Question: I have owned my home in Goodyear for six years by myself. I got title insurance at the time I purchased. I recently got married and want to add my husband to the home’s title. Can I just record a quit claim deed to him? Will I still have title coverage? Who gets the home if one of us dies?
Answer: You should generally record a warranty deed rather than a quit claim deed in transferring the title to a home or other real property. If a quit claim deed is used, a title company could deny coverage under the existing title insurance policy that you have for the reason that the insured owner has transferred an interest in the home to a new owner without warranties.
If a warranty deed is used, however, for $200 or so you can get an additional insured endorsement from your title company that will add your new husband’s name as an insured under your title insurance policy. If you also want to bring the existing title insurance policy current to today’s date, a re-issue rate should be available at a cost less than the cost of a new title insurance policy.
In regard to how to take title to the home, unless you or your husband have children from a prior marriage or there is some other reason that the surviving spouse should not own a 100 percent interest in the home, the warranty deed should show that you and your husband take title to the home as community property with right of survivorship.
Note: A quit claim deed only should be used to disclaim any interest in property.