What’s The Difference? Standard vs Enhanced Title Insurance

So you’ve (wisely) decided to purchase title insurance. Now you’re faced with the decision of purchasing the “standard” policy, or the slightly meatier “enhanced” policy.

Of course, some coverage is always better than no coverage, that’s a no-brainer. But for a few bucks more, the headaches you’ll potentially avoid are worth their weight in gold.

So what additional coverage can you expect when purchasing the “enhanced” policy?

Well, for starters, it’s important to have an understanding of ownership of the property. On a standard policy, those joint owners, tenants in common, or sole owner that initially took out the policy at the time of the closing transaction are covered for as long as they are alive. But, then you bump that policy up to “enhanced”, that coverage is now extended to anyone who inherits the title from the insured, as well as to a spouse who is awarded title in a divorce.

So now that we understand WHO is covered, let’s look behind Door #1 to see what added benefits and coverage you’re afforded with the “enhanced” policy:

  • Zoning coverage which ensures that you’re in the proper zone for a 1-4 family residential property.
  • Coverage in the event you’re required to move an existing structure on the property due to a previous owner’s failure to obtain a permit.
  • Post-closing forgeries (such as identity theft) that protect your ownership interest.
  • Ensures you will have physical access for both vehicles and pedestrians to/from your home.
  • Additionally extends coverage to not only those originally named on the policy, but also the ex-spouse in a divorce should they be awarded the property, as well as heirs in the event of inheritance of the property.

So make sure when you’re purchasing a property and deciding on if/what title insurance coverage is best for you, that you keep in mind that a home is one of the most expensive and important decisions that you will make in your lifetime. Appropriate and careful thought and consideration should be taken to make the choice that best fits your needs.