What Steps are Required after Final Payment on a Land Contract?

There are several specific steps a Buyer and Seller must take after the final payment is made on a Land Contract to complete the ownership transfer process.

After the Buyer makes the final payment on the Land Contract, the Seller must convey ownership of the property to the Buyer by signing a Deed and delivering that Deed to the Buyer.

It is the Buyer’s responsibility to record the deed with the Recorder’s Office in the county where the property is located. The Recorder charges a fee for filing the Deed, and often, a transfer tax or fee must be paid based on the sale price of the property.

The Buyer and Seller have the option to enlist the services of a Title Company or Escrow Service to help with this process. While not required, these professionals can assist in recording the Deed and ensuring that the appropriate fees are paid. Information regarding recording the Deed and the costs associated with the transfer of the property are often available online from the website of the county Recorder.

Once the Deed is recorded, the Buyer becomes the titled owner of the property. The Buyer should ensure that all utilities are transferred to the Buyer’s name, that real estate taxes are paid in a timely manner, that the property is appropriately insured against loss, plus other steps generally associated with home ownership.