You may or may not be aware of a lien on your home. These can be placed on your home from someone who claims you owe them money, such as an unpaid contractor or the government (for unpaid taxes). If you are not aware of any liens, when you start the process of selling your home, it will show up during the title search.
A sale cannot happen until the lien is cleared. How do I get the lien released? There are a couple of ways to release the lien. First, if the lien has already been settled, you need to show proof that it has been taken care of. Secondly, you can pay the lien immediately. If you do not have the funds at that moment, the lien can be paid out of your closing costs. The third option, is you can dispute the lien and have the court decide to release the lien without payment.
Sometimes the liens are from previous owners, but still attached to the home. In this case, the title company will call the previous owners and have them get the lien released. Again, you can go to the courts if the previous owners cannot show proof that the lien has been released and they will not pay. Unfortunately, this option can be time consuming and costly. Depending on the cost of the lien, it may just be easier for you to pay the debt.
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