What do a hurricane, a tornado and a redneck divorce have in common?
Somebody’s fixin’ to lose a mobile home!
That joke may be attributable to Jeff Foxworthy, Lewis Grizzard or some other Southern comedian. Regardless, a large number of South Carolinians lost mobile homes during the economic downturn, most often as a result of foreclosures rather than the disasters in the joke. Foreclosures uncover title issues that lead to title insurance policy claims. Because our office continues to see mobile home claims on almost a weekly basis, this reminder might be in order for residential real estate practitioners.
When sales and mortgages of real estate including mobile homes are closed, titles to the mobile homes should be retired, and ALTA 7 series endorsements should be issued.
If a title examination reveals a recorded Manufactured Home Affidavit for Retirement of Title Certificate, it is advisable to request from the Department of Motor Vehicles a letter confirming that the title has been placed on the DMV’s list of retired vehicles.
If no Manufactured Home Affidavit has been filed locally, then follow our statutory process to retire the title. The Affidavit requires the owner to:
- install the home on the real property;
- remove the wheels, axles and towing hitch;
- attach proof of ownership (the deed);
- attach a copy of the certificate of occupancy; and
- pay the recording fee.
Surrendering the certificate of title to the DMV requires:
- a filed copy of the Manufactured Home Affidavit from the ROD;
- the original certificate of title with either releases of liens or consents of secured parties;
- a copy of the most recent tax receipt for the manufactured home; and
- payment of the DMV fee.
When the title is retired, it is safe to issue an ALTA 7 series endorsement. Your title company will appreciate compliance with these guidelines.
And here’s a practice tip. Our former boss, Nancy Booco, always said, “If it looks like a mobile home, it probably is one.”