Property Transfer


A deed is a document that provides evidence of transfer of interest in a property from one person to another.

A grantor is the party who gives the deed, which is usually the seller, but it could be any party with the legal authorization to perform this act, such as an executor.

A grantee is the party who receives the deed. This usually is the buyer, but it could be the devisee, the trustee, etc. A grantee does not have to sign the deed, but a grantee must accept it for the transference to be valid.

Deed restrictions, which limit the use of the property, can be enforced through legal action through the grantor, neighbor, tenant or a lender.

Generally, a deed with the following would be valid:

- The name of the grantor who has the legal authority to transfer title;

- Consideration must be recited in the deed, consideration is usually stated in monetary terms but it could also be love and affection;

- A granting clause, which include the words of conveyance;

- Habendum clause, which means to “have and to hold” and defines the ownership taken by the grantee;

- A legal description; exceptions or reservation; signature of the grantor;

- Delivery and acceptance by the grantee. 

A deed does not have to be recorded for there to be valid transference, which occurs when the deed is accepted by the grantee. 

A deed signed under duress or entered into with misrepresentation or fraud is voidable. A deed that has been forged is void.

An acknowledgment is the verification of the fact of execution or the signing of a document. It is not the verification of the content of the document that is signed. When a property is transferred, the grantor declares that he or she is signing of his or her own free will. The statement is made in front of a notary public, who verifies that the person signed of their own free will, that the identification used by the signer is acceptable, and that the signature is genuine. Most, but not all states require a deed to be acknowledged and attested before it can be recorded.

The three section of the deed are:


Habendum and


The premise contains the names of the parties, a property description, the consideration, and the granting clause. The premise may also contain “subject to” clauses and a reddendum.  Reddendum is Latin for “that which must be given back or yielded.” For example, ‘I sell you my 100-acre farm except for the cemetery, and I reserve the right to visit the family cemetery whenever I choose.’

The habendum is the middle section of the deed, which defines the extent of the interest being granted and any conditions affecting the grant. A habendum, which means “to have and to hold”, is not necessary if the granting clause is found in the deed. A granting clause shows what interests are being granted or transferred to the grantee.

The testimonium is the ending portion of the deed, which contains the signature of the grantor and the date on which it was signed. The testimonium would also contain the acknowledgment and attestation.


Testate means a person died leaving a will. Devise is the act of giving real estate through a will; the party receiving the property is the devisee. The conveyance of leaving personal property through a will is called bequest. A legatee is the person who receives the personal property. A codicil is a change in a will; it modifies or explains the will in some way.

Intestate refers to someone who has died without a will. Each state has laws of descent and distribution that receives who receives the property of a person who has died intestate. A person who receives real property from someone who has died intestate is said to have received the property by descent.

A holographic will is a hand-written will.

A nuncupative will is made in contemplation of imminent death and is called an oral deathbed will. It can only be used to transfer property and must be heard by at least two witnesses.

Probate is the process of settling the estate of the deceased. The assets and liabilities of the deceased will be identified, and their liabilities will be paid. Then, the remaining assets will be distributed according to the will if the person died testate; or by the laws of descent and distribution if the person died intestate. A will is a document that a person leaves with instructions on how the estate would be distributed upon death.


Bundle of Rights  


Government Rights  

Police Power   

Eminent domain   



Real vs Personal Property




Trade Fixture   


    OR-EE Rule   


Freehold Estate   

Fee simple absolute   

Fee simple Defeasible   

Life estate   

Less than freehold estate   

Estate for Years   

Periodic Tenancy   

Estate at will   

Estate in sufferance   

Types of Leases   

Gross lease   

Net lease   

Percentage lease   

Lease option   

Property management


Essentials of a valid contract   

Capable parties  

Lawful object   


Offer and acceptance   

Types of Contracts   

Valid, Void & Voidable Contracts   

Implied contract   

Bilateral & Unilateral contacts   

Executed & Executory   

Option contract   

Land Contract   


Types of Listings contracts   

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Exclusive Agency Listing   

Open Listing   

Net Listing   

Listings with an option   

Multiple listing service   


Universal agent   

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Attorney in fact   

Principal and Client   

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Stigmatized property   



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Federal Law   

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Fair Housing   



Sherman antitrust laws   


Easement in gross   

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Property Transfer




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Forms of ownership   

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Time Shares   

Cluster housing   



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Types of Loans   

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Construction Terms   

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