The mortgage business is booming in many parts of the country. Historically low interest rates have created an almost frenzied environment with homeowners scrambling to refinance their home loans at these low interest rates. Even a few tenths of a percentage point of interest, over thirty years, can make a massive difference in the amount of interest that is ultimately paid on a loan.

For many, it makes perfect sense to take advantage of these interest rates. Besides the associated transaction fees of refinancing, there is frequently little to no downside to refinancing in times like these. However, one often overlooked consideration is the impact that refinancing your home could have on your estate plan.

When You Own Your Property In Your Name

Whether you own your real estate solely in your name or jointly with a spouse or other family member, refinancing your property has little impact on determining who will receive your interest in the property upon your death.


Continue Reading How Refinancing a Property Can Affect Your Estate Plan

Code enforcement liens that were granted “superpriority” status by a local government ordinance were held to lack priority to a prior-recorded mortgage in a recent Florida appellate court decision. City of Palm Bay v. Wells Fargo Bank, N.A., 36 Fla. L. Weekly D161 (Fla. 5th DCA January 21, 2011).

The City of Palm Bay enacted an ordinance creating its Code Enforcement Board in 1997. Under the ordinance, liens on real property created by the Board would be co-equal with state and local tax liens, and would be “superior in dignity to all other liens, titles and claims.”


Continue Reading Code Enforcement Liens Lack Priority Over Prior-Recorded Mortgages