Quit Claim Deeds 


Quit Claim Deeds, Special Warranty Deeds, Rent-to-Own, Land Installment Contracts, Mortgages & More

Many people have heard the term "quit claim deed" and wonder if it is the right way to transfer real estate between family members or others for gifts of real estate (no consideration deeds).  

Flat Fee Deeds

Deeds Prepared in most Maryland counties for a Reasonable Flat Fee!

- Spousal Deeds

- Parent / Child Deeds

- Inheritance Deeds

- Personal Representative Deeds

- LLC Deeds (Deeds into or out of LLC or corporation)

- Power of Attorney / Agent / Attorney-in-Fact Deeds

- Revocable Trust / Trustee Deeds

Arden Law Firm can retrieve your existing deed and tax account information, prepare a new deed, necessary affidavits and county intake paperwork, arrange for notarizing and witnessing in our Crownsville office and coordinate stamping and recording for a flat fee ($225 - $250 plus any gov't fees/taxes)

Private Party Mortgages (Deeds of Trust and Promissory Notes) also available for Sellers holding a note and in certain family transactions. 

Did you know?  A quit claim deed often leaves out necessary language but is not necessarily cheaper to prepare!  Arden Law Firm prepares most any kind of deed (including quit claim deeds) for a reasonable flat fee - call 410-216-7000 to see if the firm can help with your deed.  For a flat fee of $240 - $250 in most cases (plus governmental recording fees) the firm can in most circumstances have an attorney prepared deed ready for signature in 2-4 business days. 

In most cases a true " Quit Claim Deed"  is rarely the best choice.  In fact, the person giving over the property isn't confirming that they own whatever they are deeding!  In some limited circumstances, quit claims may suffice but generally if the person giving away the property clearly owns it, other options should be explored.  A Grantor (the person giving away property) might not want to give full warranties when no money changes hands, there are usually better ways to structure a deed. 

Parent/Child Deeds

Q:  Should we add an adult child to the deed?   

Q:  What are the pros/cons of adding someone to the deed?   

Q:   How do I add my son or daughter to title?  Are there taxes involved?

A:  All these are great questions and the best solution for you will depend on your specific circumstances.   However generally speaking it is NOT a good idea to simply "add" someone to a deed without careful planning.  A variety of taxes and other complications can come into play.  The recipient may wind up paying thousands more in capital gains tax if the deed is not set up properly.  Additionally, if a child gets into financial difficulty or gets sued in an automobile accident, the house you "added" your child onto may be seized and sold by creditors. 

Ask Arden Law Firm about life estate deeds (or enhanced life estate deeds) which have many of the benefits of seamless transfer without probate but don't carry many of the risks of a traditional deed.  Adequate planning shouldn't cost an arm and a leg!  Arden Law offers regular deeds and enhanced life estate deeds starting at a reasonable $240 which includes meeting with you, preparing the deed, witnessing, preparing land intake sheets and coordinating recording.  Clients pay any gov't recording costs.  

Spousal Deeds

Adding a spouse to the deed? Removing an ex-husband or wife from title?  Spousal deeds can generally be prepared quickly and without a full title examination.  A husband can add his wife or a wife can add her husband without triggering transfer or recordation tax.   Additionally deeds pursuant to a divorce decree or separation agreement where one spouse is staying on title may also qualify for an exemption from tax.

Personal Representative Deeds / Estate Deeds

Q:  I am the Personal Representative - how do I deed the property over to the heirs? 

A:   If an estate has already been opened, you need to do a Personal Representative Deed.  You should have the death certificate and Estate letters in hand.

If you need to transfer property from a decedent (someone who died) you'll likely need a Personal Representative's Deed.  In some cases, deeds are set up to automatically transfer the property on someone's death (like in cases of Joint Tenancy or Life Estate Deeds).  However, if the property is only in the name of the person who died it requires an estate deed from the PR (Personal Representative) to give the inherited property.  Arden Law Firm helps with estate / inheritence deeds for a flat fee of $250 - $300 (where an estate is already set up).  Note that an estate needs to already be opened up before the Personal Representative can sign the deed. (Arden Law Firm can also help opening up an estate or assisting the Personal Reprsentative with court filings)

Revocable Trust Deeds

Q:  We have a revocable trust - how do we deed property into the Trust?

A:   The current owners (individuals) will need to deed over the property to the Trustees.  Maryland law offers a specific statutory exemption so that this type of transaction no longer is subject to possible transfer/recordation tax.  When Arden Law Firm prepares a deed into or out of a revocable trust we make sure the necessary language is present.  

Q:  Should we hold our house in a revocable trust? 

A:   A revocable trust can be a useful estate planning tool in some (but by no means all) situations.  Before a house can be held in trust (technically in the name of the Trustee), the Trust instrument needs to be created.  There are pros to holding real estate in trust.  In Maryland, this will avoid the need to pass the property through probate.  Moreover, in most cases the person(s) creating the trust can still get benefits for their principal residence, even if it is technically in the trust name.   However, a trust does not solve all problems and may not be the best approach in every situation.  If you don't yet have a trust, you may wish to sit down with an attorney to see what estate planning makes the most sense for your particular situation.

Power of Attorney Deeds

Q:  I am an agent under my mother's power of attorney - how can I sell her property?

A:   If an agent has a valid power of attorney in hand, the agent can take any action the Principal would take.  However, this may not allow a deed to the agent him/herself.  The attorney-in-fact must act in his/her fiduciary capacity, meaning they must look out for the interests of the Principal, not themselves.  When a power of attorney is used, it must also be recorded in Land Records.  

Q:  What needs to go into a deed?

A: Several things need to go into a Maryland deed. A deed needs to specify the proper type of grant, provide an adequate description of the property, spell out how the grantees will hold title (options include individually, joint tenants, tenants in common or tenants by the entireties) and may be either a special or general warranty deed (or in some cases a non-warranty deed).   If an exemption is claimed (from transfer/recordation tax), additional language may need to be included. 

DID YOU KNOW?  By law, Maryland deeds must also contain a certification that they were prepared by a licensed Attorney or a party to the transaction.   A non-attorney cannot draw up a deed unless they are one of the parties.  

Call for a no-cost intial consult of up to ten (10) minutes to discuss your particular deed planning needs in Maryland. 

  • Anne Arundel County Deeds $240 for standard deed, $240 for life estate deed (same day processing often available)  (note: properties within city limits of Annapolis city require an extra processing step and gov't fee which adds $65 to the base deed price).
  • Baltmore City Deeds  $240 for standard deed, $240 for life estate deed (Baltimore City deeds require an extra processing step and gov't fee which adds $75-$110 to base deed price.  Anne Arundel County properties with a Baltimore address are exempt from tis step.) 
  • Harford County Deeds (Harford County deeds require an extra processing step and gov't fee which adds $65 to the base deed price. Deeds in certain municipalities may have an additional town/city fee)
  • Howard County Deeds  (may require an extra governmental charge for some but not all deeds)
  • Prince George's County Deeds   (note: PG County deeds involve an extra processing step which adds $35- $40 to base deed price)  
  • Montgomery County Deeds $240 for standard deed 

Most of the time the firm can prepare deeds and have them ready for signature in 2-3 business days (in some cases faster). 

 Note: although the law firm will record deeds promptly after they are signed, standard filing at the various government offices may on occasion run several weeks for each Clerk to complete and forward to the next office.  (As of Jan. 2017, PG county government has experienced backlog and delays in processing) We can engage a courier to provide rush hand-walk throughs in most counties (except PG) where requested.  

How much does a Deed Cost?

Arden Law Firm offers attorney prepared deeds from $225, life estate deeds or corporate / LLC deeds for $240 and Personal Representative deeds for $250. Corrective or Confirmatory Deeds may also be available.   

This flat fee includes an attorney retrieving your existing deed from Land Records, retrieving the current property tax account, preparing the deed, witnessing / notarizing at the law firm, preparing the Intake Sheet, coordinating stamping / recording and filing in Land Records.  If an exemption from transfer/recordation tax exists, preparing the associated Affidavit is included.   Most deeds must go to 3-4 different government offices for review/stamping before they are accepted for filing.  

All Maryland deeds also incur a state recording fee of $60 paid to the county.  Depending on the county, there may also be a required municipal lien release fee paid to the city/county.  These fees do not include any taxes.   Some types of deeds (such as spousal deeds, parent-to-child deeds, sibling-to-sibling deeds and deeds to or from a revocable trust) may be exempt from transfer / recordation tax. In some cases a county may impose tax even if statutorily exempt from state tax.   In other cases, tax is based on the amount of consideraton, which may include all money changing hands plus the balance of any assumed mortgage.

How can I get a copy of my deed? 

Need to get a COPY of an already filed deed?   Arden Law provides FREE copies of any deed the firm has prepared to our clients, no matter how many years have passed!  For all other MD deeds, we can retrieve copies of most Maryland deeds for $15 (including postage) and turn-around in less than 24 hours or one business day!   (there is no cost to retrieve a current deed if the firm will be preparing a new deed)

Word of Caution:  Did you get a letter about getting an official copy of your deed?  Some companies send mass letters suggesting that a homeowner must pay $80 - $90 to get a copy of their Maryland deed.  However, you do not need to pay!   You can get an almost FREE COPY of your deed from the county courthouse / Land Records office if you have the time and know-how (the clerk's office charges $1-$2 in copying costs if you physically go to the Land Records, research the deed yourself and print it out).  We regularly retrieve AA County Land Records as well as Land Records from surrounding counties like PG County, Howard County, Baltimore County and Baltimore City.   

Our firm can research your deed and send you an electronic copy for $15 for the first deed (add $3 if you prefer mail delivery) or if you have a number of deeds, only $12 per additional deed.  If you need a CERTIFIED copy (very rarely are certified copies needed outside of court proceedings), the clerk will charge an additional fee to certify the deed. 

Q: Is there any type of deed you don't handle?

A:  While the firm handles many types of deeds, it does not prepare domestic partnership deeds or deeds to/from a live-in boyfriend/girlfriend.  Such deeds may require further documentation to be exempt from transfer/recordation tax. You may find other Maryland real estate attorneys are skilled with those types of deeds.

© ArdenLawFirm 2014-2018  Managing Attorney Cedulie Laumann, Esq.