President's Message

By: Marc Garren

Well, I think most of the cold weather is behind us and we can now look forward to being outdoors, going to the lake or beach, traveling, and just enjoying nature.  Oh wait, we have jobs and need to go to work.  At least we have the weekends.  Speaking of jobs, we are lucky to work in an industry where we all get along and are interested in doing what is best to serve our clients and customers.  It truly is a privilege to work with you all in the real estate arena.

We are very fortunate to live and work in North Carolina.  Based on various articles I have read, the demand will continue to be higher than supply as far as the housing market is concerned in 2018.  On my hour long commute to work, it seems I pass by a new subdivision every month or so.  Many people from other parts of the country are continuing to move to our state.  It is exciting that we are set up and ready to help service our new neighbor’s needs.

The Real Property industry continues to be challenged by change.  Your Legislative Committee consisting of Kim Rosenberg, Nick Long and David Ferrell continues to work hard and stay out in front of issues important to our organization.  The Bills on our radar are the Manufactured Housing Bill, where some technical corrections are needed, Notice of Settlement Act, a possible Condo curative bill, and a bill to define what exactly is purchase money when dealing with a deed of trust.  I know that I highlighted these bills in our winter newsletter, but these bills are important to our industry.  Nancy Ferguson continues to work tirelessly and could use your help and wants your help.  The Notice of Settlement Act is in the drafting stages and everyone’s input is valued, from the one person firm to the largest of firms.  Please take some time to get involved so that your voice is heard.  Contact Nancy if you are interested.

If you have never attended NCLTA’s Annual Convention, I strongly encourage you to this upcoming year.  Ben Ipock has been working hard to plan the event which will be held in the sand hills of North Carolina at the Pinehurst Resort.  Tracy Steadman has sent out the beautiful invitation and now is the time to register for the seminar and secure you reservations at the Pinehurst Resort.  Look forward to seeing you all there.   

Please let us hear from you.  We welcome your opinions on the items that present the highest priority to our membership.  If anyone has a particular strength or something they would like to help with, I am definitely open to that as well.  Also, if you have an article that you would like to submit for our newsletter please feel free to do so.  It is always challenging to find content and it would be very much appreciated.  Big thanks to Jimmica Cofield for doing a great job with our newsletter!

Thank you all for your membership in NCLTA.  If there is anything any of us can do for you please let me know.  Continued success to you all in 2018!


Membership Renewals

By: Tracy Steadman

NCLTA 2018 Membership Renewal Invoices have gone out. Also, sponsorship information for the NCLTA cocktail reception at the 2018 RPS Annual Meeting was included.  Please consider becoming a sponsor of what has become a valued tradition! As in previous years the 2017 reception was a huge success with great attendance.  As always, thank you for your membership and NCLTA will continue to work for you throughout 2018.

2018 Annual Convention

We hope that you will join us for NCLTA’s annual convention which will be held at Pinehurst Resort on September 13 - 15.  Pinehurst Resort is a beautiful place for a great weekend getaway for you and your family.  In addition to several luxury golf courses, it also includes charming shops, a spa and even croquet lessons and of course we will provide 6 hours of CLE, which includes one hour of ethics.

Click HERE for more information! 

Forms Update

By: Karl Knight

All NC Filed ALTA forms can be found here:  

As new ones are approved they will be posted 

Legislative Update

By: David Ferrell

Various lawmakers have returned to the General Assembly for interim committee work since they adjourned their last special legislative session in October 2017.  The interim is generally the time where lawmakers hash out the preliminary versions of complex legislation they plan to address in upcoming legislative sessions. Typically that would be the upcoming “short session” which begins May 2018. However, the legislature is scheduled to return to Raleigh for a January 10, 2018 special legislative session. There is currently no public agenda for the January 2018 special session, although there is speculation the legislature could consider various bills to place certain constitutional amendments on the ballot. Legislative leaders have said the January 2018 special session could last anywhere from a day to a week.

The list of items the legislature can address in January 2018 is similar to previous adjournment resolutions but no longer contains “impeachment proceedings”.  Eligible matters when lawmakers return in January include:

  • Revising the Senate and House legislative districts;
  • Revising the judicial divisions of the State, the Superior Court districts, the District Court districts, and the prosecutorial districts;
  • Revising districts for cities, counties, and other political subdivisions of the State;
  • Constitutional amendments;
  • Veto overrides;
  • Appointments or confirmations,
  • Bills responding to litigation;
  • Adoption of conference reports;
  • Bills affecting the budget;
  • Local bills that met crossover;
  • Bills relating to election laws;
  • Bills returned on or after Wednesday, June 28, 2017, to the chamber in which the bill originated for concurrence.

Interim study committees met during the first half of December 2017 to address possible policy proposals affecting education, transportation, judicial reform, healthcare, agriculture, and the environment, among other subject matters. There is a study committee appointed to study the issues surrounding the creation of a mediation and arbitration board to resolve disputes between the owners of property located in a homeowners association and the governing entities of such homeowners associations. Also, there is a study committee appointed to study dispute resolution options for local governments and owners and developers of property regarding fees and charges set by local governments for water and sewer, proper funding of infrastructure, and monitoring and properly maintaining aging water and sewer infrastructure. These two study committees have not yet held meetings, but are expected to meet in advance of the 2018 legislative session beginning in May.  

In terms of news coverage, judicial election reform has been the predominant story.  Aside from redrawing state judicial districts, which have no been changed in decades, lawmakers are also weighing options to reform how the State selects its judges.  Currently, judges are elected, but potential reforms under consideration could include merit selection of judges, with appointment by the Governor or by the legislature.  Any major changes would require a Constitutional Amendment that would go before the people on an election ballot for final approval. The Senate Select Committee on Judicial Reform and Redistricting is scheduled to meet on January 3, 2018 to potentially make recommendations for legislation to be considered in 2018.

Prepared By

David P. Ferrell, Esq. - NCLTA Lobbyist


150 Fayetteville Street, Suite 1140

Raleigh, North Carolina 27601

Telephone: (919) 573-7421

Who are You and Why are You on My Land?

By: Kit Anderson, Chicago Title

Buried in the lines of text on most standard title opinions is something that fundamentally looks like this:

In ninety percent of residential transactions the check will be next to owner.  Or maybe some other indication that the party buying the property won’t have any unexpected surprises upon closing on the largest purchase of their life.  And in the vast majority of situations, the house will be unoccupied when the moving trucks pull up.

From a title insurance perspective, insurers usually do one of two things: 1) require an affidavit from the seller, or certification from the attorney, that there are no parties with current occupancy rights to the Land; or 2) take an exception for current tenants.  In commercial situations, the latter could be specified to show the specific tenant at issue. These could be tenants under oral, written unrecorded leases, or written recorded leases.  Tenants under any of these may, and probably do, have rights that extend in their favor past the recording of a deed transferring the Land.

Your buyer/client may not be knowledgeable about rights of tenants and responsibilities of landlords in North Carolina.  As the attorney for the buyer of a residential property with an existing tenant, what is your duty to (i) advise the buyer that he will “inherit” the lease and become the landlord responsible for upholding landlord’s responsibilities under the lease, (ii) determine whether an assignment and assumption of lease should be prepared/executed/recorded, (iii) advise the buyer that he and the seller should come to an agreement about handling of the existing tenant’s security deposit that complies with Chapter 42, Article 6 of the North Carolina General Statutes, (iv) advise the buyer that he should consider some form of liability insurance, etc?

Straightforward, right? 

There are some situations that are a little more out of the ordinary, and that may require additional investigation in order to assure your client that they are getting what they expect.  As the attorney, the client may look to title insurance to remedy potential issues (if insured over), but they will definitely look to you as the party that should have properly advised and guided them on the potential impacts that tenants have on their ownership rights.

NC Vacation Rental Act – NCGS §42A

§42A-19 states, in substance, that the grantee of a deed for residential property shall take title to the land subject to the vacation rental agreement, if:

  • the agreement ends not later than 180 days after the recording of the deed
  • if the agreement is to expire more than 180 day later, the grantee under the deed must have in writing agreed to honor the terms of the agreement
  • grantee may be required to return rents and fees paid by or due to the tenant under said agreement. 

Holdover Tenants in Foreclosure

§45-21.33A states, in substance, that unless the purchaser out of foreclosure will occupy the premises as a primary residence, said purchaser takes title subject to the rights of the tenant until the shorter of the end of the term of the lease, or one calendar year from taking title.   There are some qualifications on the tenants’ rights, like relationship to the borrower, need for a written lease that is not terminable at will, and the existence of an “imminently dangerous condition.”

If the purchaser does intend to occupy the land as their primary residence, the tenant must receive a notice to vacate at least 90 days prior to the purchaser’s attempt to take possession, if the tenant has an oral or terminable at will lease.

As stated before, from a title insurance perspective we are looking to the attorney or the seller to give us the information we need so that our policy factually matches up with the situation on the land.   The client, though, is looking for what they are looking for.  If that desire is immediate possession of the land, then checking unknown on the preliminary opinion will not be good enough for them.

Message from the Editor

By: Jimmica Cofield

It has been very exciting to serve as the editor of the NCLTA newsletter.  I hope you found this edition to be beneficial and a useful tool to all its readers.  As always we appreciate your feedback.   Please submit any topics or ideas that you would like to see in an upcoming newsletter.  I continue and take pride in being an available resource for any questions that you may have about the newsletter or NCLTA.

Thank you for your membership!









Jimmica Cofield | Regional Operations Manager| Vice-President

BridgeTrust Title Group

3318 W. Friendly Avenue, 4th Floor

Greensboro, NC 27410

P: 336-544-2482 | O: 336-691-3681 | F: 800-633-8254



Editorial Committee Chair

Jimmica Cofield

Executive Staff

Tracy Steadman, Executive Director

(919) 861-5584


Carolina Update

The most recent issue of the Carolina Update newsletter issued by the North Carolina Land Title Association.

Winter 2024 

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