Deed of Trust vs. Mortgage: Understanding the Difference
Many people use the terms deed of trust and mortgage interchangeably, but the truth is that they are not the same thing. A mortgage is a loan given by a lender to a borrower that is secured by a lien on real property owned by the borrower. The borrower can repossess the property if the borrower fails to make payments on the loan. A deed of trust is a document that is signed by the borrower that places the title to the property with a third party, known as the trustee. The trustee has the authority to take possession of the property and sell it to satisfy the loan if the borrower defaults.
Role of a Deed of Trust in Real Estate
Imagine you’re building a sandcastle. You (the borrower) need materials, so you approach a friend (the lender) for a bucket of sand. But wait, you don’t just hand over your prized seashell (property title) to your friend; instead, you give it to a trustworthy teacher (the trustee).
If you can’t repay the bucket of sand, the trustee might have to find someone else to finish your sandcastle, ensuring the lender doesn’t get all the seashells. This arrangement keeps things fair and prevents anyone from making a run for the shoreline.
Key Elements of a Deed of Trust
- Trustor: You, the borrower, kicking off the real estate adventure.
- Trustee: The reliable guardian of your seashell, ensuring everyone plays by the rules.
- Lender: Your friend with the bucket of sand, helping you build your dreams.
- Note: The IOU, a promise to repay that bucket of sand over time.
- Deed of Trust: The conductor’s baton, guiding the orchestra and ensuring harmony.
- Reconveyance Clause: The finale, stating that once the sandcastle is complete (loan repaid), the trustee releases the seashell back to you.