A quitclaim deed is a document that transfers whatever interest the owner has in their property. A person granting a transfer may not have absolute claim, or full rights, to the real estate. Quitclaim deeds are legal under Ohio law. A warranty deed is the opposite of a quitclaim deed, since it conveys clear and full title to property without any restrictions.
In the state of Ohio, a grantor – the person granting an interest in real property – should use the basic guideline regarding a quitclaim deed form provided in Section 5302.11 of the Ohio Revised Code.
The document will transfer whatever interest the grantor has to the grantee, the person to whom the property is granted. Quitclaim deeds are often used in divorce settlements to transfer property from one spouse to another.
Contents of an Ohio Quitclaim Deed Form
A quitclaim deed form should contain:
- Name of the grantor.
- Marital status of the grantor.
- County in which the grantor resides.
- Name of the grantee.
- Tax-mailing address of the grantee.
- Legal description of the land or interest described in the deed.
- Description of restrictions on the land, such as right of neighbor to obtain water from a creek.
- Reference to a prior instrument containing information on the transfer or ownership of the real property, specifically, volume number and page number of the prior instrument.
- Name of grantor's spouse, if any.
- Date, month and year that the grantor signed the document.
- Signature of the grantor.
In Ohio, a quitclaim deed does not need to be acknowledged by a notary public.
Pros and Cons of Quitclaim Deeds
If the grantor signing the quitclaim deed does not have clear or full title to the property, the quitclaim deed does not convey clear title to the property. That is the primary disadvantage of a quitclaim deed. The quality of title that the deed conveys is only whatever actual interest the grantor has to the property.
Restrictions could affect the grantee’s right to use, live on or sell the property. One type of restriction is an easement, a right of a neighbor to use the property without possessing it. For example, a neighbor could possess a right to cross the property to access a public road.
Recording a Quitclaim Deed
A grantee may record a quitclaim deed with the recorder’s office in the county where the property is located. A county recorder’s office may require the county engineer’s and the county auditor’s stamps to be on the deed in order to accept a deed by mail.
There is a fee to record a quitclaim deed, which varies by county. In Hamilton County, the fee is $34 for the first two main pages and $8 for each additional page. A property owner may sign a quitclaim deed even if they are not sure what interest they have in the property.
Fees for Quitclaim Deed Transfers
Every time a piece of real property is transferred, a transfer fee, conveyance fee and permissive fee are owed. All of these are fees for the sale of real estate. The fees apply when one party signs a quitclaim deed to grant property to another for a price, unless the transaction is exempt.
Typical Quitclaim Fees
The transfer fee is typically $.50 per parcel number (the number of parcels multiplied by $.50). The conveyance fee varies by county and is usually between $1 and $4. For example, in Franklin County, the conveyance fee is $3 per every $1,000 of the real property or manufactured home sale price. In Marion County, the conveyance fee is $4 per every $1,000.
The permissive fee varies by county and may be $3 to $4. Before a person calculates conveyance and permissive fees, they should round the sale price up to the nearest hundred dollars.
For example, if the sale price were $60,000, the conveyance fee was $1, and the permissive fee was $3, then the total conveyance fee would be $60 ($60,000 x 0.001) and the permissive fee would be $180 ($60,000 x 0.003).
Availability of Homestead Exemptions
A property is exempt from transfer and conveyance fees if the homestead exemption is in effect at the time of transfer. When a property is exempt from the conveyance fee, only the $.50 transfer fee is owed for the transfer. In Ohio, a homestead exemption is a credit on property tax bills.
Qualifying homeowners, including low-income senior citizens and residents with a permanent and total disability, can exempt up to $25,000 of the market value of their home from all local property taxes. For example, through the homestead exemption, a home with a market value of $150,000 will be taxed as if it is worth $125,000.
- Ohio Revised Code: Section 5302.11 Quitclaim Deed Form
- Hamilton County Recorder's Office, Ohio: Frequently Asked Questions
- The Law Dictionary: Quitclaim Deed
- Franklin County Auditor's Office, Ohio: Transfer Tax and Conveyance Fee Calculator
- Hamilton County Recorder's Office, Ohio: Fee Schedule - Main Office
- Ohio Department of Taxation: Real Property Tax - Homestead Means Testing
- Marion County Auditor, Ohio: Transfer Fee Calculator
Jessica Zimmer is a journalist and attorney based in northern California. She has practiced in a wide variety of fields, including criminal defense, property law, immigration, employment law, and family law.