Title is really fancy legalese for “ownership.” So if you “hold title,” you’re the owner. Your ownership may be limited by the rights of someone else in the property. For example, if you finance the purchase of a car or a house, the lender has the right to take and sell the car or house if you default on the debt. This right of a creditor is called a lien.

Title to land may be subject to the rights of others beyond the lender. Where someone else has the right to cross or use a part of your property, they have an easement. Where someone else has the right to come onto your land, mine it, and then must restore it, they have a reserved mineral right. If there is a Homeowner’s Association that can impose rules on how you use the land, there are covenants, conditions and restrictions on the property.

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