You see a piece of real estate you wish to buy. Everything looks good until your background research reveals that there is some confusion over the boundaries. Apparently, the seller and their neighbor have been arguing about it for years.
You might decide to walk away, or you could pursue a quiet title action (or insist the owner does so before you sign to buy). This is a relatively fast, cheap and straightforward way to get a definitive answer on the matter. Basically, you ask a local court to make the call. Once you have the answer you can determine whether to proceed or not.
Additional reasons that you might benefit from pursuing a quiet title action
Contested ownership: Sometimes more than one party claims they are the property owner. You need to be sure you are handing your money over to the legitimate owner so that you walk away with full ownership rights.
Liens: A lender may claim they still have a lien on the property, while the property owner claims they cleared it. It may just be a paperwork error, but you want to be sure.
Easements: These give one party the right to use a piece of land belonging to another. The use is usually very specific, such as the right to cross a specific section for access to something. Some easements transfer with the property while others expire on sale, or on a certain date. You need to be sure which it is.
Learning more about when to file a quiet title action is just one of the legal matters you may want help to carry out to ensure that a potential real estate purchase goes smoothly. Seeking legal guidance can provide you with additional clarity.