What is The Difference Between a Deed and a Deed of Trust?

A deed is stamped, signed, and sealed.

Are you trying to determine the difference between a deed and a deed of trust before buying a home or settling on a mortgage? If so, we are here to help. We know how confusing it can be to navigate the legal world of owning or selling property. That is why we have done ample research to provide our clients with foolproof answers regarding owning a home.

A deed is a legal document that transfers property ownership between entities or people. A deed of trust is an alternative to a property mortgage that does not transfer ownership between two entities or buyers. 

We can help explain the main differences and similarities between a deed and a deed of trust regarding owning or buying property. Knowing both aspects can help a property owner figure out how to transfer a title, create a deed of trust, and identify parties involved in a trust deed.

Difference Between a Deed and a Deed of Trust

There are critical differences between a deed and a deed of trust. 

A deed of trust is used in place of a mortgage during financial transactions to transfer the title of a property to a third party. Instead of transferring ownership to another entity or individual, the deed of trust acts as a legal placeholder until a borrower can pay what they owe to the lender. 

On the other hand, a deed directly transfers ownership to a new person, meaning the right to full ownership is transferred to a new entity. Regarding a deed of trust, the borrower only obtains the equitable title and the right to ownership in the future. 

Furthermore, a deed of trust is more similar to a mortgage than a deed. A deed of trust is used for a banking or private home loan to use as collateral. A deed of trust and mortgage help create a lien on real estate by

Another difference between a deed and a deed of trust is that a deed of trust has three parties involved, whereas a deed only has two parties involved in the deal. The deed of trust involves a borrower, the trustee (the person who holds the title), and the borrower. 

In short, a deed of trust is used to obtain and secure a loan to provide a security interest. In contrast, a deed is transferring ownership to a new party. 

You might have other questions. Like, can th executor sell the house to himself? Luckily for homebuyers, we make it easy to learn more about the house sale process on our website. 

Similarities Between a Deed and Deed of Trust

A few critical similarities between a deed and a deed of trust can help you choose the right option for your home. 

A deed and deed of trust provide a person with new property ownership immediately or over time. Although the deed of trust uses a third-party system and provides a security interest first, transferring ownership to a new party is the same result as a deed. 

Furthermore, both the deed and deed of trust include similar items in terms of legality on the document, such as the names of the parties, the inception date of the agreement or start of the loan, fees, description of the property, repayment terms and conditions, clauses, and potential riders. 

But what should you do if you are trying to sell a house? We can help you with the best advice regarding selling a house in a trust — check it out! 

What’s Included in a Deed of Trust

A deed of trust includes the following in the document:

  • Late fee repayments
  • Penalties — Deeds of trust will describe when the borrower will pay the debt, prepayment charges, late charges, funds for Escrow items, and other unpaid items. The deed of trust will clarify when the lender considers the payment ‘received’. 
  • Payment applications — Deeds will describe the application of payments to the lender (the order of payments). Most deeds clarify the interest, principal, and other amounts due. 
  • Escrow — A deed describes the payment for escrow items, such as taxes, assessments, leasehold payments, rent, mortgage premiums, and other insurance premiums. 
  • Liens — A deed includes clarification regarding when the borrower should discharge the lien, payment secured by the lien, and how to satisfy the lien. 
  • Principal rate
  • Loan charges — The lender can charge the borrower fees for interest, inspection, and rights. 
  • Property insurance — The deed of trust describes the conditions in which a Lender needs insurance and the process of maintaining the insurance. 
  • Monthly payment rate
  • Interest rate
  • Restrictions on property use while under the deed of trust — The deed of trust will address occupancy, property maintenance, preservation protocol, and inspections. 
  • Property Description — A deed of trust will include a description of the property, like the number of acres, square footage, amenities, etc. 
  • Names of the parties (lender, borrower, and trustee) 

Most deeds of trust also contain a power of sale clause that allows the trustee to sell the agreed-upon property if the borrower defaults on repayment. Learn more about deeds of trust and the necessary information on how to sell a house fast in Tampa

What is a Deeds Transfer Title?

A title is a document containing the property ownership. Having the title of property includes legal ownership, control, and responsibility. 

Similarly, a title can be transferred to a new owner by a deed. The deed is the document that transfers the title to a new person through the seller, buyer, and grantor. A deed is the proof of transfer or ownership for property and real estate, usually including land or land with a building attached. 

The deeds transfer title includes a property description, signatures, and data regarding the new title of the property. Creating this title gives the new owner the right to access the property, place a mortgage on the property, use the property in any capacity, and transfer the property. 

A deeds transfer title is essential to avoid miscommunication or mishaps regarding recording property or transferring ownership. Keeping deeds transfer titles helps properties in specific countries remain looked after and in good condition. 

Other kinds of deeds crucial to know when transferring titles and ownership are deeds in lieu of foreclosure and mortgage deeds.

Homeowners may choose a deed in lieu of foreclosure to avoid draining their bank account. A deed in lieu of foreclosure transfers the title from a property owner to the mortgage lender to help pay off mortgage payments. This type of property title transfer can help owners keep the real property and avoid foreclosure.

A mortgage deed is an agreed-upon loan amount that helps a person buy a property. This mortgage loan is a smart way to begin estate planning in any state, such as Texas, Arizona, Colorado, or Maryland.

With a mortgage deed, a person can fulfill their home purchase by getting money from the bank or lender. Once the person repays their loan, they will own the home.

The key differences between a mortgage deed and a deed of trust are the planning, number of people involved, and foreclosure steps. A mortgage deed only has two parties, the homebuyer, and the bank, whereas the deed of trust has three parties. The foreclosure process includes litigation for a mortgage deed. In contrast, deeds of trust rarely have to go into the judicial system.

Cash home buyers in Florida can provide more in-depth information regarding mortgages, deeds, and trusts! 

A trustee signs a trust deed.

Who are Parties to a Trust Deed

The deed of trust features the borrower, lender, and trustee. 

  • Lender — The lender helps a trust deed move faster throughout the transfer of ownership process since it can skip the judicial system. The lender can control the property if the company never pays the loan back.
  • Borrower — Also known as the trustor or obligor. The borrower is listed on the deed of trust with the lender and trustee and listed solely alongside the lender on a mortgage. The borrower holds the title of the mortgage in most states.
  • Trustee — The third party that holds the legal title of the property and power in case the borrower defaults on payment. The trustee holds the title for a deed of trust in most states.

If you need help figuring out how to analyze a trust deed or create one for your sale, we buy houses in Orlando and can help you speed up the process. 


Understanding the differences between a deed of trust and a deed is crucial to stay updated with legal processes and changing property ownership. Knowing how it works can help current, and future homeowners avoid any confusion regarding public records, state law, and refinance options.

Homebuyers can learn the difference between a deed and a deed of trust to make smart real estate decisions. 

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