What is a Title Deed of Property? Meaning and Difference between Title and Deed

By Mayashree Acharya


Updated on: Jul 1st, 2024


3 min read

Title deeds of the lands are documents used in real estate in India. The title deeds of an immovable asset convey a person’s ownership over such an asset to the public. It helps buyers verify whether the seller of the property is the owner and has the right to sell it. The title deeds must be complete and provide all necessary information about the property to be purchased for a smooth sale transaction.

A title deed is a formal document defining how the property is inherited, owned, transferred or allotted by an authority. It includes information about how much land a person owns or the rights of a person over land. The land ownership rights of one person are transferred to another person through title deeds.

The title deeds provide information about a property, such as the owner of the property, what rights or privileges the owner has, description and location of the property. The title deeds are usually registered and deposited with the Sub-Registrar Offices in India, where the property allotment/sale transaction occurs.

Types of Title Deeds

Sale Deed

A sale deed is created while selling the property to a buyer. It is a legal document through which the property owner transfers property ownership rights to the buyer for an amount. It contains the property description, the rights transferred in it, and the amount paid by the buyer to purchase the property. It must be registered with the Sub-Registrar Office for it to be legal.

Gift Deed

A gift deed is a document through which the property owner transfers the ownership right of the property to another person out of love and affection. The property owner (known as the donor) gifts the property to a person (known as the donee), and such a person must accept the gift.

The donee does not pay any amount to the donor for the transfer of ownership rights of a property in the donee’s favour. The donee must accept the gift in the donor’s lifetime, and the gift deed of a property must be registered with the Sub-Registrar Office for it to be valid.

Mortgage Deed

Mortgage means the transfer of an interest in a property to obtain a loan advanced from a bank or financial institution. When a person takes a loan from someone, he/she must give security to the lender for assurance that in case of default in the loan repayment, the lender can recover his/her money from the security. Usually, the property is given as security for a loan.

The mortgage deed is a legal document containing the terms and conditions relating to the mortgage. It provides the lender with legal rights over the property in case of default in repayment of the loan amount. The registration of the mortgage deed is necessary for it to be legally valid. However, registration is not required in the case of a mortgage by delivery of title deeds. 

Lease/Rental Deed 

A lease deed or rent deed is executed when a person gives his/her house/building/property premises on lease or rent to another person. A lease agreement or rental agreement is an official document signed between the property owner and the tenant who takes temporary possession of the property for a defined time.

It contains the property details, the terms of the rent/lease and the amount paid for the rent/lease. The registration of a rental deed/lease deed with the Sub-Registrar Office is mandatory if the rental agreement period is more than 12 months. But, if the period of the rental agreement is within 12 months, registration is not required.

Warranty Deed

A warranty deed is a document used at the time of the sale of a property. It guarantees the buyer that the seller has the right to sell the property and the property is free of debts and liabilities. The buyer has the right to get compensation from the seller if any issues emerge.

A general warranty deed provides the maximum security for the buyer since it involves crucial guarantees or agreements transferred to the grantor. The seller’s guarantee does not cover the entire property in a special warranty deed. The seller only guarantees to the buyer the concerns that arise during the period of the seller’s ownership over the property.

Importance of Title Deeds

The title deeds of the property are crucial when trying to sell the property. The title deeds are the proof of ownership of an individual over a property. It shows that a person owns a land, a house or a flat. It also shows the encumbrances, liens or other claims on the property, if any.

A buyer will check all the title deeds, such as sale deeds, encumbrance certificates, property tax receipts, Khata certificates, etc., to check whether the owner has the right to sell the property and whether there are no liens or third-party claims over it. They also help to know if there are court judgments against the right of the owner to sell the property. Thus, it is necessary to check the title deeds of the property before purchasing it.

The seller must produce all previous documents and records about the property through which a sale deed is executed while selling a property. While registering a property, there must be a chain of documentary proof through which the property’s ownership and subsequent changes can be traced. A sale deed becomes a chain link as a title deed.

Title Deed Registration

When a person buys a property, such as land, house or flat, he/she needs to go through a formal process known as property registration to get legal ownership of the property. Even when a person wants to gift a property, a gift deed must be done by that person to transfer the ownership of the property to the other person. The gift deed and sale deed is the title deed of the property through which a person gets ownership of the property. 

The gift deed and sale deed must be registered with the Sub-Registrar Office of the area where the property is located. The sale deed or gift deed becomes a title deed when registered and acts as proof of the buyer’s ownership. Without registration, the title deed has no value, and there will be no transfer of ownership.

What is the Difference Between Property Title and Deed?


The title refers to ownership of something. It can be a title in a job or a title of a property. Titles can be held by an individual or two or more persons. Titles can also be held by organisations, companies and trusts where all parties share the title rights of responsibility and ownership.

Deeds are the means through which titles are transferred. A deed is a legal document transferring the ownership or title of a property from one individual to another individual or organisation. A deed must be signed and registered by the person transferring and the person buying the property rights or title.

Physical aspect

There are no physical documents or the physical shape of a title. It is a concept. A title is a description of a person’s ownership over something. It is a term for a person having ownership of a property. It indicates to the public the legal ownership rights of a person.

The deed is always in a physical form, mainly in the form of a document. It is a legal statement that describes the title of the property owner. When the title is transferred through a sale or gift, it must be transferred through the deed. After the purchase or gift of a property and its registration, the buyer will receive the sale deed or gift deed in a documentary form which will confer the title on the buyer.


A title is a legal right conferring the ownership rights or transfer of interest to others through a deed. It is descriptive of the property owner. It is a way of saying to others that a person owns something and has the right to use the property.

A deed is the evidence of ownership of a property or the transfer of ownership in a property. It is a legal document describing the title, i.e., a person’s ownership. A deed is a vehicle through which the title, i.e. ownership, is transferred from one person to another. 

An imperfect deed does not make a title imperfect, meaning the imperfect deed will not affect the ownership of a person. However, a defective title makes a deed invalid. If the title is defective, i.e. a person does not have ownership, the transfer of title through a deed will not be valid, and it will be considered invalid. 

Title Deed Property Search

During the purchase of a property, the buyer usually does a title search of the property. A title search is a process of searching and verifying the public records affecting the ownership/title of the property.

All records/deeds relating to the property will be searched, including sale deeds, mortgages, tax payments, wills, etc. The title examiner, usually an advocate, will determine the property’s legal owner and what debts are owed against the property after the search is complete.

The title examiner will determine if the property has a clear title, i.e., if the seller has the right to transfer/sell the property. During the sale of the property, the seller signs the sale deed, transferring the ownership/title of the property to the buyer.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the title deed of property?

The title deeds of a property are the legal documents relating to the property. They are the proof of the ownership rights of a person over the property and how the person obtained the ownership of the property. It often includes information on the transfer of ownership of the property and on how much land an individual has and their rights over that land.

How to get a title deed of the property in India?

The title deeds of a property can be obtained from the property owner. The property owner will have the title deeds of the property. It can also be obtained from the Sub-Registrar Office, where the property owner registers the property in his/her name. When the property owner has taken a loan on the property, the title deeds will be with the bank or the lender from whom the loan is obtained. 

What is the title deed of land?

A title deed of land is a legal document for evidencing the sale and transfer of land ownership in the buyer’s favour. It contains the details of the land owner, the extent of land he/she owns, and how the land owner obtained ownership over the land. 

How long does the title deed take?

It usually takes around 4-5 working days to obtain the title deeds of a property from the office of the Sub-Registrar, where the seller obtains the ownership rights over the property in his/her favour through registration of the title deeds.

Disclaimer: The materials provided herein are solely for information purposes. No attorney-client relationship is created when you access or use the site or the materials. The information presented on this site does not constitute legal or professional advice and should not be relied upon for such purposes or used as a substitute for legal advice from an attorney licensed in your state.

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I am an advocate by profession and have a keen interest in writing. I write articles in various categories, from legal, business, personal finance, and investments to government schemes. I put words in a simplified manner and write easy-to-understand articles. Read more

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