"Functions of a Title Company"
What is Title Company & What Do They Do?"
A title company helps to ensure that components of your real estate transaction are legal and problem-free. Through research, insurance and careful coordination, they make sure that the title to a piece of property is transferred legally and correctly from the seller to the buyer. Title companies play several key roles in common real estate transactions.
Title companies generally act as the combined agent of the insurance company, the buyer, the seller, and any other parties related to a real estate transaction, such as mortgage lenders. The title company reviews title, issues insurance policies, facilitates closings, and files and records paperwork. Title companies protect real estate transactions by taking care of three important tasks for home buyers and sellers: conducting a title search, issuing title insurance, and serving as the escrow office and closing agent for the transaction.
How Do You Pick a Title Company?
Ask your real estate agent, peers who have recently bought a home or your lender for recommendations for a title company. Then, do your homework on the title companies recommended.
Look for a title company that has years of experience doing this (have they done hundreds or even thousands of these kinds of transactions?). Contact the Better Business Bureau to determine whether the company has any complaints against it.
You should also shop around for the best premium rates in your area; if you buy an owner’s title insurance policy, make sure you get one with as few exclusions as possible and that it covers the full purchase price of the home.
When Do You Meet With the Title Company and How Often?
You may meet with or talk to an agent from the title company on multiple occasions. First, you may decide to meet with a few agents from title companies before you buy your home to help you decide which company to go with.
If the title company maintains an escrow account for you, the agent may reach out to you to provide details on that account or you may contact him with questions.
If your title company handles your closing, you will meet with a settlement agent in person then. At this time, the settlement agent will explain all the documents related to the settlement before you sign anything. And, of course, if something goes wrong with regards to the title, you will likely meet with one of their agents then.
Consumers should feel free to contact their title company at any time to get answers to their questions on title searches, title abstracts, title insurance, escrow accounts or closings.
One way to help ensure that you actually hold ownership of a property is to insure the title. Without it, the cost of defending a title claim would be quite high. In order to improve your chances against such claims, you should consider working with a real estate attorney experienced in such actions.