When it comes to choosing a title company, it doesn’t matter how friendly or grouchy the title examiner or title clerk is. You need to look for a title company that has the necessary resources to do the job in a timely manner. The best way to do that is to find out for how many insurers this particular company can insure. I like to work with title companies that have the ability to write insurance with more than one of the major national title insurance providers. Ask your contact at the title company who their underwriters are, and which one they prefer working with and why. You also want to ask questions regarding time frames. Ask how long it takes for them to do the title exam and how quickly they can get the title commitment to you after it is prepared so you can review it. If you don’t understand what is in that commitment, you need to have an attorney on your side review it and help you understand it.
The second important thing a title company does involves the escrow portion of their work. In simple terms, the escrow portion is when they gather all the necessary documents and all money needed to complete a transaction. This requires working with the seller, buyer, and the buyer’s lenders. Many times, those transactions are driven and controlled by the lender(s) who are funding the buyer in the acquisition of the deal. Remember, the lender is not going to put their money into the deal using the property as collateral unless they are satisfied that the quality of the title to the property and other things are satisfactory. A good lender is going to make sure the property is in good condition, is properly described in all legal records, will be vested in the name of the borrower/buyer without any other liens, and that the borrower/buyer is able to make the payments on the property.
It’s my belief that most people get confused about what a title company can do because of the coordination of all the various loose ends that have to come together through the escrow process. This can also cause confusion for the title company as well because they might be getting contradictory information from the representatives for the parties involved. That never happens, right?!
Confusion can also occur over what the lender is willing to do and permit versus what the borrower/buyer wants to do. When this happens, the lender will win 99.9% of the time.