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The Title Report is the title insurance industry’s premier source of market intelligence on issues that matter to today’s title agent and settlement services professional. It provides up-to-the-minute, nationwide reporting on title insurance, settlement services, e-commerce and title technology, real estate market trends, fraud reports, ratings actions and earnings reports, mergers and acquisitions, niche markets, competitive business strategies and regulatory and legislative updates.


 

 

Report: Refinances increased as mortgage rates dippedOpen in a New Window

The percentage of refinance loans inched up slightly in October as interest rates dipped to a new 2017 low.

 

Pavaso, eOriginal partner to offer ‘fully’ digital post closeOpen in a New Window

With its partnership with eOriginal now in place, Pavaso said it has completed the final steps of its online mortgage process and now can offer “fully” digital post closings.

 

Realogy releases third-quarter earningsOpen in a New Window

During the third quarter, Realogy Holdings Corp.’s Title Resource Group had an increase in both purchase units and its average fee per closing unit. However, a large decrease in refinance units completed during the quarter drove the group’s revenue down.

 

BOA: Small-business owners more optimisticOpen in a New Window

America’s small-business owners are more optimistic about the national and global economies than they were one year ago, according to a survey by Bank of America.

 

Weichert Title Group adds vice presidentOpen in a New Window

Weichert Title Group has hired a former Stewart state sales manager to lead its New Jersey sales team.

 

Notarize expands offeringsOpen in a New Window

Notarize has expanded its digital platform with new services that help title agents and lenders connect and serve buyers and sellers online.

 

Mortgages delinquencies on the declineOpen in a New Window

The percentage of loans 30 days or more past due and the foreclosure inventory rate both dropped during August.

 

The Closing Exchange acquires two companiesOpen in a New Window

The Closing Exchange has acquired two businesses it believes will help it transform the signing services business for the mortgage, title and settlement, reverse mortgage, auto lending, and timeshares industries.

 

Meridian names sales managerOpen in a New Window

Meridian Title Corp. has named a regional sales manager who will lead its northern Indiana and southwest Michigan sales teams.

 

Signature Closers, Pavaso partnerOpen in a New Window

As a result of its partnership with Pavaso, Signature Closers now can provide digital closings as well as traditional closings. .

 

Qualia expands geographic reachOpen in a New Window

Qualia’s real estate closing platform is now available in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

 

Women-owned businesses doubled in past 20 yearsOpen in a New Window

The number of businesses owned by women in the U.S. doubled from 1997 to 2017, according to a report commissioned by American Express OPEN.

 

Title industry ‘cornerstone’ of Detroit’s revitalizationOpen in a New Window

The city of Detroit owns about 25 percent of all properties in the Motor City. The Detroit Land Bank Authority has the monumental task of selling these abandoned, often vacant properties and returning them to the tax rolls.

 

Stewart appoints division presidentOpen in a New Window

Stewart Title has hired a former Fidelity executive who served that company for more than two decades in six different northern California counties. The new division president will oversee Stewart’s daily operations San Francisco, Marin and Sonoma counties and be responsible for the company’s top-line growth.

 

Blogging service for title agents launchedOpen in a New Window

A Florida-based company that provides turn-key marketing solutions and websites for title agents and law firms across the country has launched a blogging service. 


 

ReverseVision integrates Premier Reverse ClosingsOpen in a New Window

ReverseVision has integrated Premier Reverse Closings’ title services into its loan origination system. 


 

Home purchasing sentiment dipsOpen in a New Window

The net share of Americans who believed October was a good time to buy or sell a home declined. 

 

Percentage of distressed sales downOpen in a New Window

Although the percentage of distressed sales declined during the third quarter, they remain high in several pockets of the nation.

 

Industry reacts to Cordray’s resignationOpen in a New Window

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and its inaugural Director Richard Cordray have been a lightning rod for critics for years. With Cordray’s announced departure, the industry’s focus likely will switch to speculation on who President Donald Trump will appoint to replace him and the bureau’s structure.

 

Analysis: MID change won’t just affect luxury homesOpen in a New Window

The housing industry has expressed its concern over changes in House and Senate tax bills that would affect the incentives for homeownership. Although many wondered about a tax break that appeared to be targeted to luxury homes of more than $500,000, the impact of the proposal could have a much wider reach than anticipated.

 

Stewart releases third-quarter earningsOpen in a New Window

Stewart Information Services Corp. said business disruptions caused by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma had a $4 million adverse impact on its pretax profits during the third quarter.

 

ATG hires CIOOpen in a New Window

Attorneys’ Title Guaranty Fund, Inc. (ATG) has selected an accomplished director of information technology in the title insurance industry to serve as senior vice president and chief information officer.

 

First International increases staffOpen in a New Window

First International Title has announced additions to its staff at two Florida locations.

 

RamQuest integrates PropLogixOpen in a New Window

A new integration will enable RamQuest customer’s to order PropLogix’s closing due diligence services without leaving the RamQuest solution.

 

ePN expands eRecording networkOpen in a New Window

During August, September and October, eRecording Partners Network added 29 jurisdictions to its eRecording network.

 

Analyst says 1 option makes sense for StewartOpen in a New Window

Following the release of its third quarter earnings report, Stewart Information Services Corp. announced it is reviewing alternatives which include a possible sale of the company or a merger. An analyst from Kroll Bond Rating Agency told The Title Report there was one combination that made the most sense for Stewart.

 

Old Republic names executive vice presidentOpen in a New Window

Old Republic National Title Insurance Co. has promoted a company veteran and brought him onto its executive leadership team. The newest member of the company’s executive leadership team joined Old Republic in 2010 and has served in various capacities, including overseeing the company’s operations in Texas, Oklahoma and New Mexico.

 

Wire fraud prevention platform launchedOpen in a New Window

The owners of a Michigan title agency which experienced an $180,000 wire fraud breach in 2015 have developed a platform designed to prevent others involved in the real estate process from experiencing the same problem. The platform was introduced at the National Settlement Services Summit in San Antonio in June.

 

Tennessee title company adds processorOpen in a New Window

Rochford Law & Real Estate Title has hired a title processor to assist with various transactions.

 

TitleVest hires sales executiveOpen in a New Window

TitleVest has hired a sales executive who will serve as a policy-issuing agent for all major underwriters.

 

eTitle links with QualiaOpen in a New Window

A new integration will enable Qualia users to access eTitle’s services.

 

Old Republic's title group continues 'record' paceOpen in a New Window

Revenue and profits from Old Republic’s title group are on a ‘record’ pace through the first nine months of 2017. Old Republic achieved improved third quarter numbers despite Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, which the company said caused a two-week disruption in Texas and one week in Florida.

 

NAR: Proposed tax reform equals middle-class tax increaseOpen in a New Window

The much-anticipated tax reform package released by the House Republicans last week will undoubtedly undergo many revisions. The National Association of Realtors is giving the initial proposal a thumbs down.

 

Mid America, NASCAR partner to promote new digital platformOpen in a New Window

Mid America Mortgage, Inc. has launched a new digital mortgage approval and closing platform that promises to help borrowers reach the closing table in less than half the time of a traditional mortgage process. To promote its new platform, the company has partnered with NASCAR and the iconic race team Richard Petty Motorsports.

 

Omni Title adds escrow officerOpen in a New Window

Omni Title LLC has a commercial title and escrow officer with more than 25 years of experience.

 

New service protects escrow securityOpen in a New Window

PCN Network’s Safe Escrow now includes a service that confirms payoff accounts and authenticates payees for outbound wires.

 

QuestSoft, Specialized Data Systems integrateOpen in a New Window

QuestSoft and Specialized Data Systems have partnered to provide end-to-end digital mortgage compliance, both companies announced.

 

Investors Title sets quarterly recordOpen in a New Window

Low interest rates and rising home prices helped Investors Title Co. set a quarterly record for revenues and net premiums written. The earning Investors Title generated during the third quarter was the second highest in the company’s history.

 

Old Republic expands executive leadership teamOpen in a New Window

Old Republic National Title Insurance Co. has brought one of its veteran team members onto its executive leadership team as an executive vice president. The newest member of Old Republic’s executive team has served as a member of the company’s National Leadership Team on its Agency Committee for nearly four years.

 

Report: No housing bubble in sightOpen in a New Window

A new report predicts housing markets throughout the nation will remain strong through the end of 2018, with home prices continuing to climb. The report suggests concerns about home prices which have hit new peaks in several areas are overblown.

 

AmTrust hires Michigan representativeOpen in a New Window

AmTrust Title Insurance Co. has hired a First American Title Insurance executive to serve as its Michigan representative.

 

Entrust names national sales directorOpen in a New Window

Entrust Solutions has selected a former managing partner of Landtech Data Corp. as its national sales director. Read on for more details.

 

ComplianceEase integrates PathSoftwareOpen in a New Window

PathSoftware has integrated ComplianceEase’s automated compliance solution with its cloud-based mortgage loan origination software.

 

First American posts improved numbersOpen in a New Window

The continued rise of home prices throughout the country was one of the factors that helped First American Financial Corp. post improved third quarter earnings. The company’s CEO said orders are up in October and that he’s optimistic about the fourth quarter.

 

AmTrust expands in TexasOpen in a New Window

AmTrust Title Insurance Co. has moved its Texas corporate offices into a skyscraper in downtown Houston. A company vice president said the company’s business is “vibrant and growing” in Houston and the additional space was needed to accommodate continued business expansion throughout Texas.

 

Stewart, Ellie Mae partnerOpen in a New Window

Stewart’s title and settlement services are now available through Ellie Mae’s all-in-one mortgage management solution.

 

Home prices peak againOpen in a New Window

Although the rate of appreciation is slowing, nationwide home prices peaked in August for the 64th straight month.

 

Percentage of vacant properties decreasesOpen in a New Window

Nationwide, the share of vacant properties decreased.

 

Gateway Mortgage selects TRKOpen in a New Window

The Gateway Mortgage Group has selected TRK Connection’s Insight Risk & Defect Management platform to conduct its internal quality control audits.

 

FNF details end-to-end tech platformOpen in a New Window

The hurricanes that devastated Texas and Florida residents also caused major disruptions for title industry and real estate professionals in those states. Even so, Fidelity National Financial, Inc.’s FNF Group posted third quarter earnings that included increases in revenues, profits and earnings per share.

 

New home sales near 10-year highOpen in a New Window

The Census Bureau reported that the number of new single-family homes sold during September reached its highest level since October 2007. An official with the National Association of Realtors told The Title Report that any new supply, especially affordable housing for first-time buyers, is being immediately purchased.

 

Nationwide launches document custody solutionOpen in a New Window

Nationwide Title Clearing has introduced a new document custody solution that includes research and mediation components. The solution retrieves missing documents wherever they’re located and assists with curing any assignment and endorsement exceptions. 


 

Chicago title agency hires underwriterOpen in a New Window

A Chicago-area title agency has hired a former Chicago Title Insurance Co. executive to serve as a commercial underwriter.


 

Simplifile adds 31 jurisdictionsOpen in a New Window

Simplifile has added 31 recording jurisdictions throughout the country to its eRecording platform. 


 

QuestSoft integrates LoanScorecardOpen in a New Window

QuestSoft has integrated LoanScorecard’s automated underwriting and compliance solutions into its compliance software platform. 

 

Thomas Title names COOOpen in a New Window

Thomas Title has recruited a former managing director at Greystar Real Estate Partners to serve as its chief operating officer and general counsel. 


 

Ellie: Refinances rise as rates dipOpen in a New Window

Ellie Mae’s latest Origination Insight Report found that the percentage of refinance loans increased in September as interest rates dropped to their lowest levels of 2017.

 

 


 

Realogy announces succession planOpen in a New Window

Realogy Holdings Corp.’s longtime Chairman and CEO Richard A. Smith is scheduled to retire at the end of the year. 


 

Westcor hires commercial examinerOpen in a New Window

Westcor Land Title Insurance Co. has hired a senior commercial examiner who has been in the industry since 1995. 


 

AtClose adds eClosing capabilitiesOpen in a New Window

Visionet Systems has added eClosing capabilities to its AtClose title, settlement and appraisal platform.


 

Average closing costs nearly $5,000Open in a New Window

Closing costs vary greatly from city to city, with borrowers paying more than $12,000 in Washington, D.C. and less than $3,000 in several Indiana cities. 


 

Stewart closes for borrower halfway around the worldOpen in a New Window

As executives for Stewart Information Services gathered in Denver for the Mortgage Bankers Association annual convention, the company made a pair of announcements highlighting its technological push forward. The first came in the eClosing space, where Chief Information Officer Brad Rable discussed the company’s first digital closing involving a seller stationed overseas.

 

Beige Book: Hurricanes disrupted economic sectorsOpen in a New Window

Despite problems caused byHurricanes Harvey and Irma, the Federal Reserve reported modest to moderate growth from September through early October. Throughout the country, real estate contacts reported that low housing inventories continue to hamper sales, as home prices continue to rise.

 

Accurate Group launches eNotary solutionOpen in a New Window

Accurate Group has launched a new eNotary solution that enables lenders to offer customers a full spectrum of eClosing options. The solutions platform is compliant with the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act and the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act, and can be combined with Accurate’s eSign solution to deliver a complete eClosing experience.

 

Housing starts declineOpen in a New Window

Labor shortages and delays caused by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma likely caused a decline in housing starts during September. First American Chief Economist Mark Fleming provided analysis of the report.

 

Reli Settlement names underwriting counselOpen in a New Window

Reli Settlement Solutions has added an underwriting counsel to help the company expand its commercial title underwriting capabilities.

 

Foreclosures holding steadyOpen in a New Window

The percent of mortgages in some stage of delinquency during July 2017 showed a year-over-year decline but a slight increase from the previous month.

 

Redfin expands into IllinoisOpen in a New Window

The real estate brokerage that includes the title and settlement company Title Forward has expanded its mortgage operation into Illinois. The company now offers loans in Illinois and Texas and expects to expand into Virginia by the end of the year. 

 

Title insurance portal launched in PennsylvaniaOpen in a New Window

A new company is providing a price-comparison service for title insurance and settlement services for consumers making home transactions in Pennsylvania.

 

eClosing initiated through Equity National’s portalOpen in a New Window

A Massachusetts credit union recently used Equity National Title’s eClosings portal to identify a county in Florida where a fully electronic closing was possible and then a loan applicant interested in the service.

 

The Closing Agent adds VPOpen in a New Window

The Closing Agent, Inc. has added a vice president who has both domestic and international experience in the title industry.

 

CATIC relocates officeOpen in a New Window

CATIC has moved its eastern Massachusetts office to a location closer to the metro Boston area.

 

LoanScorecard adds managing directorOpen in a New Window

LoanScorecard has recruited a former managing director at Hudson Advisors/Lone Star Funds.


 

President of ValuAmerica parent steps downOpen in a New Window

As part of a restructuring of its Services business, the Radian Group Inc. has eliminated the position of president at its wholly owned subsidiary Clayton Holdings LLC and announced the pending departure of Jeff Tennyson.

 


 

Michigan title agency expands leadership teamOpen in a New Window

A Michigan title agency with nearly 80 employees has expanded its executive leadership team with the addition of a chief operations officer, a controller and a human resource manager.

 

  


 

New president details ALTA’s goalsOpen in a New Window

The American Land Title Association’s (ALTA) new president said that among the goals he has for the next year is encouraging the association’s members to embrace innovation and providing more cyberawareness information.

 

 


 

TitleTap introduces customer loyalty programOpen in a New Window

TitleTap’s new program allows customers to periodically upgrade their website with the company’s latest design templates. 


 

Assurant hires national sales directorOpen in a New Window

Assurant Mortgage Solutions has hired a national sales director to focus on growing the company’s title and origination valuations product lines. 


 

Pavaso partners with Texas law firmOpen in a New Window

Pavaso will integrate the technology of a Texas law firm into its digital closing platform. 


 

A.M. Best bullish on title industryOpen in a New Window

Citing a fifth consecutive year of favorable underwriting performance, A.M. Best is maintaining a stable outlook on the title insurance sector.

 

Digital lending platform selects CEOOpen in a New Window

A former Ellie Mae chief operating officer has joined a digital lending platform company as its CEO. The company’s founder and chairman said the new CEO has a superior knowledge of the mortgage lending landscape and had helped countless lenders adopt technology to improve efficiency and compliance. 


 

New version of REDS set to be releasedOpen in a New Window

Real Estate Data Shield is set to launch an updated version of its compliance and information security solution. The newest version of the company’s web-based course addresses cyber fraud, wire fraud, identity theft, phishing emails, spoof emails, ransomware, social engineering attacks, etc. 


 

Foreclosures dip to 11-year lowOpen in a New Window

Nationwide foreclosure activities declined significantly during the third quarter. 


 

Real estate brokerage names VPOpen in a New Window

Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Homesale Realty has named a regional vice president. 


 

Home prices inch upwardOpen in a New Window

The housing stock in 34 percent of the country’s 100 largest metropolitan areas was overvalued as of August 2017. 


 

Texas up-and-comer adds execs, officesOpen in a New Window

A Dallas-based, full-service title company has expanded its executive team and opened two new offices. The company has hired a former Republic Title executive to oversee a new office in Dallas, and a former Stewart executive to lead a new operation in Plano, Texas.

 

Midwestern title group launches informational websiteOpen in a New Window

A Midwestern title group has launched an informational website that it said will provide homeowners with straightforward information about the home buying process. The company’s president said the website will positively impact the closing process through information and support. 


 

Report: Millennials not deterred by higher ratesOpen in a New Window

Neither higher mortgage rates nor summer temperatures deterred millennial homebuyers during August, according to a report from Ellie Mae.

 

Stewart adds agency integration managerOpen in a New Window

Stewart Title Agency Services has hired an agency integration manager who has 23 years of experience managing integration processes in the industry. 


 

ResWare integrates SmartCLOSEOpen in a New Window

ResWare’s integration of SmartCLOSE enables title agents to collaborate with lenders directly within ResWare. 


 

MORE Lending implements LoanScorecardOpen in a New Window

MORE Lending’s latest implementation will enable the company to instantly distribute the guidelines and pricing for their non-agency loan programs to third-party originators. 


 

WFG announces major realignment changesOpen in a New Window

As part of the realignment of its Agency Division, WFG National Title Insurance Co. has added a senior vice president and changed the responsibilities of many of its high-level executives.

Chairman and CEO Patrick Stone said the changes were needed because the company has outgrown its structure.

 

AmTrust launches title agency protection planOpen in a New Window

AmTrust Title Insurance Co. says it proprietary insurance protection plan is a ‘game-changer’ that will save its title agencies hundreds of thousands of dollars.

The company said the plan will be provided at a discount to qualifying agents and is generating interest throughout the title industry.

 

CATIC opens new officeOpen in a New Window

CATIC’s new office is assessable from the Mid-Cape Highway and overlooks historic Route 6A.

CATIC’s state manager said the location of the new office will allow its employees to easily reach all areas of Cape Cod. “We’re excited to have expanded,” the company’s state manager said.

Read on to learn where the new office is located.

 

Housing optimism matches all-time highOpen in a New Window

An increasing share of renters thought September was a good time to buy a home. Read on for more details from Fannie Mae’s Home Purchase Sentiment Index.

 

PropLogix offering title curative servicesOpen in a New Window

PropLogix has added a new service designed to help title agents and real estate attorneys protect their clients and keep closings on track. Read on for more details.

 

Sikora Law adds real estate attorneyOpen in a New Window

Cleveland-based Sikora Law has hired a director-level attorney to handle disputes for its real estate clients. Read on to learn who the law firm selected.

 

ALTA announces values initiativeOpen in a New Window

During its ALTA One conference in Miami, Fla., ALTA released a values initiative the association said provides a ‘cultural compass’ for its members. 


 

Agents National poised for growthOpen in a New Window

Following its acquisition by Incenter LLC, Agents National Title Insurance Co. (ANTIC) will have the capital and surplus it needs to accelerate its vision of creating a fully digital real estate process, ANTIC President and CEO David A. Townsend told The Title Report


 

The Title Report on site for ALTA OneOpen in a New Window

From title agents and closers to underwriters and vendors, hundreds of industry participants will gather in Florida his week at ALTA One. The Title Report will be on the scene in Miami bringing you news about the topics discussed and the industry leaders in attendance.

 


PLTA Partners