Tag Archives: Closings


Swipe Right and Match with the Perfect Title Company

Tips on finding the right title insurance company for your real estate transaction.

It's a Match with Florida Agency Network

In a world full of left-swipe worthy businesses, it’s difficult to know which title insurance company to choose for your transaction. Before you swipe right and do business with the wrong title insurance company, here are some things to consider before you choose your perfect match in a title company.

 

Company Longevity

We see it time and time again, a title company seems to pop up overnight and is ready to do business. However, can you trust the work that is being done throughout your transaction? How do you know your private information is protected?

Find out how long the title insurance company has been doing business. A title insurance company that’s been in the industry for a longer period knows the ins and outs and can speak to common questions or issues that come up, with ease. A title insurance company’s longevity shows efficient and effective processes in place. And with experience comes stability and peace of mind for all those experiencing the closing process. That leads to the next point.

 

Company Accommodations

Life can get busy. Going out of your way to get to, or handle anything thing for your closing can become a hassle. Look for a title insurance company that has multiple locations or can accommodate you during the closing process. Do they offer mobile closing or mobile notary services to their clients? Do they offer e-closings or remote online notaries (RON)? These are just a few of the points you’ll want to discuss with your title insurance company.

 

Company Strength & Support

“A great captain is great only if he has a great team.”

Your title insurance company is only as good as the team they provide to their clients. Choosing a title insurance company with a large, experienced, and dedicated staff are the qualities you want in your closing team. It’s critical that your closing team has the correct licensing and educational background to get you through the entire closing process.

Don’t forget to inquire about the title insurances company’s support; Who do they underwrite with? What type of errors & omissions (E&O) policy do they carry? This may all sound foreign to you as a buyer or seller, but this information shows the strength of a title company when difficult situations arise.

 

Company Reputation

A title company with longevity and experience has built a reputation within the real estate industry. You should place your trust in a title company that is the leader in customer and employee satisfaction.

Ask your real estate professional about their experience(s) with the title insurance company. Don’t forget to do your online research. Read through online reviews on their social pages, Google and more. It’s common to have a problem here or there, but is there a trend your finding with each customer experience?

 

There are many points to consider when swiping right on your perfect title insurance company. Florida Agency Network brands not only can close your real estate transaction at any of the many locations throughout the State of Florida, but also close your transaction at any place convenient to you with mobile notaries, e-closing and remote online notarization (RON) partners, FAN brands have the large footprint you want to have on your side.

Our closing staff has many years of experience in title insurance and closings.  We also work with several underwriters which gives us the resources to close deals other title insurance companies cannot.

Calculating Your Cash To Close

Page 2 of the Loan Estimate provides the current ESTIMATED cash to close. Some costs will stay the same between estimate and closing. Some will change.

  • A – Origination Charges – should match.
  • B – Can’t Shop – 10% Tolerance
  • C – Can Shop – no tolerance limit, BUT IF you select a provider from your lender’s list their actual cost should be no more than 10% greater than the estimate.
  • E – Recording Fees are also subject to 10% tolerance
  • F – Prepaids, G – Initial Escrow and H – Other, such as Owner’s Title may vary from the Loan Estimate without tolerance limits.

These estimates of closing costs plus loan details, Down Payment, Deposits Credits and Adjustments are used to calculate your estimated cash requirements when the loan finally closes. Consider the possible changes and tolerances when evaluating a loan decision.

Understanding Your Loan Estimate: Other Costs

Real estate transactions require taxes, certain pre-payments, and escrow funding.

Recording fees are charged by government agencies for keeping legal ownership records, while “transfer taxes” may be imposed by states, counties and municipalities on real estate ownership transfers.

Prepayments may include homeowner’s insurance premiums on the property mortgage insurance, if required property taxes for a period of months in advance, and prepaid interest, typically for the period from closing to the first mortgage payment.

Escrow funding may also be required against future annual charges for homeowners insurance, mortgage insurance and property taxes.

Title insurance on YOUR legal ownership – “Owner’s Title Policy” – may be designated as optional, which only indicates that it is not required by this creditor.

Some of these “Other Costs” may vary substantially between Loan Estimate and Closing Disclosure ask your lender about the tolerance rules or watch the video “Could My Loan Cost Exceed The Loan Estimate?”

Understanding Your Loan Estimate: Services You CAN Shop For

These costs are paid to outside parties and YOU are free to shop and compare providers for a variety of services. These might include pest inspection, or  a survey to verify property lines or a range of Title-related services.

Title services might include:

  • a Lender’s title policy, which protects their legal interest in their loan collateral- usually the property itself
  • settlement agent fees, paid to the individual or company responsible for facilitating the final transaction
  • Title Search, which clarifies and documents legal ownership of the property
  • a title insurance binder, which allows potential future use of the current title search results, conditions and exclusions for a short period to lower the cost of future title insurance.

If you select service providers from the list provided by the lender, their fees cannot change by more than 10% between the Loan Estimate and the final Loan Disclosure. If you select other providers the lender is not responsible for changes in those costs.

Understanding Your Loan Estimate: Services You Cannot Shop For

These costs are paid to outside parties, not the lender, but you don’t get to choose them. They may include:

  • appraisal, which puts a value on your property on the lender’s behalf
  • a credit report on you
  • fees to assess flood risk of your property, or for ongoing monitoring of flood zone changes related to your property
  • tax monitoring to keep track of your property tax payments
  • tax status research to assess the state of tax payments on the property.

While you can’t shop for these services, the price for these services in your final loan disclosure MUST match the price on the Loan Estimate; items in “Cannot Shop” have 0 tolerance for change.

Understanding Your Loan Estimate: Page 2, Loan Costs

Closing costs are fees paid when the title of the property is transferred to the buyer making them the legal owner.

Origination Charges are fees collected by the lender for the loan process. They may including fees for handling the loan application and “Origination Fees”, which are compensation paid by the creditor to the entity that originated your loan.

“Points” are fees paid to lower interest rates; points are considered prepaid interest for the buyer, and are usually tax deductible.

Finally, Underwriting is a payment to the lender for their assessing the risk that the loan might not be repaid, based on the loan specifics and your financial characteristics.

Understanding Your Loan Estimate: Terms, Payments and Closing Costs

The first page of your Loan Disclosure shows the Loan Terms Projected Payments and Costs at Closing.

The Loan Amount, of course is the total you are borrowing. But the Interest Rate alone doesn’t represent all of your borrowing costs. The APR figure on Page 3 shows that.

Likewise, Monthly Principal & Interest aren’t the complete amount you will actually PAY each month.

The Projected Payments figures add other costs, such as Mortgage Insurance Estimated Escrow, Taxes, Insurances and Assessment to show the approximate amount you will pay each month, over time.

The Estimated Closing Costs are directly loan-related. while the Estimated Cash to Close adds other known closing costs to tell you the estimated cash you’ll need to have to close this loan.

When Do I Get My Loan Closing Disclosure?

If an eligible loan proceeds from Estimate to closing, creditors must provide a Closing Disclosure form documenting the actual transaction terms and costs THREE business days before consummation. It must be in writing, whether paper or digital, and disclose ONLY the information specified by the CFPB.

If terms or costs change prior to consummation the creditor must provide a corrected disclosure containing the updated terms. In some cases, this may require an additional 3-business-day waiting period to consummation.

Consummation and Closing are legally distinct although they may occur at the same time depending on applicable State laws. Consummation occurs when you become contractually obligated to the CREDITOR on the loan not, for example, the real estate seller. The Disclosure must be delivered three business days prior to the legal Consummation date.

Can My Settlement Charges Change?

Yes, if circumstances change, such as:

  • a natural disaster damages the property or affects closing costs
  • the title insurer providing the estimate goes out of business during underwriting
  • new information on you or the transaction affecting settlement is discovered.

If any of these events change 3rd-party charges beyond the 10% tolerance limit creditors may issue a revised Loan Estimate.

If a creditor issues a Loan Estimate they are presumed to have collected all 6 pieces of required information. They may not claim a change in circumstances by receiving one of these pieces of information AFTER issuing a Loan Estimate.

Can Creditors Revise TRID Loan Estimates?

Creditors are generally bound by the initial Loan Estimate. They are permitted to provide a revised Loan Estimate only under certain changed circumstances. These include circumstances that:

a) increase settlement charges beyond the legal tolerance limits

b) affect YOUR eligibility or change the value of the loan security.

Also,

c) if the interest rate was NOT locked and the new rate changes points or lender credits

d) for settlement delay on new construction loans within the stated revision window – typically 60 days, or

e) if YOU indicate an intent to proceed more than 10 business days after the Estimate or request loan term revisions.

Changed circumstances are extraordinary events beyond the control of you or the lending parties, OR changes or inaccuracies revealed in the information the lender used in preparing the Loan Estimate, OR new information on you or the transaction that the creditor did not use in the Loan Estimate.