Questions to Ask When Selecting a Title Company

Consumers have a choice when it comes to selecting a title company. Because title and settlement services are a critical component of a real estate transaction, we strongly encourage you and your agent to engage in an in-depth conversation with settlement providers in order to make a well-informed decision.

Selection of a title company affects all aspects of the transaction, from the title search to the closing process, and from surety of funds to the integrity of the policy itself. There are significant risks in working with a title company that is not reputable and financially sound.

In 2012, the Division of Real Estate (DRE) reiterated its reservations about “out-of-state title companies who are not aware of local concerns.” They also expressed concerns with “title companies that have held earnest money deposits at the time they became insolvent and ceased operating” as well as with “companies issuing generic exceptions.”

While there are hundreds of critical functions a title company provides in every transaction, we believe all title companies should be able to provide satisfactory answers to the following six questions — the absolute basic standards of service that any reputable title company should meet.

We encourage you to ask these six questions of any title and escrow company prior to engaging its services for your real estate purchase or refinance.

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