Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Working with an elderly seller whose attorney is semi-retired and a nice fellow....

who just won't let us do our job.  This transaction made me realize just how hard it might be for me one day to continue to do business when the methods morph beyond my ability or willingness to comply.

While the buyer, lender, and real estate agents were all wanting to move forward, we had to adjust the workflow to the timing of another era.

It wasn't unpleasant and certainly not laziness or procrastination.  These fellows worked at the polite speed of days gone by.

In addition, when we found a problem - an unsatisfied line of credit with a bank no longer in business - the seller's attorney would not give us the information we could have used to resolve the matter in a few days.  He decided to handle it himself and visit the bank that he thought had taken over the branch files.  They couldn't help him at the branch level and so when time ran out, our options were to postpone closing or set up an escrow and let him work it out post closing. He opted for an escrow and so closed.

The whole experience made me think of my bosses and mentors of days gone by.  It also made me think about how well I will deal with the changing nature of business as time marches on.

Monday, November 12, 2012

making claim on a prior owner's owner policy

No can do.

If you have a title problem and you do not have an owner title insurance policy, you cannot make a claim on the title policy of a prior owner.  You have to take action against the prior owner and the prior owner, if they choose to file a claim, may contact their title insurance company.

A couple of weeks ago I was contacted by a consumer who we insured back in 2006.  At issue were unpaid delinquent taxes from 2005.  I asked him to send me a copy of the statement he had received showing taxes outstanding.

I always want to see the correspondence a consumer has received.  Sometimes there is a misunderstanding that can be resolved simply by reading the statement.

In this case, he had the current owner send me the statement and the new owner of the property contacted me.  I explained that all of my communications would be with our insured, even though he didn't own the property anymore.  She would have to deal directly with the prior owner, our insured.

I did some preliminary work and found that the 2005 delinquency statement we had obtained did not include 2005 school tax.  Apparently during 2005 the school district was in the process of changing collection services and though both the municipality and the local tax collector directed us in writing to the company we contacted, the 2005 school tax data was not yet in their hands.

I opened a claim in the name of our insured and the matter is under review by a claims attorney.