Abstractors – Our Business Has Changed

Certainly the title insurance and abstracting business has changed.  The good old-fashioned in-depth abstracting that was required for “marketable title” is disappearing, and at least for residential properties, it  has been replaced with a one or two-owner search that is used to provide “insurable title.” Insurable title being a risk-underwriting product, as opposed to the old “fix-the-problem-so-there-ARE-no-claims”  product.  But, as I have mentioned before, the core business for the best abstractors is not to chase the $35 residential sales, but the more intricate in-depth work that still exists for:  commercial work;  cell towers; wind farms;  mineral titles;  gas and oil rights, etc.  I am often asked where to find these professionals, and the major underwriters are now developing “specialty teams” that they fly around the country to do such work.  But that is a concern, because we all know that title searching is a VERY specialized, VERY localized occupation, and that no one from outside the area can catch those all important nuances that make a title good or not.

Are you staying current with all the changes in titles in your state?  Changes have been rampant the last few years, new liens, mortgage rules due to the need for new tax revenue and the mortgage debacle.  Are you advertising your professional expertise? Are you taking advantage of the changing market?  I hope so, it could mean like or death for your job and your industry.

2 Responses to Abstractors – Our Business Has Changed

  • Susan Goodell says:

    Jeanne,

    I have been reading your blog posts and it saddens me to hear they can’t find any experienced abstractors and are flying teams to various areas. I have a different take on some of that, and based on some of the messes I am seeing from the ramifications of the lack of filing assignments, and the whole mortgage debacle, etc. they want the experienced abstractors gone because we are the ones uncovering all of this and they are flying in to search themselves to cover what they probably shouldn’t have insured. Let’s face it often the Title company owned the lender or vice versa or were co-mingled in some fashion.

  • Nancy A. says:

    It would be nice to be able to work at something you know and have done for over 3 decades but who can afford the E&O? And it is needed now because of the $35 title searches.

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