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Michigan Association of Independent Land Title Agents

Learn

Education is important. We encourage everyone to learn more about the their title policy, title industry, settlement process and the special consumer rights, including CHOICE given to you under the law, but subtly taken away by controlled/affiliated businesses, joint venture title companies & other types of agreements where “kickbacks” are paid to receive business. Understanding more about this will help all of us make informed decisions and lead to a more transparent settlement experience for the consumer.

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What is an Independent Land Title Agency?

Any individual, sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, or other business entity, including any employee, who is legally qualified to engage in the business of land title evidencing or insuring as an abstractor, and who is not affiliated with a bank, mortgage broker, builder, real estate company or real estate professional.

What Does an Independent Land Title Agency Do?

An Independent land Title Agency makes sure that the title to a piece of real estate is legitimate and if so issues title insurance for that specific piece of property. Title insurance protects the lender and/or owner against claims, lawsuits, or other title disputes.

Title insurance agencies often maintain escrow accounts to temporarily hold the funds necessary to close on the home. An Independent Title Agency provides assurance that all of the transactions pertaining to buying and selling a piece of real estate go smoothly.

Threats To Consumers

Banks, large financial institutions and real estate firms driven by greed continue their advancement into all areas of insurance. Incentivized by kickbacks and other benefits, banks, financial institutions and real estate firms are taking over the choices of consumers. This is bad for consumers as these firms monopolize insurance industries, drive up prices, and provide lesser quality services. Independent title agents cut the unhealthy ties between the referring party and the affiliated title company. Independent agents bring about healthy competition, lower prices and an increase services and better overall value to consumers.

Why is an Independent Land Title Agent Better For Consumers?

In many real estate transactions, the title insurance agency is referred to the consumer by another settlement provider such as a real estate agent, mortgage broker, home builder or a bank. Often times referring parties will receive an incentive for referring your real estate settlement business to a specific title insurance agency. In some cases, those referring parties have direct ownership or indirect investment in the title agency to which they are referring…which essentially amounts to a “kickback” for a referral. That then begs the question to whose interest is being best served…the consumer or the referring party?

Independent title agencies are different. Independent title agencies obtain business by remaining a neutral third party and by the quality of service that they provide. Independent title agencies do not share financial interests, incentives or “kickbacks” with real estate firms, mortgage brokers, home builders and/or banks.

Independent Title agencies provide transparency, operate with integrity and are better for the end consumer because they provide better value, better quality & better service!

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A Grassroots Type of Movement

Independent title agencies across Michigan as well as the nation are banding together to represent themselves and stop the monopolization of the industry by large financial institutions. We are a voice for not only every independent title agent in the state of Michigan but for consumers best interests as well. We believe that credibility and transparency should be restored to the land title process. You too can have a voice by joining our board of members and actively partaking in activities that represent independent title agencies in your local area.

Get Involved

It is true that there is strength in numbers. Our goal is to get every title agency in Michigan to join us in our campaign to support independent title agencies and restore credibility and quality to the land title industry. If you are interested in getting more involved, please join us and become a member of MAILTA. Your membership and support is invaluable and benefits everyone.

Learn More

If you would like to learn more about some of the issues currently present in the land title industry as well as how you can become more involved, please visit our national partner NAILTA’s website www.nailta.org. NAILTA’s website is full of valuable information and is also a place to connect with other state level organizations.

Michigan Association of Independent Land Title Agencies

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P.O. Box 15133

Lansing, MI 48901