Efficient Title Agents
What a busy year 2021 has been! That doesn’t look to be changing any time soon. As an industry, we’ve gone from processing the back end of the 2020 refinancing funnel to pivoting to face a robust purchase market. The recent news that that the FHFA is scrapping its “Adverse Market Fee” for lenders could bring a bit more refinance, but the direction is clear. Lenders and service providers alike will have to cut production costs and increase efficiencies to maintain acceptable margins.
This isn’t really news anymore. What is interesting is that, from where we sit, the title industry appears to be slowly accepting and adopting a more automated and efficient production model. You know how we feel about Alanna, of course, and how much she can help any agent’s service model. But our friends and partners tell us they’re seeing it too. An increasing number of agents is not only signing on for the best production systems—and often having them customized for their own, unique workflows. They’re also deploying numerous stackable technologies that fit easily “over” their production systems (in other words, that work well in alignment with those systems) to reduce touch points, automate simple processes and, above all, allow human employees to do what they do best.
Paymints.io is one great example. Our friends there have created a fantastic electronic disbursement system that should please REALTORS and title agents alike by taking the digital earnest money and cash to close check process into the 21st century. No more use of paper checks—and all of the opportunities for fraud that come with them. They’re seeing a dramatic rise in interest from agents. And they’re not alone. We can name numerous other examples and will, indeed, in time!
That’s why we were a little disappointed to see a service provider from the the origination side of our industry, in discussing a recent major ransomware attack, refer to the title industry as a liability in the overall mortgage transaction, saying “Some of them [title agents] are still using personal web mail from hotmail.” By the way, the overall article is good and we’re certainly not singling out the speaker or the publication running the article. It’s worth a read. But it certainly is disappointing to hear that some of our counterparts in the greater real estate industry still think of the title space is antiquated. Maybe a few are. There are still some lenders using couriers as well. But overall, more and more agents are leaving their inefficiencies behind.
The title industry has read the writing on the wall. And, increasingly, they’re doing what they have to build a more efficient, effective transaction.