Tip 12-2016: Choose Your Own Settlement Agent
Never choose the settlement agent selected by the REO bank as the seller. That settlement agent’s primary relationship is with the REO bank. Tucker’s Tips encounters time and again how using the REO selling bank’s closing agent causes needless issues and delays for a settlement.
For example, we encountered a situation where the current seller of a property had used the REO seller’s closing agent when they purchased it. A boundary line adjustment had increased the parcel’s size and went unnoticed when the REO bank foreclosed on the previous owners. When transferring the property to the new owner, the REO closing agent prepared the deed and property description without taking into account the full title search, which would have revealed the boundary line adjustment to the property. Thus the REO bank transferred only a part of the property to the new owner, which again went unnoticed because the new owner had not used his own settlement agent or attorney.
Fast forward to when the new owner wants to sell, and the big title problem, that of not transferring the whole property, finally emerges.
So remember, the REO seller’s offer of “free” title insurance will rarely really be free, as using the REO’s choice in settlement agency can create a whole host of unnecessary problems.
Tucker’s Tip: Remind Purchasers to choose their own (local) settlement agent or attorney when purchasing from an REO seller.
William (Bill) D. Tucker, III
Please call me if you have any questions.
William (Bill) D. Tucker, III
Tucker Griffin Barnes P.C. Prior Tucker’s Tips
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