Carteret Title
DRN Title Search
Register
Log In
Forget your Password?

Home
Directory
Bulletins
Forums
Blogs
Articles
Links
Classifieds
About Us
Contact Us
Advertise
FAQ
Privacy Policy


Thomas Pryde's Blog

"India" is not the problem
by Thomas Pryde | 2015/04/16 |

In the past few weeks I have been highlighting the fact that the industry is rapidly changing. Some of this change is inevitable and worthwhile, but some changes may prove to undermine the health of the industry as a whole.

One of the most common changes described as being bad for the industry is usually referenced by one word: "India." For some, this has become a shorthand term for off-shoring, and it is usually used as a negative or pejorative term. However, we need to be clear that "India" isn't the problem.

Thomas Pryde's Blog ::

To be sure, there are some serious risks that are taken with any offshored search, but the cold, hard, fact is that offshore searchers are not going anywhere for one simple reason: many clients want searches to be done as cheaply as possible and the risks of offshoring searches have been deemed acceptable.

In essence, local expertise has been devalued, and in cases where it would be valued, the searcher's skills are unverifiable. Those two things create the real problem. If the skill of the searcher cannot be reliably ascertained, why should the client pay more for the search simply because of where the computer and searcher are located?

Rather than speak about the problems with offshore searches, we would be better served to spend that energy demonstrating, in concrete terms, what makes local expertise so valuable. Once that is done, we then need to be able to demonstrate that such expertise can be reliably obtained.

So, here are some questions that may help move the discussion along:

 

  • What stories can you share that demonstrate how local knowledge made the difference in one of your searches? 
  • How has your local knowledge tangibly helped your clients?
  • Besides language, what are the unique problems associated with not having local expertise in your State / County?
Next week: The importance of compelling stories to making the case for local expertise

 




Rating: 

424 words | 6959 views | 14 comments | log in or register to post a comment


Offshore v. Local
Local knowledge has helped on commercial exams numerous times.  I have had cell phone tower searches ordered on municipal property where all I was provided was an address.  Being local I knew the tower was actually on another parcel.  Being local I know the bishop's names for Catholic church property and I know the prior names for government entities.  I know from talking to clients that a big reason they do not like to use off-shore, even when pressured by their parent company, is that they cannot go directly to the examiner with questions.  They have to email their question to someone who then gets the answer from the examiner.  If there is a follow-up question, they have to repeat the process.  They much rather prefer to pick up the phone and call me directly. 
by William Hilf | 2015/04/17 | log in or register to post a reply

Exactly
Yes! Excellent... Thank you for that, William. Those are great examples. I wonder how much headache you have saved your clients over the years with that local knowledge.  
by Thomas Pryde | 2015/04/17 | log in or register to post a reply

Wrong county on search order
I've had orders sent to me where the address was said to be in County A, but was in County B (usually, it's someone that lives on the border of a county in a town that bleeds into both counties.) I don't think an off-shore searcher would have the notion to do a tax search in County B to see if the property is in that area, as opposed to County A. 
by Jim A | 2015/04/19 | log in or register to post a reply

County nuances...

Each county in my area (New Mexico) has their own nuances to searching. You can only search assignments by....whatever. Or Judgments only show up when you search this way. In one county, you have to search by legal description for assignments. In another, they come up by grantee; in a third, they come up as a related document--but only if you type in the document number, not the book/page, etc.

Most of my area is not online; therefore India(ns) is/are unable to search NM. We do have several counties online, but without knowing each county's little 'secrets', there is no way for anyone who has not been to the actual courthouse, having completed many, many searches there, to accurately complete any search. 

I get tons of searches from clients saying, our other vendor did x, y, z...can you please double check this, or redo it? We think they missed this....  And I look at the search...and can tell it has been completed by someone who has never been to the courthouse, who has never physically searched the books, the microfilm, the computer...because all those little nuances are missing in the search. 

I have clients who know the value of my services versus outsourcing, or going with someone who only searches online. I have clients who only come back after outsourcing or going with an online searcher. I wish more would realize the value of us that know all the ins and outs of our counties. 

 

 
by Joyce Froelich | 2015/04/20 | log in or register to post a reply

All good examples
Thanks for the good examples! I am finding so many instances of this, even in counties that are "all" online. Some indexing problems are so frequent that we are including a best practices advice of taking screen shots of search results. I wonder how many are doing this? 
by Thomas Pryde | 2015/05/04 | log in or register to post a reply

It Also Pays To Have Connections


Don't forget also, the value of establishing good rapport with local county personnel.  I can't tell you the number of times that a county employee has been able to point me in the right direction when I've had a particularly difficult issue to resolve.  Nine times out of ten, they're the ones who know "where all the bodies are buried," so to speak.  And they can be a great source of "insider info" such as older maps, property cards, tax rolls, etc., that the general public may not be aware of.

 
by Scott Perry | 2015/05/04 | log in or register to post a reply

Not everything is online
A owner purchased a property using an offshore company that did an online search.  Deed transfer to the new owner, after several years the owner wanted to refinance, so I was contacted and did a complete search and found a $750,000.00 mortgage in the old books that was never released.  The owner was furious, he bought the property free and clear and had an owners policy to prove it.  So after a long legal battle, we won and I have a release of mortgage.   
by Shona Dunning | 2015/05/08 | log in or register to post a reply

Who best can deal with problems which show up?
Years ago, as a newbie, I actually enjoyed trying to solve title issues, those found on schedule B 'requirements'.  For instance, sometimes a private party 2nd hadn't been released; other times an institutional holder of a second needed to be asked to subordinate to the new financing. Yet other times, an IRS lien had been paid but not released. I can't imagine anyone in a foreign country being able to do the sleuth work required to meet those requirements, at least not timely. Time is generally of the essence and the inherent knowledge of 'locals' in the course of action is what will see that deadlines are met.  Paying less will end up meaning paying more and causing all kinds of grief for the pople who rely on the expertise of local title companies.  
by john gault | 2015/05/10 | log in or register to post a reply

More great examples!
Thank you all for your examples! Keep them coming. I wonder how many of these stories could be collected from counties that are "entirely" online... 
by Thomas Pryde | 2015/05/13 | log in or register to post a reply

local knowledge trumps outsourced
I prefer companies who actually have their own researchers. I loathe companies who farm it out to different companies in other states/countries, to do work in the US. When I do local searches in Travis county, TX. I have the benefit of knowing my city very well, sometimes I'll drive passed a site where a client has ordered a chain, just to see it. Sometimes doing that you uncover what the deeds don't cover, like newly erected structures. And you feel personally connected to your chain of title/environmental lien search. 
by Chris Tinsley | 2015/05/14 | log in or register to post a reply

Equity-Legal Remedies?
This article does not address an equally important issue:  how to resolve, in equity, mistakes, oversights and fraudulent behavior?  Do offshore operations obtain E+O insurance and who provides the coverage?  What is your legal recourse in a dispute of any nature whether it be an outfight error in reporting or a claim for money?  How do these companies report income and do they pay taxes in the US? 
by Michael RAFFERTY | 2015/09/22 | log in or register to post a reply

Outsourcing policy production
Let's discuss outsourcing policy production - the title and closing are done, now the backlog of policies and most, if not all states have issuing deadlines. So, although the best search and exams do not exist from an offshore source, there are many other tasks that could be done with limited liability.  
by JASON GRIESS | 2016/04/08 | log in or register to post a reply

Outsourcing

If I am correct, all title searches have a procedure to complete. Regardless if your a local or a outsourcing company, the procedure is the same. The pricing is what I am concerned with.  

Its the American lenders that are looking for more ways to trim pricing down and make more money for investors. The warning for outsourcing is over, they have arrived and are taking the industry over.

 
by Eva Yoto | 2016/12/20 | log in or register to post a reply

Out-sourced title work - is it complete????

I might be weighing in a little late, but in Maine the Maine Title Standards state that a title examiner must look at Court records -  for death records when someone when the Chain of Title died before 1981 (Probate Court) and if the Registry of Deeds (County Recorders Office) records are incomplete after 1981 .  We are also required to look at court foreclosure files (District or Superior Court) when there has been a foreclosure in the chain of title.  In some cases, the foreclosures have been archived by the Courts and the file is located in the State Archives.  In some cases, we are required to look at court files on divorces when the Registry of Deeds information is not complete or ambiguous.

Only the newest of Probate files are online - most Probate Courts only have perhaps the last five years.  There are no District, Superior or Family Court records online.   So I am wondering - how are non-local examiners doing these title searches?

  I know I get calls to go look at Court records frequently so I can finish someones title work.....

 

 
by Victoria Veilleux | 2017/01/30 | log in or register to post a reply
Thomas Pryde's Blog

 

Links

Technology
  • Boxi Software
    Order management software for title service professionals

  • DropBox
    Best all-around cloud storage solution

Recent Comments

I might be weighing in a little late, but in Maine the Maine Title Standards state that a title exam...
by Victoria Veilleux
If I am correct, all title searches have a procedure to complete. Regardless if your a local or a ou...
by Eva Yoto
Let's discuss outsourcing policy production - the title and closing are done, now the back...
by JASON GRIESS
"A similar goal is achieved by creating a web-based portal for searchers to fulfill their orders", ...
by Don (Chunshen) Li
Great article and with the recent downturn in oil, there are hundreds of Petroleum Land Management ...
by David Willingham
This article does not address an equally important issue:  how to resolve, in equity, mistakes,...
by Michael RAFFERTY
I prefer companies who actually have their own researchers. I loathe companies who farm it out to di...
by Chris Tinsley
Thank you all for your examples! Keep them coming. I wonder how many of these stories could be colle...
by Thomas Pryde
Categories

 
© 2007, Source of Title.