Buyers: Here’s How to Save Up to $1,000 on Closing Costs
Seems like Groundhog Day around here lately. Nearly every day, I receive a call and have a conversation with a prospective homebuyer that goes something like this…
Homebuyer: “Hello, I just got a quote from your website and was hoping you could confirm that your quote for settlement fees was accurate – because it’s about $1,000 less than my agent’s title company.”
Me: “Yes, I can confirm that our quote is accurate and guaranteed. You have a right to shop and choose your own title company. You’re not required to use your agent’s title company.”
Homebuyer: “Well, the problem is that the contract has already been signed and my agent wrote in the name of her title company without me realizing it, so I guess I’m stuck using that title company, huh? I’ll remember you guys next time.”
It begins, more often than not, with the homebuyer signing a sales contract prepared by their agent, with the settlement agent field pre-populated naming the agent’s preferred title company, and a “RESPA Controlled/Affiliated Business” disclosure buried in the contract forms abyss at about page 46 of 50.
It ends with the homebuyer becoming captive to a choice they were denied as the consumer.