Who gets to pick the title company that will issue the owner policy of title insurance? It depends.
- If the seller pays for both the owner policy and the lender policy of title insurance, then the seller can pick the title company without violating the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA).
- However, if the buyer pays for the owner policy, the seller cannot condition the sale of the property on the buyer purchasing the owner policy from a particular title company. Rather, the buyer would get to pick the title company.
If a seller wants to avoid a possible violation of RESPA, the seller should not insist on a particular title company for the transaction unless the seller is paying for both the owner policy and the lender policy of title insurance.
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