Selling Title Insurance

Trying to sell a nebulous product like title insurance can be frustrating.  What is it?  How frequent are title claims?  What percent of the premium actually pays for claims?  Why do I need it if you searched the title?

I’ve answered these questions many times, but never quite as well as Michael B. Pryor who is the Past President of the American Land Title Association.

With his permission, here is his answer to all of those questions.

I Sell Title Insurance

I sell title insurance.

Some people don’t like to say they “sell” for a living, much less that their product is title insurance.

I sell because I believe in it.  Selling is explaining.  Selling is providing information relative to the good points of the product.  Selling is providing peace of mind.

I sell title insurance.

I do not hang my head and apologize for selling title insurance.  I provide a thorough and accurate search of the title, resolve ownership issues, provide lien records, keep the courthouse records accurate, collect unpaid child support, facilitate collection of government taxes and assessments, and require proper conveyances and acknowledgements.  My work keeps the housing market and the overall economy from being bogged down by inaccuracy, uncertainty, and fraud.  My vocation protects my neighbors from falling into disruptive disputes over their property rights.  My community is better for the work I do.

I sell title insurance.

I cannot imagine allowing a family member, friend, or acquaintance to purchase real estate without insisting on title insurance.  And not just any title insurance.  I want them to have a well-searched title policy, because I know how disruptive and unsettling a claim can be.  I want my family and friends to pay for a policy that they never have to use.  I hope the same thing for them regarding their fire insurance.

Our industry is constantly being criticized for low claims payout.  I salute every title insurance agent who has made that happen!  Our good work keeps our customers…our friends and neighbors…from experiencing claims.  We have done our job.  Well done.

Benjamin Franklin is often quoted as saying “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”  Those wishing for a change to the metric system might wish to parse words with Franklin, but the fact remains, title agents are the “ounce of prevention” that enable one of our country’s greatest privileges…Home Ownership.

Yes, our industry has its critics.  Yes, our industry has those whose bad practices should be eliminated.  Yes, our industry needs to be proactive in demanding ethical market practices.  But our industry should never allow anyone to characterize the overwhelming super majority of our work as anything other than the protection of the American dream.

I know my product.  I know its value.  I know the importance of the process.

I sell title insurance.

–Michael B. Pryor

Of course, title insurance is only one portion of the closing process.  Check out this short video that explains the whole process.

– Ron Critzer


Please Note: Articles written by CST employees are the opinions of licensed title insurance agents and are based on experience as such.  They are not to be taken as legal advice.