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Volume 114, 
mid-May 2015



Iowa Confirms 100 Percent Engagement in eRecording
excerpted from PRIA4/29/15


Iowa has become the eighth state in which 100 percent of its recording jurisdictions are eRecording enabled.

Colorado was the first multi-jurisdictional state to earn the 100 percent designation in 2011, with Arizona reaching that landmark in 2012. Massachusetts reached the 100 percent mark in February of this year, while Hawaii, Alaska, Delaware and District of Columbia also claim 100 percent of jurisdictions eRecording.

With the number of counties that are eRecording across the nation surpassing the 1,260 mark, an increase of more than 150 jurisdictions in the past 12 months, significant progress is being made toward nationwide acceptance of electronically recorded documents.

"eRecording hit another milestone in 2015 with Iowa moving into the 100 percent column," declared Mark Ladd, PRIA president, and vice president of regulatory and industry affairs with Simplifile, LC. "We hope to increase the pace of full-participation states by developing seamless implementation strategies through the efforts of the PRIA eRecording eXcellence Work Group and its recent 'eRecording Best Practices for Recorders' work product that is currently undergoing final review following a 30-day comment period."  (Read complete PRIA press release.)



News from PREP Chapters


Here is this issue's highlighted PREP Chapter:


Co-chairs:  Government, Kelly Callahan at and  Business, Jim Ohly at

The SE Minnesota PREP Chapter met on May 6, 2015.  The agenda included: a presentation on the upcoming closing statement changes to go into effect August 1, 2015 by Sara Batzlaff from Rochester Title; subsurface sewage treatment system requirements by John Harford, from Olmsted County; recording requirements for original docs/certified copies/photocopies by Kelly Callahan, Freeborn County Recorder; Minnesota Department of Revenue updates; county recorder updates, and updates from attending title agents, law offices, and lending institutions.  The next meeting for this Chapter will be held on August 12, 2015. (Read agenda and minutes for this Chapter on PRIA's PREP webpage.) 
OCR Technology Must Still Play A Role In The Mortgage Process
excerpted from MortgageOrb 5/5/15

Although electronic document (e-doc) and electronic signature (e-sign) technologies are coming to the fore and will be essential in helping lenders comply with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's new integrated disclosure rules going into effect Aug. 1, it is going to take a while longer before the mortgage industry transitions to a purely e-originated mortgage.

That's because most lenders will continue to allow borrowers to download, print, fill in and sign "wet" documents and then scan and upload them into the system - or flat mail them in for processing.

Why would lenders continue to offer these legacy systems, with all their latency and inefficiency? Simple: customer satisfaction. There's still a fairly sizable percentage of the population that isn't all that tech-savvy and is wary of such advances as e-doc and e-sign technology. More importantly, there are still people out there who prefer to put pen to paper and sign - rather than click - when it comes to important life decisions, such as buying a home, and lenders don't want to alienate these folks.

Anderson says for now, most lenders will continue to take a hybrid approach, "where a majority of the documents and disclosures can be e-signed and only the notary or recordable documents will be papered-out, wet signed and then scanned back in." It's interesting to note that, according to Anderson, no lender, vendor or other organization is tracking how many borrowers use wet-docs versus e-docs - and of those, for which docs. However, he estimated that about 40% of docs processed through closing are now electronic. ( Read complete article.)



CFPB Report Finds 26 Million American Adults Have No Credit History        
excerpted from DSNews 5/5/15 

A report titled "Data Point: Credit Invisibles" published Tuesday by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) Office of Research found that 26 million American adults (about 10 percent) do not have a credit history with any of the three nationwide consumer reporting agencies, termed as "credit invisible" by the Bureau's director.

Also according to the report, black and Hispanic consumers as well as those in low-income neighborhoods are more likely to have either no history or not enough credit history to produce a score with a nationwide consumer reporting agency.


"Today's report sheds light on the millions of Americans who are credit invisible," CFPB Director Richard Cordray said. "A limited credit history can create real barriers for consumers looking to access the credit that is often so essential to meaningful opportunity to get an education, start a business, or buy a house. Further, some of the most economically vulnerable consumers are more likely to be credit invisible."


Three-digit credit scores generated by one of the three nationwide consumer reporting agencies, also called bureaus (Equifax, Experian, and Transunion) are important to Americans because decisions to grant credit are most often made based on these credit scores. Thus, Americans with little or no credit history face significant obstacles in obtaining credit. (Read complete article.) 


Bill Could Have Couples Seeking a Marriage Contract Rather Than a License
excerpted from 5/4/15  

If approved, Alabama Senate bill 377 would abolish the requirement to obtain a marriage license from a Probate Judge. Instead, couples wanting to get married would sign a marriage contract.  Under current law, a Probate Judge will issue a marriage license to traditional couples if the proper proof is provided, like age and ceremony information. The license is then submitted to the office of vital statistics. But that could change.


"You go sign a contract at the Probate Court, witnessed by 2 people, pay $75, and you're married," says attorney Mark McDaniel. Bill 377 would allow the ceremony to be skipped and a contract could be submitted directly to the office of vital statistics. This means notaries, pastors or attorneys can witness the contract signing and submit it to the Probate Office.


James Martin has been a self employed notary for more than 10 years. He believes this bill's passing would not only allow for more business but bring a bit of recognition to his title. "Notaries are public officials so we are supposed to be able to identify people and use identification in our jobs to prove who you are," says Martin. (Read complete article.) 

Dare, Pender, and Rockingham Counties in North Carolina Adopt Simplifile eRecording
excerpted from PRWeb 5/6/15 

North Carolina has expanded electronic recording (eRecording) of documents in Dare, Pender, and Rockingham counties through Simplifile, the nation's largest eRecording service.


"We're excited to expand our service to these additional North Carolina counties and help expedite the overall recording process for them and their customers - near and far," said Paul Clifford, president of Simplifile. With the addition of eRecording in these counties, there are now 47 North Carolina counties eRecording with Simplifile. ( Read complete article.)


ALTA NEWS:  ALTA, NYSLTA Comment on Regulatory Proposal for Title Industry in New York                
excerpted from ALTA Advocacy Update 5/4/15 by Michelle L. Korsmo, ALTA CEO 

In early May, ALTA and the New York State Land Title Association both issued comments in response to new title insurance industry regulations that were proposed by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Governor Cuomo proposed  sweeping regulations targeting illegal kickbacks, capping prices for certain ancillary products and requiring agents and underwriters to provide greater data to the state for rate-making purposes. The new regulations come on the heels of a recent investigation by state's Department of Financial Services (DFS). The new regulations will be open to public comment for 45 days once they are published in the state register.


In a public comment after the announcement I stated, "We've seen reports that the New York State Department of Financial Services found that kickbacks have occurred in the real estate industry. Those participating individuals should be held accountable for the sake of consumers and the real estate industry professionals who work to remain compliant with state and federal regulations. We look forward to learning more about the department's proposed regulations and we encourage all members of the land title insurance industry to submit public comment."


The state claims that the new regulations will reduce title insurance closing costs by 20 percent for new home purchases and up to 60 percent for refinancing transactions. The main focus of the proposal is to prohibit certain expenditures which the department believes are improper inducements for business such as meals and beverages, entertainment, tickets to sporting events, concerts, and shows, and providing continuing legal education or continuing education for which credits are provided for a reduced fee or no fee.


We will be learning more about these details and ensuring that the position of the title industry is articulated to the policy makers in New York. If you have any questions please contact Madeleine Nagy, ALTA's director of state government affairs, at or (202) 296-3671 Ext. 329.


Links to National News
Dodd-Frank Rules Could Shave $895 Billion Off Economic Growth Over a Decade, Think Tank Says
The Wall Street Journal | May 6, 2015
According to new analysis by American Action Forum, the conservative Washington think tank looked at the banking sector's response to new regulations and the cost of complying with them to see how the financial reform law has affected economic growth. They found the law could reduce gross domestic product by $895 billion between 2016 and 2025, or $3,346 for each working-age person.

Weekly Mortgage Applications Drop 4.6% on Higher Rates
CNBC | May 6, 2015
A sharp rise in interest rates at the end of last week sent mortgage applications on a slide. Total volume fell 4.6 percent for the week ending May 1 from the previous week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.
Housing Market Continues Gradual Move Toward Recovery
DS News | May 6, 2015
Housing and economic activity has returned to or exceeded normal levels in 68 of about 360 metropolitan areas in the country (about 19 percent) as of the end of Q1 2015, according to the National Association of Home Builders/First American Leading Markets Index release.

Housing Flips Slip to Lowest Level in Years
Realtor Mag | May 7, 2015
Four percent of all U.S. single-family home sales in the first quarter were flips, sold for a second time within a 12-month period, according to RealtyTrac's first quarter 2015 U.S. Home Flipping Report. It marked the lowest number of homes flipped since the second quarter of 2011, when just 3.4 percent of all single-family home sales were considered flips.

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The views and opinions expressed in the media, articles, comments, or links in this publication are those of the speakers or authors and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions held by the Property Records Industry Association (PRIA) or its members.  PRIA does not warrant the accuracy, timeliness or completeness of the information contained in this publication. If you have a complaint about something you have found in this publication, please contact PRIA by email at
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In This Issue
Iowa Confirms 100 Percent Engagement in eRecording
News from PREP Chapters - SE Minnesota
OCR Technology Must Still Play a Role in the Mortgage Process
CFPB Report Finds 26 Million American Adults Have No Credit History
Bill Could Have Couples Seeking a Marriage Contract Rather Than a License
Three New Counties Adopt Simplifile eRecording in North Carolina
Links to National News
Advertise in PRIA's Newsletters
PREP Blog and PREP LinkedIn
Examples of PRIA's Products
PREP Chapter Meetings
  May -  August 2015    

      Central Florida

      Metro Minnesota 

      SE Minnesota

      Idaho (new)

      Northern California 

      Red River Valley MN 

      SE Pennsylvania 


      Virginia (new)



Contact Information

Do you have questions or suggestions for this newsletter or any updated information on co-chairs, emails, phone numbers, etc. please contact us:
Carolyn Ableman
PREP Coordinator

Mark Monacelli
PREP Committee Government Co-Chair, Recorder
St Louis County, Minnesota

Madeleine Nagy

PREP Committee Business

Co-Chair, ALTA

State Government Affairs


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