Industry & Technology news compliments of Marianne Mathieu
Title Insurance Industry & Technology News 02/06/19
Compliments of Marianne Mathieu
Industry Events
Look for NEW events posted since the last issue!
Industry News
In retreat, Chinese investors are now targeting more mundane US real estate
The Real Deal - The Chinese real estate selling spree continues to break records. After being net sellers of U.S. real estate in the second quarter of 2018, which was the first time since 2008, Chinese investors have now gone three straight quarters selling more than they have bought, for the first time ever.

GSE reform, CFPB underwriting rule are on collision course
American Banker - As Congress and the Trump administration chart a future for the government-sponsored enterprises, they face a fast-approaching deadline when a huge chunk of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac's loans could be in violation of federal underwriting requirements.

How accurate are Zestimates?
Leader-Telegram - Zillow’s estimate of a home’s value, called the Zestimate, can be powerful: Some homeowners track them like a stock, and when it gets to a certain point, they may decide to sell. 

Warning for female real estate agents in Colorado Springs
KRDO News Colorado Springs - Mysterious calls are targeting female real estate agents in Colorado who are working alone.

Notice and opportunities to comment
CFPB (Consumer Financial Protection Bureau) - Check here for notices and opportunities to comment posted by the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (BCFP). These requests can include: proposed rules, requests for information, and Paperwork Reduction Act notices that give the public an opportunity to comment on certain planned or existing reporting, record keeping, and disclosure requirements.

Legal News
Tenth Circuit Finds Title Agent Liable to Title Insurance Company for Removing Exception
Lexology - The United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit recently held that a title agent was responsible for the entirety of a title insurance…

Crapo’s 5-Point Plan for Housing Finance Reform
DS News - After making housing finance reforms a key focus area for the Senate Banking Committee, its Chairman Sen. Mike Crapo, introduced an outline for housing finance reform legislation.

Opportunity Zones Not Immune from Title Risks for Business Tenants
Forbes - Calls for momentum in Opportunity Zones will intensify when political campaigning heats up this next election cycle.

When Your Neighbor’s Tree Blots Out the Sun, Can You Force Them to Take It Down? Not in Massachusetts
JD Supra - Imagine owning your dream house. You have your pool, your barbeque area, your big lawn for the kids to play on. You’ve worked your whole life for this, and now you have it. It’s perfect. Well, except for your neighbor’s overgrown 100-foot tall sugar oak.

Strip Club, Clock Lofts Tango in Court
New Haven Independent - There was no pole dancing in housing court. But there were hours worth of legal tango on display as the owners of a Mill River strip club spent hours trying to outmaneuver the developers of a planned new complex of 130 affordable apartments and artist lofts in an historic former factory.

How to Turn $147 Into $10,000 – The WRONG Way
JD Supra - Homeowner bought home in 2004. In 2016, the homeowner failed to pay his $147 assessment. The homeowners association (“HOA”) assessed a $20 late fee.

Apartment Buyers Who Use Corporate Name for Security Reasons May Get Tax Break
The Wall Street Journal - Change suggested by members of law-enforcement community, judges who say they need to buy property under limited liability companies for their safety

Mass. governor proposes real estate transfer fee hike for climate resiliency projects
Building Design + Construction Network - Opposed by real estate and trade groups, plan could generate $1 billion in next decade.

Tech / Social Media
AI needs a lot more work before it can be safely used in mortgage - Hailed as a game-changing tool, artificial intelligence needs further refinement and scrubbing of any potential decision-making hazards before being rolled out for large-scale use in mortgage and other critical industries ...

How Does a Fully Digital Home Closing Work?
RedFin - Close your home online from your desk, or from around the world. All you need is a Wi-Fi signal.  

Will 2019 Be the Year That the Property Industry Adopts Tokenization?
Propmodo - As we embark on 2019, the crypto fever seems to have died down, but the question remains about whether or not the real estate industry will finally realize the potential of new technologies, such as distributed ledgers, blockchains, and tokens.

Red Alert: How to Protect Yourself from Real Estate Fraud
Forbes - It all started with a phone call from a real estate investor who called herself Janice. Janice was an investor on the east coast who was looking for more relationships with lenders to help her fund her real estate wholesaling business.

World News
Real estate scammers who abducted man to get his apartment found guilty in Yekaterinburg (Russia)
Crime Russia - The victim was beaten, taken to the woods and threatened with weapon. The abductors demanded that the man sell his apartment and give them the money. After that, he was being kept in a rental apartment, until he agreed to sign the papers of sale and purchase.

This is the world’s “money-laundering paradise” (Dubai)
The Real Deal - Everything’s bigger in Dubai. Home to the world’s tallest building since 2010, the emirate’s real estate industry could also be one of the world’s largest money laundromats.

LSO puts perks for real estate lawyers under the microscope (Canada)
Law Times - The Law Society of Ontario is considering whether to alter the restrictions on real estate lawyers who get fees and other perks paid by certain title insurers.

Insurers a worried lot with no takers for title insurance, inherent defects policy (India)
The Hindu Business Line - High pricing of title insurance, lack of proper mechanism key pain points

Title Agency & People in the News
Realtor rents hotel rooms for homeless during deadly Chicago cold snap
The Real Deal - After Candice Payne and her husband rented 20 rooms for people living outside, other good Samaritans stepped up too.

Real estate pro, victim of hackers, warns public after losing $25k in online theft - She thought she'd be the last person to get hacked. Amy Stetzler, who has worked in real estate and as a notary and credit professional for 12 years, said online hackers took $25,000 she'd intended to use for an investment.

Register of Deeds promotes protection against real estate fraud
Weymouth Wicket Local - Norfolk County Register of Deeds William P. O’Donnell recently reminded county homeowners of a free online Consumer Notification Service offered by the Registry of Deeds to protect county property owners against fraud.

Title Agents Go Nationwide
For agents interested in growing their businesses by expanding into multiple states, we’re here to make the process simple and profitable. We offer you one point of contact to streamline your options and solutions.

In Other News
Staten Island Chuck vs. Punxsutawney Phil: Who's the Better Forecaster?
DNA Info - As Mayor Bill de Blasio gears up for a re-election fight against challengers like State Sen. Tony Avella and real estate developer Paul J. Massey Jr. this November, we at DNAinfo have turned our eyes toward a rivalry far more savage and imminent.

When Snakes and Scientists Battled to Predict the Coldest Chicago Winter on Record
Atlas Obscura - In the early 20th century, meteorologists squared off with “weather sharps.”

Going postal at the mailbox
Crain's New York Business - Mailing a letter will never be the same

‘House Party’ Podcast: Which Type of Clutter Rules Your Life? Plus, Polygamy and Real Estate® - There’s no denying that real estate touches all of us, but sometimes we surprise even ourselves with the Venn diagram of housing. The latest example: polygamy and real estate. More specifically, TLC’s “Sister Wives” and real estate. Think selling one house is hard? Try selling four—all at the same time. 

Marianne Mathieu, NTP
Vice President/National Agency Accounts
Fidelity National Title Group