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What are title service fees?

Answer:

Title service fees are part of the closing costs you pay when getting a mortgage. When you purchase a home, you receive a document most often called a deed, which shows the seller transferred their legal ownership, or “title,” to the home to you. Title service fees are costs associated with issuing a title insurance policy for the lender.  

Title insurance can provide protection if someone later sues and says they have a claim against the home. Common claims come from a previous owner’s failure to pay taxes or from contractors who say they were not paid for work done on the home before you purchased it.

Lender’s title insurance is usually required to get a mortgage loan. Title service fees include the title search fee, the premium for the lender’s title insurance policy, and other costs and services associated with issuing title insurance. In most states, the fee for conducting your closing is also a part of the title service fees.

Title service fees are listed in section B or C of page 2 of your Loan Estimate (and in section B or C of page 2 of your Closing Disclosure). If the title services are listed in Section C, you can shop for them separately.   

If you choose to purchase owner’s title insurance, it will be listed in section H of your Loan Estimate.

See an interactive sample Loan Estimate form.

Note: You won’t receive a Loan Estimate or Closing Disclosure if you applied for a mortgage prior to October 3, 2015, or if you're applying for a reverse mortgage.  For those loans , you will receive two forms – a Good Faith Estimate (GFE) and an initial Truth-in-Lending disclosure  – instead of a Loan Estimate.  Instead of a Closing Disclosure, you will receive a final Truth in Lending disclosure and a HUD -1 Settlement Statement. Title service fees are listed in Block 4 of your GFE (and Line 1101 of your HUD-1 settlement statement ). If you are applying for a HELOC, a manufactured housing loan that is not secured by real estate, or a loan through certain types of homebuyer assistance programs, you will not receive a GFE or a Loan Estimate, but you should receive a Truth-in-Lending disclosure.  

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