Jane and Ryan lived in South Florida for more than 30 years. After living on the east coast in their twenties and thirties, they were looking to make a move to the west coast of Florida, Sarasota. Ryan was recruited for a new job and with little time to find a place to call home,
Jane and Ryan lived in South Florida for more than 30 years. After living on the east coast in their twenties and thirties, they were looking to make a move to the west coast of Florida, Sarasota. Ryan was recruited for a new job and with little time to find a place to call home, they enlisted a top realtor that a family friend recommended in the Sarasota County market and soon found the perfect place. Throughout the process, they thought their realtor was the crème de la crème. They were completely satisfied. As it turns out, the real estate agent was only focused on finding them a home, the part of the transaction that gets the agent paid.
When it came time to move to the closing, it turned out that although their realtor knew the Sarasota County market, she didn’t know much about the real estate closing process and title insurance. Ryan remembered the last closing was a hassle, he had to take off work, spend hours signing documents, and pay what seemed like unnecessarily high fees.
Jane and Ryan did a quick search of buyer closing costs in Florida and started to find that not all companies are created equal and realized he could shop around, get discounts, and close almost 100% online.
What led you to research closing costs?
My wife and I were looking to save as much as possible as we make this move over to the west coast and begin this new chapter in our lives, and downsize. I am starting a new career and she is transitioning to be a stay-at-home wife. Because of this change, we were looking to save as much as possible when purchasing this new home. I remembered how dumbfounded I was at the high closing costs on the last home we bought and wanted to see if it were possible to lower the costs at all (by the time I realized how high the costs were last time, it was too late, and my only choice was to sign on the dotted line, so to say).
Did you think you could save money on title insurance?
We really had no idea. We trusted our real estate agent. She urged us to go with her title company, at first, which she has been using “forever.” We didn’t know:
- Shopping for a title insurance company was an option
- There was a choice in who we used
- We could save and on what costs
We knew that title insurance was regulated by the state and that in different counties, different parties were responsible for covering the cost, but that’s about it. I think most people out there don’t realize that there is an opportunity to save on their real estate closing and title insurance costs, and they just blindly follow their realtor’s suggestions. This is a real eye opener for consumers.
Were you surprised at what you learned?
Surprised would be an understatement. I was more frustrated that I did not do my due diligence when making such a big purchase and that no one ever told me about this in all the homes we bought and sold in our time. What I was surprised to learn was that a big portion of the closing fees can be negotiated. That was refreshing to hear—I definitely already shared that news with everyone I know so they don’t get scammed when buying or selling their homes. However, I was also surprised that on the title insurance rate that is set by the state you can get a discount through the Butler Rebate, which is GREAT!
How did using TitleZoom compare with the traditional title insurance companies you used in the past?
Oh boy, not sure where to start. But, overall TitleZoom was the lowest cost company and we definitely had an exceptional experience. We asked around to see if any of our friends understood that they could have negotiated the closing fees. No one we spoke with, which were mostly our friends and family, realized that the fees were negotiable. As soon as we reached out to TitleZoom, they immediately responded and were accommodating. We completed our initial paperwork online, they sent us weekly updates so we always knew what was going on, and all of our questions were always answered promptly. And, to go a step further (and some may call us crazy), we compared TitleZoom’s fees against the title company that was involved in our last transaction and almost fell off our chair—the difference in the costs were substantial!
How did you hear about TitleZoom?
As I mentioned, we did a Google Search. From there we researched the company a little more and noticed their ratings on Facebook were five stars. And, their website was transparent, easy to understand and outlined the savings very clearly.
Would you recommend TitleZoom to friends and family?
If you are closing anywhere in the state of Florida and looking for an online, convenient and lower cost solution, we would highly recommend TitleZoom. They have 30+ years of experience, including an attorney on staff. When I tell our friends about our closing and savings experience they ask if they can go back and get the discount. Unfortunately, they cannot. But, we tell all of them to use TitleZoom for future closings!