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Report  | November 2012

The Economic Contributions of the Land Title Industry to the U.S. Economy

By Nam D. Pham, Ph.D.

The Dodd-Frank Act rulemaking has directed the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) to create new mortgage forms to help consumers to understand the terms and the costs of mortgage loans. The current CFPB proposal is the second revision in the two years since the Bureau’s 2010 changes to the mortgage disclosure forms. Two rounds of back-to-back compliance costs impose a significant financial burden to the land title industry. The compliance costs are passed on to consumers in the midst of a fragile economic recovery and a housing market that is slowly regaining strength. The proposed rules also understate the valuable role the land title industry plays in the process of buying a home and transferring real property.

This study estimates the economic contributions of the land title industry to the U.S. economy and examines the vital role title and escrow services play in supporting the American property system. The report then assesses the negative effects of the CFPB’s proposed rules on the settlement process.