American Land Title Association
Print Friendly
Home  >  News Room
News Room

SoftPro is the nation's leading provider of Real Estate Closing and Title Insurance software

North American Title Insurance Company is a seasoned title insurance underwriter that has been helping customers achieve the American dream of homeownership for more than 50 years. In the past several years, we have become known as the “underwriter next door,� because our associates are always easy to reach and our processes are, at all times, quick and straightforward. Our agency application process is fast and transparent for qualified agents. NATIC offers a one-hour underwriting response guarantee that is unparallelled in our industry. In addition, we value our agents based on their title industry knowledge and experience, not just on profits alone.

American Land Title Association Asks For Clarifications Regarding Federal Clean Energy Program

July 27, 2010

While the American Land Title Association (ALTA) supports efforts to reduce energy consumption and limit greenhouse gas emissions, several questions need answered regarding the Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) program in order to prevent potential risks in delaying or canceling real estate transactions.

“We recognize the value in lowering energy costs for consumers, creating jobs for the economy and reducing buildings’ carbon footprint for the environment,” said Kurt Pfotenhauer, chief executive officer of ALTA. “However, guidance is needed in resolving uncertainty surrounding these programs.”

ALTA sent a letter to the Federal Housing Finance Agency asking for clarification about the process by which a PACE lien is created, and how it is administered and satisfied to repay the obligation. Without knowing additional information regarding PACE liens, consumers will not be able to be properly informed they have clear title to their property and creditors will be unaware of their lien priority.

“This information allows consumers and lenders to make an informed decision about purchasing a property or providing mortgage financing,” Pfotenhauer said. “This uncertainty increases the potential of impeding or preventing real estate transactions.”

In addition, ALTA said concerns exist whether PACE financing is defined as a loan or a tax assessment. If it’s considered a loan, repayment is secured by a tax lien against the property. The Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (RESPA) requires that all loans secured by a lien against real property must be conducted in accordance with RESPA, including the issuance of a GFE and HUD-1. ALTA also seeks clarification if PACE liens must be recorded in the local public records and how ownership of the property is determined. A property owner must have title in order to grant a lien against the property, but guidelines for the PACE programs are unclear in how to prove ownership.

“Without establishing standards for determining title to property, PACE loans run the risk of significant losses due to fraud,” Pfotenhauer said. “In addition to harming PACE participants, it also damages local property records, and results in increased costs of underwriting, claims, escrow services and compliance for the land title industry.”

Print Friendly

How To Find Us:
American Land Title Association
1800 M Street, NW, Suite 300S
Washington, D.C. 20036-5828
P. 202.296.3671 F. 202.223.5843
Copyright © 2004-2016 American Land Title Association. All rights reserved.
SecurityMetrics for PCI Compliance, QSA, IDS, Penetration Testing, Forensics, and Vulnerability Assessment