Closing.com, a Web site that allows title insurers and settlement service providers to market their services and provide rate quotes on demand, says more than 1,000 title companies are now publishing their rates on the site.
The site, which launched in August, is still technically in beta mode, with a consumer launch not planned until this summer.
Closing.com is cleaning up its database and calling companies that use the site to market their services in order to help them take the steps needed to publish their rates, said Kristin Ewald, vice president of content development for La Jolla, Calif.-based ClosingCorp Inc.
But partnerships with the American Land Title Association (ALTA) and other industry groups has helped the site grow its user base at a rapid pace in recent months.
The partnership with ALTA, announced last fall, allows ALTA members to sign up for premium listings and provide rate quotes through Closing.com at no cost through the end of this year (see story).
Closing.com has similar partnerships with the California Land Title Association (CLTA) and the California Escrow Association (CEA).
Basic listings — free to any settlement services provider — allow companies to put their contact information in Closing.com’s searchable database. But companies with premium listings can also provide rate quotes to consumers and real estate professionals using Closing.com’s rate search engine.
Closing.com currently has rate search engines in 10 "verticals": title insurance, escrow and settlement services, home inspection, pest inspection, home warranty, closing attorneys, appraisals, notary services, land surveyors, and geotechnical engineers.
Closing.com claims more than 150,000 settlement services providers are using the site. That includes nearly 1,700 title companies, with 1,074 of those companies currently offering rate quotes, Ewald said.
Title companies using Closing.com range from local title agencies serving a single county, to big companies like Fidelity National Title Group, Old Republic Title Cos., North American Title Insurance Co., Entitle Direct, nearly 300 Stewart Title offices, and Orange Coast Title Co.
"We’re moving along inch by inch to become a one-stop real estate info provider that helps consumers save on closing costs and get a better picture of the process," Ewald said. "We’re all about transparency and serving both consumers, real estate agents, lenders and other professional service providers."
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