Fortune Facts – Meet the Man Who Started it All

You’ll know him when you see him – and if not, you’ll know him from the way he greets you with a warm hug.  From his signature hats to his friendly demeanor, Nick Timpanaro has become a welcome fixture in the NJ title industry. From humble beginnings, Nick opened the Fortune Title office in 2000, where he shared a desk with his one employee, Norma Diaz.  Previously, Nick was President of Commerce Title Agency, Inc.; before that, he was Chief Title Examiner and Manager of the Foreclosure Department at First Financial Title Insurance Company; and before that, he was digging through the books in the trenches of Hudson County, mastering the business of searching.  Nick spent many years researching and reading everything he could get his hands on, including the Handbook of New Jersey Title Practice written by the esteemed Larry Fineberg.  His now vast body of knowledge and experience has earned him a reputation of being the go-to source of information and guidance for many NJ Foreclosure Attorneys. Sixteen years later, Norma is still with Fortune, joined by over 20 other employees that are lucky enough to have Nick as their mentor.  Every day we appreciate his spirit, his humor, his knowledge, and his love.  If you see Nick, say hello, and give him a hug.  You won’t be...

Fortune Cares – We Love BAM!

This month Fortune Cares proudly supports the extraordinary social action work of BAM (welovebam.com) – “B”riana, “A”mina and “M”arley – three young girls on the move to improve our community through their active and inspired social networking, peer mentoring and social action programs. Through the end of April, we are purchasing items for Briana’s RoomForChange project to completely outfit five rooms on the sixth floor of the YMCA in Newark, NJ, where children 12-17 years are living, unaccompanied by any parents or guardians.  Briana’s mission:  to create a warm, welcoming space where each child can feel safe and comfortable during their stay.  Each room will be furnished with beds and bedding, desks, chairs and lamps – all decorated a cheery animal motif selected especially by Briana, the animal lover that she is! The unfortunate reality is that these boys and girls arrive at the YMCA seeking safe haven at all hours, even in the middle of the night.  Sometimes they have only the clothes on their backs, with staff scrambling to provide them the personal items they need, such as underwear and pajamas, toiletries and towels. Thanks to Briana, these children and their living condition have received much needed attention and support. To participate in RoomsForChange is as simple as placing an order at Briana’s online charity registries at either Target.com or Amazon.com.  Here, you’ll find listed all of the items needed and more to create a peaceful place these children can call home. BAM also welcomes monetary donations at welovebam.com. Briana’s RoomsForChange project is also supported by GrassROOTS Community Foundation, a public health and social action organization that...

Ask Nick – HELOC Not Discharged

Question: At the time of my client’s loan, they paid off a Sovereign Bank (n/k/a Santander) HELOC loan. However, the loan remained open of record and unfortunately the Debtors ran the line back up. We are now going to sale at the end of the month and Santander has stated that their mortgage is in FIRST lien mortgage position on this property so they will NOT need to bid to protect their lien, and that our client will be taking title to the property subject to Santander`s Mortgage unless a payoff is requested. We have the HUD and Policy stating that my client is in first lien position. I have filed a claim with the underwriter. If the HELOC was paid off –but later because of whatever reason it was not closed out, the borrower drew down on it again AFTER my client’s mortgage was given/recorded, which lender is in first lien position? Answer: Unfortunately, you definitely have an issue. The HELOC loan, since it was not cancelled when paid, holds a priority position over your client’s Mortgage. You were correct to file a title claim, and the underwriter should be handling the loss that your client will incur. The loan policy insures your client as a first lien, and they are clearly not. Please make sure you were given a claim number and proceed with the claim. Do YOU have a title query? Please submit your question to info@fortunereo.com. Check back regularly and sign up for our e-newsletter for Nick’s answers to client questions and his thoughts on topics related to all aspects of the title industry. Under no circumstances is...

Noteworthy – ALTA Business Strategies 2016

By Nicole Plath This year’s American Land Title Association (ALTA) Business Strategies Conference (BSC) was by far the best BSC we have ever attended and unfortunately will be the last. ALTA is retiring the BSC in place of something new and exciting! Every year ALTA has hosted a Business Strategies Conference in the spring. The conference has always been an incredible opportunity to learn about our industry, network with peers, and ultimately find new ways to improve our business.  It historically has kicked off with a Social Media Summit that outlines all the various ways technology and social media can help expand business opportunities and then is followed by several days of a variety of seminars and presentations. This year I had the honor of speaking with three other title agents from around the country on the topic “Compliance is a Culture, Not Just a Policy.” Our class discussed all the various regulations that a title agent is expected to comply with and how being compliant is a competitive tool, not just a regulatory standard.  We talked about how to embrace compliance and integrate it into your culture.  Fortune Title is compliant with ALTA’s Best Practices and our next step is a third party certification.  We strongly believe in ALTA’s Best Practices and beyond! I also tried to soak up as much knowledge as I possibly could. With everything going on in our industry today I was really looking forward to hearing the perspectives of lenders, software providers, and title agents around the country as to how they were dealing with TRID and compliance.  Here are some thoughts that...

Upcoming Events

ALTA 2016 Federal Conference & Lobby Day, May 16-18 A meeting of title professionals and Congressional leaders on how federal decisions impact the future of  the title business.  Washington, DC/Renaissance Downtown NJSBA 2016 Annual Meeting & Conference, May 18-20 The must-attend event of the year for education, CLE credits, networking, the industry’s top speakers and outstanding social events. Atlantic City, NY/Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa **Nicole Plath, CEO, Fortune Title Agency, will be speaking at the Leadership Academy’s Real Estate Transactions from A-Z, Wednesday, May 18, 4:00-5:40pm** Fortune Title Agency’s Young Lawyers Division Hospitality & Entertainment Parties: **Wednesday, May 18, 8:30-10:30pm, Premiere** **Thursday, May 19, 8:30-10:30pm, 28...