In an effort to keep Texas as a leading place to do business, prominent trade associations from across Texas continue to add their voice to the call for competition in the title insurance market. The Texas Business Leadership Council, a statewide network of CEOs that promotes a competitive business environment, joins the Texas Apartment Association and Texas Hotel & Lodging Association in supporting HB 4239, common sense legislation that would lower costs for Texas consumers of title insurance.
“The state has essentially sanctioned an oligopoly where a few companies do almost all of the business, with a guaranteed profit tied to an outdated regulatory scheme,” said Texans for Free Enterprise (TFE) Executive Director Bill Hammond of the current title insurance system.
“Every business in Texas should compete on price, and there’s no reason title insurance companies should be exempt. Texas consumers deserve a level playing field,” said TBLC President Justin Yancy in support of competition.
HB 4239 would allow title insurance companies to compete on price within a fixed range set by state regulators. Currently, regulators set the price based mostly on insurance companies’ stated expenses, that all title insurance companies must charge.
“Texas is a state that prides itself in its core commitment to a free market system and a belief in competition. But there remain in our state pockets of anti-competitive behavior, which includes the state’s archaic regulatory system for title insurance, where the state sets a single rate,” said THLA President Scott Joslove in a letter sent to House Insurance Committee Chairman Larry Phillips in support of HB 4239. “This legislation provides much needed accountability and transparency regarding the statutorily mandated costs of purchasing a property be it a residential home or a commercial property.”
Texas business leaders compete in the private sector every day, and know competition makes businesses stronger, and gives customers the best price. That is not happening with title insurance today. TFE will continue to encourage the House Insurance Committee to hear HB 4239 expeditiously, and support its passage.