FAQ: Transcontinental Title

andreas.com FAQ: Transcontinental Title tctitle.com

If you’re refinancing or buying a home, do not use Transcontinental Title Company (tctitle.com). Based in Tampa, Florida, they are one of the largest title companies in the Southeast, and they work with banks and mortgage companies nationwide.

In June 2002, I refinanced my house in California. Chase Manhattan, a New York bank, did the refinancing. They used Transcontinental Title to do the title work.

However, Transcontinental made such a mess of the title papers that it had to be redone. This took additional weeks of time.

The worst problem was their extremely incompetent mishandling of escrow funds. Nearly $10,000 (ten thousand) was held up by them for months. They apparently lost track of it.

  • I sent the required documents by FedEx. Total silence from them. When I called four days later, they denied that they had gotten the documents. No problem. I went to FedEx office with the shipping receipt. FedEx told me that the package had been delivered to Transcontinental at 10.26 AM and they told me the name of the person who had signed for it. I called Transcontinental again. They denied for a week that the person worked there. Finally, they admitted that she indeed worked there.
  • I wrote a number of emails to them, asking when I could expect my check. They never replied to a single email. Not once.
  • I called at all hours: morning, noon, and afternoon. The receptionists often put me on hold and no one ever picked up the telephone or I was cut off repeatedly.
  • I was told misleading stories and evasions. Each time, the check would be sent “within a few days.” This was only to buy time. A week went by and yet again “within a few more days.” This went on for months.
  • Chase Manhanttan told me they called up to four or five times per day to clear this up. They got the same run around and evasion.

I talked to a lawyer who handles title companies. She had seen this sort of stuff before and wondered if the company in some sort of financial irregularity. Escrow funds are supposed to be untouched. At some point, some one is going to complain to the Florida insurance commissioner and there may be an investigation and prosecution for criminal fraud or felony. If the company is shut down, customers will lose their money.

After months of dozens of telephone calls (sometimes as many as five calls per day,) emails, letters, and FedEx letters, Transcontinental Title finally sent me my check. But they did not pay the interest on the money. They never apologized, never explained, never said anything.

I’ve gotten emails from people who were ex-employees of TTC or current employees. They wrote that what happened to me is common at TTC. The company should be investigated.