Can consumers shop around for title insurance?

Yes. Homebuyers have a legal right to select their own title insurance providers, as well as all of their settlement service vendors. Federal law requires that borrowers be given a disclosure form to sign stating they have the right to choose their own service providers. However, studies have shown for decades that homebuyers often use the providers recommended by their advisor, which may be their real estate agent, loan officer or attorney. Legally, none of these advisors can require a homebuyer to use a specific company. Some complexity around this area happens during the resale process, where the buyer and seller usually have different real estate agents. Depending on geography, either the buyer’s agent or the seller’s agent (typically the latter) selects the title and escrow provider.