Though they probably didn’t realize it, Texans started paying more last week for title insurance, already one of the biggest costs associated with buying or refinancing a home.
The price hike, quietly approved in March by the state insurance commissioner, is the first in 22 years. Aaron Day, a lobbyist for the Texas Land Title Association, said the 3.8 percent increase was justified by data submitted by the industry and the loss of business it suffered during the housing downturn, when premium income dropped by more than one-third.
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Brenda Bell, a member of the Statesman’s investigative team, has reported on a wide range of Texas issues and public figures. Her recent work has included extensive coverage of state contract irregularities and other concerns at the Department of Public Safety.