North American Title Group promoted Kimberly Sledd to legal and regulatory compliance specialist, reporting to General Counsel Jeff Howeth. Sledd had previously serviced as vice president of sales, marketing and business development for the Mid-Atlantic region of North American Title Co., an agency subsidiary.
North American adds Indiana to expansion plans
“The regulatory environment for title and escrow entities has changed dramatically with the assumption by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) of responsibility for administration and enforcement of RESPA,” Howeth said. “It is important than ever to operate in a compliant manner. We are working on several levels to implement policies and procedures required to ensure compliance with applicable laws and regulations that affect the company’s operations across both its agency and underwriter subsidiaries or that are required under the American Land Title Association Best Practices framework. ALTA Best Practices are gaining North American Title Group increased acceptance both within our industry and throughout the broader financial services industry.”
Sledd has more than 14 years’ of experience in global business services, title insurance and mortgage lending. Previous to her arrival at North American Title, she served as a strategic account executive for a global firm offering financial and technology solutions for lenders, brokers and services. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in management with honors from the University of Phoenix and has received an executive leadership certificate from Cornell University.
“We are fortunate to have found Kimberly already within our company,” he said. “She has the capabilities to assist with research, development and implementation of these enhanced policies and procedures – and to educate and train our associates to follow them.”
“While I will miss Kimberly’s sales and marketing leadership within our division, I am confident her talents will be used even more effectively on a national level to accomplish this crucial initiative,” said Maria Deligiorgis, Mid Atlantic division president, North American Title Co.
“At North American Title, we are committed to mitigating risk through sound business practices that include empowering associates with the knowledge and support to remain compliant,” Sledd said. “I feel privileged to be a part of this vital effort, and I look forward to support executive management as we continue developing an even stronger value proposition for our stakeholders.”
To the north, North American Title Agency opened a new branch in Manasquan, New Jersey, with closing and sales representatives.
“The opening of our Monmouth County branch kicks off our aggressive expansion plans for the Northeast,” said Vince Daino, vice president, Northeast division sales manager, NATA. “We are also planning new branches in Mercer and Hudson counties, both due to be opened by the end of the second quarter of 2014. Monmouth County is strategically located in the Central New Jersey market, with great potential for growth in a very positive economic environment. The office will also be able to serve NATA customers in adjacent counties, including Ocean County.”
Ranked as 38th among the highest-income counties in the United States as of 2011, Monmouth County is among the top 1.2 percent of U.S. counties by wealth. Its real estate environment is equally positive, with the median value of $399,000 for owner-occupied housing units in the county, compared to median value of $337,900 for the state.
“This area is about an hour south of New York City,” said Jennifer Costa, Monmouth County branch manager, NATA. “We have a good mix of primary residences and second homes, including large homes, bungalows and condominiums. In addition, we were fortunate that we experienced fewer effects from Hurricane Sandy, so our housing market here has bounced back nicely with very few foreclosures.”
In March 2014, single-family home sales in Monmouth County had dropped 9.6 percent from 2013 figures, from 334 to 302 sales, according to the New Jersey Association of Realtors®. However, the median sales price had jumped 6.3 percent year-over-year, from $373,500 to $397,000, and days on market until sale dropped from 93 days to 88 days, comparing March 2014 to March 2013. In the same period, the supply of homes for sale dropped 13.3 percent from 8.3 months to 7.2 months, moving the area to more of a seller’s market. Condominiums showed a dramatic drop of 25.6 percent in inventory, with only 6.1 months’ supply in March 2014 compared to 8.2 months a year ago.
Costa said she and branch associate Linda Nardone offer the local real estate community a combined 35 years of closing experience.
“We are looking forward to building a successful settlement center for the attorneys, lenders, real estate agents and brokers in the county,” said Costa. “We can either do the closing here at our office, or if an attorney wants the closing done at his or her office, we can handle that. We expect to have a busy summer, now that our three salespeople are diligently out and about to let the real estate community know North American Title Agency is here.”
“I am confident that Jennifer and the team in Monmouth County will do well; they have the experience and fire to succeed,” said Dominic Fahey, president, Northeast division, NATA. “Monmouth County is a key part of our NJ expansion planned for 2014.”