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Volume 94, 
mid-July 2014



LAST CHANCE for PREP Newsletter Subscribers to Receive Half-Price PRIA Membership for One Year 

Act by July 31, 2014, to Take Advantage of This Offer

PRIA has a remarkable offer for PREP Chapter participants.  For those organizations not already members of PRIA, you can join NOW for just 50 percent of your applicable category and enjoy the benefits of PRIA membership through July 31, 2015!


Whether a county government or business, we are confident your organization will find a substantial value in PRIA membership and will not hesitate to make PRIA membership an annual commitment.


Members can:         

  • Attend the 2014 Annual Conference in Long Beach, CA, and all PRIA events, at reduced rates
  • Influence the development of standards and best practices for your industry
  • Join a committee or work group where you can immediately get involved
  • Stay up-to-date on the latest industry news
  • Enjoy exclusive notice of opportunities to review papers and standards, before publication
  • Meet with your industry partners for informal discussions and challenging debates
  • Interact with the brightest minds in the industry - creating your personal network
Visit and click "Join PRIA" to join online.  For Government agencies use Coupon Code:  PREPPROMOGOV.  There are both online and paper-based options available.  For Businesses use Coupon Code:  PREPPROMOBUS. There are both online and paper-based options available. See discounted membership rates here.

This offer is valid for organizations, both government and business, that have never before been members of PRIA or have not held membership in the past three years (since 2011). Questions? Contact Stevie Kernick, chief staff officer, at 919.459.6081 or Offer expires on July 31, 2014. Act Now!


News from PREP Chapters


In every edition of the PREP Newsletter, we highlight at least one PREP Chapter and post an abbreviated version of their most recent Chapter Meeting minutes.  You can also see what any of the PREP Chapters are talking about by going to PRIA's PREP Chapters webpage.  


Co-chairs: Government, Kelly Callahan, and Business, Jim Ohly,   


The SE Minnesota PREP Chapter met on May 7, 2014. Presentations given at this meeting included: 1) an update on the local DMC (Destination Medical Center), 2) an overview of current document recording requirements, 3) a discussion regarding "combined documents", 4) an update on the status of the local MERS litigation, and, 5) a report from all counties present regarding their current stats, news and eRecording volumes. The next meeting for this Chapter will be held on August 6, 2014. (Read complete minutes for this Chapter on PRIA's PREP webpage.)


MERS Must Face Trial Over Pennsylvania Mortgage Records
excerpted from National Mortgage News 7/5/14

Merscorp Inc., the operator of an electronic mortgage registry known as MERS, must face a trial to determine how much it owes Pennsylvania counties for shortchanging them on mortgage recording fees, a judge ruled.

The Pennsylvania case was brought by the recorder of deeds in Montgomery County on behalf of other recorders in the state. From 2000 to 2012, documents recorded by MERS steadily increased in the state with a corresponding decrease in recording fees collected by the counties, Joyner said in his ruling, citing a survey by the Philadelphia Department of Records. Montgomery County lost more than $15 million in recording fees, according to court documents. (Read complete article.) 




Register Now for the Annual PRIA Conference (August 25-28) in Long Beach, CA

This year's Annual Conference will feature more thought-provoking sessions that are sure to educate and enhance the working relationships of all attendees.


And good news for PRIA members planning to attend the NACRC Annual Conference, August 22-25, also at the Renaissance Long Beach.  PRIA and NACRC have collaborated to provide a "combo" registration which will save a total of $50 on fees for those Government Members attending both conferences.  Note:  The only PRIA Business Members that will benefit from the "combo" fees are Limited Access Members.  Business membership levels provide other advantages for registration fees for conferences.  Both the online registration form and printed forms are available by clicking here.


There is now a preliminary schedule of events for you to look at, so REGISTER now and reserve your room at the early-bird PRIA group rates. 


RI Top Court Affirms MERS Role as Mortgagee
excerpted from Housing Wire 7/11/14

The Rhode Island Supreme Court ruled in favor of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, affirming MERS' role as mortgagee, including its authority to assign a mortgage, the latest in a string of favorable court rulings.


In Ingram v. Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc., the plaintiffs appealed the Superior Court's grant of summary judgment in favor of MERS and other defendants, alleging in part that the mortgage assignment from MERS to Deutsche Bank was void and therefore Deutsche Bank did not have the ability to foreclose on the property. (Read complete article.) 

Still a Chance to Make Nominations for CSC's eRecording All-Star Awards
Corporation Service Company® (CSC®), a nationwide provider of paper and electronic real estate document recording services, is calling for nominations for its second-annual eRecording All-Star Awards.  And once again, we would like to remind you that the deadline for nominations is noon Eastern Time on Wednesday, July 23, 2014.

For the first time, the awards will recognize both clerks/recorders AND document submitters who have implemented and promoted the use of electronic document recording technology. There are eight award categories this year: four for submitters and four for clerks/recorders. 


Complete the Nomination Form.


ALTA NEWS:  Mortgage Risk Retention Rules Imminent (by Michelle Korsmo, ALTA CEO)

excerpted from the June 30, 2014 ALTA Advocacy Update


According to a senior Treasury official, the long-awaited final risk retention regulations for securitized mortgages (also known as the Qualified Residential Mortgage rule) is expected to be finalized shortly. The rule (required by section 941 of Dodd-Frank) requires banks and other firms that package loans into securities to retain five percent of the risk of default on their books, unless the mortgages meet certain standards.


The rule, which is being drafted by six federal regulators, has been held up since last year because of objections from the SEC. Last year, regulators issued a new proposal with two options: (1) eliminate the down-payment requirement and adopt a rule substantially in line with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's Ability to Repay rule or (2) boost the down payment requirement to 30%. In the face of pressure from ALTA and other housing groups, regulators are poised to go with the first option, but to get the SEC to drop its objection the regulators agreed to reexamine the issue in the coming years.


The hope is that finalizing this rule and other recent clarifications from Fannie and Freddie on "put-back" risk will help loosen credit availability for people seeking mortgages. Additionally, they hope this provides a shot of certainty into the private-label mortgage-backed security market. If you have any questions please contact ALTA's legislative and regulatory counsel, Steve Gottheim, at 

or 202-261-2943.


Why Today's Mortgage Market May Be Worse Than After the Collapse

In some respects right now is as bad a time for the mortgage business as the aftermath of the disaster of 2008. Of course, the crash was terrible but the industry got the benefit of unparalleled subsidies. Now the business may lose its crutches before it's ready to keep its balance.

More than $100 billion of taxpayer money has been pumped into Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to keep them on an even keel. And the Federal Reserve Board obligingly kept short-term interest rates low and bought enormous amounts of mortgage-backed securities, driving down long-term yields and enabling a refi boom that kept the business alive for four or five years. Though the term was coined for big financial institutions rather than industries, in some respects the mortgage business was marked as Too Big to Fail.


Unlimited taxpayer propping-up for the government-sponsored enterprises in the future is at least an open question. The Senate Banking Committee has passed a marked up Johnson-Crapo bill, and the full Senate will now consider reform that would make private entities liable for the first losses, in effect assigning them a 10% deductible. Even if it doesn't pass the Senate, it's the first significant step towards resolving the GSEs in many years.


And, the Fed has begun to taper off its buying down of the mortgage markets. Interest rates have gone up, though not as sharply as many had feared (and in recent weeks they've retraced some of those gains). But the rate rise has been significant enough that refinancings have tanked and the purchase market has not been able to take up the slack. And the cost of regulatory compliance is tracking north rapidly. (Read complete article.) 



Links to National News


Los Angeles Times | July 10, 2014
After hitting a 14-year low in the first three months of this year, second-quarter home lending was much stronger than analysts expected, Inside Mortgage Finance reported. The trade publication estimated that lenders funded about $310 billion in mortgages across the nation in April, May and June, up 32% from the first quarter.

MBA Reports New-home Sales Kept Climbing in June
Inman News | July 10, 2014
Sales of new single-family homes climbed slightly from May to June as the spring buying season came to a close, but were still below last year's level, according to an estimate by the Mortgage Bankers Association based on purchase mortgage applications.

Hardin County, Tenn., Adopts Simplifile eRecording Technology
PR Web | July 11, 2014
eRecording in Hardin County, Tenn., is now available to local and national recording customers through Simplifile, the nation's largest eRecording service provider.

Report: Home Prices Affected by Foreclosure Status
DS News | July 9, 2014
RealtyTrac released a study for the first time ever profiling what single family homes sell at the deepest discounts and what single family homes sell at the highest premiums.
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On most business days, we post national news articles, and PRIA and PREP Chapter information on the PREP Blog and the PRIA/PREP LinkedIn Group. You are able to stay in touch by subscribing to both sites and automatically receiving updates daily or weekly. 


The views and opinions expressed in the media, articles, comments, or links in this publication are those of the speakers or authors and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions held by the Property Records Industry Association (PRIA) or its members.  PRIA does not warrant the accuracy, timeliness or completeness of the information contained in this publication. If you have a complaint about something you have found in this publication, please contact PRIA by email at
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In This Issue
Last Chance for 1/2 Price PRIA Membership Offer
News from PREP Chapters - SE Minnesota
MERS Must Face Trial Over PA Mortgage Records
PRIA Annual Conference - August 25-28
RI Top Court Affirms MERS Role as Mortgagee
CSCs eRecording All-Star Awards
Why Today's Mortgage Market May Be Worse Than After the Collapse
Links to National News
Advertise in PRIA's Newsletters
PREP Blog and PREP LinkedIn
Examples of PRIA's Products 
PREP Chapter Meetings
        July - September 2014  

      Central Florida 

      Metro Minnesota 

      North Central Texas


      SE Minnesota

      Central Texas

      Central Lakes MN



Contact Information

Do you have questions or suggestions for this newsletter or any updated information on co-chairs, emails, phone numbers, etc. please contact us:
Carolyn Ableman
PREP Coordinator

Mark Monacelli
PREP Committee Government Co-Chair, Recorder
St Louis County, Minnesota

Madeleine Nagy

PREP Committee Business

Co-Chair, ALTA

State Government Affairs


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