Stewart Title endorses NAHREP "Code of Trust" for title and escrow professionals

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HOUSTON (Sept. 20, 2007) – Stewart Title, a national and global provider of title insurance, escrow, closing, and other settlement and real estate information services, supports the principles underlying the Code of Trust proposed by the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP).

NAHREP has announced the Code of Trust, “En Confianza,” a set of ethical principles by which all its members are required to conduct business. In a time of national shrinking home-values and a mortgage-credit crunch, the Code’s goal is to regain and maintain public confidence, protect all consumers, and sustain and increase the rate of Hispanic homeownership.

Sections of the Code apply to mortgage originators, real estate professionals, home inspectors, as well as title, escrow and other loan closing services.

“Stewart Title strongly supports the goal of increasing homeownership for all Americans,” said Matthew W. Morris, senior executive vice president, Stewart Title. Morris had just attended the NAHREP Hispanic Marketing Convention & Expo in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.

“We endorse the principles set forth in the NAHREP Code of Trust that call for consumers to receive all relevant information they need to make the right choice for their closing services, and to be made aware of those services and their rates,” said Morris. “In addition, Stewart Title already makes available title policies and other information both in English and in Spanish. Where the Code of Trust calls for federal documents and disclosures to be available in Spanish, we will be working toward getting these and other closing documents translated for the buyers and sellers whose closings our offices handle.”

Currently, two members of the NAHREP board of directors work for Stewart Title. David Medina is the NAHREP chapter president in Tampa Bay, Fla., and is the marketing director for Stewart Title’s regional office in the city. José Menéndez, Stewart’s national director of multicultural markets, has been working toward the creation of the Code since joining the board two years ago.

“Stewart Title applauds the actions of NAHREP, asking its members to work toward full disclosure, transparency, accountability and protections for consumer choice,” said Menéndez. “We will uphold these principles within our portion of the real estate transaction process.”

Stewart Title is a wholly owned subsidiary of Stewart Information Services Corp. (NYSE-STC), a customer-driven, technology-enabled, strategically competitive, real estate information, title insurance and transaction management company. Stewart provides title insurance and related information services required for settlement by the real estate and mortgage industries through more than 9,500 policy-issuing offices and agencies in the United States and international markets. Stewart also provides post-closing lender services, automated county clerk land records, property ownership mapping, geographic information systems, property information reports, flood certificates, document preparation, background checks and expertise in tax-deferred exchanges. More information can be found at www.stewart.com/.

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