Join Club

Boring Title: Horror Stories from the Obstacle Racing and Title Industry

Title insurance is boring, but Allied Title & Escrow is here to decode the jargon and make it (somewhat) more interesting. This biweekly column will explore the mundane (but very necessary!) world of title insurance while sharing interesting stories of two friends’ entrepreneurial careers. 

People ask me (Latane) all the time how and why I ended up in the title industry after being in the obstacle racing industry. The answer: It really makes no sense!

With that said, one thing I did consider as I got older and had a couple of kids to support was whether it was smart for me to be in an industry (eg., Obstacle Races) which was so boom or bust. Title insurance seemed a bit less risky than obstacle racing but today we will explore the horror stories of owning a business in each industry.

In our title tip of the week, we will also explore a horror story of a consumer who didn’t buy title insurance.

When you take an obstacle race to a new city, you are committed to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars for that weekend whether people sign up or not. Sometimes though you are lucky enough to get thousands to sign up for your race but that doesn’t mean you are in the clear. One such incident occurred in October of 2013 when we took the Ridiculous Obstacle Challenge (ROC Race) to New York City. We were very excited as we had over 25,000 participants signed up which was our most successful race to date.

What we didn’t expect was that this one weekend would be the only time in over 50 races that we were setting up the course on federal land. That week we learned that federal government would shut down for the first time in 17 years. As a result of the shutdown, federal employees would not be working and thus the property would be chained up and no one would be allowed on the land.

Although we had a no refund policy, we tried to do the right thing by offering refunds but first we informed everyone we would be rescheduling the event for two weeks later at a different location. We hired a communications/PR expert when making the decision to offer refunds who estimated only 8% of participants would take us up on the refunds. Unfortunately 55% took us up on that offer and an entire year of profits went away in a blink of an eye.

We had tried to plan for all types of situations, but that was one we never considered. We actually came up with a new internal saying after the event: NEVER EASY!

Owning a title company has its own set of risks. Although we at Allied Title & Escrow are fortunate to have top of the line security systems and protocols in place and have never had a security issue, other title companies have been hacked.

One such scam that overseas hackers have successfully pulled off is hacking a title company’s email and then reaching out to a buyer who is about to wire money and telling them to wire it to another to another bank account. It’s possible for a buyer to wire $1 million to the wrong account and have no recourse to get that money back.

Always call the title company to confirm wire instructions! We take extra precautions by continuously changing our passwords amongst a variety of other security measures to make sure our customers are protected.

Title Tip of the Week — the Horror story edition:

You are required to buy title insurance for the lender if you are getting a mortgage. The owner’s policy for yourself is optional but don’t mess around with not getting your own policy.

The most painful horror story, which happens in our industry, is when a distant relative or ex spouse surfaces after you bought your dream home and they claim they actually own the property because they should have been on the previous deed but never were.

If a judge were to rule in their favor, you could have to pay them off to own your house in full and could be out hundreds of thousands of dollars. If you have an owner’s title policy in place you would be covered! In fact, an owner’s policy covers attorney costs and there is no deductible…you just pay one time when you close on your house.

I know, I know, we were a bit pessimistic this week. We will make up for it in the next article. Have questions related to title insurance? Email Latane and Matt at [email protected]. Want to use Allied Title & Escrow when you buy a home? Tell your agent when you buy a house to write in Allied Title & Escrow as your settlement company!

Recent Stories

The owner of the bakery Cake Baby is celebrating one year of opening at the Pentagon City mall — and being out of her parents’ house. In December 2021, a…

A coalition of parents will be marching on Friday at Wakefield High School to encourage students not to use drugs and to demand a countywide response to in-school opioid use….

The freshest cold-pressed juice, cashew milks and cleanses delivered straight to your home or office from Greenheart Juice Shop! Greenheart delivers to over 100 zip codes in Virginia, D.C., and Maryland. Check your delivery day here and…

Renovations to a pair of office buildings in Crystal City, including the construction of a new pedestrian plaza, are set to wrap up this spring. Work kicked off last year…

Need help dealing with anxiety, depression or stress?

If you’re struggling to cope with anxiety, depression or stress, our virtual psychotherapy services can help. We offer a confidential and convenient service that’s tailored to your needs.

In our practice, cognitive behavioral therapy (or CBT) is an important tool we use to provide effective relief for those facing anxiety and depression. We believe that cognitive change can be used to improve behaviors and emotions, thus allowing you to achieve mental wellness. By understanding the cognitive distortions that lead to negative thought patterns, we are able to create interventions tailored to each of our clients. This empowering approach can help you gain control of how your own thoughts, beliefs, and behaviors impact your experience. With CBT, our service provides an effective treatment that can bring long-term change and mental stability.

Book a free consultation today and see how we can help you live a happier and healthier life.

Read More

Submit your own Announcement here.

St. Charles offers a play-based curriculum in a welcoming, Christ-centered environment.

Our program focuses on socio-emotional development and kindergarten readiness through hands-on and engaging activities. Our programs offer different schedules ranging from 7:30 am-5:30 pm for students, ages 2-5. We feature a full-day Jr. kindergarten class for older 4’s/5’s. Our facility includes a full-sized gymnasium, school chapel, and library. All of our students enjoy music and physical education weekly. Children have an opportunity to participate in enrichment classes such as soccer, basketball, ballet, and science.

We offer Summer Camp with weekly themes and twice a week water play, including Fun Friday moon bounce. Please join us for our Open House Feb. 3 at 9:30 am and 11:00 am. Click here to sign-up.

For more information or to schedule a tour, visit us at or call (703) 527-0608.

Submit your own Announcement here.

Almost, Maine

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, join us for a series of vignettes that revolve around the theme of love. Taking place in an almost-town called Almost, Maine, we will show you different, but important, facet of love in each

First-time Moms Meet & Greet

The truth, your first pregnancy and new mom months are full of twists and turns, ups and downs, and lots of questions! None of us really know the best way to do it – we just figure it out, together…


Subscribe to our mailing list