NATIONAL VACATION OWNERSHIP DIVISION HELPS SUNTERRA CORP. SECURE $200 MILLION


January 30, 2002, SANTA ANA, Calif.

First American Title Insurance Company, one of the nation’s largest title insurers and a member of The First American Corporation (NYSE:FAF) family of companies, today announced the successful completion of an extensive title search project that helped Sunterra Corporation, one of the world’s premier vacation ownership enterprises, secure a $200 million refinance loan.

Sunterra turned to First American’s National Vacation Ownership Division—specialists in handling vacation property transactions—to manage the complex title information-gathering project.  To accomplish the task, First American assembled a team of 13 experts from eight of the states represented in the loan.  

“Title searches needed to be conducted at 20 different Sunterra resorts in different parts of the country, and they had to be completed extraordinarily fast for the loan to close on time,” noted Chris Hermann, vice president and Western region director for First American’s National Vacation Ownership Division.  “Our vacation property experts were up to the challenge, using their extensive knowledge of state and local regulations to get the job done.”

The First American team completed 11,632 individual searches in just three weeks and prepared 44 individual commitments with an average turnaround time of only 15 days.

“The dedication of the vacation ownership team, and the advanced First American technology systems that handled these high-volume transactions, led to the successful completion of the project—more quickly than even Sunterra had anticipated,” said Deborah Lee, director of operations for First American’s National Vacation Ownership Division.  “Our ability to provide a seamless, single-point-of-contact service for both the company and lender was vital to completing this transaction on time.” 

Established in August 2000, First American’s National Vacation Ownership Division uses First American’s advanced FAST e-commerce systems to process and deliver the company’s broad array of products and services and close transactions anywhere in the country. First American is also developing new software and Web-enabled processes that will accommodate the high-volume transactions typical of vacation ownership properties.

First American Title Insurance Company, the largest subsidiary of The First American Corporation (NYSE: FAF), traces its history to 1889. One of the largest title insurers in the nation, the company offers title services through more than 900 offices and an extensive network of agents throughout the United States and abroad. The company has its headquarters in Santa Ana, Calif. Information about The First American Corporation’s subsidiaries and an archive of its press releases can be found on the Internet at www.firstam.com.

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