Company Courting New Customers in Anticipation of Rejuvenated Housing Market
One of the biggest challenges in times of economic uncertainty is determining when and where opportunity will surface. The Pacific Coast Title Division of Security Union Title Insurance Co. has been looking carefully at northern California's stalled real estate market and figures that the tide is about to turn. To take advantage of the projected upsurge in activity, the company is courting customers in Alameda and Contra Costa counties from the new office it opened in Hacienda, at 4637 Chabot Drive, in April 2008.
"We have been watching the northern California market for some time," says Rita Nordby, Pacific Coast Title Senior Vice President and Northern California Manager. Choosing Hacienda as a hub reflects a deliberate strategy to serve this market as the anticipated shift materializes. It is also a sign of confidence in inherent local property values. "Our message to the people we are marketing to - whether investors, buyers, sellers, real estate agents, or lenders - is that we are very, very positive that this market is going to turn," Nordby emphasizes.
"It's a tough market to close escrow in, so we have another approach," she continues. To provide the assistance necessary to resolve the complexities of today's home sales, Nordby recruited a staff of industry veterans, many of whom she plucked from the unemployment line. Their broad skill sets and "extraordinary amount" of experience - a combined total of 169 years - in the title business is a great asset, she says. And, like her, they all have a personal commitment to the new company.
While some other firms in the title business are downsizing or reorganizing, changing relationships with their business partners, Pacific Coast Title's cohesive, high-energy approach is capturing the attention of the local realtors and lenders. The reception to its overtures has been positive and encouraging, Nordby reports.
"We are all working hard together to implement our business plan. We have inspiration, a vision, and just plain guts," she comments. "People want to work with others who have a positive approach. It's like a breath of fresh air."
It does help that in times like this, when the foreclosure rate is so high, Pacific Coast's product, title insurance, is more important than ever. "The foreclosure process has several deadlines and requirements to make it bone fide," Nordby explains, "and if any one of them is not met, the foreclosure can be challenged. The title insurance policy will protect the owner and new lender from any invalidation, defending the title and making the insured party whole."
Pacific Coast Title is the product of a joint venture with the publicly traded Fidelity National Financial, Inc., headquartered in Jacksonville, Fl. A Fortune 500 company, Fidelity National is the parent of several well-known title insurance and escrow companies, including Chicago Title, Ticor Title, and Security Union Title.
Pacific Coast Title has three branches in southern California, in Woodland Hills, Tustin, and City of Industry. A team of eight staffs the Hacienda hub: four escrow officers and two marketing reps, a title officer, and a customer service rep. For more information, visit www.onlinepct.com .
Also in this issue ...