Although it’s been a choppy year thus far, spring never fails to bring some life back to just about any market. This year, as order counts start to rise, will be a little different than the past few. If anything, while there will be opportunities out there, there will be competition—fierce competition—for those opportunities. A purchase market is just about always inherently competitive; doubly-so in a year of depressed volume.
Down market cycles call for agents to rethink how they’re approaching the market…and how they operate.
It's during times like these that title agents need to get the job done fast and well. They also need to do it at minimum cost. And while the industry has undergone some painful staffing cuts to reduce expenses, there are also many other ways to be more efficient. Quite a few of them involve seeing the opportunity present in just about everything and everyone. The real estate transaction is a chaotic ballet of constantly moving (and changing) parts…and participants. And the vast majority always have something to bring to the table.
FAN and its family of brands has always operated on the concept of “coopetition.” Yes, there are times when we’re vying with another title agency for a REALTOR’s business, but by and large, we see almost every business in our space as an opportunity to partner for mutual benefit.
Coopetition as a survival strategy
We’ve called before for the title industry to make 2023 the year of “coopetition.” That’s a made-up term that’s gaining favor in the business world these days, and it means collaboration among business competitors for mutual benefit. That’s a little foreign in an industry as competitive as ours, but consider the following. How many times has a title agent in one geographic market turned to a competitor in another market, steering clients and orders that competitors way in order to earn at least part of the business? Especially during markets like this, there are numerous ways for title agents to partner to win at least a share of the reduced opportunities out there. For example, we work with title agencies or settlement services businesses that don’t have a brick-and-mortar presence in the markets in which we specialize, but want to grow their geographic footprint in some form. We’ve also been involved in enough M&A activity that all kinds of businesses will consult with us to be sure they’re doing it the right way. Or, consider the title agencies seeking to scale their production costs. The FAN family can also provide shared or centralized resources, such as back office services, that give our partners increased scalability and flexibility. And you may already be aware that we are the leading digital closing/RON provider of all title agencies in Florida. We frequently partner with lenders and other title companies seeking to add these services to their offerings.
The world of real estate is a world of cycles. Our own Aaron Davis has written before about “recession-proofing” your title agency. We at FAN strongly believe that the businesses who survive the inevitable down markets are generally those that are willing to partner, expand their service offerings and scale their operations so that they’re in good position when the market (inevitably) turns again. Give us a call if you’d like to see how we can partner with you for mutual benefit!
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