Although we aim to do our best on the job every single day, mistakes are sometimes made. Despite our best attempt to minimize those occurrences, we are human, and the real estate industry is regrettably not immune to the minor mess-up. Large real estate companies need further protection than just their Business Office Package Policy. For full protection from mistakes made while acting on behalf of another party, Error and Omissions insurance (E&O) can provide coverage from situations such as a misrepresentation of facts or failure to disclose a known piece of information to a buyer. Having a program such as the Norman-Spencer Top Tier Real Estate Errors and Omissions Insurance Program can ease the minds of agents and brokers, allowing them to focus on what’s most important: how to best serve their buyers and sellers.
Coldwell Banker Vanguard Realty knows all about the significance of having a trusted E&O insurance program. Having served the Jacksonville, Fla., market since 1977, Vanguard Realty began as an independent and affiliated with various companies throughout the years, finally landing with Coldwell Banker in 2010. Notably, the company is the official real estate company and relocation partner of the Jacksonville Jaguars, a marketing relationship that started three years ago, giving Vanguard Realty the license to use the Jaguar’s logo on marketing materials and vice versa in the stadium.
In addition, the market has fared well for the company this year, according to President Pete Dalton. “The market in 2014 has been very similar to 2013. The last half of this year is shaping up better than the last half of last year, and sales are up 18 percent year-over-year as compared to an average growth of 2 percent in the market.”
“One of the challenges we’re seeing is that a lot more people want to re-enter the business after exiting when the market went down,” says Donald Gulick, CFO, Coldwell Banker Vanguard Realty. “We’re setting up a program that addresses the needs of those agents. As new agents come in, you need different types of programs and marketing to give them the additional training that they need.”
To help get agents up to speed, the company offers a program Dalton calls “Concierge Service,” which enables agents to order marketing materials online, giving them a tremendous advantage in the market. This, along with the Norman-Spencer Top Tier Real Estate E&O Program, has helped Vanguard Realty retain agents that bring in $2 million or more in sales, securing them an average production per agent rate of $4 million in sales—highly impressive numbers for a market with average sales prices hovering around $200,000.
Partnering with REO Advisors, a national insurance agency specializing in Real Estate E&O insurance, also gives Vanguard Realty a competitive, differentiating edge in their market. In 2012, the company contacted REO Advisor’s National Account Executive, Anthony Burgos, in order to compare other programs’ coverages and rates to their then-current policy. After comparing various available E&O programs, Burgos ultimately recommended the Norman-Spencer Top Tier Real Estate E&O Program as its comprehensive policy coverages best matched Vanguard Realty’s coverage needs.
“We had 30 days to get the proposal together, get quotes, and lock things up. Anthony went out of his way to accommodate us and work with us. That’s a fairly short time to put a package together and get everything organized and presented. It worked out nicely and we’ve been with REO Advisors and Norman-Spencer’s Top-Tier E&O Program since September 2012,” says Gulick.
The overriding reason Vanguard made the switch was due to REO Advisors’ outstanding customer service. “If there’s any information that I need, or any turnaround needed, Anthony provides superb customer service that’s very quick, and that’s important when you’re dealing in this area of management,” adds Gulick.
Thanks to its new E&O policy, Vanguard Realty is now covered for security incidents or data breaches, open houses, lockboxes, discrimination defense, environmental hazards, and much more, taking the weight of potential incidents off management’s chest.
According to Michael Ryder, National Program Director for Norman-Spencer, the company is in the process of rolling out an expanded policy with even more enhanced coverage options to further serve its real estate customers going forward.
“I would certainly recommend REO Advisors and the Norman-Spencer Top Tier Real Estate Errors and Omissions program, and have in the past. I have no hesitation doing so,” says Gulick.
“Our relationship with Anthony at REO Advisors and Norman-Spencer has been positive both in pricing and in customer service, and we all appreciate that here,” concludes Dalton.
If you would like to discuss your E&O coverage with REO Advisors, the agency for Coldwell Banker Vanguard Realty, they can be reached at www.reoadvisors.com.
The Norman-Spencer Top Tier program is available through most insurance agencies, however, you may also choose to have your local insurance agent contact Norman-Spencer agency at www.norman-spencer.com/toptier.