First National Title Insurance Company (FNTI) continues to achieve incredible growth rates on a year-over-year basis. Through the third quarter, revenues are up almost 30 percent over the same period in 2016. Our goal to reach $100 million in gross revenues in 2017 will depend on how well the economy holds up, and if there is a surge in fourth quarter real estate activity. Even if we don’t quite reach that magic threshold, it is extremely gratifying to reflect on what we have achieved in a very short time. December is shaping up to be another great month, so as soon as we close out 2017, I will report the results of our shared success.
The reason we are so close to reaching $100 million in gross revenues is that many of you would consider 2017 a banner year. Our independent agents have grown the size of their operations and increased their market share. They know how to compete against the large national underwriters and are winning. It is the independent, entrepreneurial spirit that is driving that success.
Every day we see news reports and press releases of the “big four” underwriters acquiring and merging with various entities. They are constantly looking for an advantage to minimize the independent agents and gain a larger share of the market. But we also see new independent agents entering the market on a regular basis, willing to risk it all to carve out their niche and their share of the business. There will always be a strong independent agent influence in our markets with opportunities for new agents.
While that reality exists, there are challenges to our industry that will present themselves in 2018. One of the biggest threats is cyber crime followed by the ongoing battle to preserve our Texas regulatory system. Both of these issues are real and relevant to our future. We are addressing each of these issues on a variety of levels and have strategies in place to combat their negative impact on our industry.
Both FNTI and the TLTA have valuable tools on our respective websites to fight cyber crime. Please use these cyber tip/procedure tools and distribute the flyers to your customers and clients. The TLTA also has tools on their website to present a clear argument, based on researched facts, as to why our Texas system of regulation is the best in the country and that any other system would negatively impact our industry and the Texas consumer. Please review my “President’s Letter” which will be sent out from the TLTA next week for a more in depth explanation of the issues.
We appreciate the opportunity to earn your business and remain committed to becoming the largest independent title insurance underwriter in the state of Texas. Our success is due to your success, and we want YOU to be successful.