What's New This Month
It’s June, and the real estate industry has a lot to celebrate!

The West Virginia Bankers Title team is welcoming National Homeownership Month by doing what we do best - anticipating our customers’ needs and going the extra mile for them. It’s been a hectic, fast-paced time for the real estate profession. As we enter the summer sales season, now is the perfect time to take a moment and reflect on our last year and the growth that has occurred for all of us, not just on the business side but as professionals, too. 

We hope this month is filled with joy and the feeling of accomplishment that comes with helping our customers achieve the American Dream of purchasing a home! For our lender friends, the WVBT team read with interest this article that examines how Millennials interact with the mortgage process (because it couldn’t be National Homeownership Month without a Millennial trend article, right?) 

We hope you enjoy our newest e-newsletter. And to go along with the celebratory spirit of June, we want to send our heartfelt thanks to the Realtors, lenders and attorneys who trust West Virginia Bankers Title with your transactions. We love what we do - and we love serving you!

Have a great month!

Bob Drummond, Vice President/Agency Manager of West Virginia Bankers Title
Our office will be closed Friday, June 18 in celebration of Juneteenth.

The Emancipation Proclamation was signed in 1863, but African Americans in the Confederate territory of Texas remained enslaved until June 19, 1865 when Union troops reached Galveston Bay, Texas with an executive decree declaring freedom for all.

If you're unfamiliar with Juneteenth and why we celebrate this important holiday, we encourage you to read this article.

We look forward to serving you when we're back in the office on Monday!
Are homebuyers happier after moving to a new metro?
Short answer, yes. A new Redfin survey found that eight out of 10 homeowners who moved during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic to a new metropolitan area are happy with their decision. And they just aren’t satisfied with their new home, but their financial health increased with the move! More than three-quarters of respondents (78 percent) reported having more disposable income after their move (a likely nod to the coast-to-suburbs trend.) With many headlines discussing the satisfaction of pandemic homebuyers, the Redfin analysis is just another example of the positivity that’s come from the housing market over the past year.
U.S. to give ransomware hacks similar priority as terrorism
So this is a weighty issue but essential for the real estate industry and its efforts to fight cybercrime. Reuters is reporting the federal government will now handle investigations of ransomware attacks as terrorism. This ramp-up follows the attack on the Colonial Pipeline and the rising activity of cybercriminals amid the COVID-19 pandemic and our increasing reliance on technology. For more on how the American Land Title Association is helping to combat cybercrime, especially real estate wire fraud that can crush even the most stable real estate deal, click here
The huge tax break for home seller’s: What to know about the $500,000 exemption
President Joe Biden’s administration has laid out several policy proposals that could stand to affect the real estate industry if enacted. This Wall Street Journal article focuses on the home-sellers’ tax exemption and how it could change down the road. Hint: The exemptions are expected to remain in place, but certain homeowners who stand to make more considerable gains could owe more than they do now. As many communities across the country operate in a sellers’ market, tracking these proposed changes is even more critical.
Mortgage Trends
Professional Development
Market Highlights
Marketing Tip
in partnership with Bowe Digital
An online search is often where a customer of any kind starts when looking for information about a business, and for many, that search starts on one page...Google! That’s why now is the time to take control of your Google My Business account. 

Yes, this applies to those of us in real estate, too! Keeping your listing up-to-date through GMB informs your customers of your current business hours, location, contact numbers and special offers. You can add important images (like a logo) and photos to your account, and clients can add reviews. (Did we mention it’s free?)

Two marketing lessons we all should take from the last year are the importance of communication and how quickly the messages can change. Customers are often “giving it a Goog” before venturing out to make face-to-face contact with you, and you want to make sure all the information popping up is current.

Here’s what you need to get started:

Claim your profile. The Google My Business page does an excellent job walking you through each portion of the process, but if you are looking for more specific, section-driven directions, check out How to Create, Claim and Verify Your Google Business Listing from ThriveHive.

Fill out as much information as possible, and add photos. Your listing is only as strong as you make it. Make sure you’re providing what people need to know about your business and add some good photos of your office, logo, team, etc.    

Start asking for ratings and reviews. Everyone wants a five-star rating, but it takes some work. Make sure your happy customers know you want a Google review, especially if they’ve had a great experience. People are asked for reviews all the time, so as awkward as the ‘ask’ seems, it’s not.   

Circle back to your GMB page about once a month. Put a reminder on your calendar. By updating your material consistently, you stay current with your customers.  

Want to learn more? Reach out to bradley@bowedigital.com for a free 20-minute marketing strategy session.