SUPPORTING STRATEGIES HELPED A FLORIDA ESCROW AGENT STEM THE FLOW OF PAPERWORK AND STAY FOCUSED ON ITS CORE MISSION
From day one, the principals at River City Title were experts at dealing with the reams of legal documents required at real estate closings. Processing their own bookkeeping paperwork was another matter. Supporting Strategies brought them up to speed.
Following its launch in July 2016, River City Title, an escrow agent based in Jacksonville, Florida, quickly grew from two employees to six by providing top-notch customer service in a burgeoning real estate market. “Most importantly,” one online reviewer noted, “they keep every transaction smooth from beginning to end.”
Getting in a Bind
Before he even had a law degree, Eric Blocker was acquiring valuable experience as an escrow agent. “I worked for a real estate attorney when I was in law school,” says Blocker, now the President and CEO of River City Title, “and I’ve never looked back.”
One thing Blocker learned early on was that DIY bookkeeping was not a good use of an escrow agent’s time. After River City Title first opened for business, he delegated much of the recordkeeping responsibilities to the office manager. When he saw that the recordkeeping consisted largely of taping receipts into a binder, he realized that wasn’t a sustainable approach in an online world.
A meeting with Pete Denholm, Managing Director of Supporting Strategies | Northeast Florida, led to an efficient, cost-effective solution: outsourced bookkeeping services.
A Documented Improvement
One of the first enhancements Supporting Strategies made was to incorporate Hubdoc into the River City Title bookkeeping system. Now, instead of receipts and other important financial statements going into a binder, they’re scanned and stored in a secure online hub.
Moreover, integrating Hubdoc with QuickBooks Online and Bill.com resulted in a system that’s both transparent and shareable. Supporting Strategies can keep tabs on River City Title’s books remotely, which means Blocker and his team don’t have to. “Now my office manager just sends our invoices and receipts to them,” he says. “It’s pretty much set-it-and-forget-it for me.”
Of course, as head of the company, Blocker can’t afford to forget about the finances entirely. Again, Supporting Strategies is there to help. “If I overlook something important, they’ll remind me,” he says.
And just as a credit card company provides alerts for unusual charges, Supporting Strategies notifies Blocker when the margins deviate significantly compared to previous months or if certain expenses seem excessive.
“They also provide the ability to track expenses related to my own processes,” Blocker says. “For instance, I can track the cost of any mistakes on a monthly basis, such as costs related to calculation or recording errors. So, from month to month, I can use the information to help find ways for us to be more efficient and also more effective as an organization.”
The Bottom Line is the Bottom Line
By outsourcing his firm’s bookkeeping responsibilities to Supporting Strategies, Blocker has freed up his time and energy to concentrate on achieving his primary goal: gaining market share in what CNBC recently identified as one of the nation’s top five housing markets. “Supporting Strategies has been incredibly helpful,” Blocker says. “They’ve allowed me to focus on the things I need to be focused on, like growing the business side.”
In addition, he says, “I haven’t had to hire a full-time bookkeeper, so that saves me money.”