The real estate company Joyner Fine Properties has been acquired by the Virginia Credit Union.
The Henrico County-based real estate firm, which has been in business since 1973, will keep its name, brand and employees but it becomes part of the largest state-chartered, member-owned financial cooperative in the state.
Terms of the deal, completed Tuesday and announced Wednesday morning, were not disclosed.
“This gives us opportunities to expand and not change our brand, our people or our culture,” said William “Bill” A. White Jr., who has been president of Joyner since 1998 when he joined the firm. He became the firm’s owner in 2003.
“Our intent is business as usual,” White said. “We want to continue the reputation we have been fortunate to have and make it better.”
For a couple of years, White said he had considered selling Joyner Fine Properties, which has a residential division, a commercial real estate business and a property management firm.
“Every interested party wanted to change us,” White said. “We have been in Richmond for 46 years and we don’t want to change. We want to continue to tweak our business model as the market changes.”
Since becoming president, White has taken the real estate company from 28 employees at one office in 1998 to nearly 200 employees at five area offices today.
White will continue to lead Joyner’s daily operations as senior executive vice president. He will report to John Stone, who becomes president of Joyner Fine Properties and continues as executive vice president of financial services for the Virginia Credit Union.
“This is a win-win partnership for both organizations,” said White, who served as president of the Richmond Association of Realtors in 2005 and president of the Virginia Association of Realtors in 2016.
The deal unites Joyner with the Virginia Credit Union and its subsidiary real estate businesses, further diversifying the credit union’s services for area homeowners. Those include mortgages, title insurance services, and home and auto insurance in addition to traditional financial services.
“Joyner Fine Properties is a respected locally owned real estate firm with tremendous top real estate professionals,” Stone said. “Joyner is a great firm and we want to make sure it continues on its mission.”
For instance, Joyner Fine Properties has been ranked in the midsize category as part of the Top Workplaces awards program sponsored by the Richmond Times-Dispatch. The firm was ranked No. 2 in its size category this year and was first in 2018.
Joining forces, Stone said, creates some synergies.
The Virginia Credit Union’s business services area provides business and commercial real estate loans that could be helpful to Joyner’s growing commercial real estate brokerage and a property management business.
The credit union also has a growing home mortgage operation, Stone said.
“Our focus is we want to help members in the area achieve homeownership,” Stone said. “By combining with them and the synergies created, we are able to go out and offer to their clients a Virginia Credit Union mortgage as long as they are a member or become a member.”
Doing so helps potential homebuyers with an additional choice for financing options, he said.
The deal for the Virginia Credit Union to buy a real estate firm is somewhat unusual, banking experts said.
Some credit unions across the country own real estate firms as federal law permits them and state-chartered community banks to engage in real estate brokerage activities to a limited extent. But large national banks are prohibited from doing so since no statutory authority exists.
With the acquisition, Joyner might open offices in space where the Virginia Credit Union has offices in the Richmond region and beyond. “In some of the locations, there is room with a separate entrance. That is a possibility,” White said.
Joyner has operations in the Richmond area, but White said it could expand to other parts of the state given the Virginia Credit Union’s growing footprint.
“They have offices in Charlottesville and Fredericksburg, for instance, and we don’t have any offices there. We don’t have any immediate plans for that at this point but we have thoughts about it,” White said.