Fidelity Competes with California Agents for Listings and Home Sales!


Breaking News! Fidelity is competing directly with real estate agents for the tight inventory of available homes for sale in California.

Did you know that Fidelity National Financial, Inc. “Fidelity” owns 100% of at least one California real estate brokerage company?

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We just learned that J. Rockcliff, Inc. is a Fidelity-owned company. According to their own website, they are one of the fastest growing real estate companies in California with offices in eight (8) cities and they have hundreds of agents.

Interestingly, the J. Rockcliff website does not appear to disclose the Fidelity ownership. We learned of this ownership through an “Affiliated Business Arrangement Disclosure Statement.” In the document, Fidelity discloses that it owns 100% of the real estate brokerage firm, thus competing directly with brokers and agents in the residential market. The Disclosure Statement further reveals that their affiliated settlement service providers are also owned by Fidelity.

What could be a ground breaking first in the real estate industry, is that Fidelity, by way of its ownership in a brokerage firm is now doing business in every facet of the real estate industry. This includes escrow, title, NHD, home warranty and now home sales! So every dollar you spend on Fidelity products and services, may be funding their expansion into your business.

By the way, Fidelity also discloses in the same document that Fidelity subsidiaries own 100% of Disclosure Source NHD, Chicago Title, Ticor Title, and many Fidelity-branded settlement services. They also own 40% of Pacific Coast Title Company. Click here to view the Affiliated Business Arrangement Disclosure Statement. This is a real client document so the names were removed to protect their privacy. Also, at the top of J. Rockcliff’s website, the Fidelity-owned broker discloses that they use Transaction Point, which was previously owned or affiliated with Fidelity and which was the subject of a multi-million dollar settlement with HUD based on alleged RESPA violations.

Would you send your settlement services business to a competing brokerage?

Are you as surprised as we are to learn about this business relationship? Will this change the way you do business with Fidelity? We want to know!

  • resanmateao@yahoo.com

    Wow! Why am I not surprised at Fidelity. Eventually all of us will either be working for Fidelity or First American or not in the business, right?

  • Mary

    Wow! Why am I not surprised at Fidelity. Eventually all of us will either be working for Fidelity or First American or not in the business, right?

    • RE_Insider

      We disagree… we are surprised. Getting in multiple businesses/services that rely
      on the real estate agent referral may not be a surprise, but competing with the
      same real estate agents that they expect to get businesses from is a surprise
      to us.

    • No. eventually they will be out of business if we are smart professionals.

    • RE_Insider

      Obviously residential brokerage can be lucrative. The big question: Does Fidelity’s entry into the residential brokerage mark the first and will other title giants follow? What you think?

  • Phil

    FNF is the most overleveraged company in the business. They own at least one company in every aspect of the business. In the title buiness they have Fidelity title reps from the same brand stacked up on each other and then they have four more brands (Lawyers, Ticor, Chicago and Pac Coast) layered on top of that.
    They work the ends against the middle all of the time. I was a loyal Fidelity customer for 20 years until I recently discovered they were recruiting my escrow officers to work for another brokerage. They will do more to get new business than they are willing to do to retain their existing loyal relationships. Huge mistake.
    FNF competing against its own customers does not suprise me in the leaset. If I owned a real estate brokerage in the East Bay and knew of this I would trow FNF out on their ear. Their greed makes them screw you with a smile on their face.

    • Tired of Greasy Palms

      it’s interesting how they’ve been able keep this a secret for so long! the more i think about it, the more egregious the display of greed by FNF!

  • Deborah McKnight

    I have been using CTT exclusively…until this information was brought to my attention.

  • Bob Bolen

    I have been using some of Fidelity’s companies for years . But after reading this article I think it would be very stupid for me to keep using any of fidelity’s affiliates in any future transactions.

  • Mimi

    How unbelievably insulting…… Fidelity must be really arrogant to think that I would continue to use their services while they are pulling money out of my pocket by competing for my business…… Is this even legal? I thought that a large company like Fidelity would have to play by the rules or at the very least respect the rules of propriety, but obviously I am incorrect……… So I guess that ultimately even if they do get away with this legally, they sure as heck aren’t going to get away with it in practice because it is way off base for them to think that they can do this to me…… to other agents….. to their own customers….. I suppose they thought that we wouldn’t find out about this? I would have more respect for them if they just called it “Fidelity Real Estate” instead of deceptively trying to hide it by calling their little real estate project “J.Ratcliff”. How disturbing…… shame on them……

  • Tired of Greasy Palms

    I’m stunned the insurance commissioner allows this to continue. Rockcliff agents are directly incentivised to steer business to Fidelity companies – a blatant violation of RESPA, as well. their sales reps are encouraged to help ‘recruit’ for rockcliff from other brokers!

    i found this entry on a facebook page boycotting chicago and fidelity:

    “A special note to Bay Area Real Estate Brokers: Have you been made to respond to outrageous recruitment tactics by J Rockcliff Realtors? The parent of J Rockcliff Realtors, Fidelity National Financial (FNF), is behind this effort to bolster the roster of agents to steer business to FNF. In fact, sales reps for the Fidelity companies who interact with J Rockcliff Realtors management are required to generate recruitment prospects from competing brokerages. This begs the question: “why would you do business with your competitor?”

    • RE_Insider

      It isn’t clear if they are breaking the law but you could reach out to the insurance commissioner, Consumer Protection Financial Bureau and the Department of Real Estate and ask for an opinion from them.

      • Tired of Greasy Palms

        just did. i’ll see what i get back. I’m guessing because i can’t directly document how i was infringed upon, that i’ll get any response.

    • RE_Insider

      Are you saying that those Fidelity reps are recruiting agents from J. Rockliff’s competitors. What do you know? Anyone?

      • Tired of Greasy Palms

        yes, i do.

  • josephmaldonado

    Fidelity is off my radar from here on out.

  • Elizabeth S.

    I am surprised and I don’t appreciate this type of sly underhanded shenanigans from a big company. I have been using Fidelity for so many years and now I think I might have to re-think this because it’s just not right. I like the people that work as their representatives, but as a company I just don’t think I do business with them anymore.

  • I stopped using Fidelity services when I found out they terminated all of the CA staff and outsourced work to India. Fidelity is totaly done im my world.

    • RE_Insider

      We feel strongly about keeping jobs in America! We originated “Take The Pledge & Save American Jobs!” campaign. People without jobs can’t make a mortgage payment.

  • KB

    My broker wants us to use Fidelity Home Warranty and Disclosure Source. Is there any ongoing program to benefit brokers? Do you know?

    • Tired of Greasy Palms

      I guess it would depend on what the ‘benefit’ is. I find it interesting that your broker is steering your clients to use a specific company. If something goes wrong, both you and your broker are on the hook. I usually refer 3 companies: First American, Old Republic and American Home Shield and let the client decide. never Fidelity – not only are they in competition with us in the bay area, but my clients have actually gotten back to me about the horrible service level. trust me, the last thing i need to do is defend my reputation based on the poor service of someone else!

    • RE_Insider

      No, we are not aware on any program. Anyone?

      • Jo

        There was a Broker Program with Disclosure Source with I believe $20. or so on each order going back to the Broker. Not sure if it’s still in place but was about 3 yrs ago. They’re Reps were having meetings with the Brokers of offices to sell this “Rebate” program. Some agents may have noticed that the Coop Agents were requesting Disclosure Source as the NHD provider in their Purchase Contracts.

  • RE_Insider

    It seems that everyone is interested in this… sorry we do not know and hope that you can help. We understand that banks are not allowed in the residential brokerage but we do not know about a possible conflict with title, Home Warranty, NHD or the others. Come on legal minds, help here…

  • Anne

    What companies are owned by Fidelity (directly or trough affiliation)?

    • RE_Insider

      Disclosure Source NHD, Chicago Title, Ticor Title, and many Fidelity-branded settlement services. They also own 40% of Pacific Coast Title Company. These showed up on the Affiliated Business Arrangement from J. Rockliff Realtors, do you know of others?

      • Guest

        I believe they also have some affiliation with LPS; Lender Processing Services. I worked as a contract listing agent with this company for nearly 10 years. I seem to remember most asset mgrs had an “fnf” email addresss

  • Jmrfios

    WoW! This is blow to our industry, as it is the banks and auction companies have change the business so much. What’s next? banks with their for sale sign and R.E. agent in their retail branches? We have companies selling properties from India, is nobody watching this?

  • Agatha Juarez

    Shocked!! Not really.. Looks like they want to monopolize the business.

  • Sheila

    This should come as no surprise to us Realtors. These entities have been feeding off us for years. The first point of contact in any real estate related activity comes from the agent in the field, listing and selling real estate. The business of the Title, escrow, disclosure, home warranty companies all get their leads from Realtor generated leads. We receive no “benefits” from this per regulation but instead face stronger competition from these multi-level corporations going in direct competitions with us. What are our reps in the insurance industry and in the NEA doing about this? We have been complacent too long. Boycott anyone?

  • Jonathan Albert

    Not suprised I have had a few serious problems with Fidelity

  • Elvis Occ

    I am fed up with this crap! NAR gets 500 bucks a year from me to do nothing? We need to get matters into our own hands and find the way to form a block or Guild otherwise I see no future. Pretty soon we’ll end up being servants of big greedy corporations like Fidelity. Let’s do something before it’s too late.

  • Oscar Chavez

    Anyone know if they also own Gibson?

  • Gosh

    Yes, FNF owns Transaction Point. They settled a lawsuit with HUD for RESPA violations relating to this product for $4.5M. Check the article at http://re-insider.com/2011/07/12/not-a-surprise-fidelity-to-pay-hud-4-5-million-to-settle-alleged-respa-kickbacks-violation/

    • Whistlin

      Wow. That’s a lot of money! How does that rank compared to other large
      RESPA settlements in the past decade? Can you put that in some perspective?

  • maria sapienza

    Shame on Fidelity. Greed is a terrible vice

    • Tired of Greasy Palms

      …and their greed knows no bounds! disgusting company.

  • Estella Drake

    They recently purchased BPG Home Warranty in Sacramento.