Find more on John Blount’s appearance on Good Morning America last week below. Unfortunately, GMA does not support its videos on wordpress or youtube so I cannot post the vid.
From Doggy Treats to Personal Home Appraisals, Burke & Herbert Thrives Through Tradition
By CLAIRE SHIPMAN
Oct. 16, 2008 —
For many Virginia residents, one bank’s safety is not measured by iron bars or vault doors — though it has both — but by the doggy treats and personal touches it offers clients.
But what Burke & Herbert, the longest continuously operating bank in Virginia, really prides itself on are its boring but thorough business practices.
The bank does not deal in subprime mortgages or derivatives and personally inspects each property before any mortgage loans are given.
“We tend to stick with what we know and traditional banking,” company president and COO E. Hunt Burke said.
Such conservative practices kept the bank relatively clear of the recent economic crisis and have even inspired about $50 million in new accounts in the last two weeks.
Burke told “Good Morning America” that part of the bank’s success grew out of a belief in moving slow and steady — a practice Burke & Herbert has kept up since before the Civil War.
With such diligence, the bank earned classification from independent rating firms as one of the safest banks in the country.
One new account belongs to Joann Gaskins who watched her old bank with increasing fear and eventually closed her account and took $20,000 in cash to Burke & Herbert.
But the bank caters to more than personal accounts.
John Blount, the CFO of RE/MAX, and Paul Wexler, a nonprofit executive director, moved their businesses to Burke & Herbert.
“Simplicity, safety,” Blount told “GMA.” “Knowing the folks in your local community. That’s very important to us.”
“It’s so refreshing to walk into the bank and be greeted by name,” Wexler said. “That didn’t happen before.”
One major key to the bank’s safety, as well as the safety of thousands of other banks across the country, is that it is insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., meaning accounts up to $250,000 are federally insured.
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