The Best of Colorado Finance 2019
These finance companies can help with saving your assets, protecting them and buying new ones
BEST INSURANCE PROVIDER
State Farm’s more than 65,000 employees and 19,000 independent contractor agents service 83 million policies and accounts throughout the United States. The company, ranked No. 35 on the Fortune 500 list, offers property and casualty insurance, life and health insurance, annuities, mutual funds and banking products. It insures more cars and homes than any other insurer in the country. State Farm is consistently recognized as a top employer, a leader in the community and a green partner.
Since its founding in 1963, FirstBank has maintained its commitment to convenience, friendly and intelligent customer service and loyalty to its employees. The bank has grown through consumer and commercial lending, innovative banking products and services and a high regard for community investment. It now has more than $17 billion in assets and more than 115 locations in Colorado, Arizona and California. FirstBank also is committed to giving back to the community. It helped launch and continues to be the main partner of Colorado Gives Day and Arizona Gives Day. Since each program’s inception, more than $181 million has been raised for Colorado nonprofits and $13.4 million for Arizona nonprofits.
BEST CREDIT UNION
Ent Credit Union is a not-for-profit financial cooperative with 30 local service centers and thousands of co-op shared branch locations. The credit union also has more than 55 local surcharge-free ATMs and thousands of surcharge-free co-op ATMs. Ent passes its net earnings back to its members in the form of higher dividends on savings, lower rates on loans and lower or no fees for services. Ent has $5.5 billion in assets and 341,925 members.
BEST MORTGAGE BROKER
The 8z brand is committed to delivering the most streamlined consumer experience in the industry. The company offers a diverse product mix, which includes 100 percent financing options. All the underwriting and closing is done in-house, and 8z has access to the most competitive rates and program offerings on conventional, FHA and VA mortgages. “We are exclusive to Colorado with each of our loan officers working as a local expert for their client,” says David Bliesmer, director of lending. “Whether you are working with a trusted 8z real estate agent, your own agent, no agent at all, or are looking to refinance a current mortgage loan, the 8z team will take care of you in the way you expect.”
BEST SBA LENDER
Since 1990, Colorado Lending Source has helped make Colorado a great place to start and grow a business. The membership-based organization’s mission is to foster the economic growth of diverse small businesses within its communities. Colorado Lending Source helps banks navigate the SBA loan process in order to provide small business owners with greater access to this program. Businesses not ready for a conventional bank or SBA loan may qualify for a Community Advantage loan financed by a mission-based lender, like Colorado Lending Source, rather than directly through a bank. It can offer financing from $50,000 to $250,000 for a variety of business needs. Last year alone, Colorado Lending Source approved 221 loans totaling nearly $332 million, creating an estimated 1,747 jobs.
BEST TITLE COMPANY
Land Title Guarantee Co. was founded in Denver in 1967 and has since expanded to more than 50 locations throughout the state. “We know and understand Colorado real estate laws, customs and markets like it's our own backyard, because it is,” says Isabelle Sipperly, marketing manager. “One hundred percent of our work is done locally, so we respond more quickly. We are the largest locally owned title agency in Colorado, offering big company stability with a small firm's personal service.”
New this year for Land Title are continued advancement of its e-signature technology, the ability for closing agents to send text messages to clients from their work number for quick messages about the transaction, and a revamp of customer service including customer preferences.
BEST WEALTH MANAGER/FINANCIAL PLANNER
While other wealth management firms are consolidating and pulling out of smaller markets, Glenwood Springs-based Alpine Bank is adding wealth management offices to markets where it already has bank branches. “It’s all about providing that high touch, one-of-a-kind client interaction that we focus on,” says Tim Kenczewicz, executive vice president and manager of wealth management. “At the same time, we also have done an excellent job of keeping up to date with all electronic services. We get compliments all the time from people who transferred from larger institutions.”
The asset management firm, corporate trustee and fiduciary opened its flagship wealth management office in DTC and is opening offices in Boulder, Steamboat Springs and in Summit County.