Each year, the Journal checks in with some of the key figures in commercial banking in Sonoma, Solano, Marin, Napa, Mendocino and Lake counties. Here is our conversation with Terry Flynn, senior vice president and commercial real estate banking manager for Exchange Bank.
What two or three elements of the commercial banking business have changed in the last five years?
TERRY FLYNN: Competition for deals has become much more stringent in the last five years. The way in which borrowers approach banks and real estate loan brokers with inquiries has also changed—the business continues to be relationship driven, but in some respects, price has become a dominant factor in the decision making process. My market knowledge and experience has supported our efforts in this changing market.
In the North Bay specifically, what market forces might change significantly in 2019 and beyond, and why?
FLYNN: Rising interest rates that could ultimately slow the real estate market are certainly a concern for 2019. Our continued competition for a work force—contractors and subcontractors—is also an issue for us, especially following the Paradise fire this year and the North Bay fires in 2017.
How have customer profiles and requirements changed? For example, are customers generally more cautious or bullish in their projects?
FLYNN: I don’t think customers are more cautious. Since the last downturn, borrowers have become and continue to be cautious in how they approach and analyze deals. This is not something new and I don’t see it changing.
What’s your institution’s long term view for business in the North Bay?
FLYNN: Exchange Bank works hard to be a successful, principled and community involved financial institution that serves its customers and communities—it’s part of our vision and mission to create a better future for generations to come. We are excited about the future of business in the North Bay. The fact that Exchange Bank has continued to grow in both assets and earnings testifies to the foresight and good judgment of those who direct the bank and the confidence placed in us by our customers who trust us with their financial needs.
Most inspiring commercial banking story you were part of in the past two years?
FLYNN: It’s not any one thing. It’s the bank’s ability to help people in the rebuilding process, which may include individual homes or a large apartment complex where people have lost everything. Helping families and business owners rebuild what they’ve lost, and supporting the renewal of Sonoma County, reinforces Exchange Bank’s commitment to the community.
Senior vice president and commercial real estate banking manager
545 Fourth St., Santa Rosa, CA 95401; 707-524-3301
Year you assumed this position: I’ve been the senior vice president and commercial real estate banking manager for Exchange Bank’s Construction Lending Department since 2015. I joined Exchange Bank in 2012 as vice president in real estate construction lending.
How long have you worked in commercial banking?: I’ve been in commercial banking for over 30 years. I got my start with Union Bank where I worked for 14 years, graduating from their Loan Analysis program and then becoming a real estate lender in commercial banking. I found my forte in community banking while working at River City Bank in Sacramento. What I very much appreciate here is Exchange Bank’s commitment to service, integrity and community.
Read other conversations with this year's North Bay leaders in commercial banking.