Latter & Blum moves into south Lafourche _lowres

Richard Haase, president of Latter & Blum Inc. and Barbara Christen and Broker Lawrence Panky Christen of Century 21 American Realty mark the Century 21 office joining Latter & Blum.

Latter & Blum has acquired Century 21 American Realty USA of Cut Off, a move that allows the company to move into south Lafourche Parish and strengthens its position in the Houma-Thibodaux market.

Century 21 has been rebranded as Latter & Blum Inc./Realtors. It’s the third south Louisiana real estate firm Latter & Blum has acquired in the past 18 months, joining with the former Patterson Real Estate Agency in Houma and Century 21 Acadia Realty in Thibodaux.

Rick Haase, president of Latter & Blum, said while Century 21 American has about 10 agents, it’s the largest real estate company in south Lafourche in terms of sales.

“They’re a powerful group of people and they do a good job with their commercial real estate business,” Haase said. “They’re a perfect complement for our operations in the Bayou Region.”

The acquisition fits in with Latter & Blum’s current track to fill out its footprint from New Orleans to Houston. While markets such as Houma-Thibodaux and Lafayette have been hurt by sustained low crude oil prices, Haase said his company is taking a long-term view of the market.

“The trouble the energy sector is encountering is temporary,” he said. “We’ll be there when oil and gas rebounds.”

Latter & Blum, based in New Orleans, has annual sales of nearly $3 billion and is the country’s 33rd-largest real estate firm based on number of transactions.