Inside Features: Eric Cazarez imortgage
Erin & Lori Executive Agents of the Month
Evergreen Realty HomeSmart
Justine Howard Zip Realty
Nicholas Nguyen Prism Link Properties
Liana Norman RE/MAX Coastal Homes
Scott Shinedling Greenpath Funding
Let your buyers lock in today’s low rates while they shop for a home. Introducing the Lock-N-Shop program from imortgage… ● Lock a low-interest rate today while continuing to shop for a home ● 120 and 150-day locks available* ● An accepted home-purchase contract is not necessary ● If rates drop, use a one-time float-down feature to get an even lower rate!
Call imortgage today!
John J. Reed (949) 705-0555
Julie Day (949) 297-1407
Ryan Grant (949) 705-0582
Alan Cipolletti (949) 705-0558
Edna Austin (949) 705-0543
Chris Black (949) 705-0567
Marc Bui (949) 705-0587
Eric Cazarez (949) 705-0595
Herm Cundall (949) 705-0576
John Davis (949) 705-0576
Cory De Pass (949) 705-0584
Tommy Evans (949) 297-1425
Aaron Hanson (949) 705-0593
Kaarina Jo (949) 705-0560
NMLS ID 382768
NMLS ID 796742
Barry Krevoy (949) 297-1424 NMLS ID 923896
Nipper Larson (949) 297-1405
NMLS ID 273037
Brett McDonell (949) 705-0577
Matthew Miede (949) 705-0573
Lynn Nelson (949) 297-1406
Marty Noronha (949) 297-1403
Jim Switzer (949) 297-1415
Jim Thiel (949) 297-1419
Angilla Wang (949) 705-0604
Maxine Yokota (949) 297-1411
NMLS ID 869516 Branch Manager
NMLS ID 653005 Sales Manager
NMLS ID 259274
NMLS ID 470783
NMLS ID 174457 Sales Manager
NMLS ID 283761
NMLS ID 1015000
NMLS ID 653022
NMLS ID 118767 Sales Manager
NMLS ID 275073
NMLS ID 1112456
NMLS ID 380219
NMLS ID 675476
NMLS ID 1022434
NMLS ID 907893
imortgage Newport Beach - 1301 Dove Street, Suite 101 Newport Beach, CA 92660 | imortgage Laguna Hills - 24442 Avenida de la Carlota, Suite 110, Laguna Hills, CA 92653 | Rates, terms, and availability of programs are subject to change without notice. Licensed by the CA Department of Business Oversight CRMLA 4131040. Corporate NMLS ID 174457. All rights reserved. 05012014. * Interest-rate locks require a buyer-paid deposit equal to 0.50% of the loan amount. Buyer will receive a credit at closing for the lock deposit. If buyer does not close the loan with imortgage, there will be no reimbursement of the lock deposit.
NMLS ID 341251
NMLS ID 1021623
NMLS ID 341251
NMLS ID 303085
NMLS ID 653915
Southern California’s Publication for the Real Estate Professional
S. Orange County
36 - Linda Brakeall: I Love Complaints!
32 - Sheila Murray Bethel: The Service Boomerang
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16 - Joan Stewart:
Editors Love Briefs, Fillers, & Quizzes
Mike Ferry...........................................6 Greenpath Funding..............................7 imortgage.......................................2
Erin Valovich & Lori Gee Executive Agents of the Month
i Photography Studio........................25 Kinecta Federal Credit Union....28 & 29 PWAOR.........................................28 Realty ONE Group............................40 The Termite Guy...............................38
30 Nicholas Nguyen
26 Liana Norman
Wells Fargo Home Mortgage...........12 Photography: i Photography Studio, Ian Wiant, Rob Paino Graphic Designer: Garon T. Arrias Editorial Manager: Trudy Van Writers: Lalaena Gonzalez–Figueroa, Shannon Hartsoe, Haley Freeman, Julie Brown, Juliet Meredith © Copyright 2014 Executive Agent Magazine. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Although every precaution is taken to ensure accuracy of published materials, Executive Agent Magazine cannot be held responsible for opinions expressed or facts supplied by its authors.
E XECUTIVE AGENT MAGAZINE
n a world that has become increasingly disconnected, Eric Cazarez of imortgage is committed to providing real-time, hands-on assistance for his clients – a red carpet approach in an era of technology-driven solutions. “It’s not that I don’t utilize technology to help my clients quickly and efficiently, it’s that I believe in providing a ‘second-to-none’ customer service experience,” he says. “That means that I’m there on time and in person to answer questions and to provide the best service possible.”
With core values that include respect, knowledge and professionalism, Eric’s positive outlook and customercentric philosophy have helped place him squarely in the realm of the area’s most successful lenders. He believes in doing what he says, and saying what he means. And in today’s world, that goes a long way. It all started in high school. “My first job was in sales,” he says. “I loved it and even then I set out to provide my customers, with a high education-based sales experience.”
We have a loan for every home... simple as that.® Written by Shannon Hartsoe
Today as part of the Ryan Grant Team, Eric is more of a trusted advisor than a traditional sales person. His belief in customer education helps him assist with every type of transaction from straightforward home loan to more complex lending solutions such as reverse mortgages. The importance of the transaction isn’t lost on him. “As a lender, I am handing my clients the biggest debt of their lives, and it’s my fiduciary duty to help them manage that debt over the long haul.” For Eric, it all starts with a thorough evaluation of the customer’s needs, setting an expectation for excellence early in the process and staying ahead of changes and questions. “I consider it a failure if one of my colleagues has to call me and ask for an update,” he says. “This is not just a job for me, I am absolutely passionate about serving my clients. Even after we close a transaction I keep in contact with them and they are grateful that they are not managing this debt alone.” Some of his most productive work is done long after everyone else has gone home for the day. “People tell me how nice it must be to keep my own hours, but this isn’t a 9-to-5 job,” he says. “For me, keeping my own hours means being available nights, holidays and weekends. My success is found in providing the highest level of service to each client I work with and allowing my business partners a level of trust that is unmatched.”
From his family members he learned the importance of meticulousness, ethical business practices and excellence. “Very early on, they were talking to me about these things,” says Eric. “And because my step-dad had carved out a successful niche as a reverse mortgage lender, I learned real-world, practical applications for my own clients.” Though the market continues to evolve, Eric stays on top of every change by continuing his education and selfimprovement. “This business requires constant studying,” he says. “I started out in reverse mortgages and branched out to offer a wide array of products and lending solutions. I never want to stop growing and learning because it’s important to me to be a full-service lender for my clients.” His success may also be attributed to his self-described competitive spirit. “I don’t like to be second,” he laughs. “I’m constantly setting and reevaluating my goals and I’m on a team that is consistently challenging me. I don’t believe there will ever come a time where the numbers will satisfy me. Being on the top team in the company I have been blessed to provide this incredible service to every borrower that I work with. I’m looking forward to helping the Ryan Grant Team break the branch record for fundings in a month. I think then we will have truly established ourselves with regards to market share.”
Eric’s customer service approach is an integral part of who he is. Both his stepfather and his uncle were successful lenders in the Los Angeles area long before Eric ever thought of entering the business. His stepfather was a sought after coach and reverse mortgage expert – writing books and teaching reverse mortgage originators about this specialized product. By the time Eric started in lending, working his way from notary to lender, he already had a vast arsenal of knowledge under his belt.
Eric Cazarez imortgage 1301 Dove St., Ste. 101 Newport Beach, CA 92660 Tel: 949-705-0595 Email: Eric.Cazarez@imortgage.com Web: imortgage.com/eric.cazarez NMLS ID 1022434 imortgage is licensed by the CA Department of Business Oversight, CRMLA 4131040. NMLS ID 174457. Equal Housing Opportunity. All rights reserved. 2014.
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The Premier Purchase Lender • Purchase focused lending • Turn times unmatched by other lenders • Mortgage solutions to meet your buyers needs Brian Liebman President 949-860-3495
NMLSR ID 519190
Brian Fraser Sales Manager 714-488-2245
• Experienced local professionals who deliver exceptional service
Josh Lander Sales Manager 619-602-1587
NMLSR ID 653793
NMLSR ID 766437
Doc Spaulding Sales Manager 858-750-9110
David Gaylord Sr. Mortgage Consultant 949-939-6011
J. Horacio Herrera Sr. Mortgage Consultant 619-646-5800
Daniel Healy Sr. Mortgage Consultant 760-271-8243
George Radlick Sr. Mortgage Consultant 760-579-1998
Joel Berman Sr. Mortgage Consultant 619-279-2935
Steve Meier Sr. Mortgage Consultant 619-890-4103
Mark Joplin Sr. Mortgage Consultant 619-368-1294
Jenna Tolman Mortgage Consultant 949-702-0532
Dreama Brown Sr. Mortgage Consultant 619-890-3037
NMLSR ID 657535
NMLSR ID 653795
NMLSR ID 257383
NMLSR ID 450464
Greg Wickstrand Sr. Mortgage Consultant 619-471-1708 NMLSR ID 664707
©2013 Greenpath Funding, LLC. All Rights Reserved. NMLSR ID 996608.
NMLSR ID 347564
NMLSR ID 653792
Tim Fiero Sr. Mortgage Consultant 619-223-4184 NMLSR ID 681631
NMLSR ID 340107
NMLSR ID 999566
Charlie Burkett Sr. Mortgage Consultant 858-254-5774 NMLSR ID 240342
NMLSR ID 681674
NMLSR ID 512330
Margarita Georgieva Sr. Mortgage Consultant 858-699-2396 NMLSR ID 346669
E XECUTIVE AGENT MAGAZINE
Scott Shinedling Greenpath Funding By Shannon Hartsoe
time of expansion is an exciting time for any company, but unless the right people are at the helm, it can also be a time of extreme challenges. Scott Shinedling of Greenpath Funding, hopes to ease those potential growing pains while positioning Greenpath as one of the most successful home mortgage lenders in the Southern California area. Prior to coming to Greenpath, Scott spent 25 years honing his managerial skills in a wide variety of industries -- from hospitality and telecom to advertising and marketing. As he was searching for his next venture, Greenpath was looking for someone to help take the organization to the next level. The timing couldn’t be better “I was waiting for an opportunity to leverage my skills into building and managing a new type of sales system, using my entrepreneurial passion with a new company, and Greenpath Funding was the perfect match,” says Scott. “With their vision and my experience, I knew we could build an already stellar organization into an industry leader.” Since coming on board as Greenpath’s Director of Sales, Scott’s sales team has been busy revolutionizing the way loan officers cultivate new business, setting the stage for growth that will sustain the company for years to come. By creating new sales systems, and new ways of cultivating leads, Scott says Greenpath is in full growth mode. Over the next 5-10 years, Greenpath expects to close billions of dollars in home loans with plans to add nearly 90 new agents and sales networks. If it sounds like a lot, Scott is undaunted and big changes are already underway. “We will be putting new training programs in place to build loan officers the right way, establishing true and valuable relationships with referral partners and clients alike,” he explains. “The loan officers will not be order takers, waiting for calls to come in like most mortgage companies have been doing for years. Our team will be knowledgeable, trust worthy, outside sales professionals, unmatched by the competition and have the tools and support they need to continue to be successful.”
to build a stronger, leaner, more responsive company. At Greenpath, Scott joins a leadership team with a combined industry experience of more than 150 years, a foundation he’ll be building on to increase market share. “I believe the most successful sales group can be built with basic fundamentals, similar to what we have at Greenpath,” he says. “But it has to begin with a great work ethic and availability. Loan officers need to be able to be reached at any time by the clients and real estate agents they work with, or at the least, expect a call back within 30 minutes if they are on the line with someone else.” By working with loan officers who are as excited, dedicated and ready to take on new challenges as he is, Scott believes that clients will be better served. As customer service increases, so too does customer satisfaction. By turn, their relationships with the Realtors® they serve will be built on a solid foundation of trust and accountability. “This type of customer service is paramount in our industry. They have to have a great personality, the kind of personality that makes others smile when they are in the room. Lastly they need to be trustworthy, when they tell you something they mean it. When they make you a promise they follow through with it,” says Scott. The goal? To rebuild a broken industry and create a system of checks and balances where Realtors® and loan officers work side by side in the perfect partnership. “This is an area that is already primed for exceptional growth,” says Scott. “But growth for the sake of growth is a mistake. At Greenpath Funding we have plans to grow market share throughout Southern California by developing a highly professional and skilled sales team unmatched by competitors that believes the customer experience is the most important aspect of the transaction.” Scott Shinedling – Director of Sales Greenpath Funding 26800 Aliso Viejo Pkwy., Ste. 100 Aliso Viejo, CA 92656 Tel: 949-643-4500 Scott.Shinedling@greenpathfunding.com Web: www.GreenpathFunding.com NMLSR ID 996608
But Scott isn’t necessarily building from scratch. In fact, one of the things that first drew him to the company was its reputation as a direct lender with strong pricing, products, and efficient closings. What he saw in the company was a leadership willing to invest in its team ExecutiveAgent Magazine
f those pursuits were good enough for the framers of our venerated Constitution, is it safe to presume they are more than good enough for us sales professionals who nobly endeavor to feed, clothe and house our kin with the money we earn through the listing and sale of real estate. One need only walk a week in the shoes of a productive, successful agent to know how truly challenging, stressful, exhilarating, frustrating and fulfilling the profession of real estate is today. To be enterprising is to keep your eyes open and your mind active. It’s to be skilled enough, confident enough, creative enough and disciplined enough to seize opportunities that present themselves...regardless of the economy. A person with an enterprising attitude says, “Find out what you can before action is taken.” Do your homework. Do the research. Be prepared. Be resourceful. Do all you can in preparation of what’s to come. Enterprising people always see the future in the present. Enterprising people always find a way to take advantage of a situation, not be burdened by it. And enterprising people aren’t lazy. They don’t wait for opportunities to come to them, they go after the opportunities. Enterprise means always finding a way to keep yourself actively working toward your ambition. Enterprise is two things. The first is creativity. You need creativity to see what’s out there and to shape it to your advantage. You need creativity to look at the world a little differently. You need creativity to take a different approach, to be different. What goes hand-in-hand with the creativity of enterprise is the second requirement: the courage to be creative. You need courage to see things differently, courage to go against the crowd, courage to take a different approach, courage to stand alone if you have to, courage to choose activity over inactivity. And lastly, being enterprising doesn’t just relate to the ability to make money. Being enterprising also means feeling good enough about yourself, having enough self-worth to want to seek advantages and opportunities that will make a difference in your future. And by doing so you will increase your confidence, your courage, your creativity and your self-worth - your enterprising nature. Jim Rohn knows the secrets of success - in business and in life. He has devoted his life to a study of the fundamentals of human behavior and personal motivation that affect professional performance. He can awaken the unlimited power of achievement within you! Copyright© 2003, Jim Rohn. All rights reserved. For information about Jim’s keynote presentations and seminars, contact the Frog Pond at 800.704. FROG(3764) or email email@example.com; http://www.frogpond.com
Written By Jim Rohn
Why Wells Fargo
We want to be the key to your success We’re dedicated to helping you put more buyers into homes with more mortgage options to suit more buyers • Buyer ConnectionsSM: Connects buyers and sellers not working with a real estate agent to professionals in their local market. • Full service lender: We provide financing for conventional, FHA, VA, renovation, relocation, and more! • PriorityBuyer® Preapproval: You’ll know you’re dealing with serious buyers.
Call us today to find out more.
J.J. Ballesteros Branch Manager 714-934-7388 NMLSR ID 404462
Steve Silvestri Sales Manager 714-476-3000 NMLSR ID 419052
Mark Preston Sales Manager 714-585-6444 NMLSR ID 490912
My Hoang Home Mortgage Consultant 714-356-8991 NMLSR ID 453285
Nathan Lindsey Home Mortgage Consultant 714-394-0506 NMLSR ID 665133
Jenn Levin Home Mortgage Consultant 714-904-9424 NMLSR ID 448482
Robert Rabano Home Mortgage Consultant 714-906-8824 NMLSR ID 420527
Mark Brown Home Mortgage Consultant 714-241-1251 NMLSR ID 448078
Mark Wayne Bowman Home Mortgage Consultant 866-531-3229 NMLSR ID 450934
Elli Nguyen Home Mortgage Consultant 714-408-8245 NMLSR ID 448027
Kathy Niemczyk Home Mortage Consultant 714-934-2065 NMLSR ID 433497
Mary C. Lee Home Mortgage Consultant 714-308-8576 NMLSR ID 420573
Michael Ahn Home Mortgage Consultant 714-580-9412 NMLSR ID 237058
Renee Settas Home Mortgage Consultant 714-474-5275 NMLSR ID 251469
Cindy Tran Home Mortgage Consultant 714-328-3510 NMLSR ID 892531
Rishant Taneja Home Mortgage Consultant 714-655-8861 NMLSR ID 473697
Robert Michael Garin Home Mortgage Consultant 714-483-5504 NMLSR ID 490240
Christopher James Preston Home Mortgage Consultant 714-323-8825 NMLSR ID 490895
This information is for real estate professionals only and is not intended for distribution to consumers. Wells Fargo Home Mortgage is a division of Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. © 2014 Wells Fargo Bank, N.A. All rights reserved. NMLSR ID 399801. AS1013525 Expires 4/2014
E XECUTIVE AGENT MAGAZINE
Tony Faulkner ExecutiveAgent Magazine
Written by Shannon Hartsoe
hen you’ve earned about as many awards for real estate production as you possibly can and you’re at the top of your game, what’s next? For Tony Faulkner, the answer was easy. “Mentoring became a natural next step for me once I had reached a place where I had a fair amount of knowledge under my belt,” he says. “Managing an office and helping other agents grow into their full potential is something I love doing.” With more than 20 years of real estate sales experience, Tony has a wealth of knowledge to pass on to others. In that time he’s seen market shifts and implemented systems and protocols to help keep him on track and successfully serving his clients. As he looked back over his own career, Tony knew he wanted to make a difference for other agents, but he wanted to partner with the perfect brokerage. Today, as the managing broker of the new Laguna Niguel branch of Evergreen Realty HomeSmart, he has that chance. “The culture at Evergreen Realty is just phenomenal,” he says. “I couldn’t ask for a better place with more forward-thinking ideas. Their respect for their agents, the tools they have available, all of it is exceptional and we’re looking forward to taking the company to the next level.” A New Era in Real Estate Evergreen Realty has a 20-year history in Orange County real estate. What started as a “mom and pop” operation has grown to eight offices and more than 1,100 agents throughout the area. As one of the fastest-growing real estate companies in the nation, it would be easy to assume the company has lost the personal touch that contributed to its early growth. Nothing could be further from the truth. For five years running, the company has been voted one of the Top Workplaces in Orange County by the Orange County Register, and it remains family-run. “That family-run feeling is one of the things that attracted me to the company,” says Tony. “The company values its agents as part of that family.” Passionate, trustworthy and hard-working (as a young boy, he would mow lawns and clean windows for extra money. He went on to serve 22 years and retired from the United States Marines and AirForce), Tony says that Evergreen’s philosophy of customer service closely matches his own. Having helped build two previous brokerages from the ground up, he’s looking forward to working closely with Evergreen’s agents and building a greater market share. His open-door, collaborative management style keeps him
on the floor and interacting with agents every step of the way. “If they need me for anything, I’m here,” he says. One of the most exciting things for him is the ability to attract real estate talent through unique and cuttingedge technology. “The reason many agents get into the business is the ability to have a flexible schedule and to maintain a healthy work/life balance,” Tony says. “When they realize they’re spending too much time at the office and the balance isn’t as healthy as it should be, we lose them. Evergreen has some of the most advanced systems in place so that agents can work from anywhere they choose. It’s a flexible and paperless system. This is just another way the company shows appreciation and respect for its agents.” The company is also 100 percent commission. “Too many agents are spending too much of their hard-earned commission by giving it back to the brokerage,” says Tony. “We want to see agents keep more of what they earn and experience more success.” A True Community A man who describes himself as “Faith, Family and Service, Tony has been married for 20 years to his wife Maria and they are proud parents of 5 children and 3 grandchildren.” Tony also believes in giving back to the community, something he says is also reflected in Evergreen’s mission statement. He is a member of the Laguna Niguel Chamber of Commerce as well as the Prince Hall Masons. He is also on the board of directors and the past president of the 100 BMOC, the local chapter of a national organization dedicated to mentorship and support to at-risk youth. “Our goal is to come alongside these young men and give them some direction,” he says. “Our goal is to get them to go to college and keep them off the streets because so many of our young men today don’t have strong role models. We want to change that.” For Tony, working at Evergreen Realty HomeSmart has provided him the perfect opportunity to do what he does best – help others. “I like to see people go from being good to being great and this is the perfect place to do that!” Tony Faulkner – Managing Broker Evergreen Realty HomeSmart 24050 Aliso Creek Rd., Ste. C Laguna Niguel, CA 92677 Tel: 949-230-1597 – 949-600-8932 Email: Tony.Faulkner@evergreenrealty.net Web: www.joinevergreen.net CalBRE # 01182716
ick up any national magazine, flip through the pages, and count the number of short articles you see. They can include those little 3-inch fillers, short quizzes, 400word “how-to” articles or resource boxes. Editors love them. And you can generate some fabulous publicity for yourself by writing them. 1. Because they are so short, editors often rely on them to “fill a hole” on the page. A 75-word brief stands a much better chance of being published than a 750-article. 2. Briefs help portray you as an expert in your field. 3. They appeal to readers with short attention spans and can be skimmed quickly. 4. They’re easy to write. And you don’t need to submit a query letter to editors. Simply snail-mail, fax or e-mail the copy. 5. Unlike a story idea pitch, or a longer article you are submitting, you can usually submit briefs to editors at a variety of non-competing publications at the same time. Editors don’t expect exclusivity on these items and usually don’t care if they appear in other publications. 6. You can promote yourself, or your product, service, cause or issue much more in a brief than you can in an article you would write. 7. Briefs are an excellent way to promote a new book, particularly if you are willing to give away free advice in the brief that ties into the book. You can include a web site
URL or contact information where readers can buy from you. Types of Briefs Briefs come in all shapes, sizes and formats. They include how-to articles, tips sheets, quizzes, new product announcements accompanied by a photo, and polls and surveys. If you work within a particular industry that has its own jargon, you can also supply a list of industry words and definitions so readers can better understand your industry. Sometimes all you need to do is provide editors with a list of resources on a particular topic. If you write books on marketing, for example, you might provide a list of the top three marketing web sites, top three marketing magazines and top three audio tapes on the topic of marketing for small-businesses. This brief can be used as-is, or it can be used as a sidebar to accompany a longer article on marketing that someone else has submitted. Joan Stewart is a speaker, trainer and consultant specializing in developing and maintaining good relations with the print and abroadcast media. Reprinted from “The Publicity Hound’s Tips of the Week,” a free ezine featuring tips, tricks and tools for generating free publicity. For information about Joan, Copyright© 2006, Joan Stewart. All right reserved. For information contact FrogPond at email susie@FrogPond.com.
Editors Love Briefs, Fillers & Quizzes
Written By Joan Stewart
EXECUTIVEAGENT EXECUTIVE A GENT Nomination Form Nomination Form
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Erin & Lori Executive Agents of the Month
Erin Valovich & Lori Gee Exceeding Expectations Written by Steven McReynolds - Ian Wiant Photographer
ong before they became part of a highly successful team, Erin Valovich and Lori Gee found real estate careers in very different ways. As a child, Lori was fascinated by her father’s job of selling real estate in the Santa Barbara area, a career he started while in his 30s. “I remember as a teenager watching his success and knew immediately that this was a path that intrigued me,” she says. Erin’s foray into the profession evolved in a vastly different way. It was the transient life of a child whose father served in the military that led her to real estate. “My experience as a child moving to different military bases gave me insight and perspective on my career. I help people move, and I know what moving takes!” she says. “There was no specific event that shaped my career, it was more of an evolution of my experiences that led me to real estate as a career.”
Together they are highly skilled Realtors® at First Team Real Estate, serving Orange County areas including Laguna Niguel and Dana Point. They met seven years ago when Lori was showing a house. “We hit it off immediately,” Lori says. “She worked for another company and I recruited her to First Team. We have been working together for six years and we both have a lot of past clients, so quite a bit of our business comes from referrals. Therefore, we do business together and separately. A lot of people in our industry wonder how we can work this way, but we have mutual trust and admiration for each other, as well as a deep bonding friendship.” Erin says that while she and Lori are “different and distinct individuals,” they are committed to the same goal; to provide their clients with the best care and service possible, and to become their real estate agents for life.
“We work together by calling on clients that are expired or cancelled listings. We never take the same days off or go on vacation concurrently, so that one of us is always available to the client,” Erin says. “We have developed and implemented systems so that every aspect of our business runs smoothly. We focus our business on exceeding the expectations of our clients.” Lori: Childhood Dream Comes True The influence of Lori’s father, Pat Patterson, laid the foundation for her love of people and sales. She started her sales career working at Kinney’s Shoe Store when she was 16. “I loved helping people,” she reveals. In her early 20s, Lori became the first marketing agent hired at famed typewriter company Adler Royal, despite not having a college degree, she says. “I was attending
college, but as my career began to escalate, I found that I was more exhilarated by working in an atmosphere of interacting with people on a day-to-day basis,” Lori says. “I was recruited by Konica Business Machines for the Western Region marketing division at 25 years old.” But the corporate world did not satisfy her. Lori decided she wanted to create her own destiny, as she says, and started a marketing company called Innovative Visions. She represented automobile dealerships in Orange, Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Riverside counties. She managed a staff of 10 sales representatives. Lori also met her husband of 16 years, Dave Gee, who worked at one of the dealerships. When 2001 arrived, Lori decided it was finally time to fulfill that long-held desire to work in the real estate industry. She sold Innovative Visions and got her real estate license.
Our aim is to bring absolute satisfaction to our clients. Only then do we consider it “a job well done”. “Watching and learning from my father, I knew that I wanted to not only sell real estate, but to buy it,” she recalls. Lori adds that a saying from Bob Hope always resonates with her; that he made more money investing in real estate then he ever did as an actor. She went to work at First Team Real Estate, attracted by the fact that it is an independently owned company and not a franchise. Lori met with Mark Kojac, the broker at the Dana Niguel office, and knew immediately that this was the company for her. Lori says she didn’t even interview with another company. “His knowledge, compassion, and creating an office with such camaraderie is simply unheard of in the industry. Mark’s guidance has allowed me to become the agent that I am today, which I am eternally grateful for,” she says. Erin: From Classroom to Open Houses Unlike Lori, Erin’s background had nothing to do with the business world. After earning an undergraduate degree from California State University, Chico, and a teaching credential from California State University, East Bay, she
taught at both the high school and elementary school levels before beginning her career in real estate. But Erin wanted a career that provided more flexibility and an ability to have more control over her time and work environment. She remembered how important it was as a child to have professionals who could help her family to find the right home when her father was transferred while in the military. So, back in 1999, Erin began her career in real estate in the area of property management. “I started leasing and managing multi-family homes in South Orange County,” she explains. “From managing units, I started helping people who were renting to buy their first homes. I am now helping some of those families with their second and third moves since renting them an apartment back in 1999!” Erin joined First Team Real Estate in 2006. She came from another company that she says was not offering advertising and marketing support. That’s a far cry from what she has found at First Team.
“First Team offers a comprehensive and cutting edge marketing program that’s innovative and helps me to get houses sold,” Erin says. It took Erin a good five years to build a consistent business. But her hard work – putting in about 50 hours a week even today, including many weekends – has paid off. “My business is obtained through referral, from running awesome mega open houses, and from calling on expired or cancelled listings.” Erin also sets goals four times a year and tries to check them daily, which requires persistence and dedication to stay on track. “Some of the strategies I will use this year to enlarge my success include continuing to hold open houses that are planned as well as marketed and advertised in advance.”
“Being a Realtor® is a very demanding job if you want to be successful,” Lori says. “You have to be available at all hours. I remember when I was in my early 20s and my father telling me I should get my real estate license and I told him, ‘I don’t want to work nights and weekends.’ But when I made the choice that this was the career that I wanted, I had to commit to assist my clients 100 percent. They are depending on me to make their dream come true.” Erin says, “Real estate attracted me because I think in this business you have the opportunity to really affect and influence a person’s life. Helping someone move is a huge honor, and I feel honored when someone selects me to help them with the transition.”
An Enduring Partnership Erin and Lori consider each other their closest business partner. And that shines through in their consistent dedication to each other and their clients. ExecutiveAgent Magazine
Erin Valovich & Lori Gee First Team Real Estate 32451 Golden Lantern, Suite 210 Laguna Niguel, California 92677 Erin: 949-292-9352 Lori: 949-322-8299 ErinValovich@gmail.com LoriGee@cox.net www.valovich.com www.thegeesite.com CalBRE # 01327018 - 01356071
E XECUTIVE AGENT MAGAZINE
Written by Shannon Hartsoe
he perfect house starts with the perfect foundation, and the perfect sales career starts with knowledge. So it is with Liana Norman of RE/MAX Coastal Homes in San Clemente. Long before she even thought of
She took a job as an assistant in a very productive RE/ MAX office and learned everything she could. Under the mentorship of the broker, Liana learned the basics. “As the assistant to the real estate broker I learned the behind-the-scenes of real estate before I even obtained my license,” she says. “As I got into the business side of things, I became interested in working with people on a more personal level.” By 1989, Liana had obtained her license and transitioned to a partner rather than an assistant. There could be no doubt – Liana Norman was going places.
top producer awards, sales records or Internet marketing, Liana was building a solid foundation in real estate. Her mother was a successful loan officer, so it was natural for Liana to gravitate toward lending at first. “I thought I’d be a loan processor, frankly,” she says. “But I decided I wanted to be out in the field helping people so eventually I decided real estate would be a better fit.”
Liana Norman Going Above & Beyond
Now, one of the top producers in her office, Liana is a perennial favorite in San Clemente real estate. She has earned the coveted Platinum Award and is a member of the RE/MAX Hall of Fame. Sales came easy during her first few months in the business, Liana says. As a member of one of the area’s most successful teams, she had a head start. Coupled with her background in real estate and her knowledge of the industry, she shot to the top almost immediately. After taking a few years off, she restarted her career in Northern California. “That was a little bit more challenging,” she laughs. “It was an entirely different market.” Undaunted, Liana jumped in with both feet and within the first month she had three homes in escrow and had sold 40 homes at the end of 10 months. That’s an impressive feat for anyone, but even more impressive in a new market. “I guess it just comes naturally to me,” she says. Liana and her family moved back to Southern California and she picked up where she left off – as successful as ever. Her formula for success includes exceptional customer service, extensive knowledge and a dedication to continued education. “There’s always something to test your skills,” she says. “No two real estate transactions are the same and there are lots of different aspects to each one. Negotiations, psychology, law, a lot goes on and it’s important to stay on top of the things that help make me a better Realtor®.” Liana is dedicated to the needs of her clients, ensuring that each one gets her undivided attention. “I pride myself in going above and beyond for all of my clients and their referrals,” she reveals. “Though I now have full-time listing coordinators and assistants, I’m extremely ‘handson’ so that no detail is missed.”
keting trends keeps her – and her listings – in the public eye. A far cry, she says, from her early days. “Back then a consumer had no choice but to rely on signage or on a Realtor® for information on available properties,” she recalls. “Today’s consumer has a wide range of options available to help them look for homes or to learn about the market. But they still need a reputable, knowledgeable Realtor® to help make it all come together and make sense. They appreciate the expert guidance I and my team provide.” And it looks like the family business is growing once again. Her oldest son, Justin, is now a member of her team. “I still count my mother, Lana Facinelli, as one of my mentors,” she says, “along with Mike Vanni one of my first colleagues. Even though their styles are completely different, both have had long careers in the business and have taught me so much. With Justin here now, I hope to pass on the same knowledge I gained from them.” What’s next for Liana? “I hope to obtain my broker’s license some time this year,” she says. “Even if I never open my own office, but all of my experiences and knowledge have led me to this point and will help me continue to be a better Realtor® for my clients – I don’t think you can ever have too much education!” Liana Norman GRI, CRS, CNE RE/MAX Coastal Homes 118 S. El Camino Real San Clemente, CA 92672 Ph: (949) 690-6906 Liana@liananorman.com www.LianaNorman.com CalBRE# 01054256
Her years of experience ensure that her clients get the best service available anywhere. And as a certified negotiation expert, she’s able to help take the stress out of what could be an otherwise emotional situation. She’s focused on building relationships and earning referrals from her satisfied clients and keeps in touch with them long after the transaction has closed. A focus on ever-changing mar-
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Introducing Kinecta’s combo loan: • Finance first loan for 80% of the purchase price
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Build your competitive edge with Kinecta – Contact me today for more info! Erik Jenner Mgr., Mortgage Loan Sales, NMLS# 38025 cell: 949.293.1237 • tel: 949.253.5337 email@example.com • www.kinecta.org/ejenner Orange County Mortgage Center: 4041 MacArthur Blvd., #100, Newport Beach, CA 92660 *Terms & conditions subject to change. All loans are subject to credit approval. Guidelines are available upon request. NMLS # 407870. Intended for mortgage professionals only and not for consumer use.
The Kinecta Difference: Not-for-profit • Member-owned • Over 70 years in business 14573-05/14
E XECUTIVE AGENT MAGAZINE
Written by Shannon Hartsoe
Nicholas Nguyen ExecutiveAgent Magazine
ick Nguyen didn’t set out to be an entrepreneur. In fact, he says his skill for business was forged out of necessity rather than choice. But that doesn’t mean he wasn’t good at it. As one of five siblings born to Vietnamese immigrants, Nick says his family didn’t have much in terms of material things. What they did have was a strong work ethic, a drive to succeed and a faith that kept them positive even when times were hard. As a result, he learned the sales skills necessary to support himself, long before he even knew what an “entrepreneur” was. “I didn’t have the luxury of depending on my parents for financial help like a lot of my friends,” says Nick. “So even at a young age, I was creating little businesses for myself to make extra money. I’d go into the garage at the age of six or seven and look for things to sell.” That self-reliance remained with him even as a high school student, when he would ride his bike from his neighborhood to the Nellie Gail neighborhood to wash cars for the spending money so many others took for granted.So when the opportunity to work with a successful real estate agent presented itself, Nick didn’t hesitate. His parents introduced him to a family friend who was a Realtor®. After learning about what she did, Nick was intrigued. She helped him get started and from there, he was off and running. “She really took me under her wing and taught me the basics of financing and how to handle more difficult transactions,” says Nick. “Right from the beginning I was fascinated and it turns out that real estate was an ideal match for my personality and for my work ethic.” Nick spent a number of years honing his real estate skills while using them to start his own personal real estate portfolio. Building his own home from a lot to finished product helped Nick gain an even deeper understanding of the entire real estate process – something he uses to his clients’ advantage today. “I tell my clients that real estate is like a game of chess – it’s all strategy,” he explains. “Fortunately, I’m a very detail-oriented person.” But he had a decision to make – keep working in real estate part time, or settle in and get serious? He chose the latter. That single decision has led to Nick establishing himself as one of the area’s most successful Realtors® and owner of Prism Link Properties.
By working closely with his clients and treating each transaction as if it was his own, Nick says he’s able to give a level of customer service that is unmatched anywhere. His goal is not simply to meet expectations, but to exceed them. “I’m very passionate about what I do,” he states. “I have a good read on situations and I’m always thinking outside of the box to find and manage creative ways to seal the deal without sacrificing the interests of my clients. I’m not satisfied unless they are.” As the owner of Prism Link, Nick is acutely aware of the value of the transaction to the client, and takes his responsibility very seriously. One mistake, he says, could prove costly, so he leaves nothing to chance. He’s constantly looking for ways to improve upon his past successes and to learn from every real estate sale or purchase. “It amazes me how an agent can help alter the course and outcome of their clients’ deal,” he says. “That’s why it’s important for consumers to work with the right agent --- one who knows how to maneuver carefully throughout the transaction in order to maximize and protect their clients’ needs. Like an attorney, the agent’s negotiation skills are vital in order to create that personal advantage.” Nick’s agents, each with their own strengths and areas of specialization, all follow the same philosophy of customer service that has made Nick so successful. His hard work, determination and unwavering commitment to a job done well have made him an Orange County favorite. That dynamic approach to business has earned him the respect of his colleagues and clients alike, but Nick says it’s his faith that keeps him motivated. “The one constant that keeps me going is my faith in Jesus Christ,” says Nick. “It makes me more accountable for any actions that I take and helps me to stay strong when the going gets tough. I serve Him by serving my clients well and create a positive reflection of His work in me. Nothing is more important.” Nicholas Nguyen Prism Link Properties Tel: 949-374-3957 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: www.prismlinkproperties.com CalBRE # 01364249
The Service Boomerang
emember the expression, “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” They want to know if you are willing to give of yourself, to serve their needs and wants.
They’re not interested in your title, your college degrees, or how much money you have. First, they want to know if you care about them as a person, if you care about helping them solve their problems. Then your knowledge and experience become important. When you are considering the idea and process of giving “good service”, ask yourself, “What would I want if I were dealing with me?” That really brings it home. When you think of service in personal terms you feel the accountability involved. It becomes a personal responsibility, not just a nice idea or phrase. That kind of thinking turns into a philosophy about the service concept. And, that is where you find the real benefit, in both receiving and giving excellent service. We have intelligence quotients and personality quotients. If there were a service quotient, an SQ, how would you score? How would your organization score? It is a very powerful concept to build a life, a career or an organization on the knowledge that good service always boomerangs. Sheila Murray Bethel is a best selling author, television personality and globally acclaimed professional speaker. Sheila’s expertise is Change, Leadership, and Personal Excellence. She is the author of the best-selling book, Making A Difference: 12 Qualities That Make You a Leader, host of the new Public Television Specials, “Making A Difference”, and business woman. Copyright© 2003, Sheila Murray Bethel. All rights reserved. For information about Sheila’s Leadership Seminars and Workshops, contact the Frog Pond at 800.704.FROG(3764) or email email@example.com; http://www.frogpond.com.
Written by Sheila Murray Bethel 32
imortgage is excited to hit the beach in Surf City USA!
The #2 lender for purchase business in California in 2013* is coming to Huntington Beach! At imortgage, we understand that in todayâ€™s market, home financing requires a company with a proven track record, financial strength and integrity. Our unwavering commitment to excellence in these three key areas has earned us a reputation as one of the most well respected companies in the industry. And we cannot wait to bring our outstanding service to Huntington Beach. *Based on MarketracÂŽ Lender Profile Report | Total number of 1st Mtg Loans/Trans | Jan. 1, 2013 through Dec. 31, 2013.
John Wellsandt Branch Manager Direct (949) 705-0550 Mobile (916) 835-8129 NMLS ID 448583 firstname.lastname@example.org
Rates, terms, and availability of programs are subject to change without notice. Licensed by the CA Department of Business Oversight CRMLA 4131040. Corporate NMLS ID 174457. All rights reserved. 05012014.
imortgage 7755 Center Avenue Suite 1200 Huntington Beach, CA 92647
E XECUTIVE AGENT MAGAZINE
Written by Haley Freeman
Justine Howard “Treat Everyone Like You Would Treat Your Family”
ustine Howard is a California girl who grew up in Pacific Palisades. Her father was a successful physician for Paramount Studios. Her parents loved to entertain, so she spent her childhood socializing with a housefull of celebrities and interesting people. “One of the things I learned from my father is that he treated everyone the same, whether they were celebrities or not. My sweet mother had a zest for life and cared about people. She always remembered others at Christmas time. She relished life, and I think she was kind of my hero. I also have five sisters, and they have been a real inspiration to me,” Justine recalls. “I have always been very people-oriented, and love helping people. When I was 16, my father took us on a cruise around the world. I saw many things that opened my eyes. I saw poverty, but I also saw that most people have the same qualities of warmth and love no matter where you go. It gave me a great appreciation for the diversity of cultures and how easy it was to take for granted what I had growing up in this country. I like to think that my life is about giving back.” At the start of her professional life, Justine served as a missionary for a year and a half and obtained her degree in social work. She went on to work as the special assistant to U. S. Senator Jake Garn. “He was humble, down to earth and caring. He always stressed to all of us to keep balance in life and put family first. He had a lot of integrity, and I had the utmost respect for him. People like that had great influence on my life,” Justine says. One of Justine’s sisters is a retired commercial broker. “She is the one that said I should get into real estate with my love of people, and this is a field where women can really excel. My mother became terminally ill, and I needed flexibility to care for her. I believed in real estate. It was my mother’s financial salvation. After my father passed away, the appreciation helped her financially, as she lived to be 87. I also saw the opportunity to help people.” Justine currently works with ZipRealty. “It’s only the second company I’ve ever worked with in real estate,” she says. “They have the number one brokerage website in the U.S. We attract a tremendous amount of leads online. About 65% of my business comes from those leads.”
do everything over the internet by electronic signature. Our clients can click through their contracts just using their cell phones. My clients can go on our website and enter their questions, and I receive them by text. Then I can give them immediate service and be more responsive to their needs. Our company also really stresses ethics, which is important to me.” Justine is the mother of five children, four of whom she adopted, and she has seven grandchildren. Her oldest and youngest sons have both given military service overseas. “It is so gratifying to have them back home. I am very proud of all of my kids and their accomplishments.” “Family is always first, but I also love good, wholesome theater and good food. I love taking local trips in California and walking on the beach and swimming. I love to entertain, probably because my parents entertained so much when I was growing up. I am very involved in my church, and I am committed to giving ten percent of my income back to charity,” Justine says. “My whole business philosophy is to work hard, be honest and treat everyone like you would treat your family. I am not a high pressure sales person. I tell them honestly what I think the benefits are and then it’s their decision. Whether I have a client who is extremely wealthy or struggling just to get into a VA loan, I treat everyone the same. I appreciate people for their quality.” Justine has been selling real estate for over ten years now, and she values the way her experience enhances the service she can offer to her clients. “Knowledge is power. I’ve made mistakes and learned from them. I’m always seeking out more knowledge, so that I can be more diversified in my service. I don’t work for a commission; I work for my clients.” Justine Howard Zip Realty 4940 Campus Drive, Ste. E Newport Beach, CA 92660 Tel: 949-500-1376 Email: JuHoward@ziprealty.com Web: www.JustineHoward.com CalBRE # 01399556
The technology at ZipRealty also helps Justine to give her clients efficient customer service. “We are paperless and high tech. We have clients all over the world who ExecutiveAgent Magazine
I LOVE Complaints!
hether you’re selling loans, homes, computers, widgets, or are a stay at home Mom, your own personal person-to-person “customer service” when there is a problem is a benchmark of your ultimate success. How do you react when someone complains to you? There are several typical approaches: 1. Some people take it personally; get defensive and aggressive. 2. Others simply ignore complaints. 3. Some blame it on others. 4. Some get efficient and solve the problem without dealing with the person’s feelings. 5. And others greet all complaints with delight. DELIGHT! Delight? Why? How could you be delighted when someone complains? Because, she said confidentially, people only complain to you when they want to continue the relationship! Isn’t that delightful? (Well, except for Mr. X , but that’s a story for another day.) Think about the last time you had a problem at a retail store with maybe a slow check out. If it’s a store where you seldom shop, for a product that you can easily get
elsewhere, you may very well just leave the product on the counter and walk out. But if you encounter a slow check out at a store that is usually efficient, you may be quietly understanding; knowing that this is the exception not the rule. Or you might talk with the manager. Even if you are aggravated and angry about the slow service, the only reason you’d take your time to talk with the manager is if you wanted to continue to shop there. In essence you are giving them a second chance to apologize, make it better and win you back. This is the single biggest area where you have a chance at increasing your profitability, repeat customers and referrals. This is the place where you build lasting relationships and a better bottom line because repeat customers are responsible for 8 times the profit of a new customer! Anyone can give good customer service when things are going well - at work or at home. It’s when things go wrong, systems break down, or unforeseen obstacles pop up, that you have a chance to demonstrate your commitment to the relationship. Just what are you willing to do to make this work? To make this right? To forge a stronger bond?
Have you ever broken a bone? It HURTS! But if you give a little extra care and coddle it for a few weeks, it is stronger because that bone has been reinforced as it healed. Broken relationships are like that too. If the store manager says, _Thank you for telling me. Let me get another clerk up at the front and let me personally check you so you can get on your way. “You’ll think, WOW! He actually cares!, and he didn’t get mad. HE THANKED ME?!?! And you’ll continue to shop there. And you might tell your friends. With your customers, when you can “make it better”, they often tell their friends, “We had a nasty thing happen while we working with Pat and Pat made sure it was fixed in no time. It’s good to know people who can efficiently deal with problems when they come up. We’ll use Pat again.”
clients, marriages and parenting, are never problem-free, but the people involved have learned how to confront issues and deal with them with some charm and grace. The next time an inevitable problem arises, greet the complaint with delight, deal with the problem efficiently, the people considerately, and you will maintain the relationship. Linda Brakeall, GRI, CRB, is a nationally recognized expert in sales and marketing for Realtors®. Linda, a Realtor® for 13 years, three of which were as an award wining sales person, spent the next ten years as a manager and corporate trainer. She has been speaking professionally speaking, training and consulting since 1992. Copyright© Linda Brakeall. All rights reserved. For information about Linda, contact the Frog Pond at 800.704.FROG(3764) or email email@example.com; http://www.frogpond.com
Relationships that last a long time, including customers, ExecutiveAgent Magazine
KEY EXHIBITION HOME GAME AWAY GAME ALL STAR BREAK
HOME GAME AWAY GAME AWAY GAME (AUSTRALIA SERIES) MLB ALL STAR GAME
More Control. More Deals. At Eagle Home Mortgage, our world revolves around the relationships weâ€™ve cultivated with the real estate community. Our culture is geared toward support and empowerment of our loan officers, in order to provide the best possible service to you and your clients. Everyone at Eagle Home Mortgage is focused on the importance of closing loans and closing on time. Unlike other lenders, we process files locally, use in-house underwriters and have our own appraisal management team. This results in more control, improved communication and a faster, more efficient process; so as partners, we can make more deals happen.
Four Southern California locations: Torrance NMLS #804830
Phone: 310.602.3900 Torrance@eaglehm.com www.eaglehomemortgage.com/torrance
Branch Manager / Sr. Loan Officer
Branch Manager / Sr. Loan Officer
Branch Manager / Sr. Loan Officer
Phone: 619.929.0102 ScottCriss@eaglehm.com www.eaglehomemortgage.com/scottcriss
Phone: 949.892.2422 BrettSmith@eaglehm.com www.eaglehomemortgage.com/brettsmith
Phone: 951.750.7952 KarenVirgil@eaglehm.com www.eaglehomemortgage.com/karenvirgil
Member of the Lennar Family of Companies
Universal American Mortgage Company dba Eagle Home Mortgage. Universal American Mortgage Company of California dba Eagle Home Mortgage of California. Licensed by the Department of Business Oversight under the California Residential Mortgage Lending Act. RMLA #4130443, NMLS #1058. Copyright 2013 Lennar Corporation. Lennar and the Lennar logo are U.S. registered service marks of Lennar Corporation and/or its subsidiaries.