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NATIONWIDE & INTERNATIONAL EDITION

If It’s Good for the Soul,

IT’S GOOD FOR THE BUSINESS

What the First Thing You Do After Work

SAYS ABOUT YOU

5 SOCIAL MEDIA MISTAKES REAL ESTATE AGENTS MUST AVOID

EASY BLOG TOPICS

FOR YOUR REAL ESTATE BLOG


e has come to know them inside And when we’re not out hiking, I like to dig in the dirt as y to work in DC and Maryland much as my dogs do, so I love to garden - when the ground NATIONWIDE & INTERNATIONAL EDITION re and West Virginia as well as isn’t frozen.” y try to be everything to everys on the markets we know and Genevieve looks towards a bright future. “We should achieve Arlington and Falls Church City $90 million in volume this year,” she says “And I know it’s husband and I live. That allows attainable, especially with the development we have coming us, and it’s a bonus to my clients, down the pipeline. But I also think that it gives us yet another g with someone who knows how6 avenue to give10back; I want to do more 19 15 and serve our community because I feel like giving back is just as big a part of what I do as helping people buy and sell homes.” excellent 85% that attitude is gents who work KELLI CHABOT STEPHANIE PRIBBLE WENDY CARSON ’m really proud NANCY GIBSON ople that we’ve LEE ELMOR ve and beautiful 32 27 23 31 nd smart way,” Even as she app two and a half de amazing agents the real estate b and community Top Agent Lee Elm

retains a marked ent and passion for hel clients achieve th LEE ELMORE estate goals. Workin the banner of B Hathaway Home Florida Network R Atlantic Beach, brings to the table a fierce combination 37)Lee CREATIVE MEDITATION industry knowledge that has result FORcation THEand REAL ESTATE stellar reputation as a trustworthy real estate a

GENEVIEVE ration includesCHRISTOPHER CHEESEMAN KECIA MORTENSON & JONATHAN FINNERTY CONCANNON “I love watching where they’ve CONTENTS “I love guiding 4) IS STARTING A TEAM THE 21) EASY BLOG TOPICS FOR their resource, RIGHT SOLUTION FOR YOUR YOUR REAL ESTATE BLOG uying or selling BUSINESS? PROFESSIONAL cess, and I like 25) HOW TO SEND SMARTER to her career in real estate, Lee was in t To EMAILS find out more about 41)Prior ve through8)that, 5 SIMPLE MINDSET A COMPILATION OF she honed the e field for twenty years, where SHIFTS THAT WILL HELP YOU FROM MY COACHING for success.” customer service skills that continue to ben GENEVIEVE CONCANNONGOALS

ACHIEVE YOUR GOALS

29) WHAT THE FIRST THING

CLIENTS buyers and sellers today. “I owned a clothin

she recalls, “and when I closed that busine YOU DO AFTER call WORK512.767.3002 SAYS visit advonre.com, Genevieve,13) who for a new career path where I could IF IT’S GOOD FOR THE ABOUT YOU 45)looking UNTANGLING THE people, and stay in a service-related or email genevieve@advonre.com as a background SOUL, IT’S GOOD BIDDING WAR: A BUYER’S & indus https://

FOR THE BUSINESS

17) THINGS YOU CAN DO TO ANTICIPATE YOUR CLIENT’S NEEDS

grandfather was an architect who built man SELLER’S PERSPECTIVES 33) 5 SOCIAL MEDIA historic properties in this area, so I always ha MISTAKES REAL ESTATE houses.” A friend suggested that re 48)interest HOWinTO OVERCOME AGENTS MUST AVOID might be a good fit, and Lee decided to give YOUR WORKPLACE Copyright Top Agent That was Magazine a fortunate decision for the many FEARS buyers and sellers who have since been lucky to work with her.

Currently, the lion’s share of Lee’s bus comprised of repeat clients, referrals and w mouth customers, a sure indicator that she is p top-notch customer service. “I work very har No portion of this issue may be reproduced in any manner whatsoever without prior consent of theclients, publisher. Agent Magazine is apprecia andTop I definitely think they published by Feature Publications GA, Inc. Although precautions are taken to ensure the accuracy of published materials, Top Agent says Lee. “I also become friends with man Magazine cannot be held responsible for opinions expressed or facts supplied by its authors. To subscribe or change buyers and sellers; address, I tend tosend have a different inquiry to mag@topagentmagazine.com. Published in the U.S. relationship with them than many other Rea with their clients, I’m definitely more to th just a real estate agent.”

Phone 310-734-1440 | Fax 310-734-1440 mag@topagentmagazine.com | www.topagentmagazine.com

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Top Agent Magazine


TANNER HAWRYLUK | RE/MAX REAL ESTATE GAIL GOBEY

Top Agent Gail Gobey – Owner/Principal of or a stylist Tanner Hawryluk Director has a remarkable ability to add calm-anyone we refer, whether that’s a plumberestate in that area,” he says. “I’m one of the few 40 for marketing that i boutique agency Sashness & Gable in aWynnum, us.” The here relationships 35 and Property ease to process that people might36 expect– can be trusted. That is key for39 who hires an agency Queensland – is a force of nature driven by a true desire Gail forms with her clients – both past and present to be stressful. His approachability, energy level andare incredibly important to her, and she works strategic follow-up strategies specifically for tho to provide her clients with an exceptional customer hard to Top Agent Dav leading-edge strategies with marketing are additionalnourish and maintain them. “I contact them, ple who experience. Possessing a wealth of industry knowledge I emailare looking or who are prospective b Long &synd Fos and a warm, welcoming personality, Gail has more than them, I talk to them on the phone, just to make sure characteristics that have helped him build a respected Beyond social media marketingofand online earned her solid reputation as trustworthy, real clientBig Brand Online Marketing Dave Luptak real estate careerhonest in Spruce Grove, AB, located justthey’re okay.” Sash & Gable also host annual Tanner’s PlanTe i estate advocate who is committed to helping her clients appreciation events, “just to say thank you, and to let 15 minutes west of Edmonton. Factor in that Tanner separating and segregating potential buyers to Maryland – is achieve their real estate goals. them know that now that they’re clients of ours, they’re grew up amidst the real estate success of his father andalso family.” The company also supports aup so they have multiple ing exposures his a fulltodec hostwith of local Gail began her adventures in the real in as much“It’s as much like if you excellent his uncle, andestate that world his brother and his sister are alsocharities and organizations. “We participatehome. were shopping o custom 2003, not long after REALTORS she and her family relocated real to estate savvy is no surprise. we can,TANNER because that’sHAWRYLUK who we are,” says Gail. ® ; Tanner’s DAVEthat LUPTAK and suddenly one productmany is following you FLOULIS SISTERS GAIL GOBEY buyers an Australia from Zimbabwe, where she had a hugely earned numerous awards over the years and most“I love my job,” says Gail. “Real estate canthe it once.”Coun They REALTORS successful career LUXURY in He’s event management. Upon arrival be internet a tough after you clicked on Arundel recently the Re/Max Real Estate Hall of Fame Award. is exciting, especially when a client sees in New South Wales,Beth she initially continued in event gig; it’s definitely not a nine-to-five job, but I get so Vittardi strong to one central concept that keeps people coming “You need thatthei pe back, and re Traverso’s real estate careerMark is in its isholds three closed tr Husbandthen and moving wife Topinto Agents Bob andand Richelle sets us apart from over the other agents.” The and never imagined Tanner management, a Marketing Sales excited I get toof hand the key to someone’s ® whatwhen online would as a REALTOR , and as leader The Vittardi Real in contact,” hemark say 47 49 44 43 last twelve months and over $14.5 mi Ward – of Coldwell Banker in Newtown, Concouple’s thorough and detail-oriented approach their friends and colleagues to us.” second phase, and this time around it’s bigrole for a prominent Property Developer. Upon relocating once again new home.” Gail also strives to make an industry that has become weproducer all work out of the same brokerage andbe well. Tanner’s websites consistently attracts 1 Estate Group: paign - It’s importa have“Although status hasgenuine. also endeared themfocused to manymuch a client. “We go to thenecticut Brisbane– area in achieved 2007, Gailtop set about finding a new home forago increasingly and internet more personal. ume in 2018 alone, and his tea ger than ever. “I started 20 years and hadtechnology city, each of impressive uslack runofour ownRichards business,” says Tanner of every month and hisDave strategic I care, andfollow-u that I a through their work out ofaway the way to their do service our homework for avisitors client,” her family anda combination encountered aofdecided enthusiasm from local “I first love takingof buyers from Google searching and actually Maria got her taste the tique-style from start to finish. Her team boasts multilingual proud ofpeople the number ofhave clients they’ve Helping extends athe decent enough business,” she recalls. “But ethics, vast that industry knowledge and a true comexplains Bob. “When we meet with “Folks underestimate thetorole offirst a real given me. bu to five members inestate the “We help each other out egy attracts millions ofofviews over of beyond websites agents. “I found there was family very little support,” she says.industry. “Agents rubbing shoulders with them. Iand want bring them back to thethem, reality real industry while inoften the proqualifications and have a estate reputation for working wellthousands alongside felmitment to providing the very best customer we already know a lot about their property from achieve the American dream ofgoes homeo just weren’t responding to my calls.” Certain sheneeded.” couldfirst dobuying better, and itrepresenting all.” Technology, however, isindustry stillprofessionals, expertly utilized it’s in the agent.” Mark explains.”As ancompany’s tionship beyo work together when Primarily homeowners hours for Beth. She’s an active spon around 2007 I had my child and the real cess of her home. At the time, low professionals in the area. “I love interacting with my service available inofthe Bob researching the various public We like with the encouragement herConstitution husband Ian,State. she obtained license honor marketing strategies, andwho a robust presence on records. the internet and to social toalongside assist those putbut their faith into us, to to support my clie the agenther she was working clients, also my peers,” Mariamanagement says. “We fabulous and buyers in business, Spruce Grove, with its population of His adept use of client software technology he Encompass, a have local group that pr market collapsed it that seemed a approximately and Richelle’s expertise, in concert with and their make sure those records arewith correct, if there and began working inestate a large Franchise soonand realized medialike platforms ensure that Gail’s listings are seen by asand many potential provide proper guidance from initial contact, through real estate over th suggested Maria would be a natural fit networking out here in the Valley. It’s asellers very friendly community Prior to beginning his real estate care 35,000, Tanner also services the neighbouring community of Stony keep in front of buyers, and other agents over time. friendly demeanor, has resulted in their impresare any potential problems, head them off at the her ideal was offering a team environment with Agent support. In 2016 buyers as possible. pediatric therapies to families in neeh“ good time to take for aputhiatus. Then in 2013 Iclose. contract to My clients are putting their bigagent, to which the business. Intrigued by the chaland we’re here to help each other and our clients get everything they sive reputation as Realtors who consistently pass.” “We are excellent problem solvers,” adds County west success Edmonton. ents and I are always texting,incalling and emailing.and kno she launched Sash &Plain, Gable, Parkland which was an almost and immediate worked the Prin when not Marketing serving herThey comm my career, starting it to over from bestrelaunched interests and center during Richelle, “and there’s not too much that comes gest investment intowork/life my hands to aexecute andimportant bring ethic, lenge, she service. decided earn her license want out of real estate transaction.” due totheir her client’s fierce commitment tofront providing top-notch customer Maintaining a healthy balance is incredibly to“That Gail, she’s can reach out any time.” By keeping things lightand andbusiness friend business was experiencing am every transaction. our way that, between the two of us, we can’t andwould when she’s not assisting clients, shealways enjoys been: nothingbemore thanloves back the my best return. My has tryworking her handdown at what quickly BETH TRAVERSO MARK VITTARDI Beth to“They hit the road. “I love go scratch. This time and I doubled on MARIA BOB & RICHELLE “I alsoRICHARDS have the privilege of with prominent builders inmantra our people, clients turn into friends. also know I’m willing figure out.” recalls Dave, “and much ofjoy it was goi Sash & Gable can already boast that eighty percent of their business passion. spending timegenuine with loved ones. “Having myto family and friends around become a lifelong Since 2004, When it comes marketing listings, Maria leaves no detail unachonest and to earn the trust and respect of The his clien road trips with my family,” she says. commitment, worked incredibly hard and WARD Bobupon and Richelle metaninimpressive the late 1980’s, when they withhome community, helping them their homes,” he she notes. longer and harder; was that I’ll put in the time to answer as man“ is based referrals, statistic that thenew-build is very important to me,” the right time to make a change. shedrives has managed toclients. build aNo steadfast counted for. High-quality photography ensures that homes stand one wants to besays. soldhold anything, they prefer transaction is the b were both working for a Fortune 500 contracting company in New Bob and Richelle, who currently a perfect five-star overall three kids and just jump inhe the car and amount of loyalty Gail instills in clients. Gailthe is quick to credit her grateful was able build the flourishing business Iclients “Since myherto return to industry, that from the premium tions asvisibility they have. I want them to know they’re being taken c reputation forI’m adaptability, evolving investment properties as well as help out, while across the leading online listing platto be educated in order to make a sound decision,” he continues. hard for them,” beams. “I ca York City. At the time, Bob was the youngest Corporate Officer in rating on Zillow.com, comprised of dozens of glowing testimoteam – which includespast husband Ian, who isalready the company’s Director and Gail’s plans for and the future are to continue growing her business and her three years refer friends and family to me my clients day trips.” have today.” market knowledge, and an authentic commitment to her clients’ best forms guarantees wide-ranging exposure. Informative flyers, QR the history of the parent company and was Vice President of Sales nials, have been recognized repeatedly for excellence in their thanthat inflate a situation, has served mejob best tohis, be direct I get increased when I see how which had my excited interestth Business Manager - for much of this success. “It’s very important to “Rather team. “I love I’m able to employ itpeople, give them opportunifrom before I explains. took a break from estate continue to refer business Tanner enjoys meeting a variety people of phone different backg Marketing. Richelle oversaw all the administrative for chosen profession, garnering over awards during theirphone nearly interests. Now, she is co-owner of real Real Living Prime Propercodes, and property-specific numbers andtheir websites an and precise. I have been able to100 achieve my quarterly and annual joymy onmake the when I tel have and infrastructure and support,” she “Our team services has adminties, freedom and security,” she says. Her overarching goal, however, isprocess, the and understanding. the most profitable division. That professional relationship eventwo decades of operation. Named Five-Star Realtors by Connectito me.” That break, he notes, took place a few years after he earned through real estate and learning from each one of them. “I a ties alongside her husband, Robert. There, she heads a tightknit and impact on the ground, and Maria is only a quick call away. “We istrative support, social mediabusiness support, sales truly and property management goals to Beth continue providing the service hasapproach.” become herAs calling by conducting myamazing business withthat this the energy I live on in this indu she continues to succeed in the s That is flourishing; is transition.” tually grew capable into a successful marriage. 2000, thewith two decided cut sincein its issue, they areto also the support. I honestly love my team.” competing card. “ITanner want myevery clientsyear tomake walk thefirst door know that they’re going team that builds community andmultiple delivers his license inThough 2010.In In fact, the few yearsresults. thatMagazine stepped away freedom have a flexibletime,” schedule and “Our to give back to th sure it’sthe aand swift and smooth response she says. to move to Connecticut and transition from the construction world recipients of Coldwell Banker’s prestigious Diamond Society and phase herpart real estate career, Beth looks to the the top ended 1% ofup estateand brokers inhisthe Greatergoal Seatindustry giants in the among area, Gail has quickly become areal topbolstering producer toonly be looked after.” as aWesleyan brokerage isof toAs offer that attentive, service.” from real estate later but munity.” of Re/Max Real Estate, a portion of futu each graduated from Ohio University with an eyeboutique-style Mark’s greatest motivation is h thego-to real estate industry. “We moved to Connecticut because wenotMark President’s Circle success Awards. Most notable perhaps – particularly one oftothe agents inin Wynnum and its surrounds. the ways that she doesn’t want to grow. “I want to ren tle Area. “I mainly focus on the east side of King County,” Dave’s team is comprised of an equall Based Indian Wells and serving clients across the greater Valley ofofhis clients. “During that time, apublic lot while deals goes to the Children’s Network, wanted a better that quality life,” says Bob, “and we decided to getI traveled in an asked industry that can working beshe fairly cutthroat is their genuinely-detowards sector leadership, especially in government. He elynnMiracle and Giada. “One of direc the When what advice might haveclosed for- newer agents, Gail pauses region, Maria’s career has been defined by her amarket savvy. Beyond thefor office, Maria engaged in her community through both real estate because, even before we were agents asof real estate served receipt of their office’s award “Always being generous ofChildren’s professionals who all share the team Iishave, and notthe grow it any more,” shetohis says. Beth says. “We have ahas lot people that work for Microsoft, in online he says. “When I also returned, Istrong noticed the gap porting the Stollery Hospital in Edmonton. “It’scli aDuring entrepreneurial spirit which led him into to dedicate more time my gira Sash into & Gable’s commitment to marketing,” their community also played for a had thoughtful moment. “I think if anything,” she says finally, “just be been a passion forshe us.”built Part of the appeal, well,banks was and & kind in heart her andsincere, spirit.” the ascent downturn, relationships with expanded professional and charitable means. She member ofand themy Women’s large has rolealways in its rapid in the local market. “We’re veryaspassionate true to yourself, be and work hard. But most importantly, takeis a ethos. “Kevin Rock is my licensed industry which Mark explains, “treats me so well.” limiting time withI’ve my famil in marketing in the real estate industry. I sourced a company that to see how much it impacts families clients that work the size that it is, and it allows us to maintain that pe Amazon, etc. in our area. So we’re not in the city, but we ability to set their worksays schedule. “We thought it would skillset inown working with REO properties, earning coveted contracts Council of need Realtors, which sponsors causes throughout the area, aboutthe supporting our community,” Gail. “All of our suppliers caretoofmarket yourself and askmyself for help & if you it.have There are some amazing with Maddie, Gia, and Sarah.” specialized in that online marketing skillset both that used their services.” works with buyers as well as helping be services a great job where we pick our own and we’ve been “Forexpanded me,” saysto Richelle, when asked what enjoys touch. to alwayssafety be accessible focus ontoand the areas where people to escape the she maintains thisreliable. day. Ashours, conditions improved, she her from Habitat for Humanity to about bike-riding seminars. Sheand is I want to and the we refer are could local Our clients know that want people outgo there, don’t think that you need toshe do it Iallwant bymost served eleven years personal bailiff inyourself.” the judicial sysworking seven days aclients’ week nowhomes.” for nineteen years,” Richelle says Mark in real estate, “it’s as theasatisfaction of finding someone my listing side,” says Real Dave. “Pam Capezio teamcity… and client base. She being now drives almost a thirdher ofcareer her business also a member of the National Association of Hispanic Estate sure my agents are always accessible to our clients.” while still able to commute there.” with a laugh. the while right home, seeing how happy they are. or selling aTanner tem alsoand maintaining his real estate license for the final sixis who Having committed himself full In his Buying personal life, aofhealth and fitness advocate w assistant helps things move smo through repeat and referral clientele—a testamenthome to her ultimate Professionals (NAHREP) and a board member her local chapter. canyears. be an anxiety-inducing for them, so Bob and of I people ofBig those “As aMarketbailiff Iendeavor interacted withand a variety towards a “My brightimmediate future. “I want Every home that Tanner lists receives his Brand Online to travel still has great expectations. goa stayinglike power. To account for(unlike her mounting successtrythus far, itMaria In her hours, enjoys time spent withsignage, her familymarketing, and scenes with and Working together a well-oiled machine the increasto make as easy possible forfree them.” Adds she Bob,most “Every step of were experiencing complex situations. experience helps says. “I have extremely talented One of That the ways that Beth wants to nurture her team As she has grown her business incommunity thiswho second phase, Beth has ing Theeducation, planpair emphasizes anand attractive online presence. “Iloved hire awhat’s get even better marketing and to provide even servi cites an Plan. industry teamwork, aswe some ones, traveling, the Valley’s restaurant scene, and ingly popular “team concept”, the choose to both work the way, try toofclearly explain going on soenjoying they feelatvery contractors and others. Philbetter andcollectiv Ashl ® me as a REALTOR my leadership, while we to be creative and quick when negotiating, hone coaching skills and usedriver’s her experience to th s teamvideographer, to and support Thestyle. Beth Traverso Group. “We an open-air directly withthe allbuilt of theiraclients), Bob Richelle can boast that comfortable withon the process.” professional professional photographer and ancatching online wants her clients toaround knowtown. they are in the seat and that defining characteristics of heraher, working “I really focus concerts team problem solving, or simply de-escalating a situation.” my In June of last year and work on their o their business ismarketing based significantly upon repeat and staying at two the cutting edge of the market,” she says. “From housteam that takes allcustomers the data, marketing information and con-a interests “Starting are at heart. “We create great client experiences from others. over again, building my business have agents and support admin staff,” she says. “It’s referrals from their past clients, friends and family. “Our business 2018 The future looks brightfull these two passionate real Markgoing was recently elected by h dedicated himself time Maria to the industry, stepping the team structure.” ing tent trends to Imarketing techniques, I make it a point toMark expand myincredibly As thefor future, intends keep momentum that provide and markets it toeverypeople specifically looking at for real finish and make it to assome enjoyable as possible.” taught me nuggets that strong. I want to shar relatively small team considering the volume we do. We did is built on excellent customer service,” says Bob, “and estate advocates. While they are both zero, remarkably earnest about away from the public sector. land Association of knowledge and education. As –a says team, we’re always taking the pulse to their “Technology is always try evolving, and keeping up is key,” she REALTOR one who works about with us –40 without exception we goyear, above andtheir responsibility buyers andothers,” sellers, theyshe to inject“My focus this year is going to be o says. listings in the past 50 more on the buyer byof ACAR leadership and do other our best to tell incorporate the best tech tools says. “We want continue and bringappointed different lifestyle A significant portion Dave’s busi and beyondof thethe callmarket of duty. Even agents us that they some levity intoand every transaction. Says Bob:to“Real estate to is aexpand very ofthan Tomorrow’s Leader Today. Mark and his team ofopportunities seven serve the Northeast Ohio area. His turing my agents and helping them grow their busi our average price point is about $830,000.” up toofAnd date for our clients’ benefit.” to our clients.” Finally, with more decade over would neverstay do side. some the things we do for our customers, this serious business, but we try to have a fun time with our clients.” repeat and referred customers, perha For more information about Gail Gobey,

DAVE LU

BETH TRAVERSOMARK VITTARDI

BOB & RICHELLE WARD

MARIA RICHARDS

REALTOR Vendors and Real Estate Companies— Get Nationwide & International exposure!

Top Agent Magazine is seen by Real Estate Agents and dedication to being genuine he her, has aMaria and referral ratebackfull circlecareer for me. I always tho insightmeans behind Richards looks inefficient, want toreturn refine what we do, make it more b measure of would aon jobherwell done in their hi please call 584 111 or email Gail@sashandgable.com.au of an astonishing percent, while having bring Likewise, Maria 0439 stays connected to clients long after the clos-92 real estate and some aoftremendous the lessonssale she price has learned along the me way.to governmen Brokers in every U.S. city and Internationally! that will give me the space to grow my people whi For Beth that volume isn’t about numbers, it’s about people. market. because ofmy ourprofession. respon to list price ratio of 99%; he maintains said rates by being present “It’s leadership with

ing table has been reached. Through regular newsletters that “My husband I both love our careers so much that I don’t see us available to help my clients. Because that’sthw “We alwayshighlighting focus on the client first foremost,” she tells attention totry,” detail,” explains Dave, inand thetolives of his clients, staying inbeing touch via mailers, phone callsshe Mark ”I appreciate Copyright Agent Magazine add-value—from community events providing slowing down orTop retiring any time soon,” says. “Realsays. estate and by not ending the relationship when the deal is closed. people achieve their real estate home maintenance tips—she stays front and center in the minds of keeps you onlove your-toes and keeps you sharp. We love where we might inspire such exceptional loy helping people solve their real estate problem Top Agent. “We approach our business from a place of conher tribution, loyal clientele. Because their desert region is a popular market are and we love what we do, so we will continue to bring that forth compassion whenbut helping ach in new ways, it’s soclients rewardin friendliness and accessibility. We are never pushy always challenging for second homes and retirees, Maria and her team focus on bouand flourish.” while understanding the difficulties th

Please contact or sales-oriented. We just want to truly help people, and that able to help people through something as big as buy mag@topagentmagazine.com comes across in the way we work with our clients. In turn selling a home.” overcoming. We also work hard to For more information about Bob and Richelle Ward, process as smooth and as effortless as or call 310-734-1440 for please call 203-470-9818 or email wardteam@cbmoves.com To learn more about Tanner Hawryluk, visit tannerhawryluk.com or go to h ad rates and information. Facebook page, email tannerhawryluk@remax.net or call 780-962-8580 www.

https://www.facebook.com/tannerhawrylukrealestate/

Copyright Top Agent Magazine

Top Agent Magazine

Copyright Top Agent Mag To find out more about Mark Vittardi, 3 visit his website at depiero.com/users/mark-v www.


Is Starting a Team the Right Solution for your Business? You’ve started your own real estate business and after a slow start, you’ve found your footing and business has really taken off. Sounds great, doesn’t it? Until maybe you’re getting more business than you can handle. After all, you don’t want to sacrifice service for more listings. The top-notch level of service you offer is probably what created your boom in 4

business in the first place, so you don’t want to compromise that. But, at the same down, you don’t want to turn down business either. It’s at this point, a lot of Realtors® consider starting a team. But, how do you know if that’s the right call for you? Here are a few questions you might want to ask yourself to help make your decision. Top Agent Magazine


The top-notch level of service you offer is probably what created your boom in business in the first place, so you don’t want to compromise that.

CAN YOU AFFORD IT? First things first, are you really making enough money to warrant hiring help? One of the key things to think about is your ability to generate leads. Are you so busy with your existing contracts, that you have no spare time to generate more business? Then, it might be time to consider your options. Figure out the time you’ll be afforded to generate more business, how many more transactions that will lead

to, and then see if that pays for the assistant’s wages. That should help you easily see if it’s worth the investment. If it’s on the border, you may still want to go for it if you have a lot of confidence in the market and your ability to bring in business. If you’re not quite there yet though, it might be a good idea to look into a virtual assistant until your business is ready to expand.

ARE YOU READY TO BE A TEAM LEADER? Or in other words, how comfortable are you delegating tasks and responsibilities? For some agents, they need to be actively involved in every step of the process. Being a team leader is not only about being able to delegate, it’s about mentoring and guiding your team as well. Not only do you have to help them serve the team

better, you need to look at yourself honestly too, constantly evaluating what you can do better. It’s also your job to set up systems and operations, that are constantly refined with the feedback of your team members. Clear and constant communication is key with your clients as well as your team.

CAN YOU FIND PEOPLE WHO SHARE YOUR VISION? Of course, the above two points are moot, if you’re unable to find people that you trust and that share your business’ philosophy. Having a supportive and professional team culture is instrumental in a team’s success. These are people you will be working with closely for long hours so you not only need to trust in their expertise and professionalism, you want to find people with a positive attitude. You will all be relying on each other to create seamless transTop Agent Magazine

actions in sometimes stressful circumstances. Having the right team spirit, so to speak, is what will help your business and team grow. The ultimate goal of a team is to have thriving careers for everyone on board. So, if you want to see your business grow maybe a team is right for you. It may even give you a little free time for a personal life. We can all dream, can’t we? 5


NANCY GIBSON Nancy Gibson has had some particularly notable clients this year: CEOs, entrepreneurs, even a Chicago Bear. But for Nancy there’s no difference between her most high end clients and the everyday families with whom she works. “I treat football stars with the same enthusiasm and work ethic as I do someone buying a $160,000 condo,” she says. She has been selected by the Merchandise Mart as a Top 10 Luxury Residential Real Estate Broker in Suburban Chicago, but that high end work doesn’t define her. “I like to be known as somebody who does the same amount of good work for a small home as I do for a luxury home,” she says. With 32 years in the business, Nancy has proven her dedication to working hard for her clients no matter their level. That’s why she boasts a stellar 75% return and referral rate, and why she’s been winning awards consistently and has been the number one agent in Northbrook, enjoying the highest sales volume of any agent, and is why she ranks in the top 10 producing individual agents (out of all agencies) in Chicago’s North Shore. What’s more amazing is that she’s basically a one woman operation, not a big conglomerate. “I’m really my own individual agency,” she says. “I have people that help me - an executive assistant, marketing admins, photographers - but I don’t have a big team, and I’m still able to put out the numbers that I do. I’m very proud of that, and it all comes down to hard work.” Nancy does the hard work for one reason. “I like helping people,” she says. “I’ll put in the time to make their house marketable

and to stage it perfectly so that they can get the most money. And that forms relationships that last - I have had people call me up ten years later to help their kids find a home. I love how intimate that bond can be be with your buyer or seller, and how it can last.” Helping people isn’t just a career for Nancy, it’s a passion. “I’m very involved in the community,” she tells Top Agent. “I’m a consistent supporter of the Northbrook Woman’s Club, and I’m part of Impact 100, a group of professional women that gives out a yearly $100,000 grant to a worthy Chicagoland area not-for-profit organizations.” For Nancy being happy and following her passions are the most important things, and the things that make her a better REALTOR®. “I don’t want to take 50,000 listings,” she says. “I’d rather take a few listings from those people who are willing to be helped, who are willing to do the staging and the work to get the best deal they can.” Even though Nancy has been a Top Agent for decades, she is never done learning. “I was just in an all-day seminar yesterday,” she says. “I have to stay on top of the game, and I always want to learn about what’s new with technology or internet marketing.” Everything changes, and that’s what Nancy likes best. “The whole gist of my job is that the product always changes and I’m always meeting new people. I do the best I can for them, and I feel appreciated by them, and that’s what makes this such a happy job.”

To find out more about Nancy Gibson, call 847-363-9880, email nancygibson@atproperties.com, or visit atproperties.com/agents/nancygibson www.

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The Law Offices of Margaret F. Sauser are proud to congratulate

NANCY GIBSON

on being featured for the State of Illinois in Top Agent Magazine!

Tel. 847.291.6958 | Fax. 847.509.3305 meg@megsauserlaw.com | megsauserlaw.com http://

360 S. Waukegan, Suite C, Deerfield, IL 60015

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5 Simple Mindset Shifts That Will Help You Achieve Your Goals

Everyone knows that a positive attitude is one of the key steps to achieving success. It’s very easy to let negativity bring you down and oftentimes, people end up quitting at the first set back. Even if you don’t think of yourself as a negative person, you’re probably doing numerous things you don’t even realize are holding you back. Recognizing these negative mindsets, and then implementing simple mindset shifts, are sure to help you not only create a more positive outlook, but a more successful outcome to whatever goal you’re trying to achieve. 8

1

Turn jealousy into admiration

It’s very easy to look at someone who has what you want, and feel envious, which quickly turns into criticism and excuses about why you weren’t able to get what they seemed to get with ease. This is something successful people never do. Instead, they recognize that the only thing keeping them from success is themselves. If you want what someone else has, you should look to them as a role model. What

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are they doing that you aren’t? There’s probably more to their story than you’re giving them credit for. Someone else’s success doesn’t hinder your ability to do the same, but constantly having a ‘life’s not fair’ attitude definitely will.

2

Tackle the things you dread doing first

We all procrastinate to some extent. Usually it’s things we don’t want to do. But when you put something like that off, it creates a serious cloud over your whole day. Experts recommend getting those things out of the way first. Not only do get it crossed off your list, but you will feel energized by your accomplishments and tackle the day with even more force.

3

Don’t make decisions based on emotion

Reaching goals, especially long term ones, can have a lot of ups and downs. The key to achieving them is to stay level-headed during setbacks, really focusing on your plan and how the setback fits into your long term vision. If you have a solid plan in place, you could be destroying months of hard work with one rash emotional decision, that is probably coming from a place of panic. When you’re feeling emotional...wait. It really is that simple. Wait it out until Top Agent Magazine

you’re back in a rational state of mind and take it from there.

4

Learn to love feedback

It’s very easy to be thrown off by negative feedback or constructive criticism. No one likes it. But when it comes to achieving your goals, you need to be able to hear it, assess it and then make an unemotional decision about what it means to you and your success. In fact the business world’s most successful leaders are there because they not only take in that feedback, they actually constantly ask for it. Fresh perspectives on what you’re doing are always valuable. When you’re in the thick of it, it can be hard to see what needs improvement. Asking a trusted peer or advisor can be instrumental in keeping the momentum on reaching your goal going.

5

Replace a fixed mindset with a growth mindset

You might be wondering what the difference between the two are. A fixed mindset thinks that growing intelligence or skills is impossible, while a growth mindset thinks those things can be developed. People with a growth mindset are more likely to expand beyond their comfort zone, since they really believe almost anything is possible with hard work. And if it isn’t? They’re willing to give it a try. Being willing to try and fail, is a key element to reaching even the most lofty goals.

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STEPHANIE PRIBBLE

A background in advertising and marketing, a lifelong interest in real estate and deep knowledge of Greater Houston combined to create the perfect inspiration for Stephanie Pribble to follow her passions “It was time to take a leap of faith,” Stephanie says of her 2014 decision, shortly after she and her husband married. Now, the Pribble Group is poised for exponential growth. In fact, to kick off her newest chapter in real estate, Stephanie recently affiliated with Compass Real Estate. “I am very excited about this decision,” she explains. “Partnering with Compass represents a level-up for both my sellers and my buyers. This is an extremely technology-driven brokerage that aligns itself with the top agents in the city.” Primarily focused on Houston’s Inner Loop and surrounding neighborhoods, Stephanie is also making a mark throughout Greater Houston. She earns 95% of her business from referrals and repeat clients and, prior to joining Compass, was already a top local producer. “I couldn’t be more thankful for my friends and clients who put their trust in me,” she says. Online reviews show that client loyalty stems from Stephanie’s transparency, communication and no-pressure approach to each real estate. Describing the experience of working with her as 10

stress-free and fun, Stephanie’s clients appreciate how personable, helpful and responsive she is. “I also take a very black-and-white approach to pricing,” she says, noting that by maintaining a nearly 50-50 balance between buyers and sellers, she can offer a deep, holistic view of pricing and negotiations to all of her clients. “With buyers, we hone in on different view of the numbers than with sellers,” she says, noting that days-on-market factor differently into a seller’s or a buyer’s negotiation process. “By seeing both ends of the spectrum, we can get our buyer the best deal or, in some cases, simply get them the house they want in a multiple-offer situation.” The same goes for her sellers. “Numbers don’t lie,” says Stephanie, whose success with listings is a direct result of her presentation and pricing. “I provide a personalized staging consultation, walking sellers thoroughly through exactly how their homes should show,” she says. “If necessary, I recommend additional staging, especially if the home is unoccupied or new construction; it’s important to make the house feel like a home.” She then uses a blend of comparative research, market analysis and experience to recommend the ideal list price. “A buyer’s first showing is online, so I have a very strong digital approach,” she says. Copyright Top Agent Magazine


“We also take advantage of an agent-to-agent vertical for coming-soon marketing, which is a win-win for both the seller and buyer.” It’s no coincidence, therefore, that in the past year, 75 percent of Stephanie’s listings have sold within the first two weeks. While pricing, analytics, negotiation, presentation and attentiveness are tools that Stephanie employs on behalf of her clients, the joy that comes from helping others inspires not only Stephanie, but her clients. “I love that our work together represents a big chapter in each person’s life, no matter their life story or their stage in life,” she says. With every transaction, her goal is to form a genuine relationship. “Some of my clients have turned into great friends or viceversa! It’s hard not to enjoy people’s company during the process.” As her business thrives, Stephanie also remains active on a personal level, giving back to local and national nonprofits and educational organizations. “I also love to cook,” she adds, noting that, when not working, she and her husband can be found cooking, dining and enjoying good wine. Circling back to the topic of business, Stephanie emphasizes her goal of expanding her team. “Doing so will allow me to maximize my time out in the field with clients,” she says. “The real estate industry is ever-changing and Houston has over 30,000 agents. It’s important for everyone to work with someone who is tuned-in and that they trust.” Top Agent Magazine

To learn more about Stephanie Pribble, visit pribblegroup.com or her Facebook page, email pribble@pribblegroup.com or call 713.542.1730 www.

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CONGRATULATIONS

e i n a h p Ste e l b b i r P ON BEING FEATURED IN

TOP AGENT MAGAZINE!

FRONTIER TITLE GALLERIA 1177 West Loop S, Suite 1350 Houston, TX 77027 O 713-840-0208 | F 713-840-0228 www.FrontierTitleTexas.com

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If it’s good for the soul,

IT’S GOOD FOR THE BUSINESS

Visibility, name recognition and knowing you’re supporting the community that makes your success possible are good reasons to take part in community service. But how is it that some people seem to be able to give time to charities while running their own businesses, managing their own families and households, exercising regularly, attending sporting events and concerts, eating well and sleeping seven or eight hours a night? The truth is, not all agents are able to do everything so easily. But more important is the fact that no one needs to do everything all of the time. The trick is to make sure that, whatever you do holds meaning. REALTORS® and mortgage professionals who seem the most gregarious in their community outreach are those whose giving seems to fill their own souls. When their Top Agent Magazine

volunteer efforts or donations directly impact causes they or their clients care deeply about, “giving back” becomes energizing. Jason O’Quinn of Prime Lending in Dallas Texas, for instance, says that his family’s ongoing work building homes for some of the poorest families in Honduras fills him immeasurably. “It rejuvenates me,” he says. “There’s quite a dichotomy between the houses we build there and the houses we finance here,” he says. “It refocuses me, going from financing $1 million homes in Dallas to physically laying cinderblock for $10,000 homes in Honduras. Everything has more meaning when we sacrificially give of our time, talent and treasure.” The longtime “big picture” for Colorado REALTOR® and property manager, Linda

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Todd, for instance, has included giving back to the community, whether serving as a lead carpenter for Habitat for Humanity, making deliveries for Meals on Wheels, or pitching in for the sake of baseball. And through her lifelong passion for baseball, she harmoniously blended her personal interests, her work and her community service. For many years, she was so involved Little League the local league named a new field after her. “I cried for 3 days after they told me that!” She and her husband also started a scholarship fund for junior college baseball players and serve as a host family for the rookie league of the Colorado Rockies, putting up newly drafted players in their home. For Florida REALTOR® and property manager, Mario Gonzalez, neither his business nor his primary community outreach would exist without the other. A retired U.S. Navy pilot, Mario formed his brokerage, Navy to Navy Homes, when he saw a need for military personnel to find affordable homes to purchase. “We got into it to help, but that led to a full-blown real estate business.” Besides providing opportunities for investment and homeownership, the company donates 35% of every commission to Homes for Heroes, veterans’ groups, or organizations benefiting fire, police, medical organizations, churches and homeless shelters. “We’re small, but we give so much back that we were the top Homes for Heroes company in Florida and

top-five nationwide.” But he does none of this for the attention. His friends may call him the “Humble Hero of Heroes,” but helping is Mario’s passion. “To be such a small business and be the top Homes for Heroes affiliate is mind boggling!” Like Mario, for many, the best service takes place in simple and quiet ways. Illinois REALTOR®, Susie Scheuber, for example, takes a humble approach to giving back. Although she donates a portion of every commission check to the Children’s Miracle Network, she doesn’t discuss this with clients unless they happen to ask. “I do it because I want to and because, to me, giving back is the right thing to do when you’ve been fortunate in business and life,” says Susie. We all know how inertia works; the more energized we get by certain behaviors, the more likely we are to continue those behaviors. For some top agents, community outreach has become such a natural routine of their daily lives that they never find it burdensome. A good way to add community service into your life, therefore, is through the causes that mean the most to you. For starters, consider giving a small donation after closing to the charity of your client’s choosing. Learning the different causes that they care about just might foster a new mission for you.

If you have a unique story to share about how your community outreach has impacted your life and your business or inspired others, click here for consideration in our magazines: www.topagentmagazine.com/nominate-a-real-estate-agent-to-be-featured 14

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Wendy Carson

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WENDY CARSON The people Wendy Carson has helped through the most important transactions of their lives over two decades’ time can’t say enough about her integrity, knowledge and willingness to go the extra mile. They mean it in the most literal sense. “Before entering real estate, I earned a master’s in business communication and worked for corporations that provided relocation services to their transferees,” says Wendy, who back then knew she needed a change from the corporate world but hadn’t found the best fit. But after meeting a mutual friend of the bride at a 1997 wedding who happened to be in real estate, she knew what that next step would be. “I could still take advantage of my education and my skills were a good fit.” She also understood relocation, earning her an early leap into an area of real estate that traditionally takes decades to reach. Based in Eagan, MN, Wendy soon began representing buyers and sellers across the broader Twin Cities area as well as western Wisconsin. “When you do relocation work, you have to be willing to go anywhere the client needs to go, so I have my Wisconsin license as well.” While a majority of her business is near Eagan and the Twin Cities, she has sold properties as far as two-and-a-half hours from her home and office. Receiving a majority of her business from referrals, clients appreciate Wendy’s organized, educational approach and her warmth and availability. “I have hosted free seller and buyer seminars throughout the Twin Cities for about 10 years; it’s important to educate people,” Wendy explains. “People know that I’m not a high-pressure sales person. When they’re preparing to spend the most money they’ve ever spent, I won’t hurry them or pressure them to do anything they’re not ready to do. They feel confident that every decision is ultimately theirs to make.” Wendy is there to prepare them for each step of the process. For listings, Wendy works closely with sellers to prepare their homes for high-quality photography and widespread digital marketing. “Technology is everything,” she says. “I run electronic flier campaigns through email on social media; I use Facebook

to get the word out in addition to my website and my broker’s website.” Through her affiliation with Re/Max, Wendy’s listings also receive exposure on hundreds of real estate and valuation websites. “And while technology is important, I don’t ignore the power of things like postcards, which get great response, especially for my open houses.” An informed, smooth transaction is what Wendy aims for with each client engagement. “I enjoy that every day is a different story; I get to meet so many interesting people who have a wide variety of needs.” Once she connects with them, they stay in touch, and many of them attend the special events she holds once or twice a year. “I’ve hosted outings for St. Paul Saints games; the Minnesota Vikings stadium and museum tours; Minnesota Twins games; wine tasting events; and summer events at local water parks.” Wendy is visible locally, having raised three children in the area, two of whom recently began college. “My husband and I have twins who are at different colleges, so I’ve entered a transition stage!” Her family likes to get involved with an organization that provides meals to kids before school breaks or extended weekends, they volunteer for their kids basketball, golf and speech booster clubs and are active with their church, teaching confirmation classes. They also enjoy travel, which may usher in the next phase of Wendy’s career. “While we live in Minnesota, Florida and its warmth is important to us, especially during a Polar Vortex!” Wendy says with a laugh, adding that she is toying with the idea of getting her Florida license. If or when she does, Wendy should have a couple decades worth of loyal clients from Minnesota and Wisconsin waiting to work with her. Wendy’s story wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the fact that she has appeared in two TV programs. In addition to an episode of HGTVs “Five Day Flip,” she and some buyers she represented were featured in a full episode of TLC’s “My First Home.” Afterwards, Wendy held an event at a local movie theater for 300 clients and their friends. They viewed the episode of “My First Home” followed by a movie screening, complete with popcorn and pop for all. “Afterwards, we held a Q&A, so people could ask me and my buyers about recording the show,” she says. “It was fun and educational for everyone.”

To learn more about Wendy Carson, visit wendycarson.com or go to her Facebook page, email wendy@wendycarson.com or call 651.341.6020 https://www.facebook.com/wendycarsonremax/ 16

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Things You Can Do to Anticipate Your Cleint’s Needs First and foremost, the real estate industry is a customer service business. The key to any successful real estate business is one that can build a reputation by providing an unsurpassed level of care. That usually means a transaction that is seamless and stress-free as possible throughout the whole process. Your client’s experience is what keeps them not only coming back, but gets them to recommend you to their friend and family.

tise. By showing you can not only anticipate their needs, but have insight into any potential problems that might arise, they will have complete confidence in you. Achieving that level of trust is the key to a transaction that is as stress-free as possible.

The key to creating a great experience is anticipating your client’s needs. They are relying on your professionalism and exper-

From the moment, you meet a po-tential client, your goal should be to find out not only what they are looking for as far as their real estate

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GET TO KNOW YOUR CLIENTS ON A PERSONAL LEVEL

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goals, but who they are as a person. Listening and asking the right questions from the start is one of the most important aspects of the job. You almost have to become an amateur psychologist, really honing in on the emotional reasons behind their real estate transaction. Taking time upfront not only gives you valuable insight into your client, but it is the first impression your clients have that you truly care about them, and that this isn’t just another commission check for you. This goes miles in helping them feel comfortable enough to rely on your guidance. Knowing who your client is on a deep level will help you navigate the transition ups and downs, allowing you to anticipate the best way to handle it.

SPOT POTENTIAL PROBLEMS AND PROVIDE SOLUTIONS Having insight into your client’s per-sonality type will come in handy when you anticipate an upcoming snag in the transaction. Most people find the process to be stressful even under the best of circumstances. One of the best rules of thumb is to always provide the solutions to anticipated problems when you present them to the client. This should be the case even when the problem isn’t on you. Anything that can ruin a client’s overall experience can reflect poorly on you, whether you deserve it or not. This is a business philosophy called “zero risk”. You don’t want to take any chances with having an unsatisfied customer. This is where your experience in the business pays off. You’ve probably seen most things and can easily anticipate problems that are 18

likely to delay the process. Remember you are in charge. You are the expert. And, remember, part of avoiding potential problems is making sure your client knows what to expect upfront, always communicate openly and honestly. Telling people what they want to hear and knowing you can’t deliver it, is destined to fail, and will always reflect poorly on you.

FIND WAYS TO EXCEED EXPECTATIONS Recognizing ways to exceed a cus-tomer’s needs is just as important as looking out for potential problems, when it comes to creating an exceptional experience. Have a vetted list of trusted service providers. Be hands on. There are Realtors® who are out there helping clients pack, mowing lawns, and picking kids up from school. They are there for a client in ways that are unexpected. Having one thing taken off your plate during a stressful period in your life can feel like a lifesaver and is not soon forgotten. It is those “little” things that will turn a client into a lifelong advocate for your business.

TAKE IN FEEDBACK A good service provider is always trying to do better. Many Realtors® have clients fill out surveys after the transaction is over. This serves two purposes. It helps you become better at your job and it shows your clients that you care about them and their opinions. You can also use social media to get feedback via analytics and interactions. All of this information can then be used to create better customer experiences in the future. After all, this is a customer service industry. Treat it like one and you’re bound to succeed. Top Agent Magazine


KELLI CHABOT Top Agent Magazine

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KELLI CHABOT Kelli Chabot thinks listening is a lost art these days. “When I’m with a client I am 100% with them. I’m not on my phone, I’m not distracted, and I am completely focused on them and their needs.” That skill - truly listening to her clients and hearing what they have to say - has been the foundation of Kelli’s successful career as a REALTOR®. Working in the Greater Kansas City area for more than a decade, Kelli had an extraordinary 2018, selling a little over 15 million and boasting an average listing time of 10 days versus the Kansas City average of 49 days. She is most proud that 89% of her business comes from repeat and referral clients. She takes great care of her clients, and they in turn feel compelled to refer friends and family to Kelli & her team. But for Kelli it isn’t about the numbers. “I love getting to know the families I work with,” she says. “I like being there when they find THE home, and to watch the excitement as it becomes their own. I also love working with sellers, helping them present the best face of their property, and getting them top dollar.” Joining clients together with the best home or the best deal requires some of Kelli’s previously learned skills. “I’m a former teacher and that helps quite a bit,” Kelli explains. “Doing this job correctly means educating the client about the process and what’s the best plan of action in each situation. I listen to their needs and then help them make their decisions.”

Building a home, buying and selling, or investing in a home can be stressful, but Kelli’s calm demeanor keeps her clients reassured. “When things go awry, which sometimes they do, I am the calm during the storm,” she says. “My clients know that I’m going to stay level-headed and to solve the problems.” Part of that problem solving comes from the great support system she has built up around herself. “I don’t have a big team so I can be very involved personally,” she says. “I have an awesome admin that works with me, but I also have this little family of people I love to work with. I have an amazing photographer, and my stager has worked for Pottery Barn and West Elm. I have a couple of inspectors and lenders that treat my clients like gold. I have an amazing handyman who is inexpensive and so responsive. I’m very picky about who I work with, and especially to whom I refer. My clients know they can always call me for any type of professional referral and I’ll send them the best in the business!” When she’s not working, Kelli likes to spend fun quality time with her family. “We’ve taken several family cruises,” she says. “And we just love going to Disney World. These days I don’t get to take too many vacations, but I love my job so much that it never feels like work anyway.” Kelli is looking towards an even better 2019. “Last year we sold a little over $15 million,” she says. “This year my goal is to sell over $25 million. To do that I’m going to need to expand my team a little, so I’ll be hiring even more amazing people!”

To find out more about Kelli Chabot, visit kellisoldit.com, call 816-718-6863 or email her at kellisoldit@kw.com www.

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Easy Blog Topics for Your Real Estate Blog Today, blogging looks a lot different than it did back in 2007, when the platform was just beginning to take off. Successful bloggers don’t choose blog topics on a whim. They think strategically and develop pillar content that their target audience will come back to again and again. Real estate bloggers should be less concerned with whether the same post already exists (it does) Top Agent Magazine

than with how they can be more informative and helpful than their competition. Your personality is likely the thing that your clients connect with, and your blog is another place where you can let it shine. Pillar content refers to those evergreen posts that never get old because they are always timely. Think about those questions that you’ve had to

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answer a hundred, if not thousands of times— that’s your pillar content. Wouldn’t it be nice if you could direct your clients to a blog post or, better yet, they discovered the answer on your website rather than you having to constantly repeat yourself?

Or maybe you helped a client sell their house for much more than they were expecting by conducting a series of small and inexpensive renovations. Tell your readers how you did it.

Evergreen Content

Your clients are likely new to the area. Inform them about upcoming community events or mom-and-pop shops they may have never heard of. Are there hiking trails or parks nearby? What’s the best place to grab a cup of coffee before work or a beer after? You can spotlight these places regularly as a monthly series.

This should really make up the bulk of your content. The possibilities are endless, and you could easily come up with an entire year’s worth of content with only a few hours of brainstorming. Here are some examples: You could provide your readers with a list of questions they should ask when interviewing a realtor, the steps to becoming a real estate investor, real estate facts all first-time homeowners should know, steps new parents should take to prepare their home for a baby, recommended vendors for home maintenance, or common real estate terms defined. You could explain to your readers what they need to know about home staging, which home renovations add the most value to their home, how to research schools or crime rates in specific neighborhoods, what a home association is, or how to start flipping houses and buying foreclosures.

Case Studies Sometimes realtors work with a client for years before they are ready to buy a home. Personal finance blogs are a thing for a reason. People want to see exactly how someone else achieved a shared goal. If you have a close relationship with a client who you helped become a homeowner, consider interviewing this client and writing up a case study that shows exactly how the two of you worked together to achieve this goal. 22

Stay Local

There are plenty of real estate news outlets that will be posting about the state of the market—but they won’t be talking about your specific community, and that’s where your blog comes in. Of course, if you only blog about community functions or properties on the market, then as soon as that event is over or that listing is sold, your content ceases being useful. The best real estate blogs balance their content by posting a little about all the above. Maintaining a high-quality blog means your prospective clients don’t need to visit several websites to have their questions answered because you’ve done the work for them. It’s a tool that helps you make a great first impression. If you still need help coming up with blog topics for your real estate blog, consider sending a survey out to your clients. You can send it via email and post it on social media. Ask your clients what real estate problems they need help solving and write your content with their responses in mind.

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Christopher Cheeseman & Jonathan Finnerty

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CHRISTOPHER CHEESEMAN & JONATHAN FINNERTY “We conduct our business honestly, ethically and passionately, and we work hard to get our clients to the next chapter of their lives,” says Top Agent Christopher Cheeseman, who along with his husband, Jonathan Finnerty, head up The CJ Team at Anchor Real Estate of Long Island, located in Patchogue Village. The couple’s entrée into the real estate world was born out of Christopher’s lack of fulfillment with his former career as Vice President of a manufacturing and event design firm. “Jonathan and I had discussed the idea of working in real estate before, so I suggested we both take a chance and give it a shot.” In 2015, armed with their newlyacquired licenses, the pair hit the ground running and found almost instant success. The CJ team sells primarily in Suffolk County, the eastern half of Long Island, though they will travel anywhere on Long Island their clients request their services. Currently overseeing an equally-dedicated team that includes agents Rachel Henning, Samantha Bertuccio, Thomas De Santis, as well as newest member Timothy Edwards, Jonathan and Christopher have forged a brand that is synonymous with excellence in customer service. This client-centric focus has translated into a business that is almost entirely based on referrals from their satisfied buyers and sellers, an impressive feat in their highly-competitive market. “I think it’s because we treat our clients well, we’re honest, and we forge a connection with them,” says Jonathan, when asked to account for the loyalty their clients demonstrate. “We try to keep the entire experience as stress-free as possible for them.” There are many other factors that come into play, chief among them the pair’s affable and upbeat personalities that instantly put their clients at ease. “Not only are Jonathan and I business partners and husbands, but we’re also best friends. We’ve been told that we’re very funny together, and I think our clients enjoy that,” Christopher proudly shares.

Another primary element in The CJ Team’s success story is their thorough and intelligent marketing strategies. Professional photography is utilized exclusively, and a 3D Matterport tour is provided for every luxury property. Professional designers are employed to create all of their sleek marketing materials. A robust internet presence and deft utilization of social media platforms ensure that each of their listings is seen by as many potential buyers as possible, and quick sales for top dollar are more the rule than the exception. When asked what they like most about what they do for a living, Christopher grows thoughtful for a moment before replying. “We like the fact that we are serving a purpose,” he says finally. “We feel like we’re giving back to our community by helping people find a home in a neighborhood they love.” The CJ Team gives back to their community in a wide variety of other ways as well, including their support of a wide array of local charitable organizations, and includes their hosting of annual food, coat and toy drives. Christopher, Jonathan and Rachel also participate in Cycle For The Cause, for which they rode bicycles from Boston to New York to raise money for people living with AIDS. This year CJ Team Member Thomas De Santis will be doing the ride with them as well. When Christopher and Jonathan aren’t working – which, they admit, is rare – they enjoy nothing more than traveling and spending time at their Fire Island Beach house with their two dogs. Christopher and Jonathan’s plans for the future are fairly simple, but in keeping with their philanthropic natures. “In addition to growing our business with our Broker, Gina Ferraro, at Anchor Real Estate of Long Island, we want The CJ Team to be known as the real estate team that gives back to the community. That’s our goal and our mission.” And all the while, of course, continuing to offer the top-notch, caring customer service that has become their stock-in-trade.

For more information about Christopher Cheeseman & Jonathan Finnerty, please call 631-949-9200 or email TheCJTeamHomes@Gmail.com 24

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How To Send

SMARTER EMAILS

Email is a great tool for agents to use when trying to stay in touch with their past clients, as well as for reaching out to prospective clients. However, used incorrectly it can make your attempts to reach out seem like spam. The secret to using email effectively is making sure that everything you send out does one thing: ensure that you remain relevant to your contacts. To do this you have to get personal. Personalization will go far to ensure that your contacts are actually clicking on your emails. This means that if you do reply on an automated drip email campaign to build business, you need to customize your content so that it delivers something meaningful to each individual recipient. Here are some steps that will help you do exactly that:

1. SEND A WELCOME EMAIL TO

NEW CLIENTS AND PROSPECTS Rather than simply add new contacts to your automated email drip campaign, make sure to send each new contact receives a warm welcome as well. Sending a welcome email along with adding new contacts to your drip campaign is proven to be 86 percent more effective at catching your contact’s attention. Let them know they are welcome and that you appreciate their interest. Top Agent Magazine

2. NURTURE YOUR RELATIONSHIP

THROUGH YOUR EMAIL To let your potential client know that you are thinking about them by sending them useful content that relates to the process of buying or selling a house. Some great topics include credit score information, ways to save money, regular market updates, what buying in your market is like, information about the neighborhood, tips on how they can prepare their home for sale, and other relevant information. A great way to

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add to these emails’ punch is to time them so that they coincide with what that individual is going through and dealing with at that time on their path through the buying or selling process.

3. CELEBRATE IMPORTANT DATES

Everyone loves to be noticed and appreciated. Schedule emails to go to each client that celebrate their purchase anniversary or birthday. Make sure you include a personal note and your own wishes that the year ahead goes well for them. If you’ve been a bit out of touch with your contacts, you might want to send them a friendly hello.

4.

MOBILE-FRIENDLY EMAILS With our phones being akin to mini computers, most people read their emails on their phone these days. So, it is particularly important to make sure that your emails are rendering well on the smaller screens. If you want to make any kind of impact, you have to run a mobile-friendly email campaign in today’s world. You are going to lose a lot of your audience if they can’t read your email on their phones.

5.

TRACK THE PERFORMANCE OF YOUR EMAILS AND ALTER ACCORDINGLY The best way to make sure your emails are being read and making the kind of impact you desire is to consistently monitor the analytics,

and see what your readers are actually clicking on and what elements are most popular with your contacts. Going forward you can alter different elements of your email campaign such as content, images, graphics, and even smaller elements like your subject line to draw in more clicks from your readers, and cater to what grabs their attention. You also want to follow a targeted email strategy. The best way to do this is segment your email list based on the data from your CRM and the demographics of your contacts. Different clients are going to be interested in different content. Long-time clients looking to buy a second home or possibly downsize are going to be interested in completely different content than your first-time buyers. A good way to filter your contacts is by looking at which ones are looking to buy or sell, how far along in the process they are, as well as other important information about them.

6.

DON’T SPAM UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES You probably already know that flooding your clients’ emails is big no-no. However, different people have different ideas about what is too much contact. One great way to approach this problem is to ask your clients whether they would prefer weekly, monthly, or occasional emails from you. This way you can cater to each client’s preference.

The emails you send your clients can often be a double-edged sword when it comes to how well they work to bring in business. Following these simple rules will help your emails be as successful as they can possibly be, and will make your contacts much happier with you. So, don’t just send out emails without doing your homework about how to do it right. Your email campaigns can be a powerful tool if you know how to create and utilize them in the right manner. 26

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KECIA MORTENSON SERVING THE BOISE VALLEY FOR OVER 2 DECADES

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KECIA MORTENSON When Kecia Mortenson was selling manufactured homes in 1994, she saw an opportunity to transition into real estate. “It was getting harder to find the land to put the homes on, and when I turned to agents for help, I didn’t get much enthusiasm,” she explains. “So I decided to get my license to help my clients.” But it didn’t take long for Kecia to expand beyond the manufactured homes market. By 1996, she was working as a full-time Realtor. Today, she has a transaction coordinator on her team, a Realtor partner and a marketing assistant. Since 1998, each year Kecia has either been awarded a member of the Top Producers’ Club or the Circle of Excellence. This past year she was in the top 5% of producers in her Brokerage, Silvercreek Realty Group, the largest Real Estate office in the State of Idaho with over 1300 agents as well as #1 in production in Idaho and in the top 75 Nationwide. As a result, she was invited to be part of a mastermind group with other top agents. Serving all of the Treasure Valley in Idaho, she’s made great strides as a Realtor, and all of her business now comes from repeat clients and referrals. Her continued success is no doubt due to her emphasis on relationships and personalized service. “As much as we try to automate this industry, it is still a relationship business,” she explains. “People really want help navigating the process and they want that personal touch. And I just want to make their lives easier by providing that little extra.” Kecia is always available for her clients, and makes sure they know she is looking out for their best interest. “I work hard to build that relationship so they know they can trust me.” After more than two decades in this industry, Kecia is an expert in her field, so her clients feel comfortable calling on her for advice even after the transaction is over. “They ask me all kinds of questions, and because that trust is there, they know I will answer them honestly, and if I don’t know the answer, I’ll find them a resource,” she says. “I love to share information and knowledge.”

Establishing a foundation of trust with her clients has allowed her to flourish as an agent. When past buyers or sellers think about real estate, she is often the first person that comes to mind. “I like being a resource, educating people, and helping them make a good decision, which usually starts way before any real estate transaction. So I never rush them into anything. When they’re ready to buy or sell, I’ll still be here.” Kecia understands how important it is to purchase a home, and feels it is one of the best and easiest ways to build financial wealth. She is always happy to guide them, before, during and after the transaction, knowing it is likely one of the largest purchases they will ever make. “In addition to sending out calendars and cards, I also remind my clients to file their homeowners tax exemption before the deadline as well as mail them their settlement statements during tax season”. I like to be of ongoing value to my clients, not just during the transaction. After working with Kecia, clients do not hesitate to leave her glowing reviews. One recently said, “I am a former Realtor who had many dealings with Kecia and always found her to be extremely knowledgeable, especially in regard to price and local areas. Kecia is a straight shooter and will help a person make the hard decisions; a very good characteristic in a business woman. I always said that if I ever sold my house Kecia would be my Realtor of choice. Sure enough, when it came time for me to sell, I hired Kecia and even in a very difficult market with a slim margin for error in pricing, Kecia hit it right on the money and got my house closed within a couple months.” As Kecia looks towards the future, she is excited to find new, innovative ways to bring value to her clients and would also like to train and mentor other agents, something she’s done previously. But no matter how her business grows, her love for it will always remain. “Real estate is in my bones. I love helping people. I want them to feel they have a friend in the business and can always call on me for advice. If I can be their ‘Realtor’ hero, it brings me great joy.”

To connect with Kecia Mortenson, please call her at 208-724-4661 or email Kecia@homesid.com 28

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What the First Thing You Do After Work Says About You We all have our routines. From that morning cup of coffee to a jog at the gym, it’s common to establish touchstones for our daily lives. But have you ever considered what these habits tell us about ourselves? Our actions reveal much about our motivations and emotional life, so taking a second look at your first move at the end of the day can be telling. With that in mind, see how you fare when it comes to post-workday habits... Top Agent Magazine

Break a Sweat After a long day of work, is your first instinct to strap on your sneakers and take off on a run? Do you stop off at the local yoga studio for an extended stretch? Maybe you head to the weight room to pump some iron. Whatever your exercise pick, if you’re inclined to sweat it out at the end of a long day, you’re likely a routine-oriented profes-

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sional who internalizes work-related stress. Of course, you’ve chosen a healthy release for all that pent-up tension, and you’ve discovered the power of endorphins. Once work hours are over, not everyone finds the motivation to stay active. This means you’re driven by routine, conscious of your emotional and physical health, and prefer to leave your cares at the gym, rather than bring them into your home oasis. However, it’s important to give your body a rest now and again, as recuperation time is not only beneficial for physical health, but can help prevent burnout for the long haul. Flexibility is a skill, and one just as important to cultivate as rigid commitment. If you find yourself out of sorts if you miss just one day of working out, you might want to pay some attention to your routines and motivations, and rebalance your commitments and fitness routine accordingly.

Round-the-Clock Hustle If you’re the type to bring work home with you, you aren’t alone. While your motivation to work nonstop is admirable, it’s also important to make the mental transition from workplace to home, establishing the time to hustle and the time to relax. Just like those that hit the gym without fail after a long day, sometimes you’ll need to practice saying no. If your work life is indistinguishable from your personal life, it’ll be hard to catch a break and recharge. This means burnout, frayed nerves, and missed details will soon be on the horizon. Of course, round-the-clock hustle is a strength, too. You’re passionate about your work, care deeply about doing things right, and failure is not an option. Just make sure that you establish some foundational boundaries so that you maintain an 30

appropriate, healthy balance between your time at work and your time at home with the loved ones and hobbies you cherish. If making way for downtime isn’t easy, try penciling it in the way you would a work engagement. Dinner with a friend, a date night with a significant other, or a solo movie fest can be readily added to your calendar, and thus built in to your regimented schedule.

Turn to Food If your first instinct after work is to eat, it can say a few different things about your routine. Perhaps you’ve been so on-the-go all the day that you haven’t had time for lunch. In this case, you might need to regiment your schedule with more purpose aimed towards downtime and self-care; food is fuel, after all. If you head home and gorge after an average day, you may be turning to food as a way to relieve stress. In this case, you may need to reassess some of your post-work habits and find a healthier balance and outlet for your tension. Taking a walk, grabbing fresh ingredients for dinner, hitting the gym, or decompressing by catching up with a friend or a good book—all are healthier, more balanced ways of executing the transition from the office to the home. Pay attention to your consumption post-work. Determine how hungry or satiated you really are before making a grab for the nearest sustenance. People decompress in all different ways after getting home from the office, but always remember that routines are telling. Don’t take your daily actions and impulses for granted. Examine the root behind your well-worn practices, and you may detect nuances at play beneath the surface that can you help you recalibrate for the better.

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GENEVIEVE CONCANNON Genevieve Concannon has over a decade of experience in real estate, and while her expertise in working closely with builders and her ability to walk clients through the buying and selling process with confidence have set her apart, what truly makes Genevieve special is her dedication to creating connections.

in green building and sustainability - and her community involvement. Every year she organizes the Hearts + Pints Bazaar, a marketplace that brings together local artists and artisans to sell their wares, and to benefit local charities through silent auctions. “We have food and drinks and music and it’s really fun,” she says. “We have a great time and get to support people who are having issues.”

“I’m a community builder,” she says. “Building a community is about knowing how to make people comfortable and confident and welcomed. It’s not just about me and business, it’s about making where we live better.”

Between Advon and her community involvement, Genevieve doesn’t have a lot of free time, but she does like to make the best of her off hours. “My husband Drew and I have two silly dogs, Rosco and Gus-Gus,” she smiles. “Basically we’re the silly puppy parents that like to take day trips and venture out towards the Shenandoah foothills and take our dogs on hikes. And when we’re not out hiking, I like to dig in the dirt as much as my dogs do, so I love to garden - when the ground isn’t frozen.”

As the Broker/Owner of Advon Real Estate, Genevieve brings that commitment to community to her work with the people of Northern Virginia. Because she is so dedicated to the areas in which she lives, Genevieve has come to know them inside and out. “I’ve seen people try to work in DC and Maryland and sometimes even Delaware and West Virginia as well as Virginia,” she explains. “They try to be everything to everybody, but at Advon we focus on the markets we know and understand. So I work a lot in Arlington and Falls Church City and Falls Church, where my husband and I live. That allows me to have a more intense focus, and it’s a bonus to my clients, who know that they’re working with someone who knows how the community operates.”

Genevieve looks towards a bright future. “We should achieve $90 million in volume this year,” she says “And I know it’s attainable, especially with the development we have coming down the pipeline. But I also think that it gives us yet another avenue to give back; I want to do more and serve our community because I feel like giving back is just as big a part of what I do as helping people buy and sell homes.”

That explains Genevieve’s excellent 85% return and referral rate, and that attitude is what she expects from the 13 agents who work at her boutique brokerage. “I’m really proud of the dynamic group of people that we’ve brought together that do creative and beautiful things in a very sustainable and smart way,” she says. “These are strong, amazing agents that care about collaboration and community just as much as I do.” For Genevieve that collaboration includes sharing her clients’ victories. “I love watching people have that moment where they’ve achieved a goal,” she says. “I love guiding them to that goal, being their resource, answering their questions. Buying or selling a home can be a difficult process, and I like knowing I helped people move through that, and that I’ve positioned them for success.” Helping comes naturally to Genevieve, who weaves it into her work - she has a background

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To find out more about GENEVIEVE CONCANNON visit advonre.com, call 512.767.3002 or email genevieve@advonre.com https://

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LEE ELMORE Even as she approaches two and a half decades in the real estate business, Top Agent Lee Elmore still retains a marked enthusiasm and passion for helping her clients achieve their real estate goals. Working under the banner of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Florida Network Realty in Atlantic Beach, Florida, Lee brings to the table a fierce combination of dedication and industry knowledge that has resulted in her stellar reputation as a trustworthy real estate advocate.

While any agent can sing their own praises, the best assessment of their abilities is often found in the reviews they have received. “Lee is a great agent in the Jacksonville area. She was the selling agent when I bought my first property in the area…She is very attentive, knowledgeable and realistic. I highly recommend her,” reads just one of the glowing testimonials Lee has accrued.

Prior to her career in real estate, Lee was in the retail field for twenty years, where she honed the excellent customer service skills that continue to benefit her buyers and sellers today. “I owned a clothing store,” she recalls, “and when I closed that business I was looking for a new career path where I could still help people, and stay in a service-related industry. My grandfather was an architect who built many of the historic properties in this area, so I always had a great interest in houses.” A friend suggested that real estate might be a good fit, and Lee decided to give it a try. That was a fortunate decision for the many grateful buyers and sellers who have since been lucky enough to work with her.

Lee has fairly simple plans for the future of her business: to continue helping as many people as she can, and to keep on providing the amazing service that has become her stock-in-trade. Additionally, she looks forward to mentoring newer agents entering the industry, and to stay abreast of the ever-changing real estate industry. “There is something new to learn in this business every single day,” she says.

Currently, the lion’s share of Lee’s business is comprised of repeat clients, referrals and word-ofmouth customers, a sure indicator that she is providing top-notch customer service. “I work very hard for my clients, and I definitely think they appreciate that,” says Lee. “I also become friends with many of my buyers and sellers; I tend to have a different kind of relationship with them than many other Realtors do with their clients, I’m definitely more to them than just a real estate agent.” 32

“What I love about this business is that not only do I get to help people with what might be the biggest transaction of their lives,” says Lee, “but I also get to meet some really interesting people from all walks of life. You never know who is going to be on the other end of the phone when you answer it.”

For more information about Lee Elmore, please call 904-699-4503 or email Lee.Elmore@FloridaNetworkRealty.com Copyright Top Top Agent Agent Magazine Magazine


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SOCIAL MEDIA MISTAKES

Real Estate Agents Must Avoid There is perhaps no greater marketing tool for agents these days than having a large presence on social media, but there is more to social media marketing than just opening an account and gaining followers. A lot of agents forget the social part of social media. It’s all about engagement, but it needs to be the right kind of engagement. This can often be the first impression potential clients or industry peers have of you, so make it count. There is no second chance to make a first impression, and that is especially true for real estate agents. Here’s just a few things you want to avoid.

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1 Using it to Vent

Social Media is a great place to complain and commiserate about things, but save that for your personal page. A real estate transaction is already a stressful ordeal, the last thing anyone wants is someone who seems like they’ll bring a negative energy to the process. Even worse? Bad mouthing other Realtors® or listings. You’re selling yourself and your skills, so don’t sell anything that shows you in a bad light. Much like marketing a property, everything you put out should be professional and inviting.

2

Lack of Consistent Branding

Yes, social media is about social engagement, but it’s also about creating brand recognition. While you don’t want it to be purely promotional, you are running a business, so create a consistent branding across all social media platforms. If you can afford a professional graphic designer to help you out with this, that’s great. But at the very least, have the same profile pic, cover image and highly visible contact information, across the board. And don’t forget to share links to your other accounts, some people prefer different social media applications.

3Not Posting Enough

It’s good to create a schedule of how many times you’ll be posting per day and to pick times when you might have the most engagement. Don’t over do it, but three posts a day at the right time, tends to be a good goal. There are numerous tools on Facebook, for example, that

can let you see when interactions are the highest. Stick to your schedule and adjust accordingly. It’s also important to not just post your listings. Be a resource for people who follow your page. Post community events, or other informative articles that are relevant to home ownership. Be a page they want to follow even when they aren’t buying or selling a property. They’ll remember you when the time comes.

4

Not interacting With Your Followers

It’s called social media for a reason. The more you engage with your followers, the more they see you as a real person, and not just a marketing tool. Not only do you get to know your past clients and potential clients, on Facebook, engagement actually will make your posts seen by more people. So it’s a win/win.

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Not Sharing or Linking to Others

It might not seem like a good idea to not promote the blogs, pages or listings of other people, but it’s not only an excellent way to build goodwill, it will also increase your own presence when they reciprocate. So make a point to share posts and links for local businesses and even the blogs of your peers, if it’s a post that offers valuable insight into an expertise you don’t have. That will encourage them to share your posts and even your listings, which will increase your potential buyer pool. This is another incentive to create your own blog. Unique informative content is always of value, and more likely to be shared than promotional links.

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FLOULIS SISTERS, LUXURY REALTORS Buoyed by a strong economy and a lack of a foreign buyer tax, Montreal’s luxury real estate market is soaring. And selling this island city’s most exclusive neighborhoods are Magdalini and Androniki Floulis, whose particular view of luxury real estate helps buyers and vendors realize extraordinary dreams. As a team for nearly 15 years, Floulis Luxury Realtors is synonymous with unmatched knowledge and expertise.

in, we have 10 seconds to impress them; we need to help the homeowner with staging in order to impress buyers right away,” says Androniki. Their professional partners include photographers, videographers and designers who assist every step of the way. “We always know our target market before marketing.” Androniki adds. “By knowing who will fall in love and make an offer on one of our listings, we stage accordingly.”

“I started in real estate in Manhattan in 1999,” says Magdalini explains that the team’s heavy digital Androniki, who worked with prestigious brokerfootprint leads to widespread exposure for each age, Douglas Elliman Real Estate, which awarded listing on hundreds of websites. Given their affiliaher its Triple Excellence Award. Her sister, Magdtions with both Sutton Centre-Ouest and Coldwell Androniki (left) and Magdalini (right) alini, meanwhile, previously worked as an attorney Banker Global Luxury, they network with luxury in commercial real estate law with a prominent downtown law firm agents around the world. Being fluent in English, French and Greek overseeing multi-million-dollar transactions. “I knew I needed to be out has been a real asset in this domain. “We are also getting ready to open in the field working directly with more clients. I saw what my sister was a second office, this time in Clearwater Beach on the Gulf Coast of experiencing in real estate and knew it was time.” Florida in partnership with Coldwell Banker Global Luxury,” she says. “This is something that no local agent has done yet, to our knowledge. Already a leader and trendsetter, in 2001, Magdalini transferred her talBut we have identified a need for snowbirds from Montreal who want to ents to real estate. To Montreal’s luxury residential market she brought own property on the Gulf and spend their winters in Florida.” The sisters her fine-tuned attention to detail, strong negotiation skills and client will also split their time, serving clients in both locations. advocacy. And in 2005, when Androniki returned to Montreal, the sisters formed their powerful partnership. Magdalini and Androniki always maintain their commitment to their clients. “Although we do sales, real estate is about trust,” says MagdaFocusing on central Montreal’s affluent neighborhoods, including Westlini. “Being a sister team sets us apart; people trust how we guide them mount, Outremont, Golden Square Mile, parts of Côte-des-Neiges and and how we focus on the solutions, not problems.” No matter what, she Notre-dame-de-Grâce, Floulis Sisters deliver full-service client care. explains, they make themselves continually available and they relentThis approach includes extensive networking with other agents and lessly stand by their clients’ interests. Also important to both women is brokers in the luxury space. “We work with the entire real estate comtheir love of real estate and living healthy, vegan lifestyles full of exermunity, whether we’re listing or working with buyers,” says Magdalini. cise and adventure. “What little free time I have, I spend with my family, “We’re strong believers in collaborating with agents who may have buymy close friends and my fur babies,” says Magdalini. Androniki adds ers for our listings; it’s a team effort.” that she also loves salsa dancing and that the sisters actively support local animal rescue organizations. Marketing luxury homes in Montreal cannot be taken lightly. Magdalini is certified as a Luxury Marketing Specialist and a member of the For both sisters, real estate is far more than a career. “It is lifestyle. I like prestigious Million Dollar Guild. For the greatest impact locally and the fact that I get to meet and help so many people,” says Magdalni. For internationally, Magdalini and Androniki begin by walking through the Androniki, the same is true. “At the end of the day, we’re helping people. property with the homeowner, guiding them on how to prepare the home These are major purchases or sales and can be emotional; I get joy out to present well in photos, online and at showings. “When a buyer comes of knowing that we can help make people’s life transitions smoother.”

To learn more about Floulis Sisters Realty, visit floulissisters.com or go to their Facebook page, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn, email fs@floulissisters.com or call 514.808.0426 https://

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GAIL GOBEY Top Agent Gail Gobey – Owner/Principal Director of boutique agency Sash & Gable Property in Wynnum, Queensland – is a force of nature driven by a true desire to provide her clients with an exceptional customer experience. Possessing a wealth of industry knowledge and a warm, welcoming personality, Gail has more than earned her solid reputation as trustworthy, honest real estate advocate who is committed to helping her clients achieve their real estate goals. Gail began her adventures in the real estate world in 2003, not long after she and her family relocated to Australia from Zimbabwe, where she had a hugely successful career in event management. Upon arrival in New South Wales, she initially continued in event management, then moving into a Marketing and Sales role for a prominent Property Developer. Upon relocating once again to the Brisbane area in 2007, Gail set about finding a new home for her family and encountered a decided lack of enthusiasm from local agents. “I found that there was very little support,” she says. “Agents just weren’t responding to my calls.” Certain she could do better, and with the encouragement of her husband Ian, she obtained her license and began working in a large Franchise business, and soon realized that her ideal was offering a team environment with Agent support. In 2016 she launched Sash & Gable, which was an almost immediate success due to her fierce commitment to providing top-notch customer service. Sash & Gable can already boast that eighty percent of their business is based upon referrals, an impressive statistic that drives home the amount of loyalty Gail instills in her clients. Gail is quick to credit her team – which includes husband Ian, who is the company’s Director and Business Manager - for much of this success. “It’s very important to have infrastructure and support,” she explains. “Our team has administrative support, social media support, sales and property management support. I honestly love my team.” Though competing with multiple industry giants in the area, Gail has quickly become a top producer and one of the go-to agents in Wynnum and its surrounds. Sash & Gable’s commitment to their community has also played a large role in its rapid ascent in the local market. “We’re very passionate about supporting our community,” says Gail. “All of our suppliers and the services we refer are local and reliable. Our clients know that

anyone we refer, whether that’s a plumber or a stylist – can be trusted. That is key for us.” The relationships Gail forms with her clients – both past and present are incredibly important to her, and she works hard to nourish and maintain them. “I contact them, I email them, I talk to them on the phone, just to make sure they’re okay.” Sash & Gable also host annual client appreciation events, “just to say thank you, and to let them know that now that they’re clients of ours, they’re also family.” The company also supports a host of local charities and organizations. “We participate as much as we can, because that’s who we are,” says Gail. “I love my job,” says Gail. “Real estate can be a tough gig; it’s definitely not a nine-to-five job, but I get so excited when I get to hand over the key to someone’s new home.” Gail also strives to make an industry that has become increasingly technology and internet focused much more personal. “I love taking buyers away from their Google searching and actually rubbing shoulders with them. I want to bring them back to the reality of it all.” Technology, however, is still expertly utilized in the company’s marketing strategies, and a robust presence on the internet and social media platforms ensure that Gail’s listings are seen by as many potential buyers as possible. Maintaining a healthy work/life balance is incredibly important to Gail, and when she’s not assisting clients, she enjoys nothing more than spending time with loved ones. “Having my family and friends around is very important to me,” she says. Gail’s plans for the future are to continue growing her business and her team. “I love that I’m able to employ people, give them job opportunities, freedom and security,” she says. Her overarching goal, however, is to continue providing the amazing service that has become her calling card. “I want my clients to walk in the door and know that they’re going to be looked after.” When asked what advice she might have for newer agents, Gail pauses for a thoughtful moment. “I think if anything,” she says finally, “just be true to yourself, be sincere, and work hard. But most importantly, take care of yourself and ask for help if you need it. There are some amazing people out there, don’t think that you need to do it all by yourself.”

For more information about Gail Gobey, please call 0439 584 111 or email Gail@sashandgable.com.au 36

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Creative Meditation

for the Real Estate Professional The real estate world can be an industry of intense emotional and psychological pressure. Deadlines, meetings, employee needs, client needs and a hundred other items on which one needs to focus on a daily basis can create an environment that is not only not conducive to mental well-being, but can be outright detrimental. Learning to quiet the mind has been the focus of meditation for millennia. While those not familiar with the concept of meditation may instinctively think of yoga mats, incense, and chanting when the word “meditation” arises, there are in fact, many forms of meditation that can integrate quite Top Agent Magazine

easily into the daily hustle & bustle world of the busy real estate agent. First, think about when you are alone each day. Here are some possible times to practice mediation during the work day: • When driving to the office in the morning • When driving to a showing or to meet a client • Before your open house begins • After the open house • Driving home in the evening 37


Repeating a mantra can be very calming, particularly when you are trying to rid yourself of negative, self-defeating thoughts. These are just five examples of times when you can take advantage of meditation techniques to quiet your mind and, by extension, increase productivity. A calm mind is a more thoughtful, better tuned instrument. Here are some examples of meditations you can try.

1

For when you’re driving, download and listen to any number of audio Guided Meditations available on the internet. YouTube has a generous selection of these, many of which are geared towards success in business.

2 Repeating a mantra can be very calm-

ing, particularly when you are trying to rid yourself of negative, self-defeating thoughts. It doesn’t matter what words you choose, as long as you feel good about your choice. “I am a success” or “I will approach all of my clients with love today” are two examples. Whatever works for you and gets you into the desired mindset.

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3 Something as simple as listening to pleasant music in your car can be considered meditation, provided it brings you to a place of comfort as opposed to one of spiritual discordance.

4 The most important thing, however, is to take time to find gratitude in everything you do. Count your blessings, be grateful the exciting career in real estate you have built for yourself.

Once you’ve mastered some of these techniques at quieting your mind, you can attempt to find some that work even better for you. Walking, plain silence, or even exercise can have meditative qualities and benefits if practiced on a regular basis. When you’re truly feeling calm, your clients can sense this. And with this comes the feeling that you can be relied upon to stay focused and calm in any unforeseen circumstances. And in the world of real estate, that’s a highly prized commodity. Top Agent Magazine


TANNER HAWRYLUK | RE/MAX REAL ESTATE Tanner Hawryluk has a remarkable ability to add calmness and ease to a process that people might expect to be stressful. His approachability, energy level and leading-edge strategies with marketing are additional characteristics that have helped him build a respected real estate career in Spruce Grove, AB, located just 15 minutes west of Edmonton. Factor in that Tanner grew up amidst the real estate success of his father and his uncle, and that his brother and his sister are also REALTORS®; Tanner’s real estate savvy is no surprise. He’s earned numerous awards over the years and most recently the Re/Max Real Estate Hall of Fame Award. “Although we all work out of the same brokerage and city, each of us run our own business,” says Tanner of the five family members in the industry. “We help each other out and work together when needed.” Primarily representing homeowners and buyers in Spruce Grove, with its population of approximately 35,000, Tanner also services the neighbouring community of Stony Plain, Parkland County and west Edmonton. “I also have the privilege of working with prominent builders in our community, helping them with their new-build homes,” he notes. “Since my return to the industry, I’m grateful that clients from the past three years already refer friends and family to me and my clients from before I took a break from real estate continue to refer business to me.” That break, he notes, took place a few years after he earned his license in 2010. In fact, the few years that Tanner stepped away from real estate ended up bolstering not only his later success but that of his clients. “During that time, I traveled a lot while working in online marketing,” he says. “When I returned, I noticed the gap in marketing in the real estate industry. I sourced a company that specialized in that online marketing skillset to market both myself & my clients’ homes.” Every home that Tanner lists receives his Big Brand Online Marketing Plan. The plan emphasizes an attractive online presence. “I hire a professional videographer, a professional photographer and an online marketing team that takes all the data, marketing information and content that I provide and markets it to people specifically looking at real

estate in that area,” he says. “I’m one of the few agents here who hires an agency for marketing that includes strategic follow-up strategies specifically for those people who are looking or who are prospective buyers.” Beyond social media marketing and online syndication, Tanner’s Big Brand Online Marketing Plan includes separating and segregating potential buyers to follow up with so they have multiple exposures to his client’s home. “It’s much like if you were shopping on eBay and suddenly that one product is following you around the internet after you clicked on it once.” They payoff is exciting, especially when a client sees their home online and never imagined Tanner would market it so well. Tanner’s websites consistently attracts 10,000+ visitors every month and his strategic follow-up strategy attracts millions of views over thousands of websites . His adept use of client management software technology helps him keep in front of buyers, sellers and other agents over time. “My clients and I are always texting, calling and emailing. They know they can reach out any time.” By keeping things light and friendly with people, clients turn into friends. “They also know I’m willing to work longer and harder; that I’ll put in the time to answer as many questions as they have. I want them to know they’re being taken care of.” Tanner enjoys meeting a variety people of different backgrounds through real estate and learning from each one of them. “I also like the freedom to have a flexible schedule and to give back to the community.” As part of Re/Max Real Estate, a portion of each of his closed deals goes to the Children’s Miracle Network, directly supporting the Stollery Children’s Hospital in Edmonton. “It’s amazing to see how much it impacts families and clients that I’ve worked with that have used their services.” In his personal life, Tanner is a health and fitness advocate who likes to travel and still has great expectations. “My immediate goals are to get even better at marketing and to provide even better service.” He wants clients to know they are in the driver’s seat and that their best interests are at heart. “We create great client experiences from start to finish and make it as enjoyable as possible.”

To learn more about Tanner Hawryluk, visit tannerhawryluk.com or go to his Facebook page, email tannerhawryluk@remax.net or call 780-962-8580 www.

https://www.facebook.com/tannerhawrylukrealestate/

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DAVE LUPTAK Top Agent Dave Luptak – Lead of Long & Foster Real Estate’s Dave Luptak Team in Annapolis, Maryland – is rapidly approaching a full decade of providing excellent customer service to his many buyers and sellers in Anne Arundel County. With fortythree closed transactions in the last twelve months and over $14.5 million in sales volume in 2018 alone, Dave and his team are justifiably proud of the number of clients they’ve been able to help achieve the American dream of homeownership.

Thoughtful, comprehensive marketing strategies have also played a prominent role in Dave’s success story. Professional photography and video are utilized exclusively, as is expert staging for both the interior and exterior of every listing. “We do everything with a keen eye for marketing and online presentation,” says Dave.

Prior to beginning his real estate career in 2010, Dave worked in the Marketing and Print Sales industry. “That business was experiencing a major contraction,” recalls Dave, “and much of it was going online. I felt it was the right time to make a change. I had dabbled in investment properties as well as helped my uncle with his, which had increased my interest in the real estate, the process, and my understanding. It was a natural transition.”

Dave’s plans for the future include growing his business, continuing to improve his already-exceptional marketing presence, and streamlining current processes to better service their clientele.

Dave’s team is comprised of an equally-dedicated roster of professionals who all share his client-first business ethos. “Kevin Rock is my licensed teammate who works with buyers as well as helping me manage the listing side,” says Dave. “Pam Capezio is my unlicensed assistant who helps things move smoothly behind the scenes with signage, marketing, and as a liaison to contractors and others. Phil and Ashley Dudley joined my team last year and work on their own listings within the team structure.” A significant portion of Dave’s business is based on repeat and referred customers, perhaps the most solid measure of a job well done in their highly-competitive market. “It’s because of our responsiveness and our attention to detail,” explains Dave, when asked what might inspire such exceptional loyalty. “Also, our compassion when helping clients achieve their goals, while understanding the difficulties they are sometimes overcoming. We also work hard to make the entire process as smooth and as effortless as possible.” 40

When he’s not working, which is rare, he admits, Dave enjoys nothing more than spending time with his fouryear-old granddaughter, who he is raising as a single parent. He also loves being outdoors running, paddleboarding and other activities afforded by Annapolis’ water lifestyle options.

“Real estate transactions are a partnership these days,” says Dave. “I tell my clients we want to ensure that their goals are achieved, and that they get the most out of their investments. But it’s a team effort. It’s important to have an open mind to what needs to be done, and the willingness to work together. That’s definitely what gets the best results in the end.”

For more information about Dave Luptak, please call 202-841-9085 or email daveluptak@gmail.com Copyright Top Top Agent Agent Magazine Magazine


A Compilation of Goals from My Coaching Clients By Walter Sanford

Many times, new coaching clients don’t know what to ask for. They don’t get “turned on” until they hear what others are planning to get. Real estate sales is like a buffet – almost anything you can imagine. My clients tweak lead generation, answer objections with value, speed up the process, and don’t get involved in bad deals or with low/no profit individuals. They start seeing their needs met and then seed capital for the future. It is interesting that many of my second and third year coaching clients have very similar goals. I thought you might be interested in them as well. 1 Transfer 20% of every commission check to an online account like Fidelity.com at the same time as the deposit. 2 Obtain disability insurance. 3 Open a 5-2-9 account for my child’s college education. 4 Set up a plan to pay all non-real estate secured debt that has higher interest rates than the rate on my highest mortgage. 5 Buy one more break even or positive cash flow property with no balloons. 6 Start one in-house lead generation activity aimed at a hot demographic to have less reliance on paid consolidator lead generators. 7 Create a manual for all office activities so we do not forget profitable activities and find it easier to train an assistant. Top Agent Magazine

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8 Break database solicitation down to a call session every working day. 9 Buy a good quality, used vehicle with low mileage. 10 Get up a half-hour earlier and read the Bible. 11 Eat all frogs (distasteful activities) in the first hour of office time. 12 Establish vacation and time off goals. 13 Plan capital improvements to rental properties. 14 Buy guns, ammo, dehydrated food, water, generator or other disaster preparedness items. 15 Create better habits including gym time, walking, running, cardio, weightlifting, less sugar, better food. 16 Determine net worth for comparison with future years. 17 Set friend goals – either increase the number or have deeper relationships. 18 Make a will or better yet, a trust. 19 Refinance into fixed rates. 20 Pay all estimated taxes and keep income taxes current. 21 Institute various plans to increase the “at bats” with sellers. 22 Reduce money on buyer generation and move it to seller generation. 23 Fund retirement accounts. 24 De-clutter using eBay and garage sales. 25 Plan fun activities to look forward to with family. These top twenty-five represent most of the ideas contained within my clients’ goals for 2016. I hope this will give you some ideas in finding your passion. Copyright©, Walter Sanford. All rights reserved.

To obtain Walter’s training for your business in a seminar or personal coaching, call us at 800.792.5837 to create a plan that works for you. Walter Sanford has been designing and implementing real estate systems for 30 years. One of the most successful REALTORS® and now wealthy from his systems, Sanford teaches his systems and strategies through his products, seminars, and personal coaching producing the best results in the industry. Do what works, do what is proven. Hire Walter Sanford. Call our office at 800.792.5837, email walter@waltersanford.com, or chat with us online at www.waltersanford.com. 42

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MARIA RICHARDS Maria Richards got her first taste of the real estate industry while in the process of buying her home. At the time, the agent she was working alongside suggested Maria would be a natural fit for the business. Intrigued by the challenge, she decided to earn her license and try her hand at what would quickly become a lifelong passion. Since 2004, she has managed to build a steadfast reputation for adaptability, evolving market knowledge, and an authentic commitment to her clients’ best interests. Now, she is the co-owner of Real Living Prime Properties alongside her husband, Robert. There, she heads a tightknit and capable team that builds community and delivers results. Based in Indian Wells and serving clients across the greater Valley region, Maria’s career has been defined by her market savvy. During the downturn, she built relationships with banks and expanded her skillset in working with REO properties, earning coveted contracts she maintains to this day. As conditions improved, she expanded her team and client base. She now drives almost a third of her business through repeat and referral clientele—a testament to her ultimate staying power. To account for her mounting success thus far, Maria cites an industry education, teamwork, and community as some of the defining characteristics of her working style. “I really focus on staying at the cutting edge of the market,” she says. “From housing trends to marketing techniques, I make it a point to expand my knowledge and education. As a team, we’re always taking the pulse of the market and do our best to incorporate the best tech tools and stay up to date for our clients’ benefit.” Likewise, Maria stays connected to clients long after the closing table has been reached. Through regular newsletters that add-value—from highlighting community events to providing home maintenance tips—she stays front and center in the minds of her loyal clientele. Because their desert region is a popular market for second homes and retirees, Maria and her team focus on bou-

tique-style service from start to finish. Her team boasts multilingual qualifications and have a reputation for working well alongside fellow industry professionals in the area. “I love interacting with my clients, but also with my peers,” Maria says. “We have fabulous networking out here in the Valley. It’s a very friendly community and we’re here to help each other and our clients get everything they want out of a real estate transaction.” When it comes to marketing listings, Maria leaves no detail unaccounted for. High-quality photography ensures that homes stand out, while premium visibility across the leading online listing platforms guarantees wide-ranging exposure. Informative flyers, QR codes, and property-specific phone numbers and websites make an impact on the ground, and Maria is only a quick call away. “We make sure it’s a swift and smooth response time,” she says. “Our goal as a brokerage is to offer that attentive, boutique-style service.” Beyond the office, Maria is engaged in her community through both professional and charitable means. She is a member of the Women’s Council of Realtors, which sponsors causes throughout the area, from Habitat for Humanity to bike-riding safety seminars. She is also a member of the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP) and a board member of her local chapter. In her free hours, she most enjoys time spent with her family and loved ones, traveling, enjoying the Valley’s restaurant scene, and catching an open-air concerts around town. As for the future, Maria intends to keep momentum going strong. “Technology is always evolving, and keeping up is key,” she says. “We want to continue to expand and bring different lifestyle opportunities to our clients.” Finally, with more than decade over insight behind her, Maria Richards looks back on her career in real estate and some of the lessons she has learned along the way. “My husband I both love our careers so much that I don’t see us slowing down or retiring any time soon,” she says. “Real estate keeps you on your toes and keeps you sharp. We love where we are and we love what we do, so we will continue to bring that forth and flourish.”

To learn more about Maria Richards email Maria@Maria-Richards.com, visit Maria-Richards.com, or call (760) 902 – 1761 www.

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BOB & RICHELLE WARD Husband and wife Top Agents Bob and Richelle Ward – of Coldwell Banker in Newtown, Connecticut – have achieved top producer status through a combination of their impressive work ethics, vast industry knowledge and a true commitment to providing the very best customer service available in the Constitution State. Bob and Richelle’s expertise, in concert with their friendly demeanor, has resulted in their impressive reputation as Realtors who consistently put their client’s best interests front and center during every transaction. Bob and Richelle met in the late 1980’s, when they were both working for a Fortune 500 contracting company in New York City. At the time, Bob was the youngest Corporate Officer in the history of the parent company and was Vice President of Sales and Marketing. Richelle oversaw all administrative services for the most profitable division. That professional relationship eventually grew into a successful marriage. In 2000, the two decided to move to Connecticut and transition from the construction world to the real estate industry. “We moved to Connecticut because we wanted a better quality of life,” says Bob, “and we decided to get into real estate because, even before we were agents as real estate has always been a passion for us.” Part of the appeal, as well, was the ability to set their own work schedule. “We thought it would be a great job where we could pick our own hours, and we’ve been working seven days a week now for nineteen years,” Richelle says with a laugh. Working together like a well-oiled machine (unlike the increasingly popular “team concept”, the pair choose to both work directly with all of their clients), Bob and Richelle can boast that their business is based significantly upon repeat customers and referrals from their past clients, friends and family. “Our business is built on excellent customer service,” says Bob, “and everyone who works with us – without exception – says we go above and beyond the call of duty. Even other agents tell us that they would never do some of the things we do for our customers, this

is what sets us apart from the other agents.” The couple’s thorough and detail-oriented approach has also endeared them to many a client. “We go out of the way to do our homework for a client,” explains Bob. “When we first meet with them, we already know a lot about their property from researching the various public records. We like to make sure those records are correct, and if there are any potential problems, head them off at the pass.” “We are excellent problem solvers,” adds Richelle, “and there’s not too much that comes our way that, between the two of us, we can’t figure out.” Bob and Richelle, who currently hold a perfect five-star overall rating on Zillow.com, comprised of dozens of glowing testimonials, have been recognized repeatedly for excellence in their chosen profession, garnering over 100 awards during their nearly two decades of operation. Named Five-Star Realtors by Connecticut Magazine every year since its first issue, they are also the recipients of Coldwell Banker’s prestigious Diamond Society and President’s Circle Awards. Most notable perhaps – particularly in an industry that can be fairly cutthroat - is their genuinely-deserved receipt of their office’s award for “Always being generous & kind in heart and spirit.” “For me,” says Richelle, when asked what she enjoys most about her career in real estate, “it’s the satisfaction of finding someone the right home, and seeing how happy they are. Buying or selling a home can be an anxiety-inducing endeavor for them, so Bob and I try to make it as easy possible for them.” Adds Bob, “Every step of the way, we try to clearly explain what’s going on so they feel very comfortable with the process.” The future looks incredibly bright for these two passionate real estate advocates. While they are both remarkably earnest about their responsibility to their buyers and sellers, they try to inject some levity into every transaction. Says Bob: “Real estate is a very serious business, but we try to have a fun time with our clients.”

For more information about Bob and Richelle Ward, please call 203-470-9818 or email wardteam@cbmoves.com 44

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Untangling the Bidding War: A Buyer’s & Seller’s Perspectives In a competitive marketplace, bidding wars become the norm. While this may put sellers in an excellent position to recoup on their investment, it can push buyers beyond their budgets and test their temperaments in the process. As an agent, how do you navigate both sides of the coin? After all, you want to net the best results for your client—regardless of which side of the closing table they’re on. To fortify your approach to a heated bidding war, here are a few ideas and insights to better clue you in on the perspectives of buyers and sellers alike. Top Agent Magazine

Buyer’s Perspective: Emotions Running High? Channel it. When the market is booming, buyers feel the pressure—especially when affordable inventory is limited. This can create stress, feelings of hopelessness, and impulsivity. As an agent, how do you channel this emotional energy into something positive? Consider asking buyers to put those anxieties and high hopes onto paper. Have buyers outline

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who they are, why they’re inspired to buy a home at this juncture in their lives, and how they see their lives unfolding once they become a homeowner (or repeat homeowner). Think of it as a letter of intent. Buyers benefit from taking abstract fears and dreams and articulating them on paper. Likewise, this document can serve as a valuable tool during a bidding war. Letters like these can help sellers with multiple offers make a personal, emotional connection with a particular buyer.

Sellers Perspective: Manage expectations. When multiple offers are rolling in on a property, it’s easy for sellers to get carried away. Numbers are flying, expectations are heightened, and sellers may become hypnotized by higher and higher offers and ideal outcomes. While it’s good to celebrate prime market positioning, it’s also important to maintain an even keel so that your seller’s mind is clear and they’re thinking rationally through their options. Sometimes the highest offer isn’t necessarily the sure thing. Manage your clients’ expectations by leading by example, offering a balanced perspective, and talking them through all potential outcomes so that they don’t only hone in on the best-case scenario. During a bidding war, tensions are running high for seller’s too, who will soon begin their next chapter in another home. Keep a cool head and remind your client to see the big picture, recognize that it’s possible for some offers to fall through, and to sit tight until the closing table has been successfully reached.

Buyer’s Perspective: How do you authentically and convincingly convey your interest? When ten or so offers are in the mix, it can be hard to differentiate your buyer from the next. While numbers will obviously do a lot of the talking, you’d be surprised how much of a difference a 46

personal touch can make. Some popular approaches to standing out include personal letters—as mentioned above—tailored to the property. Was the property in question a family home for years? You might have clients detail their dreams of raising a family inside those walls, rather than tear the property down and rebuild something to boost the lot’s value. Including a family photo is also a good tact for personalizing letters in a bidding war. Likewise, little gifts included with your offer can speak volumes about your personality and due diligence as an agent. It may seem a little cheesy, but when sellers are looking at ten near-identical offers, those personal touches can really paint a compelling, personalized picture.

Seller’s Perspective: How powerful is cash? Data shows that cash offers—typical of investor clientele—double the chances of having an offer accepted. This goes hand in hand with waiving a financing contingency, which also helped boost the probability of an accepted offer, according to research. Cash is king, however, since offers that aren’t completely reliant on comprehensive financing seem to minimize risk for sellers, who are already eager to see a deal go through. Cash deals also tend to go through quickly, freeing sellers up to pursue their next property and move on to new horizons. While not every buyer has the ability to operate in cash, it’s a worthwhile consideration for those in ultra-competitive markets and with liquid capital. While the bidding process can be stressful for agents and clients alike, it’s important to remember that it’s a time of opportunity, too. If you want to make the most of it as a seller, data shows that a personal touch can endear buyers to their seller counterparts. For sellers navigating a competitive process, it’s important to keep a balanced perspective. For agents, here’s the bottom line: get creative, be resourceful, and use all the tools in your arsenal to achieve the best result for the clients you serve.

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BETH TRAVERSO Beth Traverso’s real estate career is in its second phase, and this time around it’s bigger than ever. “I started 20 years ago and had a decent enough business,” she recalls. “But around 2007 I had my first child and the real estate market collapsed and it seemed like a good time to take a hiatus. Then in 2013 I relaunched my career, starting it over from scratch. This time I doubled down on my commitment, worked incredibly hard and was able to build the flourishing business I have today.”

that keeps people coming back, and referring their friends and colleagues to us.” Helping people extends beyond business hours for Beth. She’s an active sponsor of Encompass, a local group that provides pediatric therapies to families in need. And when she’s not serving her community, Beth loves to hit the road. “I love going on road trips with my family,” she says. “I have three kids and just jump in the car and go for day trips.”

That business truly is flourishing; Beth is among the top 1% of real estate brokers in the Greater Seattle Area. “I mainly focus on the east side of King County,” Beth says. “We have a lot of people that work for Microsoft, Amazon, etc. in our area. So we’re not in the city, but we focus on the areas where people want to go to escape the city… while still being able to commute there.”

As she continues to succeed in the second phase of her real estate career, Beth looks to the future and the ways that she doesn’t want to grow. “I want to nurture the team I have, and not grow it any more,” she says. “I love the size that it is, and it allows us to maintain that personal touch. I want to always be accessible and I want to make sure my agents are always accessible to our clients.”

As she has grown her business in this second phase, Beth has built a team to support her, The Beth Traverso Group. “We have two agents and support admin staff,” she says. “It’s a relatively small team considering the volume we do. We did about 40 listings in the past year, and 50 more on the buyer side. And our average price point is about $830,000.”

One of the ways that Beth wants to nurture her team is to hone her coaching skills and use her experience to support others. “Starting over again, building my business from zero, taught me some nuggets that I want to share with others,” she says. “My focus this year is going to be on nurturing my agents and helping them grow their business. I want to refine what we do, make it more efficient, because that will give me the space to grow my people while still being available to help my clients. Because that’s what I love - helping people solve their real estate problems. It’s always challenging in new ways, but it’s so rewarding to be able to help people through something as big as buying or selling a home.”

For Beth that volume isn’t about numbers, it’s about people. “We always focus on the client first and foremost,” she tells Top Agent. “We approach our business from a place of contribution, friendliness and accessibility. We are never pushy or sales-oriented. We just want to truly help people, and that comes across in the way we work with our clients. In turn

To find out more about Beth Traverso, visit her website at BethTraversoGroup.com, call her at 206.931.4493 or email her at beth@bethtraversogroup.com www.

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How To Overcome Your Workplace Fears Fear is something that can help protect us from danger, but it is also something that can be a hindrance to us in our lives, especially when it keeps us from potentially thriving and growing as a person. This is especially true in the workplace. Here’ a look at some proven ways to overcome common workplace fears.

1

ASSESS THE FEELINGS BEHIND THE FEAR

Really owning the emotions that are putting you in a place of fear, is the first step. By just naming it and then talking it out in your head, what exactly you’re feeling and why, it can help deflate the fear. Think of it as releasing some of the fear into the ether. Yes, you’ll still be nervous about your presentation, but a lot of what was holding you back is gone. You’ll feel lighter, and hopefully have just enough butterflies to make your soar.

2

TALK ABOUT YOUR FEARS WITH A TRUSTED CO-WORKER

Nothing can make you feel more isolated than going down the path of “This is something that only happens to me.” Trust me, it doesn’t, and you might be surprised to find out that some people have had it even worse. Talking to someone you trust and admire, hearing their own fear horror stories and how they overcame them, will help normalize what you’re feeling. Releasing yourself from the idea that it’s something about you, will be an enormous relief.

3

THINK OF THE WORST CASE SCENARIO

Although it might seem counter-productive, truly assessing what the worse outcome of the situation you’re afraid of serves two purposes. It might lead you to realize the worst case scenario isn’t that bad 48

after all. Of course it could also lead you to a really uncomfortable thought, you could lose your job. As bad as that is, it also gives you an opportunity to start focusing on what really matters, and how you might grow from the experience and possibly end up better off. Countless people in their dream jobs now, were once fired and thought it was the end of the world. Hopefully, that won’t happen to you, but learning to have confidence in your abilities to always find a way, will be a great tool in overcoming fears.

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COMPARTMENTALIZE

If you’re a super-organized type, you might try actually setting aside time in your day to focus on your fears. It might seem odd, but it will let you NOT focus on your fears during the other hours of your day. Think of it as a task, you aren’t just sitting there worrying, you’re taking in your fears and figuring out ways to overcome them.

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START THINKING OF YOUR FEARS AS OPPORTUNITY FOR GROWTH

Start thinking of fears as challenges. As scary as it might seem to face them, for the most part they are things that can be fixed. A lot of fear is based on inexperience which leads to a lack of confidence. A common fear is workplace evaluations. Instead of looking at it as hearing everything that is wrong about you, think of it as an opportunity to see where you can improve. Going into it with a positive attitude rather than a defensive posture, will make the whole thing better for both parties. Overcoming fears is oftentimes about a simple attitude adjustment. Like anything it takes practice, but the results of that practice will lead to a life that you’re able to thrive in both personally and professionally.

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MARK VITTARDI Mark Vittardi holds strong to one central concept as a REALTOR®, and as leader of The Vittardi Real Estate Group: be genuine. “Folks often underestimate the role of a real estate agent.” Mark explains.”As professionals, it’s an honor to assist those who put their faith into us, to provide proper guidance from initial contact, through contract to close. My clients are putting their biggest investment into my hands to execute and bring back the best return. My mantra has always been: be honest and genuine to earn the trust and respect of clients. No one wants to be sold anything, they prefer to be educated in order to make a sound decision,” he continues. “Rather than inflate a situation, it has served me best to be direct and precise. I have been able to achieve my quarterly and annual goals by conducting my business with this approach.” Mark graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with an eye towards public sector leadership, especially in government. He also had a strong entrepreneurial spirit which led him into the industry which Mark explains, “treats me so well.” Mark served eleven years as a personal bailiff in the judicial system while also maintaining his real estate license for the final six of those years. “As a bailiff I interacted with a variety of people who were experiencing complex situations. That experience helps me as a REALTOR® to be creative and quick when negotiating, problem solving, or simply de-escalating a situation.” In June of 2018 Mark dedicated himself full time to the industry, stepping away from the public sector. Mark and his team of seven serve the Northeast Ohio area. His dedication to being genuine means he has a return and referral rate of an astonishing 92 percent, while having a tremendous sale price to list price ratio of 99%; he maintains said rates by being present in the lives of his clients, staying in touch via mailers, phone calls and by not ending the relationship when the deal is closed.

“You need that personal touch when you’re staying in contact,” he says. “This isn’t a mindless drip campaign - It’s important to me that my clients know that I care, and that I appreciate the opportunity that they have given me to represent them. For me that relationship goes beyond closing, and I’m always there to support my clients.” Mark has sold $25 million of real estate over the last two years as an individual agent, to which he credits his referral sphere, work ethic, and business strategy. The joy his clients experience after a successful transaction is the best part of the job. “I like working hard for them,” he beams. “I can’t put into words the fulfillment I get when I see how excited they are getting the keys, or hearing their joy on the phone when I tell them we received an offer. That’s the energy I live on in this industry.” Mark’s greatest motivation is his wife Sarah and daughters Madelynn and Giada. “One of the reasons I focused on real estate was to dedicate more time to my girls,” he says. “The dual career was limiting my time with my family, and now I get to be more present with Maddie, Gia, and Sarah.” Having committed himself full time to real estate, Mark’s looking towards a bright future. “I want to continue to grow the team,” he says. “I have extremely talented agents that have put their faith in my leadership, while we collectively build our momentum into ’19.” Mark was recently elected by his colleagues to the Akron Cleveland Association of REALTORS® Board of Directors, and was appointed by ACAR leadership to hold the distinguished honor of Tomorrow’s Leader Today. “Everything has seemed to come full circle for me. I always thought my desire to lead and assist would bring me to government. Now I’m able to combine my leadership with my profession. I’m passionate about this industry,” Mark says. ”I appreciate the fact that every day I get to help people achieve their real estate goals.”

To find out more about Mark Vittardi, visit his website at depiero.com/users/mark-vittardi www.

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