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NATIONWIDE & INTERNATIONAL EDITION

TURN OPEN HOUSES INTO DESTINATIONS

If It’s Good for the Soul,

IT’S GOOD FOR THE BUSINESS

RECONSIDER REFERRAL-ONLY

When Planning for the Future

CREATIVE MEDITATION for the Real Estate Professional


NATIONWIDE & INTERNATIONAL EDITION

DIANA CAMPBELL 6

After earning her degree and completing a long and

HEIDI BECKER 11 16 successful tenure 15 in restaurant management, Diana GERI FARRELLY

Campbell was ready for her next challenge. When Georgia-based Heidi Becker

From there, Diana and herGABR team giv GRACE19 BLOODWELL homework kit that20 encourages a

insight when marketing.Ranked “We gea comes to marketing, with an assistant who promotes her

Top of Agent Grace sellers Bloodwell her she wasare buying her own home, she in enjoyed the of aspects love about– theirwith homes, w the coun Geri Farrelly has a secret present andfirst involved all sorts the enhanced built a successful career listings through online presence, social media so thoroughly that she continued to comb are like, and we’re able to add w th Journal, one third of the Shea Rivkind clients weapon when it comes process to community, but perhaps the most fun way they get in the nonprofit worldupon before and advertisements. Heidi uses atext,” professional the market long after her closing day. Drawing ouralso marketing she explains. – of One“ servicing the real estate involved their annual free cream jumping into realice estate. photographer who Team captures property its best & Bloodwell ateach Coldwell her existing skillsetsisand interests, she knew that real It’sevent. time and effort toinreally consider Real Es something she does not regret, light, with drone shots, videos and photos. She is dedi- buy needs of the people of North estate would make for a natural fit. Thirteen years the prospective of a potential Banker Residential Brokerage Unique m Florida as it has helped her become cated to whatever means necessary to get your property later, Diana hasday builtbefore a dynamic business andwe team, us set the listing apart.”professio From th Reading: she is truly one “The school starts hire twoiniceCharlestown, cream Massachusetts cant role CAMPBELL GABRIELA HEIDI BECKER GRACE BLOODWELL a prolific agent. Heidi feels DIANA under contract and sold as quickly as DAJER possible. through Even ex GERI FARRELLY CHRISTOPHER ORTIZ a reputation for integrity, client-centric wide-ranging visibility of them. Born and raisedalong in with trucks,” Geri says. “We drive them all over town and over 50 engagement is over, Heidionline makes sureplatforms, to stay dedicated real estate Banker’s care, and a lasting vision for the future.in the community –afteristhe atransaction leading listing courseso North Reading, she and her give out free ice to kids thesuccess day before they inviting go is acream key factor to her in touch, her friends and past clients to happy and through theirto website. “We wan professional who is committed a powe career, Gabriela the re husband are raising their back ERNSTONE to school. become quite the local hour tradition!” asIt’s anthat award winning realtor. every month. “I call itknow First where Friday withbrings Heidi. to It’s Today, Diana heads a team includes agents, they stand,” Diana sa GAVIN KILEY FLINT RICHARD GATAVECKAS of industry knowledge and tru 31 32 27 providing her buyers and sellers including ALISON ELDER 23 24the town, RUBY GONZALEZ OBE She has held various community, including been a great way to show appreciation foradept my clients. 28 two children in administrative staff, roles and in a the client care manager. knowledgeable, at negotiatin interests of her many grateful Vice President of the Board for domestic violence group It’s a non-working event, so I don’t even bring business When launching the team, Diana merged her existing toand offer every element of service abhi with best customer service available in the greater clients and various When she’s not being athe major force in North Reading, When Kiley Flint moved her upstill and until the very end when the transaction was How did Richard Gataveckas asking how they are doing, Gavin Ernstone brings As busy as Gavin is, he finds time for one of his P Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico-based them to our Fourth of July parade, Top she’s Agentserved Alisonon Elder has Topexce Ag Promise birthdays, Place. “Ashusband ainviting Certified Fundraising Executive, cards,” she explains. business with her Craig’s, and together they have put We always want to go above and beyond and toexpeCrested Butte, Colorado completed. She among is truly awith knowledgeable real to estate committees in town and spent with Massachusetts’ Realty Geri likes to unwind. “Imillions love toof tohello the gym, orthe go find his niche market previous transactions, w Boston area.passions: Ago consistent top producer who regularly non-b R Top Agent Ruby Gonzalez –and decades real estate great racing. He races in the International orofeffort just stopping by their homes to say during more than twenty-five of Prem Gabriela began her career in re Isignificant have helped organizations raise dollars into cultivating a well-rounded roster of professional. talent.of Realtors in 1999, knew she’d bethousands We would highly recommend her Realty to act inBroker/Owner needs are,” he says. Guild. People looking to years buy orleveraging sell homesher in North skiing,” she says. “Butshe my very favorite thing todollars do of Ruby Southw for abused women and children. Through all that, IAssociation’s Asserve Heidi looks towards the future, she is excited to a closes over twenty million annually and who yield bt holidays,” explains. local when sheand was still attending rience to bear when helping Motor Sports Michelin Pilot Sports Under the banner ofshe Royal LePage, Diana and her team Beyond the office, Diana her team give bac there the rest real ofmy her life.Hilton asHead an to agent for anyone interested inclients. selling or buying Island, South -serving can claim more than two cated rb Reading could not find knowledge someone with more local with Montreal’s my time off isfor to go with family down neverclients stopped thinking about or loving estate,” continue growing and hernationFor her, it fund working for veteran agent Ma and commitment clients across western suburbs, with inroads Downtown client appreciation events, including fitness his find their Las Cup series, his car emblazoned with the Simply has been ranked among the topthe 6% of all agents as target “I realized it was home for real estate in Crested Butte/Gunnison area.” Carolina? What is Richard’s favorite parthat decades of experience helping who Heidi says. She owns several investment properties doesn’t evenworthy feel like work.“We “I don’t like what I la do,Vega Iperson owner of Stewart de G expertise than Geri. Cape.” and elsewhere. “Each team member has their own area of expertise, causes. love to maintain that Extensive, thorough and intelligent marketing strategies to excellence in customer Vegas dream homes.me,” From Vegas logo. “I’m a luxury agent primarily,” heand says. estate, just when youachieve think you shw she said. to help wide, Grace’s commitment to hard and integrity enal buyers sellers herself, including a played historic on Wanting Main in LOVE what I do. work Iwith feel honored to help clients with dual degrees inbuy, Intern and together we cover a RICHARD pretty diverse range across theRUBY greater element clients, even after closing,” she say have also ahome major role inStreet the success ofGONZALEZ The service helping his her OBED GUZMAN KILEY FLINT ALISON ELDER GAVIN towards ERNSTONE GATAVECKAS After moving to the US from something comes up that is totall others make a home there as When Kiley isn’t working, she’s staying involved earliest days in London “But I’m a race car driver because I love doing it.” work, ca Fayetteville, whichshe shesays. painted purple to honor victimsa contingent sell, or reputation invest in residential and properties. their realcommercial estatetime, goals. has translated into stellar as aface-to-face trusted real When sh Montreal region,” What’s more, aof significant involved, have and Ruby’s show our cl Marketing, Gabriela was prom Elder Group. Beginning with excellent photography many grateful and She got into real estate because her jobbuyers was taking Geri has a very clear vision the future, and what Europe, Richard started his ordinary,” he says. “It’s all abo well, she got her license and with the community or spending time outdoors. She -of heis driven started in theand knowled ofwhere Alzheimer’s. Heidibyobtained her referral real estate license I strive to benity onethey’re of the focus best agents there is, because my p on providing exceptional business repeat clientele—amounting appreciated.” In her free hours, Dian working with that that company’s estate traveling real career That drives meBoard and is whathisI andground staging, Alison makes certain that eachestate listing sellers achieve became an advocate. agent in 2004. She served onis theinCrested Butte Land Trust for the her away from North Reading so often.their Her real old role theofFarrelly Realty Group can play. “I to help androughly hit the running. joined Keller Williams clients theHilton best!” industry at85% age 17 to She his Gavin is speeding towards a big future. “It’s a very a to their- overall clientshare. This milestone iswant nodeserve spent with her family and loved ones, and stayi customer service is well-known, and her true concern de la Vega purchased her ow Head in 2003. In theand beginto the community, Richard partici hasn’t looked back since; and can’t imagine ainternet more last eight years was president for two. Her favorite shown in2017, its best light. Atime robust presence –boot estate goals in the scenic Lake Tahoe area of teen-yea career, teaching certification classes forCalifornia. physical stay involved in the community,” she says. Atlanta Partners in working full asclients a residenachieve accident. Nurturing lasting relationships with is foundational classes, triathlons, and weekly w forLas her“Being clients hascamp resulted in her reputation as her an agent twenty-five years of expeexciting time in Vegas,” he explains. “The in 2010, Gabriela stayed on w ning of his career he worked with many Europeans events through RE/MAX and give fulfilling career. shewith has an assistant/marketing hobbies include skiing, hiking, golf and call any her partnership both Engel &intuitive and online Honesty, took integrity andover her the client-first ethos tial and commercial specialist. For more information about Heidi please to Diana’s professional ethos, she citesis customer She alsoinenjoys traveling with her husband and faW therapy, her all country.business “I used to get part ofToday, the life of and this town soVolkers important to me. Grace began her career in can real estate 2002 as playing atoBecker, junior Park, she who beseven trusted place their needs working under that banner ever rience inamarketing the Vegas market, luxury market the last or eight years has who were first time home buyers. Then heconsistently expanded commission to Children’s Miracle director, and covers all offor Gunnison Valley. Her in water activity. allows prominent placement on over 860 have resulted in her stellar reputation as an agent who 678-548-7294 or email heidi@heidibeckerrealtor.com. Obed obtained his real estate licer CONTENTS service as the leading driver of her working style. “Everyone on our friends, and playing cards. front and center during every transaction. stuck in airports all the Gavin time sohas I couldn’t get home That’s why I’m looking to expand into commercial at Harvard University upon the advice of her mother. She has his business by helping clients to acquire distressed He also plays a role in many loca business is her largely based offwith she important that attention torelationship detail and aof– referrals, really flourished and we’ve seen some Because of charitable organizaago amazing as means of facilitating the sales team experienced, knowledgeable, anddeft wewhich offer those websites worldwide and exploitation of social canmy be consistently trusted to put her understood customers’ needs Perhaps the most accurate m to husband and mytop children,” recalls. “I isshe real estate - right now we’re residential and Iincredible properties at auction in built orderonly, to flip them. Working In Richard’s free time, he lovesan go credits to her communication and availability. As she looks towards the future, she’s eager to continue “I began selling the summers for extra money,” Boys level of Geri customer service would set him apart houses being and some people come tions, includes them in her business plan. Onduring the properties. Soon, he foundishim resources when it comes to sales and negotiating,” sheproperties explains. As for the future ofestate her business, Diana eag media platforms ensures that each of her are front and center during every transaction. Ruby began her career in real after purchasing success is trying the fact that entirc with investors became a large part of his business. beach and out newthe local growing her business. In the meantime, she’s enjoying couldn’t4)do3 that anymore. I had always liked real think moving into commercial could be the next big sale of every listing, she makes a donation to her client’s ithis really comes downGrace to is making sure the know thatcontinue leadership role and refine her team. “Our focus ish foreclosed properties SUREFIRE METHODS 25) 9clients THINGS THE BEST 45) ARE INpurchasing OR OUT? from his competitors and “What serve tobuyers town. Ifclients thesewith trends to develop, there’s recalls. “When Iher graduated, IYOU was pursuing several Charlest seen by as well. many potential as possible. first home in 1998. “It was such great feeling to based upon clients Richard been working RE/MAX since 2008 “Going to aapeople restaurant onreturn “My with my clients ishas very important,” every minute of the journey. “Meeting iswho what I the rp estate, but most of all I like helping people. we’re So communication step forIf us.” favorite charity. they don’t have one, Heidi isbe happy there for them. Our motivations aren’t transaction based, biggest team, but the besttoteam,” says. “I’m was able help ashe lot of buyers going to some truly great stuff to be sold.” THATofMAKE FORGroup, A LEADERS NEVER SAY As Principle The Elder Alison works be able to buy my own home,” she recalls, “So I wanted where an impressive 80% of his business comes from a beautiful sunset—it does not and again, and customers whgt careers. I had three jobs and was unsure of my direction. she says. “I want to be involved with my buyers and love most about it. I’ve been fortunate to have a great to share her knowledge and help them choose. Heidi is because we’re not in it for the dollar. We’re in it for the relationships management role, working on the business, Iwith tooka the exam and fifteen years laterstands hereincludes Iatop am.”a veritable recalls. “I found that I reallybuild en repeat and referral clients. He has a able good mix ofmany clients that!” he says. “The scenery is beP Giving back to her community is also a priority for to be to help others have that same feeling. So, in large, equally-dedicated team that Today Gavin real estate “This is a relationship business PRODUCTIVE MEETING sellers every step of the way, guiding them through clientele base, become lifelong friends.” 49) 5 SIMPLE MINDSET SHIFTS involved in the community and anwhat ambasand we keep thatbusiness focus central in all aspects of we do.” creating a finelypeople tuned machine.at Wearing multiple I that lucked outisinvestors, and was hired by four incredible mentors Grace’s achieve the dream of hom include: sellers, vacation homebuyers, future, Richard plans to expand 1999, I took a real estate course, passed, got my license, and does so through a variety THAT of ways,WILL her husband of thirty years, Desmond, who known is the asked how to pr inA the 29) process.” Kiley is she also extremely detail oriented, empire. He’s well asforAlison, the Dream Home sador her local Chamber of Commerce. Knowing and exciting.” With their firstshe newmanages construction 3 WAYS TO MAKE YOUR HELP YOU Gibson Real Estate Charlestown Steven Ozer, Rosemary continue Where she is is the owner/broker of the Farrelly Realty and first time homebuyers. He is so passionate about to sell properties in Savannah, Ge and started my business.” trust and loyalty in the highly making sure no stone is left unturned. When working including a six-year stint on the local Cancer Advisory company’s Managing Partner. Desmond also runs his 8) RECONSIDER REFERRALWhen it comes toyour listing properties, and her team that and an impressive team of an agents and leaders athut feeling neighborhood isFOR important, she ensure Specialist, regularly carrying 20safe to in25 luxury list- Diana impressive one WORK YOU ACHIEVE YOUR GOALS Hilton Head—a Lowcountry resort town and barrier onAveraging be covering Hilton Head, Bluffto Group, leadingbrokerage, a team of Pacific seven agents who serve allWORKSPACE Kverek, Ken Stone, Duncan Gillespse. From there, I allwith ofthirteen the in with clientscommunity never feel the need tothe call herBeginning for real estate. “It’s about peopl Council, establish Tahoe Forest own mortgage Bay Lending, homes are primed ato memorable debut. withGenetum remains the upswing. Now, yR started an annual safety event where topand year, Obed and his equally-dedic ranging in price from a Kiley, million andtohelping amake half ONLY WHENings PLANNING FORwhich Heidi’s luxury listing she recently sold. island featuring fantastic restaurants, aRuby thriving artsguiding parts of the Savannah,” he ana update, asand shecoverage is always keeping them in back. the loop. Currently, serves the western side ofexplains. the veryher, personal to me, and my clieot of Massachusetts, withtoatheir focusclients. on Middlesex and photography using their office-owned 3D Tour camera, and primarily insight future appears bright officials answer questions from the public. Because Upshaw Memorial Cancer Center. She also served on the provides additionalbut value “It’s been never looked Real estate became my passion.” with her swath of the Southwest region 16 million dollars. But beyond thatthe hehighest owns level Simply scene, golfto tournaments, community festivals, investors’ groupwhat which flips hom THE FUTURE “I her provide of service mymost clients,” island of CREATIVE Puerto though she is Iwilling to goIObed’s pretty friends. take do very sen properties are documented in had their finest and immersive light. bell Rico, and and her team. of involvement, she has no difficulty growing 33) WHAT THE FIRST THING 53) MEDITATION Essex As the owner, Geri sets Best ofcurrently Tahoe Chef’s Committee for many years, really Counties. great partnership,” says Alison. Asthe an standard official Nearly bus the trans twelve miles of in beachfront on the which Atlantic Ocean— a need bit sothe I’mentirety off to a of good start in tb Vegas, a luxury full service firm that has she explains. She has extensive experience luxury much anywhere her clients her. Impressively, a her YOU business. In 2018, Heidi was named Top KW rals, one of the most accurate me for customer service for her agents. “We gear everyraised funds to provide free psychosocial programs for “Shop” of international industry giant Engel & Volkers, DO AFTER WORK SAYS FOR THE REAL joined ESTATE talking upsolo to Even buyers and investors 13) TURN OPEN properties; isthe happy to help any and allitclients. Athat longtime agent, Grace recently forces knowled nearlyHOUSES 400 agents workingCommercial on somebut of most high significant based on ib That business focus onis relationships Producer, and number 6 Residential Agent customer service, and something cancer patients, among many other philanthropic efforts.portion of Ruby’s Alisontoassists both buyersneeds,” and sellers, in ABOUT thing our customer’s she specializing explains. “We comes naturally topoint him. to YOU PROFESSIONAL after the transaction is over, Kiley makes it a in her market center. Heidi plans tofellow grow herTop company repeatand and seasoned referred customers, a sure sign that she is competition, noteworthy in aexf“ end real estate in Clark County. As if that wasn’t INTO DESTINATIONS with Agents Brokers Tracy the score of. “I always exceed my clients’ the second home resort markets in than Lakethat Tahoe individualize everyand property, but more we stay more in touch, sending out monthly even by starting a team this year. newsletters and instilling trust and loyalty in the people she works with. riously competitive and cut-thr by way of explaining this excepp enough to keep him busy, Gavin has a magazine, When it is time to market listings, Richard’s Shea and Stephanie Rivkind. “We each have our own has abso When “Iasked about plans for the future ofof her and itshard beautiful waterside communities in the market reports. mail out a midher and year-end report,” work to5remove as much of the nestled stress and to37) having great relationships with Much that is due to the fact that Ruby maintains “and I treat them like family, as if 17) MORNING HABITS HOW TO SEND 56) DAILY HABITS Vegas Dreams Magazine,Kiley thatsays. he uses toAlison highlight work really shines. He clients business, expresses a values desire to continue growing majestic Nevadarun mountains. “I are send on property and am advises business, but we collaborate on dealswith as her well,” says. Whether they a updates buyer or seller, clients can expect make theSierra transaction as smoothly as possible. It’s Ibuyers feelshe that people likeduring tothem workanw constant contact and sellers sibling. I want to protect on how to make minor changes and best TO MAKE YOUR DAY SUPER SMARTER EMAILS THAT INCREASE some of the most stunning luxury properties across always in touch regarding upcoming local events.” her business. That growth, however, not come at theWILL exceptional service from Heidi withbenefited guidance throughout explains. “It get increases transaction “I’m always to very mymy important to us to always go the extra mile.” toshe make sureavailable they the be “It’s uswill to process. leverage each other’s prepare their homes intremendously orderthe toCommunity receive top the city. business is based the PRODUCTIVE Safety Event with Fayetteville mayor, Chief of Police, and officials. YOUR MENTAL goesstellar abovecustomer and beyond when that it clients, expenseShe of the service has become A significant portion of Alison’s on transaction. agents like to she work with other R and I always answerSTRENGTH my phone,” explains. dollar, hegoes ensures each listing knowledge, and it that benefits the isclient When it comes to marketing, Kileyand also above

to have three Top

calling card. posted repeat and referred clients, perhaps the most accurate 41)her Of course, Obed’s vast knowledg BECOMING THEonBEST hundreds of popular real estate That commitment to quality is why the Farrelly Realty and tobeyond, offering professional videography, Agents working for him or her. It she alsoforms happens toclients be 21) IT’S FOR measure of IF a job wellGOOD done Butinallthe of highly-competitive that comes second the simple pleasures ness alsoher plays a prominent role in Copyright Top Agent Magazine The relationships with are cherwebsites and marketing platforms. Richard OF THE BEST Group gets so much referral business, with Geri estiphotography, Matterport tours, blogging and social To find out more about Geri Farrelly, “I’ve done so different really fun working with two great people.” real estate industry. “I believe it’s because we are so ished bydetail Ruby, and she works hard to many nourish and tr THE SOUL, IT’S GOOD FOR pays close personal attention to every of working with clients and bringing the personal media exposure. Working with To the brokeragemore LIV mating 95% of her business assays repeat or referral. But callthem (514) 264esta– different aspects of personal the real farrellyrealtygroup.com, visitclients,” maintain Diana them. ThisCampbell, includes sending and makeslearn each client feel about client-centric in our approach,” when asked touch. “I Alison, enjoy spending time with my THE BUSINESS Sotheby’s International Realty, she is able to reach a as if they are as an institution in North Reading, it’s no surprise “whether it be large scale or his978-866-8658 only client.DianaCampbell@RoyallePage.ca, He enjoys serving clients messages on important dates, such as birthdays and onsmal what inspires such impressive customer confidence and email or visit teamc call or wide audience. Gavin says. “I Realty like getting to know them and finding Currently, the lion’s share of Grace’s business is based to structure a deal so it’s a win that so many folks come to Farrelly Group in a wide variety of price ranges. He has the anniversary of their home purchase. loyalty. “We provide a very concierge level bespoke the right house at of a great price that suits email them.” on geri@farrellyrealty.com the buyer and the seller. It’s imp repeat and referred clients, an impressive statistic that sold homes for everywhere from $100,000 through word of mouth. After all, Geri and her team For more about Richard Gatavec service, attention and responsiveness to our clients.” After the transaction is over, clients love to spread www.

www.

buyer and seller, and oftentimes e

to over $2 million. To stay in touch with

https://www.linkedin.com/in/corinne-woodman-4a552626 thorough and thoughtful approach to marketing Copyright For more about Kiley Flint, Top A email hhirealestate@roadrunner.c level of information customer service she the One recentlythe said,exceptional “Kiley Ruby’s That attention to detail and customer care resulted in word about her work. illustrates Phone 310-734-1440 Fax 310-734-1440 the handsomely, other side of resulting the transaction, past clients, Richard believesher in alistings personal While he works| in the luxury space, Gavin keeps his has also paid off in please 970-275-2554 or Copyright Top Agent Magazine orcall call (843) 298 2602 provided personal and professional advice andfollow-through, guidance 141 closed transactions and nearly $100MM in volume provides. “I and I’m detail-oriented,” the task at hand, which is closing touch. “What works for me isquick callingsales people feet firmly planted in the local community. “I’m on for top dollar. High-quality photography is mag@topagentmagazine.com | www.topagentmagazine.com from the beginning when we first listed our condo with email kflint@livsothebysrealty.com in 2018. says Grace, when asked how she has inspire used to ensure eachmanaged property is to shown in its best light, the board of Habitat For Humanity in Las Vegas,” No portion of this issue may be reproduced in any manner whatsoever without prior consent of the publisher. TopErnstone Agent Obed’sMagazine exceptional,iscutting-edge a Fo Copyrigh To findloyalty out more about and savvy use of the the internet and social media such impressive and trust, “IGavin putMLS, theCopyright best interests herelationships says. “And she I’mGA, theInc. board chair for special events. Top Agent Magazine Alison cherishes thebystrong forms with strategiesTop ensure quick sales for published Feature Publications Although precautions are taken to ensure the accuracy of published materials, Agent information about Alison maximize visit his website at thedhs.com, of clients first and IElder, amsubscribe anexposure. efficient communicator.” Every year I holdand an nourish event at one expressed ofFor mymore listings andmy her clients, and works hard maintain Magazine cannot be to held responsible for opinions or facts supplied by its authors. or change address, send please call 530-582-8103 or To call 702-523-3677 or up to 300 people come, and in the last two years ema Additionally, Grace’s longevity in the industry, coupled them. Ininquiry additiontotomag@topagentmagazine.com. a highly-customized CRM system, Published in the email U.S. tahoe@alisonelder.com email him at gavin@thedhs.com we’ve raisedthrough over $300,000 she also reaches out to them regularly a variety for Habitat.” or Alison.elder@evusa.com of methods. “It’s everything from recognizing their 2 Top Agent Magazine https://www.facebook.com/Corinne-Woodman-Real-Estate-Top-Producer-since-2005-164217970263905/

www.

Copyright Top Agent Magazine Copyright Top Agent Magazine


35

CHRIS MAY 44 DAN 39 STEPHEN KARBELK LOTZOF LIMARYS 36HERNANDEZ BEATA & 40 SARAJACQUELINE KOLPEK43(TEAM KOLPEK)

Top Ag When Chris started Top Agent Stephen Karbelk – Lead A staggering percent of Stephen’s is basedare onseenMay ensure that business their listings by as manyapote The mother and ninety daughter

Jacqueline Lotzof’s real Brokerfa Top Agent Limarysof the Hernandez Education extremely to Limarys, and RealMarkets group in Ashburn, isrepeat clients andimportant an impressive feat by any measure career inestate real estate in them 1992, buyers as possible. real estate team of Beatareferrals, and Virginia has nearly three decades of in the highly-competitive world of real estate. “I developed a Vice Pri began longand before times – of Keller Williams Advantage she works hard to– make surecareer that both current she knew she she had found Sara Kolpek of Platinum experience helping his clients achieve niche for myself,” says Stephen, when asked to account for this Raleigh, her calling. sheexplori reloIII Realty in Orlando, prospective clients fully understand transaction Both the Beata and means Sara h Partner Realtors in Downers gotin licensed. “My family inphilanthropic theirFlorida residential –and commercial real loyalty. “I’ve specialized ‘legal sales’, which I possess haveis Once of Beaz cated to Arkansas in 2000, estate goals. Currently ranked among a deep understanding of how to do Chapter 7 and Chapter 11 and each is heavily involved with animal we are Facebook a truly can claim nearly two decades of process.Grove, “I doIllinois a show– on every Friday, aimed the construction business, and the two wo dec the Top 25 of all Century 21 teams bankruptcy sales, salesMAY and other including types of really courtorganizations, theMAYBERRY ASPCA (American dynamic duo who have receivership builtsheCHRIS she hit the ground So DANA BEATA & SARA KOLPEK JACQUELINE LOTZOF LIMARYS HERNANDEZ helping STEPHEN KARBELK buyers and sellers at theregion, Spanish community,” explains. “Where I are real esta in the achieve entire Mid-Atlantic driven transactions. So, many attorneys and lenders who in I grew up with a father who love se for the Prevention running. of Cruelty to Animals), a solid business on a foun(TEAM KOLPEK) Today, she has athe VITTARDI and the number 1 teamspeak at Century situation haveMARK recognized that an estate. expert in I’ll those areas their real estate goals. Limarys, about athat lothonesty, of different aspects ofI’m real those sp Suburban Humane Society, and they both foster dation of integrity teamhomes,” of as Realtors, including and built 21 New Millennium’s One Loudoun and come to me for myremodeled sales expertise.” Stephen’s experience tion are who is fluent in both English and even bring in people from title companies or lenders through therole PitinBull rescue Pitties. “W and a one sincere commitment Vittardi strong central concept has also played “You need thatChi-Town personal touch when y office, Stephen’s highly-professional Mark and truly caringholds approach to to a licensed auctioneer a large hisher continuing Top Age and two other she says. “Iexplains, always felt adaughter connecFor Jac straightforward, Dana’s 55they 57 51to®,ashelp JON MYERS ahisREALTOR and leaderservice of The Vittardi Real contact,” he says. “This isn’t a comm mindl Spanish, hashis clients assembled a as dedithem understand the better so can ART REMSBECKER 47 48 hasto really the experience of helping animals providing excellent customer to their many 52“As working with resulted in reputation an as agent success story. anprocess auctioneer,” heenjoyed “Iincan offer my JANET PASSIO rare agen licensed agents. “We servetheiri many customers achieve Estate Group: beservice. genuine. - It’s important to me that my clie who exemplifies the concept of exceptional clients two decisions.” ways to sell theircommunity,” property: they says can paign start high and tion to residential real estate.” she lov Sara. Furthermore, Team Kolpe grateful buyers and sellers. cated support group (The Liz Team) that allows her tocustomer make more informed wealth o all of Northwest Arkansas,” she explains. “Our busiresulted inItheir her stellar reputation care, andmarketthat appreciate the opportu Honest, forthright and eschewing Perhaps theclients, most acc work as with the brokerage method, ordonating theyaI can start low “I am in-VEST-ed Janet in myPassioputting thatstart in can sell house.” He goes the When with Top Agent Wendy “If problem arises for my I wt got her in speaking thea down, South Jersey andthrough eastern Pennsylvania committed to funds in clients’ names and a ca she say focus on consistently delivering both excellent customer ness is made up of referrals and relocation clients.” have given me to represent them. For “Folks often underestimate the role of a real estate Licensed since 1992, Stephen’s interest with real estate began and work high the auction method. My clients know that I can Reddy – pointing Owner/Broker atan Reddy Real Estate she says. “Often, clients don’B the hard-sell tactics ofit,”much oftheir behind Art’s success clients. I believe in notBeata being house inch by outwith things a buyer might the business back in agents,” 1986, places.nearly With average of thirty days onbecause market, rescue organization ofthe choice.my Additionally, began her journey ininch real estate three toand engagi at for a very young age.grateful “Both my clients. parents were Mark real estate objectively propose a strategy for selling their home, I’mthe tionship goes beyond closing, I’mth agent.” explains.”As professionals, it’s service and solid results her many Exceptional marketing of her listings has also played At Coldwell Banker Harris McHaney & Faucette inrece That connection is strong, and has led Jacqueline to know A former environmental scient infrom Lynchburg, Virginia –an the first thing one solving behind scenes. I try really his competition, Top Agent Art reviews he has is a longtime member of the Society of St. Vincen decades ago, finding success as an agent fairly quickly. a says salesman, I aim to keep my notice, just so his sellers are aware and there are no while making the move listings enjoy premium visibility and reach desired ers. Wor$ Stephen, “and I used to go to their office and play theirput their not bound to doing one way.” to support my clients.” Mark has sold honor to assist thoseonwho faith into us, toit only Fayetteville, she provides superior service to each in the real estate industry upo is likely to notice is her ebullient personality free process for them.” a significant role in Limarys’ success. Professional has forged career Zillow.com, on which Paul, which person-to-person toEsta in-a Sara, joined forces with Beata in 2017, and success over theRemsbecker past years inoffers theareal North MLS computer and pretend that Idaughter, wasprovide an agent, Thatgreat interest Philadelphia totoo.” New Jersey. buyers increating short order. clients informed,” JonHer Myers surprises. After personally the13 marketing estate Shore. over the lastsupport twoBuying years as proper guidance from initial contact, through Real and every buyer or seller, which has helped her busiand bracing sense of humor. When the conmother, a long-time real estate never waned, and in 1990inhe began his first full-time job in the Limarys began her journey in real estate 2002, when photography and video ensure each listing is seen in Expert, thorough marketing strategies have also been a factor community members. Team Kolpek was born.own Beata’s longevity in the industry based on extensive industry a perfect five-star ove agent, to which he credits his referral contract to close. My clients are putting their bigIn fact, it was Janet’s real Washing explains, when discussing his material, Jon implements a “multi-tired marketing Carrying 10 to 12success. listings at any timeThat -ethic, with propertake of in process includes marketing, versation turns to real estate, however, her beand more successful selling re real estate world. “I workedand at Long & Foster in their corporate Stephen’s Professional, high-quality photography ness grow immensely. business strategy. gest investment into my hands toin execute and bring heragent wealth ofsuggested industry knowledge, coupled with MARK VITTARDI CORI WHITAKER WENDY REDDY knowledge and aback firm work with. He MYERSher license JANET ART REMSBECKER sheJON obtained so shePASSIO and herrelocation husband could its best light, and Limarys’ status as arobust global marketing a actual reputa estate who she Beyond the office, Janet gives tocommither community career in real estate. With aback strategy” consisting of social media, various office, working in their department as an return. assistant when no expense to ensure that ever is utilized exclusively, and a websites, online spares and social media wealth of industry knowledge and sincere “and she was right. I started wit ties aimed at everyone from first-time home buyers to take th the best My mantra has always been: be “I really love helping people,” says Beata, when Sara’s fresh perspective and ability to connect with the ment to providing his clients with I was looking for and will cona buy a home and avoidlove commission. Ultimately, specialist makes certain that each property is seen by try her hand at being the through work with her local church, sheafter particIpaying wasfor in college. I slowly worked myhonest way upand to aindustry. property ensures that hiscustomer listings areserseen by its aswhere many potential helping others, Jon as well ashave traditional marketing strategies. best light and by she asexplains. many potentia Theas joy his clients experience after genuine tocommitment earn the presence trust andexcellence respect to in“I and twelve weeks I’d alr havewhat a Jacqueline very fast response time,” she “I she enjoys most about what does. “Obvio millennial generation, proved a potent comboof that luxury level house hunters usually gets face ea excellent customer service. As me something that mile to help her many grateful coordinator, arranging the sales of REO properties for banks. I then buyers as possible. The RealMarkets team also employ a fairly Intrigued byNothe challenge, ipates and helps withmay thebe family ministry forbest she began working found as a Realtor, and hasn’t looked buyers as possible. transaction is the partjob.” of theEventu job. “I clients. onemany wants topotential be sold they prefer extensive, hands-on preparation ofbut the his calling as an agent in vice takesanything, center stage. Wendy fastofrecovery than my full-time the paycheck at the end of the day is helpful, has translated into a stellar reputation as a top-producing have decades experience and am very profeseventually got into the auction business that company.” method thatBroker/Owner hascontinues. proven highly-successful: “We develop achieve their real estate of Lake Cushman knows the communit hard for them,” hesellers beams. “Iphotographs, can’t put into words th to with be educated in order to deals make unique achildren sound decision,” he her closed within 45 days. That efficiency is Janet earned her license and hit the ground running, and young adults. She also helps orchestrate site professional each pro approaching twenty years in the industry, but back since. recommendation of her ever-s Jacksonville, North Carolina As Jon prepares for the future, he is eager to expand his II like isthe being in aexcited service based industry.” team that consistently achieves exceptional results for a complete property package for every onewhen of our listings,” says sional. also tailor of service I provide to the Imost get I type see how they areand getting the key “Rather thanfor inflate a work. situation, it hasthe served me best to be direct Realty in scenic Hoodsport, nications immediately exposure on the internet a robust p discovering a natural affinity and talent her all fundraisers for the bereavement ministry, which her enthusiasm providing her buyers and“All sellers first-class real This impressive experience translated into a for booming business went back to school to obtain Stephen. the with regarding are put just part of fuels her 100% return Jacquel When she’s working –information which is rare –that Limarys when he moved herehas from business and his team to what other regions. “My goal isI “I to concurs: want my buyers and sellers to be an their clients. type ofexcellent client am helping.” She acknowledges that their joy onproperty theall phone when Iand tell them we received and precise. I have been able to not achieve my quarterly and annual Cori, who owned a wellness ph Washington, Art truly earned his reputation as a professional and I’d platforms. Wendy also pushes the list estate advocacy is still as it was on day one of her career. that allows Stephen to provide exceptional advocacy forasbuilt a fresh wider together in onehas complete package that has all of the information Now, more than thirty years later, she has a welcomes families from Southern New Jersey and the was during that course that she with their purchase or I love seeing them theeateries, energy I liveand on insale. this years industry.” by conducting my availing business with this approach.” San Diego. byarray a few friends totypical jump intogoals have five different revenue streams from this business. More thanConvinced a third of Limarys’ business is agent, based on enjoys herself ofprofessional the many local first time home buyers, for instance, have different rate. bat sixteen prior to even entering trusted real who sincerely cares wants to buy or sell of clients than theas and – though he andreferral his team they needestate to make a who decision.” fellow agents and past clients, justwho ano sterling reputation agent defined by integrity, an team tri-county area are closing experiencing the loss alarge loved of of a on home builder, table, with smiles their faces.” The lion’s share of Beata and Sara’s business is comprised this industry, he studied itstill and soon became licensed, I want to build the and build the brand. I want to obtained her license in 2005. needs than someone who has sold multiple houses. repeat clients, referrals, and word-of-mouth, perhaps is also a fan of art exhibits. Additionally, she volunteers work with a significant number of residential clients careers - todayabout heinclude Wendy, whose former both teacher and sales executive strategies she “We give it 100 the well-being ofwith his many grateful clients. working with him.” says. “R Mark’s greatest is hisconstruction wife Sarah and dau Mark graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University an eye unrelenting work ethic, and relationships that stand the one. In her free hours, Janet most enjoysmotivation time spent into theemploys. new of repeat clients and referrals, perhaps the most accurate has developed a strong commercial business. “IGamble, figured out aalong When asked what advice he might have forLimarys, agents who might the real estate junkie,” she aren reca a decision he sign has never regretted. Today, after capitalchange the confidence level of real estate agents, that’s Shedomestically also understands that everyone has various prefthe surest of success in the highly-competitive her time and energy working with the elderly. for Proctor & is veteran of relocation – both elynn and Giada. “One of the reasons I focused on towards public sector leadership, especially in government. He “That was in Sara’s 2003,” says Dan test ofago time. the measure way, real sheof has earned a “I’m host ofvery family, and visiting theabout authentic and open the process with Malk, Looking to the future, Beata and plans arerea success highly-competitive real estate time that Along selling commercial estate is, in ainlotthe of ways, bewith struggling, Stephen pauses for abeach. thoughtful moment before ous properties and Istyle learned erences for communication, adjusts her to adunl During theand rare moments when she’s izing his early success,“It’s he formed the Vested Realty why I’m big on my agents providing value to clients.” andexplains internationally - having moved twenty-three times prior to settling to dedicate more time to my girls,” he says. “The also Stephen. had a strong entrepreneurial spirit which led him into the realonestate industry. because I’m very honest who has a teenaged son, enjoys being a mentor to A former owner of a wholesale tropical fish company, During the rare mom easier than selling residential,” “I think a lot replying. “If you want to sell more real estate, it’s important to learn the Year my first year with eigh simple: to grow their business withoutand sacrificing a industry.Realtors’ “We work#1 incredibly hard for our Jacqueline clients,” says says. accolades, including Weichert Agent for always intrigued ul my clients,” “Part of that ismy being been in limiting my time with family, and now Iwould get to be industry which Mark explains, “treats so well.” atexpert home on her 150-acre farm, which h meet their desires. go above and beyond, and stay in Lynchburg. Upon settling in that historic city, Wendy began casting Group, a 4 member team within brokerage, which With a young production total ofme $4 million last year, his first of agents his are discouraged from selling commercial, and I believe about more types ofthe properties and become an“I in multiple Art officially entered world of real estate sales in enjoys nothing more and transparent,” says Limarys, when asked how she people. now on year sixteen in home b the incredible customer service that has become syn Beata, when asked to account for the loyalty they continue their Washington Township office, and as a thirty-year As for the future, Janet intends to spend the coming properties so thought real es with Maddie, Gia, and Sarah.” since the 1700’s. Gardening is a chief about for a Ifnew career. “I felt like real estate would be a great fit, because that’s a mistakecounties. for a number of reasons. you’re selling a home fields so you’re not competing in the same world as everyone else. in touch years after the close of their home. I help very honest about the homes themselves, and with my their ho serves Onslow, Pender and Carteret Jon has year, and currently over $4 million closed and pending 2005. “Iyears hadprocess ainlot of experience buying and selling myon Jean, and isthis anindustry avid o pry metop away mous with their names. tocustomers. inspire. “We believe inyears explaining the our inspires such incredible her member of amongst the of Excellence within the fine form. “Ibusiness want to of from Mark eleven astransaction a personal in to the judicial syscareer choice andbefore aanimals, smart to loyalty a high-net worthCircle individual, those areon theserved same people thatNew are The onlybailiff way you’re going to build your“I is tostay sell more so predilection for rescuing ho I’d been both sides of the socontinued often,” she explains. them through any issues that might occur ornext seen a steady increase in the amount of referrals and this year, it’s clear he’s on the right path. own vacation Art recalls, “and after my busisays, “and spending t buyers and sellers, and Iagent believe we are truly inhomes,” the minority background in building I can give advice about remodassemb Having committed himself full time to real estate, M tem while also maintaining hislooks real estate license for thepresent final six likely toI want to invest commercial properties. If an wants Jersey Association ofin Realtors. the market and remain one of the top-producing agents that more opportunities themselves. You can handle them “I’m also very honest and make myself available to The future bright for Limarys, and her goal is to horses I’ve adopted, numerous chicken understood what it was like to move and to settle into a new community, after thesomeone close, and put their needs first and foretowards a bright future. “I want to continue to grow of those years. “As a bailiff I interacted with acan variety of with people among comes to helping our clients underCurrently, the lion’s share of D repeat business since he started, which he credits tothey hisagents ness collapsed due to an earthquake, I decided to sell at the lake, or at the to develop more repeat business, need to when be ableitto offer more yourself or you partner else to learn a new aspect Ready to Buy Your Home? One ofSell the“My surest metrics oi inrealizing my industry,” she says. Finally, with three decades says with aor laugh. husband says eling and the space’s potential.” how to them always. They seeservices me as someone they trust; one hundred transactions perhelps year.true This be so can I figured that wasclose something I could bring to theexperience table.” were complex situations. That says. “Ishould have extremely talented agents that put most.” the transaction, she sends them gifts and to their clients and stand not justtheir bewho perceived as who of thehe business”. Stephen with his mantra, “Ifbased you want rights assomeone a consumer.” Beata’s ongives referrals, a sure sign onemuch ofAdditionally, my homes because I concludes needed some money. When back tohave his co commitment to providing superior service. No experiencing matter how grows, his loveAfter for this the real estate business is th he’s going to put me out.” Wendy als Today, Janet serves clients across southern New of insight behind her, Janet Passio considers what ®Jersey, as a friend. They know that not just for the noinproblem for someone asyoumotivated asmy she is, though Love Animals? Let us Help! leadership, while we collectively build our moment me asany a REALTOR to new be creative and quick when negotiating, itoncan b could sellI’m their house. I can there truly help with real estate need.” to sell more, then need to sellout more.” reaches on aproperty, regular basis ascharitable well as holidays. longtime involvement the construction arena and highly-competitive real I went in tovalues a helping real estate office to list the efforts. industry will remain. “I like people and solving business thatgiven is based repe Nineteen years in, Wendy has grown Reddy Estate acareer community that has her soestate much particularly of,problem Gloucester, Camden, she most in her thus far. “I they love helping or simply de-escalating a Real situation.” Ininto June ofhighlymoney.” Additionally, Limarys in– the whocounties isher married to solving, admits that she does require some help: “I’m a understanding of she structural issues gives her a leg up on Chris also hosts a customer appreciation day where we have a high-quality pro More than that, Jacqueline fights for her clients. “I’m offered me atojob.” Art had previously his and Cori’s hovers, impressive local YWCA, she works boutique agency that isfull recognized for its integrity-based “An informed client builds trust. Burlington, I prep themSalem, soreputable when problems. That’s the best about it.” Markpurchased was recently elected bycurrently his colleagues to with the A 2018Cape Mark May—though dedicated himself timepart the industry, stepping Atlantic, and my clients what is probably one of the biggest much of their competition. invites past and current clients. needs,” says Dana, aske Ifall you BUY or SELL home with us,when a militarycomes veteran is particularly passionate about says. “So with allshe ofshe my business is based on ® land Association of REALTORS away from theChristian,” public sector. Board of Direct ownshe home on gorgeous Lake Cushman and had spent “I really love what Ithd been told by my clients that business ethos and proven track record of helping its clients achieve through ayour community bible study grou tough negotiator,” tells Top Agent. “I work very something up –they remember going over itlead. she follows wherever clients Under theabanner decisions they’ll make in their lifetime,” she reflects. weappointed will donate $150 toleadership ANY registered impressive consumer loyalty. byso ACAR to hold the disting helping and selland homes. what God provides me.” that I’mright down toshe earth and their real estate goals. Wendy currently oversees an equally-dedicated committees and boards,” says, “my many weekends there prior to selling the area, he is property for so with me,” veterans Jon says. buy “That trust confidence brings of Weichert Realtors, she works in conjunction with “Helping clients find what they’re looking for and

WENDY REDDY

REALTOR Vendors and Real Estate Companies— Get Nationwide & International exposure! hard to make even sure my clients aretonot being taken Thorough, thoughtful – enhanced further for thisChris area, also having When it comes marketing, exceeds when asked what it been is about team of five agents marketing and support staff, which includes her a passionate representative for husband anyone looking to live light up. That’s thebor ex

rescue organization of “Everything your Mark and his team of seven serve the Northeast Ohio area. His animal of Tomorrow’s Leader Today. has seem

me referrals and repeata customers.” Throughout full-time assistant and a the buyer’s agent. Over the be and their home for years toWhile come—it’s a photography big choice and in your name. dedication to being genuine meanswhat heof, haswill atalents return referral full circle for I always thought mythat desire le by Sara’s exceptional targeted social media – has My team can feel energy advantage and that getting ame.fair market expectations, offering professional and much of her competition istofoc John Cardwell, who specializes in farm and land sales inthey’re therate outlying loyalty. Cori’s stellar work e there. “This area issuccess so beautiful,” says. “We’ve gotenjoy Limarys’ Jon assessment is them backed bymaking the impressive of an aastonishing 92inpercent, while having a tremendous sale priceitheseriously. would bring me to government. Now I’m able to course ofupdated, herup career, she has driven more than 70% responsibility and I take I also the transaction, is keeping sure also played large role the pair’s continuing contagious. I love what do as afast as they can, Wendy’s plans for 3D present tours. “It provides way to tour a house for online rural areas of their historic city. Wendy is their quick to credit that team, play when assessing herI abou con value for what home is worth.” a huge lake with snow-capped mountain peaks behind Buy AND Sell your house with us, to list price ratio of 99%; he maintains said rates by being leadership with my profession. I’m passionate of glowing testimonials has received forboth story. “We’re certified stagers,”friendships says Beata,machine, “so we of her business through repeat and referral clientele. I’ve developed over the years. I’ve met so nonumber one is left in the dark. Even aftershe the transaction, make a great first impression are more in walk keeping withthat theinto highly which operates proverbial for much of people get this shoppers, so they can virtually through it,” she in the lives like of histhe clients, staying inwell-oiled touch via mailers, phone calls says. ”I“So appreciate the fact every day wetry,” willMark donate $300. it. It’s an amazing spot, and once people realize this is many exceptional value to our clients.” Careful prepaherstays services, including this one fromknowledgeable, “I’m dedicated, and experienced in the many wonderful people working in this business, and Jon in touch, calling his clients atZillow.com least provide once awhich mentality that has endeared herand toa her her continuing success. “Each person in my office is responsible going to be easy to make de and by not ending the relationship when the deal is closed. people achieve their real estate goals.” says. Chris also utilizes drones to capture images where they want to be, the becomes pretty easy,Dana to ration of their properties prior toof listing, high-quality beatakolpek.com/dog-campaign/ industry,” she says. “Igoput awill lot of time and care into I’m grateful for selling the extended family they’ve become.” truly cherishes the she relatsa “We’re going to aremain small,” perfectly illustrates her willingness and for handling ainformation different aspect thespecializes buying and process,” Jacqueline injob relocation, and she uses her quarter. “After I help them purchase a to house Iabove For more about Stephen Karbelk, “This is job, and it’s hard video of the house, property and amenities. be honest.” photography and athey unique, highly detailed brochure into a smooth her and other realtake estate of those big firms. I might a whata “Working I do. I’m awith full-time and I take my saysagent, Wendy, “and dooritrole very well. That translates self-motivated and disciplined beyond for aher clients: Limarys was check in after week, then month, then quarterly for please call 571-481-1037 email Stephen@RealMarkets.com expert knowledge the local area toone help herclients clients Beata Kolpek Sara Kolpek assure thatif each home is with presented in its bestoflight. enjoy training them and helping them transaction for our clients.” very seriously. It doesn’t matter I’m working 630-207-9909 when it comes to scheduling 630-306-4452 m theamazing. first year.She After I check six and months getsthat, things doneininevery a quick efficient Sara’s deft exploitation of theA media significant portion of Art’s business on bkolpek@pprhomes.com feel atinternet homeand in social their new homes. “I’m ishelping them find skolpek@pprhomes. tobased stay the course and keep doing first-time homebuyers, a condo, or a $500,000 listing— day most days…about 60wha ho and stayand in touch through campaigns.” special way, she was verydrip personable andOneasy to adept workat achieving quick referrals from satisfied customers, perhaps the surest Top Agent Magazine While sales for top dollar, Reddy RealCopyright Estate’s business thatthe creates intimate, For past four years,person I’ve their new community,” she says. “Whether it’s finding everyone I work with is treated with same high level of occasions, birthdays and anniversaries, clients with. Herlike extensive experience in real estate allowed sign by of the a job in the highly-competitive and goesweek above andabout beyond formillion them.” success best be measured factwell that done the lion’s share of and respect. I’m “It’s totallyimportant committed to might my clients, and I give Copyright Top$40 Agent Maga bestestate schools, fitness centers, or day-to-day places can also expect to receive a card. for their business is basedthe on repeat and referred clients, a significant real industry. “I don’t look at myself as being her to handle a difficult situation with ease. She put my price the past 4 years is abou them 110%.” To fi Forbetter more about Limarys Hernandez, them to and knowbest I am in-VEST-ed with Ithem from the where to dine, Iofhave a passion accomplishment in the like highly-competitive world real estate. than any other agent,” saysThis Art, for withconnecting typical for North my King and South Sno needs interests first, and would recommend loyalty is engendered byclients a host ofwith factors, chief among them Wendy’s beginning and beyond.” humility. “I’m just honest and straightforward and call 407-717-2464 or vis local resources.” her to anybody who Beyond wants toadvocating by or sellfor a house. I willinterests, Janet her clients’ isplease steadfast commitment to providing exceptional customer service. The To find out more about Mark Vittardi, I don’t pressure my clients in any way. I find that email LHernandez@TheLizTeam.com definitely choose heran again!” adept marketer. Her listing campaigns capture each gratitude clients feel for her attention to detail andbecause willingness works theyto know I’m not When it comes to marketing, Jonitsinsists doing his her with visit hisextremely websitewell, at depiero.com/users/mark-vittardi home in fineston light, beginning professional go above and beyond for them is made abundantly clear when is reading Working hard for her clients what Jacqueline, For more ab going to hound them into making an offerdrives or anything own photography and videos taken with professional photography, a personalized website, and broad expothe scores of glowing testimonials she has received, including this one please c Copyright Agent but else. she I’m alsojusttakes time forTop herself. Whenany she’s not going to guide them and Magazine answer Fa equipment. “I will do a walkthrough withfull clients before learn about Copyright Top Agen sure across the scopeposted of online listing platforms. on Zillow.com: “Wendy is a spectacularTo agent. Shemore sold our home Janet Passio email Bi questions they have.” photos so we can decideLikewise, what to feature,” he explains. changing people’s lives through real estate, she likes email JPassio@comcast.net, visit Inst quickly, found us a beautiful new home, and negotiated both a great her extensive experience allows to tap For her more information about Jon Myers, Jon provides simple tipsa clients can implement tofellow get price and early occupancy. She is very knowledge about Lynchburg JanetPassio.com, or and call 471 – 0229 wide-ranging network of professionals toacross travel with her family. While that(609) sometimes takes please call 910-537-0533 or e Magazine 3 the surrounding areas, very accurate and honest about home value, and the Top mostAgent value for their home. “Things like red mulch, or email Jon@DigTheVest.com is personable and kind. I highly recommend Wendy when looking for a

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3 Surefire Methods that Make for a Productive Meeting Sometimes a business meeting can achieve exactly what it sets out to do: communicate, assess actions, set goals, or otherwise. Other times, meetings can feel like a drain on your time and energy, and only advance your agenda in marginal ways. While meetings are an integral form of communication in the professional world, how can you ensure that they are both productive and worthwhile? 4

The truth is, it takes intentioned planning to make a meeting a success. A well-curated meeting makes partners and employees feel unified as a team, excited about what’s to come, and motivated to achieve a collective goal. With that in mind, consider a few approaches below to maximize your next meeting and ensure that all parties involved leave with a renewed sense of direction and inspiration.

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1. Create a detailed agenda in advance Oftentimes meetings are scheduled with a loose goal in mind—to hash out the terms of a contract or to strategize a new marketing campaign, for example. To ensure your meeting is productive, time-efficient, and achieves its end, create a detailed agenda in advance. This means breaking down your overarching goal into pieces and outlining what’s required to complete each component. You might also consider making time blocks for each respective component, so there is a clear structure and hierarchy in place. Not only does this ensure that time is used wisely and evenly, but it also creates order and momentum for the greater task at hand. What’s more, you’ll want to distribute this detailed agenda in advance of your meeting, so that all attendees will be familiar with the format and delineated goals of your gathering. This will set a professional tone, while keeping team members and conversation on task.

2. Reserve off-topics ideas and comments for later Too many meetings are derailed when an off-topic question or comment is made and hijacks the attentions of attendees. While it’s natural that outlying issues may arise when all team members are gathered, you can ward off distractions by creating a so-called holding area for off-topic talking points. This holding area will serve as the receptacle for any off-topic or lower priority addendum, and you can create a chunk of time towards the end of your meeting to readdress those Top Agent Magazine

points separately. Once you’ve achieved the highest priority goals of your meeting, you can then return to the items in your holding area. Note: be sure to familiarize your staff with this approach so that the expectation is already in place and interruptions won’t distract from your meeting’s true intent.

3. Conclude every meeting with a brief summary and action items The very last thing you should do before concluding your meeting is to reemphasize the main takeaways of your gathering and outline a specific list of action items. Again, successful meetings are clear and give attendees a sense of direction. That’s why reiterating action items—or next steps in need of completion—to each respective employee is an essential component of a productive meeting. Likewise, summarizing main takeaways unifies a team’s understanding of what’s important and why the meeting was called in the first place. Ending on a concrete yet proactive note helps launch team members toward the next event in their day and gives them a sense of confidence as they tackle their duties. Meetings don’t have to be a formality or a bore. When planned and executed with incisiveness, they can inspire your talent roster and streamline productivity in your office. Especially in the world of real estate, ensuring everyone is on the same page and doing their jobs effectively is key to success and longevity. Put a little planning into your next meeting, and you’ll save yourself valuable time and energy as you move forward.

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GERI FARRELLY Geri Farrelly has a secret weapon when it comes to servicing the real estate needs of the people of North Reading: she is truly one of them. Born and raised in North Reading, she and her husband are raising their two children in the town, and she’s served on various committees in town and with Massachusetts’ Realty Guild. People looking to buy or sell homes in North Reading could not find someone with more local expertise than Geri.

are present and involved in all sorts of aspects of the community, but perhaps the most fun way they get involved is their annual free ice cream event.

She got into real estate because her job was taking her away from North Reading so often. Her old career, teaching certification classes for physical therapy, took her all over the country. “I used to get stuck in airports all the time so I couldn’t get home to my husband and my children,” Geri recalls. “I couldn’t do that anymore. I had always liked real estate, but most of all I like helping people. So I took the exam and fifteen years later here I am.”

Geri has a very clear vision of the future, and what role the Farrelly Realty Group can play. “I want to stay involved in the community,” she says. “Being a part of the life of this town is so important to me. That’s why I’m looking to expand into commercial real estate - right now we’re residential only, and I think moving into commercial could be the next big step for us.”

“The day before school starts we hire two ice cream trucks,” Geri says. “We drive them all over town and give out free ice cream to kids the day before they go back to school. It’s become quite the local tradition!” When she’s not being a major force in North Reading, Geri likes to unwind. “I love to go to the gym, or go skiing,” she says. “But my very favorite thing to do with my time off is to go with my family down to the Cape.”

Where she is is the owner/broker of the Farrelly Realty Group, leading a team of seven agents who serve all of Massachusetts, but with a focus on Middlesex and Essex Counties. As the owner, Geri sets the standard for customer service for her agents. “We gear everything to our customer’s needs,” she explains. “We individualize every property, but more than that we work hard to remove as much of the stress and to make the transaction run as smoothly as possible. It’s important to us to always go the extra mile.” That commitment to quality is why the Farrelly Realty Group gets so much referral business, with Geri estimating 95% of her business as repeat or referral. But as an institution in North Reading, it’s no surprise that so many folks come to Farrelly Realty Group through word of mouth. After all, Geri and her team 6

To find out more about Geri Farrelly, visit farrellyrealtygroup.com, call 978-866-8658 or email geri@farrellyrealty.com www.

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Tom Patch and Mortgage Equity Partners are proud to congratulate

GERI FARRELLY

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

TOM PATCH

O: 781.309.1807 | C: 617.710.6353 MEPloans.com/TPatch http://http://

MLO# 142695 | NMLS #1936

MORTGAGE EQUITY PARTNERS, 200 Broadway, Suite 101, Lynnfield, MA 01940

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Reconsider Referral-Only When Planning for the Future

A 100% referral rate is a testament of client happiness. But even a 30% referral rate is proof of client satisfaction. It’s all relative, say some agents. One number pays tribute to past success, which is certainly a story worth telling. But the other might better predict the future. Many agents plan for the idea that 8

working only on referral may not be sufficient during slower times of the year, in a down market, or when an agent needs to expanding into a new sector. Unless you are clairvoyant enough to flawlessly predict every market change or every

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Many agents plan for the idea that working only on referral may not be sufficient during slower times of the year, in a down market, or when an agent needs to expanding into a new sector. life change that your clients and referral partners may experience, it’s wise to maintain an active marketing presence. The reasons vary, however, depending on the goals and trajectory of each individual’s business. If long-term success, a growing team, a legacy or expansion into new areas are not priorities, then working a sphere of influence may be enough for some agents, especially those who may be in the industry mostly for the love of the business. But for a majority of agents, no matter how much they love their work, their real estate and mortgage businesses are careers, first and foremost. Let’s start with the team-builders and mentors. Agents and brokers who are building teams are wise to invest in business marketing, advertising and community outreach. Ty Hutchins, who owns and operates Ty & Company Real Estate in Colorado’s Front Range, says that, while she could personally live off referrals alone, her goal is to build up her agents. “I do the marketing piece for my team, so I can help them succeed,” she says. That marketing includes running commercials on TV and in movies theatres, as well as lead generation that identifies potential buyers, sellers and Top Agent Magazine

investors between the Colorado Springs and Denver markets. Her team’s goal, she adds, is to promote their reputation of being honest, hardworking professionals with the reach of a major brand but the personalized approach of a boutique. Then there are the growers. Khrista Jarvis and Nicole Jung of The Khrista Jarvis Team in the San Francisco Bay Area, are on a considerable growth track. “We’re the #1 team in our area and the top team in Compass Real Estate nationally,” explains Khrista. While high marks for service on behalf of their clients have led them to these heights, they know that they must continue to evolve and market their brand. “We do a good deal of social media marketing for our listings and for our business,” she says. Their names, therefore, are frequently linked to sentiments of trust, dependability and market knowledge, both in their marketing and in their reviews. Next, there are those who weathered the worst of times. Susan Roche entered real estate sales in 2003, following several years of property management in North Carolina. The key to her sustained triumphs through major market swings lies in her long-range planning. “If the market starts to dip or fall,

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I have safety nets in place,” says Susan Roche, team leader of Simply Real Estate, based in Charlotte. “When it’s a seller’s market, I still plan for a buyer’s market and when it’s a buyer’s market I plan for a seller’s market..” In other words, no matter how comfortable her existing work may feel, she networks consistently. She also employs a full-time marketing director who leads several projects including ongoing research, events and social media exposure in addition to listings marketing. By staying ahead of market changes, Susan knows she can unfailingly represent her clients’ best interests while still maintaining a safety net for her business. Even professionals with more than three decades’ experience and deep referral networks know the importance of business

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marketing. Cathy Richards, co-owner with Nancy Dalaska of Epic-Wasatch Homes in Park City, UT, entered real estate in 1987 and still draws at least a fifth of her business from lead generation, social media marketing and community outreach. Her business partner, Nancy, adds that real estate is about much more than their own business. “We love collaborating and brainstorming with other agents to help them prosper,” says Nancy. “We believe the healthier the market, the better we all are.” Regardless of market conditions, even the best reputation can’t guarantee long-term success. To sustain and grow, it’s wise to feed your business by increasing exposure, remaining flexible and maintaining systems for customer service, networking, research, marketing and lead-generation.

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CHRISTOPHER ORTIZ

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CHRISTOPHER ORTIZ Christopher Ortiz is new to the real estate game but he’s hit the ground running and garnered a lot of attention in his Sonoma County home base. A natural people person, Christopher moved into real estate after many years of trying on different careers, looking for the one that fit his style of liking people and wanting to serve them. “I love people,” Christopher says. “I love helping people. I love helping them deal with the challenges we need to overcome to get the deal over the finish line. I love networking and meeting new people and figuring out how I can help them.” Christopher has taken that passion and turned it into success. Two years into his career, he’s building a solid base of referrers, and that comes from his dedication to working differently. “This is a very competitive business,” he tells Top Agent. “So I go out of my way to offer something different to clients. I bring value in unique ways, like helping them with closing costs or relocation expenses. I have sacrificed some of my commission to do things like that for my clients.”

He’s bringing that love of food and people and his community together in a video project intended to highlight some of the great eateries in Sonoma County. “We do professionally shot video reviews of local restaurants - new ones and overlooked classics - and present them for free on our website,” Christopher says. “That allows us to support local business while also getting our name out there.” Getting his name out there is vital to Christopher, who is looking forward to a long career in real estate. At 27 he knows that his age can be both an advantage and a challenge. “I sometimes get asked at the end of the process, ‘How old are you?’” he laughs. But he has proven with MULTIPLE MILLION DOLLAR SALES, that age is not the number that matters in real estate. “My goal this year is to move into my own office,” Christopher says. “But I also have longterm goals. I want to diversify and keep being innovative with my marketing. And I want to do that while still being the genuine and personal agent I’ve been these last couple of years.”

But more than that, what Christopher brings is honesty. “I am upfront and honest with my clients,” he says. “I’m genuine with them, and very personal. That makes a difference, and I’ve gotten reviews noting that I’m not just the average salesman - that I bring something more direct and personal to the deal.” When he’s not working, Christopher likes to stay in shape, and it’s a good think he loves fitness, because he also loves a good barbecue. “I love food and I love entertaining,” he says. “I love having people over to my house and just enjoying some music, some family and some friends.” 12

To find out more about Christopher Ortiz visit christopherortiz.cbintouch.com, call 707-623-2902 or email christopher.ortiz@cbnorcal.com www.

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Turn Open Houses into Destinations People are busy. Even those who are actively looking to buy a house or want to learn about the market for a future purpose have busy schedules. But with bit of added time, creativity and investment in making open house into destinations, you’ll see greater turnout. And we all know that greater turnout increases the likelihood of offers. There are several creative ways to hold an open house with a mindset of hospitality and with the goal of providing something of value to each person who attends. Top Agent Magazine

The neighbors-only open house Some agents embrace the “nosy neighbor” concept as a benefit, not an eye-rolling challenge. With his client’s permission, Wesley Peters, a Keller Williams broker in the Baltimore Metro Area, often gets the neighbors together before a home hits the market. “We invite other brokers, too, but we include as many neighbors as we can,” he says, explaining that he schedules these events for a Thursday or Friday evening, happy hour-style, rather than midday on a Sunday. They get a better turnout at 5:00 pm than

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midday on a weekend when the neighbors are busy with their lives. In a relaxed setting, conversations flow, neighbors can mingle and catch up, and the buzz begins before the home is listed. In advance, prepare invitations and hand-deliver them to homes on the streets you and your client agree are best to include. The destination is the event; the value each attendee receives is the social interaction and the removal of any awkwardness over visiting their neighbor’s house. Your client’s benefit is the buzz. A turnkey block party any time of year Once a property is listed, some agents take on the role of party planners. Certain streets or neighborhoods, they find, are perfect for lowkey social occasions. In some place, such as neighborhoods with many young families, a bounce-house or games may even ramp up the fun factor. But the idea of a seemingly spontaneous block party during an open house can be easy to pull off, whether you’re serving lemonade and cookies or coffee and pastries. The chance to meet prospective neighbors turns the event into a destination for both buyers and the neighbors; the value comes in buyers’ ability to see how the neighbors interact. Your seller’s benefit is that the grapevine will be filled with happy stories about their home. Tips: By keeping basic supplies in storage, you’ll be ready for a pop-up block party any time. Promote this type of event with targeted social media marketing and fliers or postcards to communities within a short distance of your listing. Invite other professionals It’s common mortgage lenders to attend open houses. But why not provide even more value to people who attend? Chances are, you have more than a handful of professional partners who welcome an opportunity to join you at your open house. Consider inviting an interior designer, a contractor, a gardener, even a gardener or a painter. Invite them to your broker’s open in advance or give them time to view the property 14

before the open house begins. Then encourage them to stroll the property during the open house or to sit with you. When visitors ask about needs or concerns they may have about the house – such as loan questions, the cost of improvements or upgrades or even remodeling – you’ll be able to introduce them to an expert on the spot. For that matter, your invited pros don’t even necessarily have to be in home-related businesses! Prospective buyers always want to know about the community when visiting open houses. Consider inviting representatives of community

organizations, like youth sports group or owners of mom-and-pop retailers to help your visitors get a feel for the neighborhood or town. For this type of open-house, prepare a flyer or card with your community contacts on it so visitors can leave with resources as well as information. Open house should be about the buzz. They’re about creating a conversation about your listing and making the home memorable to visitors. By giving people a unique experience they won’t forget, you’ll show your sellers how creative you are in meeting their needs.

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HEIDI BECKER Georgia-based Heidi Becker first built a successful career in the nonprofit world before jumping into real estate. It’s something she does not regret, as it has helped her become a prolific agent. Heidi feels engagement in the community is a key factor to her success as an award winning realtor. She has held various roles in the community, including Vice President of the Board for domestic violence group Promise Place. “As a Certified Fundraising Executive, I have helped organizations raise millions of dollars for abused women and children. Through all that, I never stopped thinking about or loving real estate,” Heidi says. She owns several investment properties herself, including a historic home on Main Street in Fayetteville, which she painted purple to honor victims of Alzheimer’s. Heidi obtained her real estate license and hit the ground running. She joined Keller Williams Atlanta Partners in 2017, working full time as a residential and commercial specialist. Because of her relationship with charitable organizations, she includes them in her business plan. On the sale of every listing, she makes a donation to her client’s favorite charity. If they don’t have one, Heidi is happy to share her knowledge and help them choose. Heidi is involved in the business community and is an ambassador for her local Chamber of Commerce. Knowing feeling safe in your neighborhood is important, she started an annual community safety event where top officials answer questions from the public. Because of her involvement, she has had no difficulty growing her business. In 2018, Heidi was named Top KW Commercial Producer, and number 6 Residential Agent in her market center. Heidi plans to grow her company even more by starting a team this year. Whether they are a buyer or seller, clients can expect exceptional service from Heidi with guidance throughout the transaction. She goes above and beyond when it Top Agent Magazine

comes to marketing, with an assistant who promotes her listings through enhanced online presence, social media and advertisements. Heidi also uses a professional photographer who captures each property in its best light, with drone shots, videos and photos. She is dedicated to whatever means necessary to get your property under contract and sold as quickly as possible. Even after the transaction is over, Heidi makes sure to stay in touch, inviting her friends and past clients to happy hour every month. “I call it First Friday with Heidi. It’s been a great way to show appreciation for my clients. It’s a non-working event, so I don’t even bring business cards,” she explains. As Heidi looks towards the future, she is excited to continue growing and serving her clients. For her, it doesn’t even feel like work. “I don’t like what I do, I LOVE what I do. I feel honored to help clients buy, sell, or invest in residential and commercial properties. I strive to be one of the best agents there is, because my clients deserve the best!” For more information about Heidi Becker, please call 678-548-7294 or email heidi@heidibeckerrealtor.com.

Heidi’s luxury listing she recently sold.

Community Safety Event with Fayetteville mayor, Chief of Police, and officials.

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GRACE BLOODWELL Top Agent Grace Bloodwell – one third of the Shea Rivkind & Bloodwell Team at Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage in Charlestown, Massachusetts – is a dedicated real estate professional who is committed to providing her buyers and sellers with the best customer service available in the greater Boston area. A consistent top producer who regularly closes over twenty million dollars annually and who has been ranked among the top 6% of all agents nationwide, Grace’s commitment to hard work and integrity has translated into a stellar reputation as a trusted real estate advocate. Grace began her career in real estate in 2002 as a junior at Harvard University upon the advice of her mother. “I began selling during the summers for extra money,” Grace recalls. “When I graduated, I was pursuing several careers. I had three jobs and was unsure of my direction. I lucked out and was hired by four incredible mentors at Gibson Real Estate Charlestown - Steven Ozer, Rosemary Kverek, Ken Stone, and Duncan Gillespse. From there, I never looked back. Real estate became my passion.” A longtime solo agent, Grace recently joined forces with fellow Top Agents and seasoned Brokers Tracy Shea and Stephanie Rivkind. “We each have our own business, but we collaborate on deals as well,” she says. “It’s benefited us tremendously to leverage each other’s knowledge, and it benefits the client to have three Top Agents working for him or her. It also happens to be really fun working with two great people.” Currently, the lion’s share of Grace’s business is based on repeat and referred clients, an impressive statistic that illustrates the exceptional level of customer service she provides. “I follow-through, and I’m detail-oriented,” says Grace, when asked how she has managed to inspire such impressive loyalty and trust, “I put the best interests of my clients first and I am an efficient communicator.” Additionally, Grace’s longevity in the industry, coupled 16

with her past experience as an appraiser, provides her clients with significant added value. Unique marketing strategies have also played a significant role in Grace’s success story. In addition to Coldwell Banker’s industry-leading online tools, Grace employs a powerful combination of supplemental tactics, including personal phone calls to brokers who may have clients interested in an upcoming listing, phone calls to non-brokers or “connectors” whose networks might yield a buyer, excellent social media marketing, as well as targeted mailings. When she’s not working, Grace enjoys golfing and traveling, and she is also an ardent philanthropist. A fourteen-year board member of the Friends of City Square Park, she currently acts as Governor of City Square Park. She has also served on the board of The Charlestown Boys and Girls Club, and has been involved in the Charlestown youth soccer and basketball programs. Grace’s plans for the future are straightforward: to continue growing her business, while sacrificing none of the incredible service that has become synonymous with her name. “I want my clients to walk away from the transaction thinking that I was thorough, genuine, knowledgeable, and efficient,” she says, and judging by the scores of glowing reviews she has received, Grace has absolutely already achieved that goal.

For more about Grace Bloodwell, please call 617-512-4939 or email Grace.Bloodwell@NEMoves.com Copyright Top Top Agent Agent Magazine Magazine


5 Morning Habits to Make Your Day Super Productive For many, most mornings begin with a rush—a rush to get dressed, a rush to find something edible for breakfast, a rush out the door and into rush hour. Likely you have heard articles advising you to set your

alarm early to give yourself some flexibility —which is sound advice, of course—but consider a few of these additional tweaks to your morning routine that can set a productive tone for your day at large.

1. Keep Screens Away Until Breakfast Oftentimes, our first instinct upon waking is to check-in on our phones, tablets, or computers, to scope out the latest social media updates and e-mail correspondence. While diving into the action might seem productive, studies show that waylaying screen time until you’re up and dressed, and have had a good breakfast, will actually make your first pass Top Agent Magazine

at all things digital more focused, clear, and efficient. Instead of answering a few e-mails, checking out a friend’s photos, and then hurrying to shower and dress, instead make a resolution to keep the online world at bay for the first half-hour to an hour after you rise, then you’ll approach the digital world with fresh eyes, energy, and adeptness.

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2. Meal Prep Sometimes hitting the snooze button is inevitable, but if you make prepping breakfast the night before a part of your routine, then grabbing something healthy on the go will be a snap—and your stomach will thank you for it. Load up your coffee machine ahead of time, so all you have to do

is hit brew. Or, chop up a fruit salad, mix a smoothie, or simply put a granola bar and a grapefruit in your lunch bag, ready to be grabbed on your way out the door. Even if it’s small or basic, keeping yourself fueled will keep distractions, inefficiency, and mood swings at bay.

3. Queue Up a Podcast on Your Commute Whether you’re driving, biking, or taking public transportation into the office, a podcast is a perfect way to brush up on industry knowledge. Try sourcing a podcast relative to your field and narrated by experts. Not only will it get you thinking about the topics of your industry—while expanding

your professional vocabulary—it will also wake up your brain and get your head in the game as you prepare to launch your day. Use your commute time to bump up your knowledge and conversation points, and you’ll be ahead of the curve before you reach the office.

4. Begin with a To-Do List When work gets busy, sometimes just getting started is an overwhelming prospect. Before you dive in to your e-mails and projects, take twenty minutes and be thoughtful as you assess your daily and weekly to-do

list items, then map them. By giving yourself a bullet point system of what you need to accomplish and by when, you can undo some of the anxiety that a busy schedule promotes.

5. Walk It Out, Even If You Missed the Gym While we often rely on coffee for our morning buzz, exercise provides a potent burst of energy that can supercharge your day. But, let’s say you’re running behind and skip the gym—all is not lost! Take fifteen minutes in

the early morning to take a walk around the block a few times. The fresh air and aerobic exercise will wake you up, get your blood moving, and provide your morning with a natural injection of motivation.

Everyone’s morning routine varies, but perhaps the first step is identifying aspects of your routine that could be improved, and tackling them from there. From waylaying

screen time distractions to getting in a little blood-pumping exercise, keep these tips in mind as you launch your most productive morning routine ever.

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DIANA CAMPBELL After earning her degree and completing a long and successful tenure in restaurant management, Diana Campbell was ready for her next challenge. When she was buying her own home, she enjoyed the process so thoroughly that she continued to comb the market long after her closing day. Drawing upon her existing skillsets and interests, she knew that real estate would make for a natural fit. Thirteen years later, Diana has built a dynamic business and team, along with a reputation for integrity, client-centric care, and a lasting vision for the future. Today, Diana heads a team that includes agents, administrative staff, and a client care manager. When launching the team, Diana merged her existing business with her husband Craig’s, and together they have put significant effort into cultivating a well-rounded roster of talent. Under the banner of Royal LePage, Diana and her team serve clients across Montreal’s western suburbs, with inroads Downtown and elsewhere. “Each team member has their own area of expertise, and together we cover a pretty diverse range across the greater Montreal region,” she says. What’s more, a significant contingent of business is driven by repeat and referral clientele—amounting to roughly 85% of their overall clientshare. This milestone is no accident. Nurturing lasting relationships with clients is foundational to Diana’s professional ethos, and she cites intuitive customer service as the leading driver of her working style. “Everyone on our team is experienced, knowledgeable, and we offer those important resources when it comes to sales and negotiating,” she explains. “What it really comes down to is making sure the clients know that we’re there for them. Our motivations aren’t transaction based, because we’re not in it for the dollar. We’re in it for the relationships and we keep that focus central in all aspects of what we do.” When it comes to listing properties, Diana and her team ensure that homes are primed to make a memorable debut. Beginning with photography and coverage using their office-owned 3D Tour camera, properties are documented in their finest and most immersive light.

From there, Diana and her team give clients a concise homework kit that encourages a nuanced layer of insight when marketing. “We get to know what sellers love about their homes, what the neighbors are like, and we’re able to add that extra touch to our marketing text,” she explains. “We take the extra time and effort to really consider a property from the prospective of a potential buyer, and that helps us set the listing apart.” From there, they capture wide-ranging visibility through exposure across the leading online listing platforms, social media outlets, and through their website. “We want clients to always know where they stand,” Diana says. “Our team is knowledgeable, adept at negotiating, and our aim is to offer every element of service a client could want. We always want to go above and beyond and exceed expectations.” Beyond the office, Diana and her team give back through hosting client appreciation events, including fitness fundraising efforts for worthy causes. “We love to maintain that personal touch and fun element with clients, even after closing,” she says. “We like to get involved, have face-to-face time, and show our clients and community they’re appreciated.” In her free hours, Diana most enjoy time spent with her family and loved ones, and staying active through boot camp classes, triathlons, and her weekly water polo match. She also enjoys traveling with her husband and family, entertaining friends, and playing cards. As for the future of her business, Diana is eager to expand her leadership role and refine her team. “Our focus isn’t on a being the biggest team, but the best team,” she says. “I’m really enjoying my management role, working on the business, building systems, and creating a finely tuned machine. Wearing multiple hats is really fun and exciting.” With their first new construction project in the works and an impressive team of agents and leaders at the helm, momentum remains on the upswing. Now, with thirteen years of experience and insight guiding her, the future appears bright for Diana Campbell and her team.

To learn more about Diana Campbell, call (514) 264 – 2933, email DianaCampbell@RoyallePage.ca, or visit teamcc.ca www.

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GABRIELA DAJER Ranked among the top agents in the country by the Wall Street Journal, Realtor Gabriela Dajer – of One Sotheby’s International Real Estate in Coral Gables, Florida – is a consummate professional. Having sold well over 500 million during the course of her fourteen-year career, Gabriela brings to the real estate game a wealth of industry knowledge and true concern for the best interests of her many grateful buyers and sellers. Gabriela began her career in real estate back in 2005, when she was still attending college, and began working for veteran agent Mayi del la Vega, thenowner of Stewart de la Vega Group. Upon graduating with dual degrees in International Business and Marketing, Gabriela was promoted to sales, initially working with that company’s luxury listings. When de la Vega purchased her own Sotheby’s franchise in 2010, Gabriela stayed on with her and has been working under that banner ever since. Perhaps the most accurate measure of Gabriela’s success is the fact that the entirety of her business is based upon clients who return for her services again and again, and customers who are referred to her. “This is a relationship business,” says Gabriela, when asked how she manages to inspire such impressive trust and loyalty in the highly-competitive world of real estate. “It’s all about people. Every transaction is very personal to me, and my clients always become my friends. I take what I do very seriously.” That focus on relationships is also applied to her competition, noteworthy in a field that can be notoriously competitive and cut-throat. “I pride myself on having great relationships with other agents, because I feel that people like to work with people they like,” she explains. “It increases my business because other agents like to work with other Realtors who are going 20

to make the process easier and seamless. I think it makes a big difference.” Gabriela, who is also fluent in Spanish, has also achieved Top Agent status through her comprehensive and thoughtful marketing strategies. Gorgeous professional photography is utilized exclusively to showcase each of her listings in the best light possible. “ We don’t mind spending a lot of money on that, because first impressions are very important,” she says. A robust internet presence and deft exploitation of social media, coupled with print ads in high-profile publications ensure maximum exposure for each of her properties, almost guaranteeing quick sales for top dollar, and of course, satisfied clients. When she’s not working, Gabriela likes to spend time with her family, which includes three young children. “We love to be outdoors, go on the boat or in the pool,” she says. As for the future, Gabriela looks forward to continuing to grow her business, while sacrificing none of the exceptional client service that has become her stockin-trade. “I love what I do,” says Gabriela. “I love meeting new people and helping them reach their real estate goals.”

For more information about Gabriela Dajer, please call 786-290-3832 or email GDajer@onesothebysrealty.com Copyright Top Top Agent Agent Magazine Magazine


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 22

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ALISON ELDER Top Agent Alison Elder has spent more than twenty-five years leveraging her local knowledge and commitment to excellence in customer service towards helping her many grateful buyers and sellers achieve their real estate goals in the scenic Lake Tahoe area of California. Honesty, integrity and her client-first business ethos have resulted in her stellar reputation as an agent who can be consistently trusted to put her customers’ needs front and center during every transaction. As Principle of The Elder Group, Alison works with a large, equally-dedicated team that includes her husband of thirty years, Desmond, who is the company’s Managing Partner. Desmond also runs his own mortgage brokerage, Pacific Bay Lending, which provides additional value to their clients. “It’s been a really great partnership,” says Alison. As an official “Shop” of international industry giant Engel & Volkers, Alison assists both buyers and sellers, specializing in the second home and resort markets in Lake Tahoe and its beautiful waterside communities nestled in the majestic Sierra Nevada mountains. A significant portion of Alison’s business is based on repeat and referred clients, perhaps the most accurate measure of a job well done in the highly-competitive real estate industry. “I believe it’s because we are so client-centric in our approach,” says Alison, when asked what inspires such impressive customer confidence and loyalty. “We provide a very concierge level of bespoke service, attention and responsiveness to our clients.” That attention to detail and customer care resulted in 141 closed transactions and nearly $100MM in volume in 2018. Alison cherishes the strong relationships she forms with her clients, and works hard to maintain and nourish them. In addition to a highly-customized CRM system, she also reaches out to them regularly through a variety of methods. “It’s everything from recognizing their Top Agent Magazine

birthdays, inviting them to our Fourth of July parade, or just stopping by their homes to say hello during the holidays,” she explains. Extensive, thorough and intelligent marketing strategies have also played a major role in the success of The Elder Group. Beginning with excellent photography and staging, Alison makes certain that each listing is shown in its best light. A robust internet presence – her partnership with both Engel & Volkers and online marketing allows for prominent placement on over 860 websites worldwide – and deft exploitation of social media platforms ensures that each of her properties are seen by as many potential buyers as possible. Giving back to her community is also a priority for Alison, and she does so through a variety of ways, including a six-year stint on the local Cancer Advisory Council, helping establish the Tahoe Forest Gene Upshaw Memorial Cancer Center. She also served on the Best of Tahoe Chef’s Committee for many years, which raised funds to provide free psychosocial programs for cancer patients, among many other philanthropic efforts. When asked about her plans for the future of her business, Alison expresses a desire to continue growing her business. That growth, however, will not come at the expense of the stellar customer service that has become her calling card.

For more information about Alison Elder, please call 530-582-8103 or email tahoe@alisonelder.com or Alison.elder@evusa.com Copyright Top Agent Magazine 23


GAVIN ERNSTONE Gavin Ernstone brings decades of real estate experience to bear when helping his clients find their Las Vegas dream homes. From his earliest days in London - where he started in the industry at age 17 - to his twenty-five years of experience in the Vegas market, Gavin has understood that attention to detail and a top level of customer service would set him apart from his competitors and serve his clients well. Today Gavin stands atop a veritable real estate empire. He’s well known as the Dream Home Specialist, regularly carrying 20 to 25 luxury listings ranging in price from a million and a half to 16 million dollars. But beyond that he owns Simply Vegas, a luxury full service firm that currently has nearly 400 agents working on some of the most high end real estate in Clark County. As if that wasn’t enough to keep him busy, Gavin has a magazine, Vegas Dreams Magazine, that he uses to highlight some of the most stunning luxury properties across the city.

As busy as Gavin is, he still finds time for one of his great passions: racing. He races in the International Motor Sports Association’s Michelin Pilot Sports Cup series, his car emblazoned with the Simply Vegas logo. “I’m a luxury agent primarily,” he says. “But I’m a race car driver because I love doing it.” Gavin is speeding towards a big future. “It’s a very exciting time in Las Vegas,” he explains. “The luxury market in the last seven or eight years has really flourished and we’ve seen some amazing houses being built and some incredible people come to town. If these trends continue to develop, there’s going to be some truly great stuff to be sold.”

But all of that comes second to the simple pleasures of working with clients and bringing the personal touch. “I enjoy spending time with my clients,” Gavin says. “I like getting to know them and finding the right house at a great price that suits them.” While he works in the luxury space, Gavin keeps his feet firmly planted in the local community. “I’m on the board of Habitat For Humanity in Las Vegas,” he says. “And I’m the board chair for special events. Every year I hold an event at one of my listings and up to 300 people come, and in the last two years we’ve raised over $300,000 for Habitat.” 24

To find out more about Gavin Ernstone visit his website at thedhs.com, call 702-523-3677 or email him at gavin@thedhs.com www.

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Things the Best Leaders Never Say

As Spider-Man’s Uncle Ben said, “With great power, comes great responsibility.” Being the boss is a great thing, but there’s a reason the ‘bad boss’ is common stereotype. Some people tend to use their power in destructive ways and that isn’t good for anyone. You might not even know you’re being a bad boss, it can be subtle sometimes. There are common traits among great leaders, if you want to be a boss that operates with integrity and is respected by everyone

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you work with, make sure you don’t say any of the following things.

1

I’M THE BOSS

Stating a fact that should be obvious is always a sign of weakness, and when you are the boss, strength of leadership is THE key component. It also may indicates a stubbornness that is the death knell of a healthy work environment. Your job as a leader is to bring everyone to your level of success, not to create a larger rift.

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2

6

I’LL DO IT MYSELF

Being a good leader is all about delegation. If you are hiring people who are professional and trustworthy, then this should be a no brainer. It is your job as a leader to get the right people for the job and then lead them in away that means success for everyone.

3

THAT WASN’T MY FAULT

There’s an old saying “The Buck Stops Here.” and that is still true today. Good leaders take responsibility for what happens. They don’t blame others or make excuses. They take the hit for the team and then find the solution to make it better. Not only does it show they have integrity, but it also fosters a warm team environment that makes all players feel like their boss has their back.

4

I’M SORRY TO ASK YOU TO DO THIS

Treating your employees with respect is mandatory, at the same time there is no reason to be sorry when you ask people to do their job. Leadership is strength and confidence. Expecting your employees to put in the same work ethic as you is your job.

5

I ALREADY KNOW THAT

Having a ‘know-it-all’ attitude isn’t pleasant coming from anyone, but the last thing you need to do as a boss is shut down the people working for you. If you give them the impression that you’ve thought of everything, why should they bother giving potentially valuable contributions? Make people feel good about all input, even if you don’t think it will work or have already thought of it. Open flow of communication and ideas is key to a successful team. 26

THAT’S NOT THE WAY WE DO IT HERE

Well, why not? Being a successful leader means always being open to change and improvement. No great leader is ever accepting of the status quo. It’s not only lazy, it’s uninspiring and usually leads to a work environment that is stagnate. Yes, keep things that work going, but nothing should ever be untouchable. Creative thinking should never be faced with constant roadblocks. A good option is to always ask for more information. Let your employee show you why they think their way might be better. This gets them energized and excited to approach you with more in the future.

7

I’M NOT HERE TO MAKE FRIENDS

This is a workplace, not a reality show competition. Good leaders know that building strong workplace relationships, with employees, vendors and peers, is the foundation of a successful business

8

DON’T BRING ME BAD NEWS

No true leader avoids bad news. They confront everything head on because as we said above, they know that ultimately everything is their responsibility, and ignoring a potential problem will most likely end up being worse down the road. Good leaders want to know bad news right away, and the last thing you want is to foster a work environment where employees feel like they have to lie to you.

9

YOU JUST DON’T GET IT.

You’re the boss. If someone who works under you is having trouble understanding something, it’s on you to make it clear to them. Getting frustrated makes them less likely to ask for help in the future. Sharing your expertise and experience is not only generous, but a necessary tool in the success of your business.

Top Agent Magazine

Top Agent Magazine


KILEY FLINT When Kiley Flint moved to Crested Butte, Colorado in 1999, she knew she’d be there for the rest of her life. “I realized it was home for me,” she said. Wanting to help others make a home there as well, she got her license and became an agent in 2004. She hasn’t looked back since; and can’t imagine a more fulfilling career. Today, she has an assistant/marketing director, and covers all of Gunnison Valley. Her business is largely based off of referrals, which she credits to her communication and availability. “My communication with my clients is very important,” she says. “I want to be involved with my buyers and sellers every step of the way, guiding them through the process.” Kiley is also extremely detail oriented, making sure no stone is left unturned. When working with Kiley, clients never feel the need to call her for an update, as she is always keeping them in the loop. “I provide the highest level of service to my clients,” she explains. She has extensive experience in luxury properties; but is happy to help any and all clients. Even after the transaction is over, Kiley makes it a point to stay in touch, sending out monthly newsletters and market reports. “I mail out a mid and year-end report,” Kiley says. “I send updates on property values and am always in touch regarding upcoming local events.”

her up and until the very end when the transaction was completed. She is truly a knowledgeable real estate professional. We would highly recommend her to act as an agent for anyone interested in selling or buying real estate in Crested Butte/Gunnison area.” When Kiley isn’t working, she’s staying involved with the community or spending time outdoors. She served on the Crested Butte Land Trust Board for the last eight years and was president for two. Her favorite hobbies include skiing, hiking, playing golf and any water activity. As she looks towards the future, she’s eager to continue growing her business. In the meantime, she’s enjoying every minute of the journey. “Meeting people is what I love most about it. I’ve been fortunate to have a great clientele base, many become lifelong friends.”

When it comes to marketing, Kiley also goes above and beyond, offering professional videography, photography, Matterport tours, blogging and social media exposure. Working with the brokerage LIV Sotheby’s International Realty, she is able to reach a wide audience. After the transaction is over, clients love to spread the word about her work. One recently said, “Kiley provided personal and professional advice and guidance from the beginning when we first listed our condo with Top Agent Magazine

For more information about Kiley Flint, please call 970-275-2554 or email kflint@livsothebysrealty.com Copyright Top Agent Magazine 27


RICHARD GATAVECKAS How did Richard Gataveckas find his niche market among thousands of Realtors in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina? After moving to the US from Europe, Richard started his real estate career in Hilton Head in 2003. In the beginning of his career he worked with many Europeans who were first time home buyers. Then he expanded his business by helping clients to acquire distressed properties at auction in order to flip them. Working with investors became a large part of his business. Richard has been working with RE/MAX since 2008 where an impressive 80% of his business comes from repeat and referral clients. He has a good mix of clients that include: investors, sellers, vacation homebuyers, and first time homebuyers. He is so passionate about Hilton Head—a Lowcountry resort town and barrier island featuring fantastic restaurants, a thriving arts scene, golf tournaments, community festivals, and twelve miles of beachfront on the Atlantic Ocean— that talking it up to buyers and investors comes naturally to him. When it is time to market listings, Richard’s work really shines. He advises clients on how to make minor changes and best prepare their homes in order to receive top dollar, and he ensures that each listing is posted on hundreds of popular real estate websites and marketing platforms. Richard pays close personal attention to every detail and makes each client feel as if they are his only client. He enjoys serving clients in a wide variety of price ranges. He has sold homes for everywhere from $100,000 to over $2 million. To stay in touch with past clients, Richard believes in a personal touch. “What works for me is calling people 28

and asking how they are doing, how satisfied they are with previous transactions, and what their real estate needs are,” he says. What is Richard’s favorite part of the job? “In real estate, just when you think you have seen everything, something comes up that is totally new and out of the ordinary,” he says. “It’s all about customer service. That drives me and that is what I love.” To give back to the community, Richard participates in many charity events through RE/MAX and gives a percentage of each commission to Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals . He also plays a role in many local community events. In Richard’s free time, he loves going for a walk on the beach and trying out new local restaurants and chefs. “Going to a restaurant on the water and watching a beautiful sunset—it does not get much better than that!” he says. “The scenery is beautiful here.” For the future, Richard plans to expand his business in order to sell properties in Savannah, Georgia, as well. “I will be covering Hilton Head, Bluffton, Okatie, and some parts of Savannah,” he explains. “I already have an investors’ group which flips homes in Savannah quite a bit so I’m off to a good start in that area.”

For more about Richard Gataveckas, https://www.linkedin.com/in/corinne-woodman-4a552626 email hhirealestate@roadrunner.com or call (843) 298 2602 https://www.facebook.com/Corinne-Woodman-Real-Estate-Top-Producer-since-2005-164217970263905/

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3 Ways to Make Your Workspace Work for You Productivity experts agree that a curated workspace positively impacts productivity and mood, but oftentimes we settle for bland desks and cubicles that lack personalized details or considerations for workflow. Why miss out on the opportunity to optimize your surroundings when it could brighten your day—and boost your performance? Keep in mind some of these tactics to make your workspace your own and reap the benefits along the way. Top Agent Magazine

DETERMINE YOUR WORKING STYLE AND DECORATE ACCORDINGLY For the creative set, a colorful and art-filled workspace can inspire fresh ideas and reduce stress. Likewise, casual yet aesthetically pleasing furniture, accessories, and décor set an inviting yet functional mood. A pop of color from an office tool—even something as basic as a stapler—can inject a sense of fun and modernism into your daily tasks. For the more analytical, right-brained worker, clean

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lines and zero clutter go a long way. A few well-chosen personal photos in tasteful, unassuming frames can provide a motivating connection to the world beyond the office, while accessories and supplies that are sleek, monochrome, and contemporary inspire a sense of calm efficiency. BUILD A WORKSPACE WITH YOUR DAILY ROUTINE IN MIND If you find yourself spending hours on the phone per day, or assembling stacks of documents and brochures, or even coming and going from the office with frequency—there are simple adjustments you can make to your workspace that will save you time and energy. If you sit for long hours—responding to e-mails or making calls—try incorporating an ergonomic chair or keyboard wrist-pad to maximize comfort. If you spend a long time assembling presentation materials, then file organizers, trays, and easy-to-pull labels can shave valuable time off your efforts. Lastly, those who step out for frequent meetings can reduce the hassle of being on-the-go by making your space mindfully organized—a coatrack and a dish for your keys by the door, an auto-brew coffeemaker, or an easily edited whiteboard calendar can make jet-setting simpler.

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ADD EASY DETAILS THAT ENRICH YOUR WORKING EXPERIENCE While organization and décor can rally productivity and mood, there are also a few extra details you can introduce to your workspace to improve the quality of your working life. Healthy, easy to grab-and-go snacks—think nuts, homemade trail mix, and fresh fruit— can keep your energy up without the sugar crush or guilt. If there’s a window nearby, a hard-to-kill plant like a philodendron or a fern not only cleanse the air around you, but also provide a welcome connection to the natural world. Being prepared in a pinch is another great way to make your workspace work for you: a spare tie, a tube of lip balm, hand sanitizer, or a box of Band-Aids can save you a trip to the store when an unexpected need arises. While we take great pains to make our homes our sanctuaries—complete with the decorations, furniture, and food we favor—we often overlook our work areas, even though we spend a sizable portion of our week sitting at the same desk. Challenge yourself to add a few of these personalizing, productivity-boosting details to your work area and bring the comfort of home to your working life.

Top Agent Magazine

Top Agent Magazine


RUBY GONZALEZ Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico-based Top Agent Ruby Gonzalez – Broker/Owner of Ruby Realty - can claim more than two decades of experience helping buyers and sellers achieve their real estate goals. Ruby’s focus on providing exceptional customer service is well-known, and her true concern for her clients has resulted in her reputation as an agent who can be consistently trusted to place their needs front and center during every transaction. Ruby began her career in real estate after purchasing her first home in 1998. “It was such a great feeling to be able to buy my own home,” she recalls, “So I wanted to be able to help others have that same feeling. So, in 1999, I took a real estate course, passed, got my license, and started my business.” Currently, Ruby primarily serves the western side of the island of Puerto Rico, though she is willing to go pretty much anywhere her clients need her. Impressively, a significant portion of Ruby’s business is based on repeat and referred customers, a sure sign that she is instilling trust and loyalty in the people she works with. Much of that is due to the fact that Ruby maintains constant contact with her buyers and sellers during the transaction process. “I’m always available to my clients, and I always answer my phone,” she explains.

Priding herself on being a resource for her clients, Ruby’s ability to help them through all aspects of the transaction process has endeared her to them. “Our buyers like the way we take them by the hand and walk them through everything,” she says. “Our sellers like the way we always respond to their calls, their questions, and their needs. If any of them need an accountant, or power of attorney, or anything else, we will guide them and connect them to the right people.” When she isn’t working – which, she admits, is very rare – Ruby enjoys reading, and being around the people she loves. She is also actively involved in multiple charitable efforts that include raising funds to combat homelessness on the island. She is also very active in the local real estate community, and is a part of the Puerto Rico Association of Realtors and the Mid Island Association of Realtors, among others. Ruby’s plans for the future are pretty straightforward: to continue growing her business while sacrificing none of the amazing customer service that she has become known for. Additionally, she would like to begin expanding further into the local luxury market. “I love what I do,” says Ruby. “I really enjoy making people happy.”

The relationships she forms with her clients are cherished by Ruby, and she works hard to nourish and maintain them. This includes sending them personal messages on important dates, such as birthdays and on the anniversary of their home purchase. Ruby’s thorough and thoughtful approach to marketing her listings has also paid off handsomely, resulting in quick sales for top dollar. High-quality photography is used to ensure each property is shown in its best light, and savvy use of the MLS, the internet and social media maximize exposure. Top Agent Magazine

For more about Ruby Gonzalez, please call 787-510-8877 or email Ruby@RubyRealty.com Copyright Top Agent Magazine 31


OBED GUZMAN Top Agent Obed Guzman – of Premiere Plus Realty in Southwest Florida – is a dedicated real estate professional who has achieved phenomenal success through hard work, comprehensive industry knowledge and a true desire to help his many grateful clients achieve their real estate goals. Obed obtained his real estate license more than a decade ago as means of facilitating the sales of his own investment properties. Soon, he found himself assisting investors purchasing foreclosed properties. “I was bilingual, so I was able to help a lot of buyers purchase properties,” he recalls. “I found that I really enjoyed helping so many people achieve the dream of homeownership.” Averaging an impressive one hundred transactions per year, Obed and his equally-dedicated team sell a broad swath of the Southwest region of The Sunshine State. Nearly the entirety of Obed’s business is based on referrals, one of the most accurate measures of excellence in customer service, and something he is justifiably proud of. “I always exceed my clients’ expectations,” says Obed, by way of explaining this exceptional level of loyalty, “and I treat them like family, as if they’re my parent or a sibling. I want to protect them and their transaction, and to make sure they get the very best deal possible.” Of course, Obed’s vast knowledge of the real estate business also plays a prominent role in his continuing success. “I’ve done so many different transactions in so many different aspects of the real estate world,” says Obed, “whether it be large scale or small scale, and I know how to structure a deal so it’s a win-win situation for both the buyer and the seller. It’s important to educate both buyer and seller, and oftentimes even the agent working the other side of the transaction, it’s easy to accomplish the task at hand, which is closing the deal.” Obed’s exceptional, cutting-edge and thorough marketing strategies ensure quick sales for top dollar. Professional 32

photography is utilized exclusively, and he produces high-end videos to showcase his listings in the best light possible. Matter Port 3D tours are employed, and a robust internet presence and targeted social media marketing make certain that each property is seen by as many potential buyers as possible. When he’s not working, Obed enjoys nothing more than spending time with his wife and their two daughters, enjoying the Florida lifestyle. He is also an ardent philanthropist, and gives back to his community in many ways, including above-and-beyond efforts to assist underprivileged neighborhoods severely impacted by Hurricane Irma. Obed’s plans for the future include tapping further into the local luxury market, and to grow his business while sacrificing none of the exceptional customer service that has become his calling card. “I absolutely love all aspects of real estate,” says Obed. “I love getting to meet and help so many wonderful people from so many different cultural backgrounds, and finding out what brought them to beautiful Southwest Florida.”

For more about Obed Guzman, please call 239-258-5969 or email OGuzmanpa1@gmail.com Copyright Top Top Agent Agent Magazine Magazine


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 34

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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LIMARYS HERNANDEZ Top Agent Limarys Hernandez – of Keller Williams Advantage III Realty in Orlando, Florida – can claim nearly two decades of helping buyers and sellers achieve their real estate goals. Limarys, who is fluent in both English and Spanish, has assembled a dedicated support group (The Liz Team) that allows her to focus on consistently delivering both excellent customer service and solid results for her many grateful clients. Limarys began her journey in real estate in 2002, when she obtained her license so she and her husband could buy a home and avoid paying commission. Ultimately, she began working as a Realtor, and hasn’t looked back since. More than a third of Limarys’ business is based on repeat clients, referrals, and word-of-mouth, perhaps the surest sign of success in the highly-competitive real estate industry. “It’s because I’m very honest and transparent,” says Limarys, when asked how she inspires such incredible loyalty amongst her customers. “I’m also very honest and I make myself available to them always. They see me as someone they can trust; as a friend. They know that I’m not just there for the money.” Additionally, Limarys – who is married to a military veteran – is particularly passionate about helping veterans buy and sell homes. Limarys’ assessment is backed up by the impressive number of glowing testimonials she has received for her services, including this one from Zillow.com which perfectly illustrates her willingness to go above and beyond for her clients: “Working with Limarys was amazing. She gets things done in a quick and efficient way, and she was very personable and easy to work with. Her extensive experience in real estate allowed her to handle a difficult situation with ease. She put my needs and best interests first, and I would recommend her to anybody who wants to by or sell a house. I will definitely choose her again!” Top Agent Magazine

Education is extremely important to Limarys, and she works hard to make sure that both current and prospective clients fully understand the transaction process. “I do a show on Facebook every Friday, aimed at the Spanish community,” she explains. “Where I speak about a lot of different aspects of real estate. I’ll even bring in people from title companies or lenders to help them understand the process better so they can make more informed decisions.” Exceptional marketing of her listings has also played a significant role in Limarys’ success. Professional photography and video ensure each listing is seen in its best light, and Limarys’ status as a global marketing specialist makes certain that each property is seen by as many potential buyers as possible. When she’s not working – which is rare – Limarys enjoys availing herself of the many local eateries, and is also a fan of art exhibits. Additionally, she volunteers her time and energy working with the elderly. Limarys, who has a teenaged son, enjoys being a mentor to young people. The future looks bright for Limarys, and her goal is to close one hundred transactions per year. This should be no problem for someone as motivated as she is, though she admits that she does require some help: “I’m a Christian,” she says. “So all of my business is based on what God provides me.”

For more about Limarys Hernandez, please call 407-717-2464 or email LHernandez@TheLizTeam.com Copyright Top Agent Magazine 35


STEPHEN KARBELK Top Agent Stephen Karbelk – Lead of the RealMarkets group in Ashburn, Virginia - has nearly three decades of experience helping his clients achieve their residential and commercial real estate goals. Currently ranked among the Top 25 of all Century 21 teams in the entire Mid-Atlantic region, and the number 1 team at Century 21 New Millennium’s One Loudoun office, Stephen’s highly-professional and truly caring approach to working with his clients has resulted in his reputation as an agent who exemplifies the concept of exceptional customer service. Licensed since 1992, Stephen’s interest with real estate began at a very young age. “Both my parents were real estate agents,” says Stephen, “and I used to go to their office and play on their MLS computer and pretend that I was an agent, too.” That interest never waned, and in 1990 he began his first full-time job in the real estate world. “I worked at Long & Foster in their corporate office, working in their relocation department as an assistant when I was in college. I slowly worked my way up to being a property coordinator, arranging the sales of REO properties for banks. I then eventually got into the auction business with that company.” This impressive experience has translated into a booming business that allows Stephen to provide exceptional advocacy for a wider array of clients than the typical agent, and – though he and his team still work with a significant number of residential clients - today he has developed a strong commercial business. “I figured out a long time ago that selling commercial real estate is, in a lot of ways, easier than selling residential,” explains Stephen. “I think a lot of agents are discouraged from selling commercial, and I believe that’s a mistake for a number of reasons. If you’re selling a home to a high-net worth individual, those are the same people that are likely to want to invest in commercial properties. If an agent wants to develop more repeat business, they need to be able to offer more services to their clients and not just be perceived as someone who could sell their house. I can truly help with any real estate need.”

A staggering ninety percent of Stephen’s business is based on repeat clients and referrals, an impressive feat by any measure in the highly-competitive world of real estate. “I developed a niche for myself,” says Stephen, when asked to account for this loyalty. “I’ve specialized in ‘legal sales’, which means I have a deep understanding of how to do Chapter 7 and Chapter 11 bankruptcy sales, receivership sales and other types of courtdriven transactions. So, many attorneys and lenders who are in that situation have recognized that I’m an expert in those areas and come to me for my sales expertise.” Stephen’s experience as a licensed auctioneer has also played a large role in his continuing success story. “As an auctioneer,” he explains, “I can offer my clients two ways to sell their property: they can start high and work down, as with the brokerage method, or they can start low and work high with the auction method. My clients know that I can objectively propose a strategy for selling their home, because I’m not bound to doing it only one way.” Expert, thorough marketing strategies have also been a factor in Stephen’s success. Professional, high-quality photography is utilized exclusively, and a robust online and social media presence ensures that his listings are seen by as many potential buyers as possible. The RealMarkets team also employ a fairly unique method that has proven highly-successful: “We develop a complete property package for every one of our listings,” says Stephen. “All the information regarding that property are put together in one complete package that has all of the information they need to make a decision.” When asked what advice he might have for agents who might be struggling, Stephen pauses for a thoughtful moment before replying. “If you want to sell more real estate, it’s important to learn about more types of properties and become an expert in multiple fields so you’re not competing in the same world as everyone else. The only way you’re going to build your business is to sell more so that more opportunities present themselves. You can handle them yourself or you can partner with someone else to learn a new aspect of the business”. Stephen concludes with his mantra, “If you want to sell more, then you need to sell more.”

For more information about Stephen Karbelk, please call 571-481-1037 or email Stephen@RealMarkets.com 36

Copyright Top Top Agent Agent Magazine Magazine


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. 38

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BEATA & SARA KOLPEK (TEAM KOLPEK) The mother and daughter real estate team of Beata and Sara Kolpek – of Platinum Partner Realtors in Downers Grove, Illinois – are a truly dynamic duo who have built a solid business on a foundation of honesty, integrity and a sincere commitment to providing excellent customer service to their many grateful buyers and sellers. Beata began her journey in real estate nearly three decades ago, finding success as an agent fairly quickly. Her daughter, Sara, joined forces with Beata in 2017, and Team Kolpek was born. Beata’s longevity in the industry and her wealth of industry knowledge, coupled with Sara’s fresh perspective and ability to connect with the millennial generation, have proved a potent combo that has translated into a stellar reputation as a top-producing team that consistently achieves exceptional results for their clients. The lion’s share of Beata and Sara’s business is comprised of repeat clients and referrals, perhaps the most accurate measure of success in the highly-competitive real estate industry. “We work incredibly hard for our clients,” says Beata, when asked to account for the loyalty they continue to inspire. “We believe in explaining the process to our buyers and sellers, and I believe we are truly in the minority among agents when it comes to helping our clients understand their rights as a consumer.” Additionally, Beata’s longtime involvement in the new construction arena and her understanding of structural issues gives her a leg up on much of their competition. Thorough, thoughtful marketing – enhanced even further by Sara’s exceptional targeted social media talents – has also played a large role in the pair’s continuing success story. “We’re both certified stagers,” says Beata, “so we provide exceptional value to our clients.” Careful preparation of their properties prior to listing, high-quality photography and a unique, highly detailed brochure assure that each home is presented in its best light. Sara’s deft exploitation of the internet and social media Top Agent Magazine

ensure that their listings are seen by as many potential buyers as possible. Both Beata and Sara possess philanthropic hearts, and each is heavily involved with animal welfare organizations, including the ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals), the West Suburban Humane Society, and they both foster dogs through the Pit Bull rescue Chi-Town Pitties. “We’ve really enjoyed the experience of helping animals in our community,” says Sara. Furthermore, Team Kolpek has committed to donating funds in their clients’ names to the rescue organization of their choice. Additionally, Beata is a longtime member of the Society of St. Vincent De Paul, which offers person-to-person support to in-need community members. “I really love helping people,” says Beata, when asked what she enjoys most about what she does. “Obviously, the paycheck at the end of the day is helpful, but what I like most is being in a service based industry.” Sara concurs: “I want all my buyers and sellers to be happy with their purchase or sale. I love seeing them at the closing table, with smiles on their faces.” Looking to the future, Beata and Sara’s plans are fairly simple: to grow their business without sacrificing any of the incredible customer service that has become synonymous with their names.

Ready to Buy or Sell Your Home? Love Animals? Let us Help! If you BUY or SELL your home with us, we will donate $150 to ANY registered animal rescue organization of your choice and in your name. Buy AND Sell your house with us, we will donate $300. beatakolpek.com/dog-campaign/ Beata Kolpek 630-207-9909 bkolpek@pprhomes.com

Sara Kolpek 630-306-4452 skolpek@pprhomes.com

Copyright Top Agent Magazine 39


JACQUELINE LOTZOF Jacqueline Lotzof’s real estate career began long before she got licensed. “My family is in the construction business, and I grew up with a father who remodeled and built homes,” she says. “I always felt a connection to residential real estate.” That connection is strong, and has led Jacqueline to great success over the past 13 years in the North Shore. Carrying 10 to 12 listings at any time - with properties aimed at everyone from first-time home buyers to luxury level house hunters - Jacqueline usually gets her deals closed within 45 days. That efficiency is just part of what fuels her excellent 100% return and referral rate. “I’m very authentic and open about the process with my clients,” Jacqueline says. “Part of that is being very honest about the homes themselves, and with my background in building I can give advice about remodeling and realizing the space’s true potential.” More than that, Jacqueline fights for her clients. “I’m a tough negotiator,” she tells Top Agent. “I work very hard to make sure my clients are not being taken advantage of, and that they’re getting a fair market value for what their home is worth.” Jacqueline specializes in relocation, and she uses her expert knowledge of the local area to help her clients feel at home in their new homes. “I’m helping them find their new community,” she says. “Whether it’s finding the best schools, fitness centers, or day-to-day places like where to dine, I have a passion for connecting my clients with local resources.” Working hard for her clients is what drives Jacqueline, but she also takes time for herself. When she’s not changing people’s lives through real estate, she likes to travel with her family. While that sometimes takes 40

them far from their Highland Park home, it also sometimes involves just going a few towns over. “I love exploring,” she says. “Whether it’s traveling around the world or checking out local farmer’s markets. I love seeing what other communities have to offer.” For Jacqueline all the hard work is worth it because she loves what she does. “No two days are the same,” she says. “Everyday I get to meet new people, get to know them, and get to make an impact on their lives. Buying a home is one of the biggest steps a person can take in their life, and the fact that I can help people take that step is what gets me up in the morning and face each day with excitement.” Jacqueline, already successful, is looking towards an even bigger future. “I want to grow my team,” she says. “Right now I have one team member, Stephanie Malk, and she joined me about two years ago. She’s been invaluable, and she helps our clients discover their home, rather than simply find a house. I want to assemble a team of agents like her, who understand how to show clients not just what a home is, but what it can be.”

To find out more about Jacqueline Lotzof, visit atproperties.com/jacquelinelotzof, call her at 847.917.8220, follow her on Facebook at Facebook.com/jacquelinelotzof and Instagram at @jacquelinelotzofrealestate, or email her at jlotzof@atproperties.com http://

www.

Copyright Top Top Agent Agent Magazine Magazine


Becoming the Best of the Best By Verl Workman

Becoming one of the best agents in your market requires hard work, time, and dedication. One of the most important things you can bring to the table is your real life market knowledge and expertise. As you increase your market knowledge IQ, your confidence will grow and you’ll win the trust of your clients.

• Preview all the homes that come on the market in that area. By attending all the open houses and tracking price reductions on properties in your area, you’ll know the nuances that pictures cannot convey…but be careful with your time.

• Track closings and sold prices in your target area so you become To do that, you need to know more familiar with list-to-sell ratios about your market than the average consumer. That’s more of a challenge • Become familiar with vacant land than it used to be since consumers in your target area can easily find market statistics online, quickly and easily preview • Get active in the community by listings on the web, and access public doing things like attending county meetings where changes in zoning records without many barriers. and housing are to be voted on, and Clearly, becoming an expert offer your input requires effort, more now than ever before. Here are a few things you • Write articles and offer your can do to establish yourself as an expertise to newspapers and radio stations on trends and happenings in expert in your area. your area • Select the area you want to become • Start a community blog where you an expert in

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post information and articles that affect those homeowners • Gather e-mail addresses of people interested in what is going on in the area, and begin a monthly Podcast where you discuss trends and market information. • Read local and national real estate magazines, articles and blogs to stay caught up with what is happening nationwide so you can compare your market to other similar markets around the country. Technology is a valuable asset for consumers and agents alike, so find ways to put it to work for you. By establishing yourself as the expert and sharing your unique knowledge 42

through public sources like blogs, print media, emails, and unique approaches like Podcasts, and public videos, your customers will increasingly look to you as the definitive source. Data is everywhere, so think in terms of how to educate your customers and make them experts so they don’t have to do all the legwork. By doing so you’ll win their respect and loyalty. Bottom line: get fully committed to becoming an expert in your chosen career and you’ll reap the rewards. Verl Workman is the national technology speaker/trainer that stands out as #1 when it comes to showing companies and their sales associates how to make money using today’s technology. © Verl Workman. All rights reserved. Top Agent Magazine


CHRIS MAY When Chris May started a career in real estate in 1992, she knew she had found her calling. Once she relocated to Arkansas in 2000, she really hit the ground running. Today, she has a team of Realtors, including her daughter and two other licensed agents. “We serve all of Northwest Arkansas,” she explains. “Our business is made up of referrals and relocation clients.” At Coldwell Banker Harris McHaney & Faucette in Fayetteville, she provides superior service to each and every buyer or seller, which has helped her business grow immensely. “I have a very fast response time,” she explains. “I have decades of experience and am very professional. I also tailor the type of service I provide to the type of client I am helping.” She acknowledges that first time home buyers, for instance, have different needs than someone who has sold multiple houses. She also understands that everyone has various preferences for communication, and adjusts her style to meet their desires. “I go above and beyond, and stay in touch years after the close of their home. I help them through any issues that might occur before or after the close, and put their needs first and foremost.” After the transaction, she sends them gifts and reaches out on a regular basis as well as holidays. Chris also hosts a customer appreciation day where she invites all past and current clients. When it comes to marketing, Chris also exceeds expectations, offering professional photography and 3D tours. “It provides a way to tour a house for online shoppers, so they can virtually walk through it,” she says. Chris also utilizes drones to capture images and video of the house, property and amenities. Top Agent Magazine

Clients love to leave glowing reviews about their time with Chris. One recently said, “I called Chris because of all of the wonderful things that I had heard about her and I was not disappointed. Chris is extremely professional & knowledgeable about local market conditions. Her experience also allows her to keep a ‘cool head’ throughout the negotiation process, even when things get dicey. Throughout the entire buying process, she will make you feel like you are her #1 priority; ‘always on’ and responsive! If you are looking for a premier real estate in NWA (meaning one of the best!!), I would highly recommend Chris May!” As Chris looks towards the future, she is eager to continue growing her team, NWA Metro Group. “We have a growing global luxury market here, our office currently has 60 listings that are above the $500,000 threshold, so we want to keep expanding that market.” In the meantime, she’s loving every minute of her work. “I love real estate and meeting people. Every transaction has a challenge, and that’s really rewarding for me.”

For more information about Chris May, please call 479-445-0508 or email chrismay@coldwellbanker.com Copyright Top Agent Magazine 43


DANA MAYBERRY Top Agent Dana Mayberry – Broker in Charge and Senior Vice President of Sales for the Raleigh, North Carolina branch of Beazer Homes – has nearly two decades of experience in the real estate field, with sixteen of those spent in the new construction arena. Honest, affable and straightforward, Dana’s commitment to helping their many customers achieve their real estate dreams has resulted in her stellar reputation as a trusted professional. A former environmental scientist, Dana began working in the real estate industry upon the suggestion of her mother, a long-time real estate agent. “She thought I’d be more successful selling real estate,” Dana recalls, “and she was right. I started with her company part-time, and after twelve weeks I’d already made more money than my full-time job.” Eventually, and again upon the recommendation of her ever-supportive mother, Dana went back to school to obtain her Broker’s License. It was during that course that she met the broker-in-charge of a large home builder, who convinced her to segue into the new construction arena and join her company. “That was in 2003,” says Dana, “and I was Rookie of the Year my first year with eighty-four homes sold. I’m now on year sixteen in home building and you couldn’t pry me away from this industry. I love it.” Currently, the lion’s share of Dana’s teams business is based on referrals, a sure sign of a job well done in the highly-competitive real estate industry. “It’s because we have a high-quality product that fits people’s needs,” says Dana, when asked how she sustains such impressive consumer loyalty. “Also, I have a passion for this area, having been born and raised in Raleigh. My team can feel that energy and positive energy is contagious. I love what I do, and I think that helps make a great first impression to those that meet me.” Dana truly cherishes the relationships she forms with her clients and other real estate agents, and works hard 44

to maintain and nourish them. “I am always available to assist or answer questions” she says, “and we encourage our clients to connect with us on multiple social media platforms.” Expert and thorough marketing has also played a large role in Dana’s success story. Professional photography is utilized exclusively to ensure that each home is showcased in its best light, and an extensive online presence maximizes exposure. “Because I’m with a great builder, we predominantly use the MLS and our company website for marketing. “We also use social media and sites like Zillow. The most common result is a quick sale and happy clients, with her listings spending an average of thirty days on the market. Dana – and Beazer Homes – are dedicated to giving back to their community as well, and do so primarily through their financial support of The Fisher House Foundation, which provides free housing and support for military and veterans families while a loved one is in the hospital. Dana’s plans for the future are, as she says, fairly simple. “We want to keep growing our business, and keep delighting our customers with amazing service. We want to build both our brand and our reputation.”

For more about Dana Mayberry, please call 919-971-8757 or email Dana.Mayberry@Beazer.com Copyright Top Top Agent Agent Magazine Magazine


Are You In or Out? by Barry Eisen

Have you ever felt like you’re doing all the right things but your wheels are just spinning? You’ve invested a lot of time into a business, a job, a relationship, a sport, a course of study, but the results don’t justify the effort or time. You have so much invested, you just can’t walk away. You can see the light at the end of the tunnel but it doesn’t seem to be getting closer. What to do, what to do? As a business/personal coach I hear feedback every week from those who feel frustrated, powerless, and stuck in one or more areas. The reasons, or justifications for continuing doing things they tolerate rather than love are many. But, like panic attacks, unless you address the issues and make changes they get worse and you get more of them. For most, not paying attention and continuing in the same direction is a mind numbing experience, which produces a low selfesteem and is a recipe for a boring life. Ask yourself the question, “What area Top Agent Magazine

or areas of my life am I tolerating and simply taking the path of least resistance?” In other words, “Where am I painting by the numbers?” (That’s a reference to the over 50 reader.) Without being defensive (that’s the part of the ego that says everything is all right and points the finger of blame outward rather than to the real inward source) are there areas in which you’d like to be more passionate, confident and more in tune? When I ask those who feel stuck or trapped if they know what to do to make the positive change, most everyone knows their own truths. Knowing and doing are very different. As Khalil Gibran once said, “To know yet not to do is to not really know.” And most are honest enough to admit that they’ve lost their vision of what was important and let distractions get in the way. (Damn those bright shiny objects!) A remedy that works most of the time is to refocus by identifying the area of concern, setting a short term goal 45


Visualize the success you desire. Top performers do this in every field. Do it too...with consistency.

(such as six months), creating a plan of action and following through like your hair’s on fire for that period of time. Six months simply represents a period of time to get past the learning curve of establishing new attitudes and actions. At the end of the six months, do a reality check. Is the success you’ve created by doing things right without excuses worth the effort you’ve put in? Or, was the victory not so satisfying? If not, move on to something else. But whether you stay focused on your successful makeover or decide to move on, you decide KNOWING, not playing mental gymnastics with yourself. Not knowing is the pain of guilt many carry. “What if?!” Passion, confidence and a positive self-esteem don’t develop by working on them, they happen by creating victories. Keys to getting unstuck: 1) Be willing to own your shortcomings 46

and poor attitude as well as your strengths. The truth CAN set you free. 2) Be teachable and open to learn better ways of thinking and acting. Learn from those ahead of you, not the ones behind you. 3) Associate with those who will support, not tear you down. 4) Consistently read or go to seminars, from those who have done their homework, to get new ideas and reinforce the basics. 5) Accountability buddies and coaching work. Live up to goals. 6) Visualize the success you desire. Top performers do this in every field. Do it too...with consistency. Barry Eisen teaches personal development seminars and coaches Southern California top producing REALTORS®. “Your business will never grow more than you do” is the theme; self hypnosis and behavior modification are the tools for playing a bigger game. barryeisen.com, barryeisen@LA.twcbc.com 818-769-4300 Top Agent Magazine


JON MYERS “I am in-VEST-ed in my clients. I believe in not being a salesman, I aim to keep my clients informed,” Jon Myers explains, when discussing his career in real estate. With a love for helping others, Jon found his calling as an agent in Jacksonville, North Carolina when he moved here from San Diego. Convinced by a few friends to jump into this industry, he studied it and soon became licensed, a decision he has never regretted. Today, after capitalizing on his early success, he formed the Vested Realty Group, a 4 member team within his brokerage, which serves Onslow, Pender and Carteret counties. Jon has seen a steady increase in the amount of referrals and repeat business since he started, which he credits to his commitment to providing superior service. “An informed client builds trust. I prep them so when something comes up they remember going over it with me,” Jon says. “That trust and confidence brings me referrals and repeat customers.” Throughout the transaction, Jon is keeping them updated, making sure no one is left in the dark. Even after the transaction, Jon stays in touch, calling his clients at least once a quarter. “After I help them purchase a house I will check in after a week, then a month, then quarterly for the first year. After that, I check in every six months and stay in touch through drip campaigns.” On special occasions, like birthdays and anniversaries, clients can also expect to receive a card. “It’s important for them to know I am in-VEST-ed with them from the beginning and beyond.” When it comes to marketing, Jon insists on doing his own photography and videos taken with professional equipment. “I will do a walkthrough with clients before photos so we can decide what to feature,” he explains. Jon provides simple tips clients can implement to get the most value for their home. “Things like red mulch, Top Agent Magazine

putting that in can sell a house.” He goes through the house inch by inch pointing out things a buyer might notice, just so his sellers are aware and there are no surprises. After personally creating the marketing material, Jon implements a “multi-tired marketing strategy” consisting of social media, various websites, as well as traditional marketing strategies. As Jon prepares for the future, he is eager to expand his business and his team to other regions. “My goal is to have five different revenue streams from this business. I want to build the team and build the brand. I want to change the confidence level of real estate agents, that’s why I’m big on my agents providing value to clients.” With a production total of $4 million last year, his first year, and currently over $4 million closed and pending this year, it’s clear he’s on the right path. No matter how much he grows, his love for this industry will remain. “I like helping people and solving problems. That’s the best part about it.”

For more information about Jon Myers, please call 910-537-0533 or email Jon@DigTheVest.com Copyright Top Agent Magazine 47


JANET PASSIO Janet Passio got her start in the business back in 1986, while making the move from Philadelphia to New Jersey. In fact, it was Janet’s own real estate agent who suggested she try her hand at the industry. Intrigued by the challenge, Janet earned her license and hit the ground running, discovering a natural affinity and talent for her work. Now, more than thirty years later, she has built a sterling reputation as agent defined by integrity, an unrelenting work ethic, and relationships that stand the test of time. Along the way, she has earned a host of accolades, including Weichert Realtors’ #1 Agent for their Washington Township office, and as a thirty-year member of the Circle of Excellence within the New Jersey Association of Realtors. Today, Janet serves clients across southern New Jersey, particularly in the counties of, Gloucester, Camden, Atlantic, Burlington, Salem, and Cape May—though she follows wherever clients lead. Under the banner of Weichert Realtors, she works in conjunction with a full-time assistant and a buyer’s agent. Over the course of her career, she has driven more than 70% of her business through repeat and referral clientele. “I’m dedicated, knowledgeable, and experienced in the industry,” she says. “I put a lot of time and care into what I do. I’m a full-time agent, and I take my role very seriously. It doesn’t matter if I’m working with first-time homebuyers, a condo, or a $500,000 listing— everyone I work with is treated with same high level of respect. I’m totally committed to my clients, and I give them 110%.” Beyond advocating for her clients’ interests, Janet is an adept marketer. Her listing campaigns capture each home in its finest light, beginning with professional photography, a personalized website, and broad exposure across the full scope of online listing platforms. Likewise, her extensive experience allows her to tap a wide-ranging network of fellow professionals across 48

the South Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania marketplaces. With an average of thirty days on the market, listings enjoy premium visibility and reach desired buyers in short order. Beyond the office, Janet gives back to her community through work with her local church, where she participates and helps with the family recovery ministry for children and young adults. She also helps orchestrate all the fundraisers for the bereavement ministry, which welcomes families from Southern New Jersey and the tri-county area who are experiencing the loss of a loved one. In her free hours, Janet most enjoys time spent with family, and visiting the beach. As for the future, Janet intends to spend the coming years in continued fine form. “I want to stay on top of the market and remain one of the top-producing agents in my industry,” she says. Finally, with three decades of insight behind her, Janet Passio considers what she values most in her career thus far. “I love helping my clients with what is probably one of the biggest decisions they’ll make in their lifetime,” she reflects. “Helping clients find what they’re looking for and what will be their home for years to come—it’s a big responsibility and I take it seriously. I also enjoy the friendships I’ve developed over the years. I’ve met so many wonderful people working in this business, and I’m grateful for the extended family they’ve become.”

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To learn more about Janet Passio email JPassio@comcast.net, visit JanetPassio.com, or call (609) 471 – 0229 Copyright Top Top Agent Agent Magazine Magazine


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. Top Agent Magazine

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.

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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 50

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.

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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.

Top Agent Magazine

Top Agent Magazine


WENDY REDDY When speaking with Top Agent Wendy Reddy – Owner/Broker at Reddy Real Estate in Lynchburg, Virginia – the first thing one is likely to notice is her ebullient personality and bracing sense of humor. When the conversation turns to real estate, however, her wealth of industry knowledge and sincere commitment to excellence in customer service takes center stage. Wendy may be fast approaching twenty years in the industry, but her enthusiasm for providing her buyers and sellers with first-class real estate advocacy is still as fresh as it was on day one of her career. Wendy, whose former careers include both teacher and sales executive for Proctor & Gamble, is a veteran of relocation – both domestically and internationally - having moved twenty-three times prior to settling in Lynchburg. Upon settling in that historic city, Wendy began casting about for a new career. “I felt like real estate would be a great fit, because I’d been on both sides of the transaction so often,” she explains. “I understood what it was like to move and to settle into a new community, so I figured that was something I could bring to the table.” Nineteen years in, Wendy has grown Reddy Real Estate into a highlyreputable boutique agency that is recognized for its integrity-based business ethos and proven track record of helping its clients achieve their real estate goals. Wendy currently oversees an equally-dedicated team of five agents and support staff, which includes her husband John Cardwell, who specializes in farm and land sales in the outlying rural areas of their historic city. Wendy is quick to credit that team, which operates like the proverbial well-oiled machine, for much of her continuing success. “Each person in my office is responsible for handling a different aspect of the buying and selling process,” says Wendy, “and they do it very well. That translates into a smooth transaction for our clients.” While adept at achieving quick sales for top dollar, Reddy Real Estate’s success might best be measured by the fact that the lion’s share of their business is based on repeat and referred clients, a significant accomplishment in the highly-competitive world of real estate. This loyalty is engendered by a host of factors, chief among them Wendy’s steadfast commitment to providing exceptional customer service. The gratitude her clients feel for her attention to detail and willingness to go above and beyond for them is made abundantly clear when reading the scores of glowing testimonials she has received, including this one posted on Zillow.com: “Wendy is a spectacular agent. She sold our home quickly, found us a beautiful new home, and negotiated both a great price and early occupancy. She is very knowledge about Lynchburg and the surrounding areas, very accurate and honest about home value, and is personable and kind. I highly recommend Wendy when looking for a buying or selling agent.” Any person who has been involved in a real estate transaction is keenly aware that the process can often be convoluted, with a multitude of moving parts, any one of which can break down at any time and impede forward motion. Fortunately, problem-solving is one of Wendy’s strengths as a Realtor, and something she professes to actually enjoy. Top Agent Magazine

“If a problem arises for my clients, I will figure out a way to get around it,” she says. “Often, my clients don’t even know that I’m problemsolving behind the scenes. I try really hard to make it a no-drama, stress free process for them.” That process includes marketing, of course, and Reddy Real Estate spares no expense to ensure that every one of their listings is seen in its best light and by as many potential buyers as possible. Following extensive, hands-on preparation of the home and the taking of exquisite professional photographs, each property is provided with maximum exposure on the internet and a robust presence on multiple social media platforms. Wendy also pushes the listings out to her vast network of fellow agents and past clients, just another of the “above and beyond” strategies she employs. “We give it 100%,” she says. During the rare moments when she’s not working, Wendy can be found at home on her 150-acre farm, which has been in her husband’s family since the 1700’s. Gardening is a chief passion, followed closely by her predilection for rescuing animals, horses in particular. “I have four horses I’ve adopted, numerous chickens, three cats and nine dogs,” she says with a laugh. “My husband says if I bring one more animal home, he’s going to put me out.” Wendy is also dedicated to giving back to the community that has given her so much. A recent board member of the local YWCA, she currently works with two-and-a-half year old children through a community bible study group. “Although I love working on committees and boards,” she says, “my heart is really with the kids.” While much of her competition is focused on growing and expanding as fast as they can, Wendy’s plans for the future of Reddy Real Estate are more in keeping with the highly personal, face-to-face business mentality that has endeared her to her many clients, past and present. “We’re going to remain small,” she says. “I have no plans to become one of those big firms. I might take a few more agents on, because I enjoy training them and helping them become successful. I’m going to stay the course and keep doing what we’re doing; being that family business that creates intimate, personal relationships with our clients and goes above and beyond for them.”

For more information about Wendy Reddy, call 434-258-4121(mobile), 434-384-4663 (office), or email wreddyteam@wendyreddy.com Copyright Top Agent Magazine 51


ART REMSBECKER Honest, forthright and eschewing the hard-sell tactics of much of his competition, Top Agent Art Remsbecker has forged a career based on extensive industry knowledge and a firm commitment to providing his clients with excellent customer service. As Broker/Owner of Lake Cushman Realty in scenic Hoodsport, Washington, Art has truly earned his reputation as a trusted real estate professional who sincerely cares about the well-being of his many grateful clients.

Perhaps the most accurate assessment of the reasons behind Art’s success can be found in the glowing reviews he has received, including this one from Zillow.com, on which site he is a Premier Agent with a perfect five-star overall rating: “Art was amazing to work with. He actually listened when I told him what I was looking for and never wasted my time showing me something that didn’t fit my requirements. He knows the community well and responds to communications immediately. His manner is comfortable yet professional and I’d recommend him to anyone who wants to buy or sell a home. It was a true pleasure working with him.”

A former owner of a wholesale tropical fish company, Art officially entered the world of real estate sales in 2005. “I had a lot of experience buying and selling my own vacation homes,” Art recalls, “and after my business collapsed due to an earthquake, I decided to sell one of my homes because I needed some money. When I went in to a real estate office to list the property, they offered me a job.” Art had previously purchased his own home on gorgeous Lake Cushman and had spent many weekends there prior to selling the area, so he is a passionate representative for anyone looking to live there. “This area is so beautiful,” he says. “We’ve got a huge lake with snow-capped mountain peaks behind it. It’s an amazing spot, and once people realize this is where they want to be, the job becomes pretty easy, to be honest.”

During the rare moments he’s not helping clients, Art enjoys nothing more than spending time with his wife Jean, and is an avid outdoorsman. “I like to hike,” he says, “and spending time outside, whether that’s here at the lake, or at the ocean, or in the desert.” He also gives back to his community through a variety of charitable efforts.

A significant portion of Art’s business is based on referrals from satisfied customers, perhaps the surest sign of a job well done in the highly-competitive real estate industry. “I don’t look at myself as being better than any other agent,” says Art, with typical humility. “I’m just honest and straightforward and I don’t pressure my clients in any way. I find that works extremely well, because they know I’m not going to hound them into making an offer or anything else. I’m just going to guide them and answer any questions they have.” 52

“I really love what I do,” says Art. “I love finding the right property for someone, and watching their face light up. That’s the exciting part for me.”

For more about Art Remsbecker, please call 360-877-5111 or email BigTrees@hctc.com Copyright Top Top Agent Agent Magazine Magazine


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 53


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


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.

Top Agent Magazine

Copyright Top Agent Magazine 55


Daily Habits That Will Increase Your Mental Strength When it comes to building physical strength, the solutions are obvious, but keeping up your mental strength isn’t as easy as going to the gym. Although physical exercise does help clear your head and relieve stress, there are other things you can do daily that will help your mind be as strong and flexible as your body after a workout. Here’s just a few things you can do to help clear your head and make you more productive.

DON’T WASTE YOUR BRAIN POWER That might seem obvious, but think about how much mental energy you might use up worrying about negativity or things you have no control over. Instead of focusing on problems, focus on solutions. This actually take a lot of effort, we’re all conditioned to let worry paralyze us sometimes. Try and catch yourself when you’re wasting time thinking about about past mistakes or current dilemmas you don’t have the power to stop. You really only have so much mental energy, and if you have kids and an especially stressful work situation, that might be even less than normal. Start treating your brain like the precious resource it is. You don’t want to be running on empty when it really matters.

STEP OUTSIDE YOUR COMFORT ZONE A lot of mental energy can go to dealing with anxiety. One way to deal with that is by forcing yourself to try new things and take on new challenges, that you might normally avoid because they make you feel unsure or scared. Challenge yourself daily, even with small things. This is definitely something that becomes easier with practice. Start small, and in no time you’ll be taking on things you never thought were possible. The simple task of trying something new every day will have you feeling energized and put you on the path to self-growth.

BE SELF-AWARE Your emotions affect everything you do, even if they’re not at the surface. Recognizing and labeling them is key. A lot of the above exercises require self-reflection. It’s okay to have the emotions you have, understanding why and where those emotions come from allows you to focus on dealing with them rather than just wallowing in them. Being self-aware is also about self-care. Know the things that help relax and rejuvenate you. That way you can handle everyday stresses and remain calm even during the most turbulent times.

BE MORE POSITIVE

BE WILLING TO LEARN

Eliminating negative thoughts is essential to increasing your mental strength. Carrying around negativity is like swimming with all of your clothes on. You might be okay at first, but eventually you’ll feel like you can barely stay afloat. Don’t drown in negativity, use positive thoughts as a lifesaver. This doesn’t mean you should ignore things you need to improve, just approach them with solutions rather than beating yourself up. Constant monitoring of this is important since it’s really easy to slide back into negative thinking.

A lot of people are still hung up on the idea that learning is a boring and tedious process, but you aren’t in junior high anymore. You can find something you’re actually interested in and immerse yourself in it, which engages your mind like nothing else. Whether it’s learning a new technology that will improve your business or something that will make you a more well-rounded person, the learning process keeps you engaged and open to new ideas. A curiosity about the world and new things is something that all mentally strong people have in common.

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Top Agent Magazine


CORI WHITAKER Top Agent Cori Whitaker is that rare agent who possesses both a wealth of industry knowledge and a caring, genuine approach to engaging with buyers and sellers. Working with Windermere Real Estate /North in Lynnwood, Washington, Cori has developed a reputation as a Realtor who will consistently go the extra mile to help her many grateful Seattle-area buyers and sellers achieve their real estate goals. Cori, who owned a wellness publishing company for sixteen years prior to entering the world of real estate, obtained her license in 2005. “My father was quite the real estate junkie,” she recalls. “He owned numerous properties and I learned a lot watching him. I was always intrigued and would ultimately manage those properties so thought real estate would be a great career choice and a smart next move.” One of the surest metrics of a job well done in the real estate business is the percentage of one’s business that is based on repeat and referred clients, and Cori’s hovers, impressively, around 80%. “I’ve been told by my clients that they appreciate the fact that I’m down to earth and authentic,” says Cori, when asked what it is about her that inspires such loyalty. Cori’s stellar work ethic also comes into play when assessing her continuing success story. “So many people get into this industry and think it’s going to be easy to make a decent living,” she says. “This is a job, and it’s hard work. One has to be self-motivated and disciplined. I am very deliberate when it comes to scheduling my time. I put in a full day most days…about 60 hours a week generally. For the past four years, I’ve closed a transaction a week and about $40 million annually. My average price the past 4 years is about $750k which is solid for North King and South Snohomish counties.” Top Agent Magazine

Expert marketing of her listings is another reason for Cori’s ascendancy to Top Agent Status. Careful preparation of the home prior to listing, staging, high-definition photography and aerial videos are just a few of the strategies she employs to ensure each property is shown in its best light. Open houses, professionally-produced full-color flyers, and a robust internet and social media presence expose her listings to as many potential buyers as possible, and quick sales for top dollar are the usual result. During the rare moments when she can find free time, Cori enjoys nothing more than spending time with her husband and their two grown children. They try to get away as often as possible to their second home on the semi-isolated, scenic San Juan Island of Decatur. “We love to go there with our dog to just adjust our head space for a couple of days when we can,” she says. Despite her longevity in the industry, Cori retains the same enthusiasm and dedication she has had for her career since the very beginning. “I love helping people who are in transition,” she says, her sincerity obvious. “Being a relevant part of their life changes is exciting to me. My clients are trusting me to help them navigate those changes, and it’s both an honor and huge responsibility.”

For more information about Cori Whitaker, please call 206-795-4361 or email CoriWhitaker@windermere.com Copyright Top Agent Magazine 57


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