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OREGON EDITION

Why Millennials Are Now the HOTTEST SEGMENT OF THE BUYERS MARKET

Why Delegating is the Key to LONGLASTING SUCCESS

3 Beyond-theOffice Activities to INSPIRE A CREATIVE BUSINESS BOOM COVER STORY

BREYLAN DEAL-ERIKSEN


OREGON EDITION

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BREYLAN DEAL-ERIKSEN

CONTENTS 4) HOW TO RECOGNIZE TRUE LUXURY PROPERTIES 13) KILLING CLIENTS WITH KINDNESS AND VALUE

18) 3 BEYOND-THE-OFFICE ACTIVITIES TO INSPIRE A CREATIVE BUSINESS BOOM 22) WHY DELEGATING IS THE KEY TO LONG-LASTING SUCCESS

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How to Recognize True Luxury Properties What to Consider Other Than Location When luxury home buyers are looking for a new abode, they are often advised to pay most of their attention to location, location, location. And it’s true that good locations often have better properties, but if you’re only looking at location then you might be forgetting what it is in a luxury property that makes it luxury. You could view a property in a great location, and because you completely ignored any of the other factors that make a property high end, you might find that once you move in, you aren’t as pleased with the actual house itself as you thought you would be. Here are the other things you should look out for when purchasing a luxury home: • Architectural Uniqueness: The simple fact is that good

architecture retains its value. Do your homework on architects and find the ones that have a good track record of designing beautiful, but practical homes. Don’t simply pay attention to how the building looks today. Consider how it will look in a few decades. Keep an eye out for the “bones” of the building, and decide whether they will stand the test of time or not. Things such as a solid foundation, high-grade materials, unusual details, and artistic components are good aspects to consider. Will the structure hold up well or will it degrade and crumble without constant upkeep? That funky molding may look artistic today, but in ten years will it be considered artistic or just plain weird?

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• Practical Layout: Make sure you have enough room to live

in comfort. As a buyer of luxury property, you probably have quite a busy social schedule. You want to make sure that the layout will lend itself to helping you maintain clear separation between your social areas and private ones. You don’t want guests having to go back into your bedroom to use the bathroom. Look out for places with stairwells, awkward columns, long hallways, and other wastes of space.

• Unobstructed Views and Light: You want to live in

a home that gives you lots of natural light, such as one that is open to the outdoors. That natural light will improve your mood, as well as the resale value. The openness of a space filled with natural light will make you feel more comfortable and happy in your new home. What about the view? Do you see a Do you park, a bridge, a river, or a skyline? Is the see a park, fantastic view out your window protected? a bridge, You’ll need to understand the surrounding air a river, or a rights and zoning allowances of neighboring buildings to understand the possible risks. skyline?

• Windows: Windows are the primary source of losing heat and

cooling. Make sure they are double-paned with good insulation that will protect your home against weather and noise. Unless the windows are already like this, it is unlikely that the condo or co-op board will allow you to install your own.

• Ceiling Height: Consider the cubic footage of the property.

You want to look for high ceilings that increase the openness of a room. Of course, you don’t want to go too high. Above 14 feet will get you diminished marginal returns.

• Storage: If you’re a woman, you will understand this one. We need

lots of closets and additional storage room to fit all of our clothes, shoes, jackets, hats, purses, etc. However, lucky for you, your potential home’s existing closet square footage will not limit you from putting in more storage space. Custom closet companies can create any kind of storage

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space you desire. You will have to, however, make sure that your new home does have an area that you can turn into this storage space. • In-Unit Laundry: In-unit laundry has become necessary for

any luxury home or apartment. Do you really want to have to trek down flights of stairs to use the basement laundry? If you still consider it wasted space, you can convert it into more closet space.

• The Gym: Having a fitness area nearby is an amenity that is especially

important, particularly in winter when you don’t feel like walking to the gym a few blocks down. One thing to consider is the Do you really want of the gym in relation to have to trek down size to the size of the building in flights of stairs? light of common area fees. • Move-In Ready: I’d advise against buying time-consuming and

frustrating fixer-uppers no matter how much you want to add custom kitchens, finishes, fixtures, and other characteristics. Choose a property that already has all of these amenities taken care of. These properties have already had the same designers you would hire fashion the house at a fraction of the cost you would pay to have them do it after you move in. In this light, it is worthwhile to pay a little extra for the move-in ready home.

• Reputation: Pay attention to the reputation of the building. A

property that has a good reputation tends to retain its value. You can easily find this out online on posts, and established locals are likely to have an opinion.

If you want to buy luxury property that is really worth it’s price, then I would suggest adding these points to your list of things your new home must have. If you want to get a high quality home that is a true luxury, you’ll want to watch out for these aspects as well as the location. Some properties might claim to be luxury based on their location, but when compared against this list, they don’t make the cut. So, don’t be fooled by imposters, and make sure you find a true high-end property. 6

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BREYLAN DEAL-ERIKSEN 7


Breylan Deal-Eriksen is a Principal Broker and Realtor at Windermere Realty Trust in Portland, Oregon.

Breylan Deal-Eriksen, Principal Broker and Realtor at Windermere Realty Trust in Portland, Oregon is that rare agent who approaches his career with enthusiasm, true concern for his clients and an impressive wealth of industry knowledge. A fierce advocate for his clients, Breylan has built a loyal and trusting customer base that not only repeatedly utilizes his services, but also enthusiastically refer friends and family. Breylan is also deeply versed in the financial side of the real estate business, having begun 8 Copyright Top Agent Magazine

his career in 2008 working in the mortgage industry, which he did for four-and-a-half years. Following that, he spent eighteen months working in title and escrow. “During that time,” says Breylan, “I created many relationships with Realtors, and it became apparent to me that I should become one. So I got my license in 2014 and hit the ground running. I’ve found that my experience in the mortgage industry and title and escrow has been really beneficial when it comes to helping my clients understand the transaction process from that perspective.” Breylan is adamant about ensuring that his clients fully understand the entire transaction process. “One of the things I do,” he explains, “is have an initial meeting with a new buyer, for example, we sit down and I explain the real estate contract in depth and show them where they are strong as a buyer, where they’re protected as a consumer, and just generally take the fear out of the process. Fully explaining what their options are and what to expect from the beginning, I think Top Agent Magazine


helps people feel like they can trust you to give them great advice.” Breylan also takes a decidedly egalitarian approach to his clients. “A lot of agents focus only on higher price points. I think it’s very important to treat all people the same, regardless of budget.” Nearly all of Breylan’s business is the result of referrals from satisfied clients. This glowing testimonial posted on his Yelp profile clearly illustrates the reasons for this loyalty: “Breylan went above and beyond from the start. During the initial meeting, Breylan spent over an hour and a Top Agent Magazine

half on a Saturday to find out what we were looking for and to educate us on the overall process of home buying since this was our first experience. He was always supportive and never pushy with the process. Breylan was prompt with all communications, even when we did not expect him to be (like when he was on vacation, and shouldn’t be working). He thought of potential problems we might encounter and solved them before they became an issue. Not only is he very professional, he is also very personable. Breylan has a great sense of humor and a calming presence which comes in handy when home buying becomes stressful. We Copyright Top Agent Magazine9


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“A lot of agents focus only on higher price points. I think it’s very important to treat all people the same, regardless of budget” couldn’t have asked for a better agent and highly recommend him!.” Breylan is passionate about giving back to his community, and to that end he has worked with the Oregon Food Bank, Friends of Trees, and the Windermere Foundation. He has also been involved with fundraisers for Portland’s local LGBTQ Community Center. When he’s not working or giving his time to worthy organizations, Breylan enjoys being with his fiancé Ben, a nurse at The Oregon Top Agent Magazine

Clinic, and their corgi, Monty. “We love cars, we like to go on hikes, and we’re big foodies. We love to cook and to host dinner parties, go to movies and live theater, just those fun things everyone else is doing,” he says. Breylan’s future plans include continuing to grow his business, which has seen exponential increases year after year. While he has plans to eventually bring a buyer’s agent on board, he is dedicated to remaining handson in his approach. “The nice thing about Copyright Top Agent Magazine 11


(Windermere) and its culture is that it’s about our clients, not about growing a massive team. It’s about treating our clients like family. I don’t foresee moving to a model

where I’m basically functioning as an operations manager overseeing other agents. I really enjoy having boots on the ground, working with my clients directly.”

For more information about BREYLAN DEAL-ERIKSEN, please call 503 - 953 - 0253 or email hello@breylan.com Copyright Top Agent Magazine 12

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Killing Clients with Kindness and Value By Walter Sanford

Sometimes, we need to “kill” our clients with kindness and offer value. I know it goes against everything in our nature to turn the other cheek when they are being mean. Recently, a coaching client had some challenges with a particular client, and I’m sure you have also worked with the kind of client who discourages you so much that you just want to hit the delete button! How about offering a response that increases your fame and makes the client always wonder what they may be missing? They might not list with you, but they will never forget you. Included in the balance of this article are the email from the client, the request for help from my coaching client, and then my suggested response. Email from the Potential Client: Sorry, I have been really busy. Let me tell you where I’m at with everything. You may or may not be interested. I am definitely putting the house on the market. The house has been rented for the last 5 years with the same family. They originally signed a rent to own lease. Three years ago, they decided they didn’t want to buy it. Top Agent Magazine

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Anyway, I recently informed them that I’m going to put the house on the market. Now, they are reconsidering buying the house. I don’t think they will buy the house, but I guess you never know. If they do buy the house, it would be for sale by owner. I will not let them drag their feet. We happen to know a lot of REALTORS® in (area). Some are pretty good friends and with that comes opportunities at rates way under the norm. One of them did sell our last house quickly but circumstances have changed. I know you are a very good REALTOR®, because I have heard other REALTORS® talk about you. You may not be interested at this point anymore. If you are still interested, let me know what your best rate is. Let me know if you are okay with the current tenants on a “for sale by owner” agreement, if that happens. I would want a short-term agreement. The current rent is higher than my mortgage payment so I’m okay if they don’t buy and I’m not forced to sell at a low price. However, I want to sell ASAP. I’m wanting to purchase another property so I’m not going to overprice the house and I will negotiate. Email from Coaching Client to Me: Walter, this guy is a college basketball coach. I want to help him, but I need to have a chance to run a successful business, too! How do I answer this? Email from Me to Coaching Client (to share with potential client): Thank you so much for the nice words. It is very exciting to hear that our hard work is creating some buzz. I think we can accommodate you and exceed your expectations: 14

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1. We believe that we exceed client expectations more often than most agents, because we spend the time to understand what the client needs. Then we develop a customized program to meet and exceed that goal. We would love to help you in accomplishing your real estate needs. 2. We would be happy to exclude the current residents from the listing agreement for 30 days. This would help in motivating the current residents to buy in that they can see the price discounted by the commission, if they commit to buy within the 30 day period. We would like to offer you our closing service that handles everything for a flat fee of $4,000. This handles the contract phase, aligning the team of affiliates, and the closing. This, of course, is at your option. 3..Our commissions are normal for our market, but we save you money over any commission discounter. Our specialty is increasing your net proceeds. We do this by bringing you more buyers with more effective marketing, better negotiating, better systems for handling inspections, better pre-approval tools for your buyer, better contracts, and less post-seller litigation from better contracts. Commission discounts usually cost you money because of the agent’s lack of emphasis on your net proceeds check. It is like a basketball player who is playing with no heart, only for the scholarship. 4. Our rate is retail 6%. This may eliminate us, but that would be a shortsided conclusion. Here are 5 of the ways we can beat any commission discount: A. We beat the average List to sell ratio in (area) by a larger margin than any discount. B. We beat the days on market, which affects your carrying costs and lost opportunity costs on your equity. C. We have a low litigation rate as compared to national standards. D. We can market your home a little over retail due to our marketing. Top Agent Magazine

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D. We urge a pre-inspection plan to get rid of the little and big problems before a buyer is involved and wants everything built new. 5. Our agreements are 6 months, but that is not what sells properties. Marketing and price sell property. If we are wrong about those two items, we will adjust every week based upon showings and consultations with you. 6. I would also like to advise you on a misconception. Rental costs average about 35% of market rent in our area. Add in lost opportunity costs on your equity that is not doing anything at this point. I can show you how your current position is losing you money every month. I think our next step is a presentation of the tools we bring to achieve your goals. Listing with friends is loyal, but is it the best business decision? Do they have the tools and will you hold their feet to the fire when the results are not what you need? (Client’s name), you know the difference superstars make on a team. Let’s go for the win. It’s not so much whether my coaching client obtained the listing, but he needed to stand up for a profitable, long term business. Never sell yourself short to get business. You will never be happy. In these situations, I cannot guarantee an outcome, but I can guarantee the client will never forget you. You are planting seeds of discontentment with the small amount of money saved in a commission compared to not achieving their goal. Whether he/she admits it or not, he/she will have respect for you. Do more lead generation so you won’t have to work so hard on leads like these. Copyright©, 2015 Walter Sanford. All rights reserved.

Walter Sanford has been designing and implementing real estate systems for 30 years. One of the most successful REALTORS® and now wealthy from his systems, Sanford teaches his systems and strategies through his products, seminars, and personal coaching producing the best results in the industry. Do what works, do what is proven. Hire Walter Sanford. Call our office at 800.792.5837, email walter@waltersanford.com, or chat with us online at www.waltersanford.com. 16

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3 Beyond-the-Office Activities to Inspire a Creative Business Boom Maintaining motivation year-round is a challenge, especially for those who are several years into a demanding real estate career. It’s easy to burn out, get stuck in a rut, or cycle blindly through a well-worn routine. But those that leave an impact on their industry understand that creativity holds the key to innovation and longevity. To stay ahead of 18

the curve and build your brand, you’ve got to take the time to breathe new life into your practice and see things from a new angle. But where to begin? To invite change, you’ve got to look outside the box—or in this case, beyond the office. If you’re in need of a professional creative make-

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To stay ahead of the curve and build your brand, you’ve got to take the time to breathe new life into your practice and see things from a new angle. over, or at least want to experience a burst of inventive energy, consider some of the activities below. You may just shake up your routine, bend your brain in new ways, and inject some inspiration into your professional path.

Expand your mind through meditation. You’ve likely heard all about the supposed powers of meditation, and perhaps you’ve long considered it an over-hyped New Age invention. But did you know that some of the foremost entrepreneurs of our era practice this cost-free, mentally restorative routine? From Oprah Winfrey to Steve Jobs, practitioners of meditation cite its stress-relieving principles, in addition to improvements in concentration, energy, self-awareness, and overall health.

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Even mainstream medicine is beginning to understand the preventative and restorative health benefits that meditation affords. As professional fields go, the mortgage and real estate industries require their fair share of emotional labor—you’re tasked with guiding clients through the investment of a lifetime. Meditation promotes peace and perspective, while reducing stress, adding a new level of self-awareness, and helping you mentally declutter. When it comes down to it, it only makes sense that taking time to go quiet and center your mind helps professionals find wherewithal amidst a hectic industry. Next time you’re feeling drained, out of ideas, or at your wit’s end—consider just fifteen minutes of meditation to get you started. Like most things, it takes some practice. But, if you commit the time, you’ll be thanking yourself later.

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Learn something new. If you’re facing burnout, then adding a new responsibility to your plate may seem like the least appetizing self-help solution there is. However, learning a new skill can reinvigorate your understanding of familiar tasks and dilemmas. Plus, learning a new skill doesn’t have to mean formal classes or time-draining homework. Select something that can even kill two birds with one stone. Want to let off some steam, too? Try a kickboxing class that meets just once-a-week. You’ll have something new to look forward to, meet new people, challenge yourself, and earn some feel-good endorphins, 20

too. Want to cut loose and have some fun? Join a board game meet-up group, take a cooking class, or try rock-climbing for the first time. A stimulating new activity will light up long-dormant parts of your brain, and your clients and colleagues will surely notice the influx of energy to your outlook. Still don’t think you have enough time to add something new to the mix? Blend your morning commute with an audio language learning service. The point is to shake-up your habits and introduce a new challenge that’s unrelated to work. Doing so can make you look at things in a new light and boost your mood along the way.

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See new sights. If you can, there’s no better way to break from routine than to physically separate yourself from your surroundings. There’s nothing more inspiring than traveling to new destinations, experiencing new cultures, and getting a sense of the world’s true vastness. If a trip abroad isn’t in the cards, don’t fret. There are bound to be plenty of places relatively close by that you’ve never seen. And these trips don’t have to break the bank, either. Devote just one or two days to visiting a place you’ve never gone before, like a state park, protected forest, or a small seaside village. Perhaps you’re only a few hours from a National Park you’ve been meaning to visit but have never made time for. Or, there’s a lively city one state over that you’ve always wanted to try. Whatever the destination, near or far, you’ll refresh

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your perspective entirely when removed from all your usual routines. New restaurants, traffic patterns, storefronts, weather—whatever the change may be, you’ll be experiencing everything brand new all around you. Taking the time for trips like these isn’t easy. In fact, making yourself devote those free days may be a difficult task itself. But it’s the most direct way to get a breath of truly fresh air, and when you return home you’ll be able to assess familiar surroundings in a totally new light. However you decide to add creativity to your professional life, don’t wait. Once you take the plunge, you’ll be regretting you hadn’t done it sooner. After all, the key to longevity is regular maintenance, so do your part and break the mold today.

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Why Delegating is the Key to Long-lasting Success Delegating isn’t a dirty word. In fact, it’s the secret weapon of some of the most successful real estate leaders out there. Those that want to succeed and lead a business built to last understand that delegating is the key to growth and longevity. While the idea of delegating may sound nice, consider a few ways in which delegating adds professional value that goes far beyond efficiency.

DELEGATING DEVELOPS YOUR MANAGEMENT TECHNIQUE Have you ever considered that delegating tasks and responsibilities can help you, as 22

a leader, develop your managerial skills? While the main objective of delegation is to distribute work in a balanced, efficient way, it’s also a chance to assign tasks with insight, calibrating your team in the process. Consider delegation an opportunity to build strengths and address weaknesses on your team by choosing specific tasks for specific employees. You can also work on and expand your communication skills, find ways to streamline your delegation tactics, and create opportunities for collaboration. Don’t just delegate blindly, be thoughtful in how you parcel out the workload and responsibilities. Doing so will allow you to fortify your

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While the idea of delegating may sound nice, consider a few ways in which delegating adds professional value that goes far beyond efficiency.

management skills, in addition to lightening your load for the better.

DELEGATING BUILDS COLLECTIVE CONFIDENCE Another byproduct of delegating is that it builds collective confidence in the ranks of your office. By giving employees the chance to flex their skills and control their own small slice of the pie, you’ll be fostering a sense of responsibility and growth on your talent roster. Not only will your staff benefit from the chance to step out on their own, but the team will also benefit as a whole, as each member will attack their duties with a renewed sense of confidence and competence. This collective aptitude will translate to clients and industry colleagues, who will sense the power of a practiced, well-calibrated team in which each member has the chance to shine.

DELEGATING SHARPENS WEAK SPOTS IN OFFICE COMMUNICATION Proper delegation requires clear communication and the careful outlining of responsibilities, goals, and expectations. By regularly delegating to staff, you’ll be giving the whole office the chance to curtail careless communication habits and establish a new benchmark for quality correspondence. Begin by setting an example by clearly communicating delegated responsibilities, leaving the door open for Top Agent Magazine

questions, and by making progress reports the standard. After a while, these good habits will become engrained in your team, and your office will benefit from a uniform and effective communication style, no matter the project.

DELEGATING TURNS ACCOMPLISHMENTS INTO A TEAM WIN The ultimate goal of delegating duties is to get the job done, but when you practice delegation, each team member will have a stake in the outcome. In other words, a job well done can be celebrated by all. Giving your team the chance to invest themselves in an overarching project allows for a big pay-off once success is achieved. Not only does this boost morale and provide meaningful motivation for daily work, but it also builds a sense of comradery among the ranks. What’s more, team members will know they’re taken seriously and considered valuable to the team’s dynamic. And don’t forget: a job well done is a reward in and of itself, but it also doesn’t hurt to demonstrate your gratitude for a team goal accomplished. Delegating responsibilities isn’t a new idea, but the benefits are more plentiful than most imagine. With that in mind, capitalize on opportunities to delegate and you’ll not only be bolstering your business, but building your team and your own professional profile for the long haul.

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