RISMedia's Real Estate Magazine

SEP 2018

Real Estate magazine is the industry's leading source for real estate news and information since 1980. Published monthly by RISMedia, Real Estate magazine offers timely and relevant real estate news to the industry's top brokers and agents.

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RISMedia's REAL ESTATE September 2018 95 themselves studying at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo though with differ- ent career expectations—Trapani as a pre-law student destined to fol- low in the entrepreneurial footsteps of his father, Marko Trapani, and Iwanaga to study English and Fine Arts and begin coaching high school football. But despite their differing aca- demic journeys and early career paths, the two eventually found themselves working side by side, much as in their days back on Sobey Road—only this time as real estate professionals, first as sales associates, then as leaders; locally for Iwanaga and on a much larger, national scale for Trapani. So, it should come as no surprise that when Trapani, with the backing of his father, was ready to launch an upscale, boutique real estate agen- cy, he would call on the friends and creative thinkers who shared his unique vision. Sereno Group opened its doors in 2006 with 27 top-producing agents, 115 listings in Los Gatos and sur- rounding areas, and a goal that ran against tradition: to break from the large-scale agency model in favor of offering every client the expert and personalized service that would make a positive difference in their real estate experience. Today, under the leadership of Tra- pani as chief executive officer and Iwanaga as executive vice presi- dent, with Barbara Cole as chief op- erating officer and Tim Proschold as vice president of group strategy and success, the firm has 365 agents in eight locations doing $3.5 billion in annual sales. "That's an average of more than $10 million in sales per agent," Trapani points out—a rare accom- plishment even in a region where, according to real estate data firm CoreLogic, the median home price for a single-family home hit a record of $935,000 last May. Part of the reason for that, Trapani is quick to note, is that the company has taken an intentional and care- ful approach to growth. "We did not focus on hiring brand-new licensees during our first nine years in busi- ness," he says. "We set a very high bar for character, quality and profes- sionalism. We seek to align with the most experienced and thoughtful sales staff representing the best in- terest of our group and clients." While Sereno Group takes pride in the quality and experience of its sales staff, efforts to ensure they stay ahead of the curve include ac- cess to the best trainers and coach- es in the industry, including Brian Buffini, Tom Ferry and Lorna Hines. The firm also schedules bimonthly meetings wholly devoted to aware- ness, inspiration, thoughtfulness and business applications. Trapani sharing the progress of the company at Sereno Group's Mid-Year Meeting

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