RISMedia's Real Estate Magazine

JUN 2019

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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88 June 2019 RISMedia's REAL ESTATE Paul Ekstrom Broker/Owner Realty ONE Group Choice Andover, Minn. www.realtyonegroup.com/reales - tateagent/paul-ekstrom-9814972 Region served: Andover and North - east, Minn. Years in real estate: 12 Number of offices: 2 Number of agents: 70 What makes Realty ONE Group the best fit for you? I was with Keller Williams for 12 years, and while I learned a lot during my time there as both an agent and team member, when I wanted to expand my busi - ness, I needed a brokerage to help me take my business to the next level. It was right then that I was approached by Realty ONE Group. In addition to the platform they have that combines superior technology, websites and marketing, I was truly impressed with the people. Real estate is a people business, and Realty ONE Group is all about the people. We have an unbeliev - able relationship, and they treat me like I'm the most important person in the world. How do you stay ahead of the com - petition? On the brokerage level, we've done it organically. I'm very well respected in the industry, and our agents tell other agents who they believe will fit in well here. We haven't done an aggressive marketing campaign because our doors aren't open to everyone. I believe that if I bring in even one bad egg, it'll take us down and keep us from growing. So, we grow the right way. And while we may not be growing as fast as we could, doing it the right way allows us to bring in solid producers. What is your best advice for new agents? If you aren't committed to lead generation, you're in the wrong business. The technology is there, so we have to use it. Also, we're the leaders in video production, so my advice is to learn to put out excellent videos, which can also be used to generate leads. Videos per - sonalize the business like nothing else we have today in tech terms. In what ways do you go the extra mile for your agents? We're kind of crazy in Minnesota. In fact, we cut holes in the ice and jump in. Last year, I convinced 25 agents to jump in with me and we raised $4,830 for childhood cancer with our Polar Plunge. I would never ask anyone to do anything that I wouldn't do with them. What would you say is the key to your success in real estate? Lead generation. It's always lead generation. And, of course, never being satisfied with the status quo. We always strive for constant improvement. For more information, please visit www.realtyonegroup.com. Striving for Constant Improvement by Lesley Grand to Connecticut. With Long Island Sound to the north and the Atlantic Ocean to the south, we offer the best of both worlds. In my opinion, there's no better place to live. Please describe some of the current trends you're seeing in your market. We're seeing a sweet spot when it comes to properties that are listed at $500,000 and below. In fact, any - thing in that price range is currently flying off the market, while proper - ties listed at $800,000 and up are sitting a bit longer. How does your company make its agents' jobs easier? By offering them all the tools, training and technology they need to be successful. Through our backend system, RealSmart Agent, agents have the ability to work anywhere, anytime—as long as they have an internet connec - tion. Taking this one step further, agents can access flyers, manage their website and download listing presentations all from the backend. They can even upload paperwork to RealSmart Agent for broker ap - proval. In the end, the higher com- mission they're earning allows them to make more money on any given deal, which leads to them having more money to spend on marketing. In what ways do your agents use technology to better serve their clients? In addition to our large social media presence, I recently built a TV studio in the office so that our agents can get in front of their clients through a variety of different mediums. Whether they're talking about market conditions/trends or highlighting a new listing, video is a great way for agents to showcase themselves. While some of our more experienced agents shy away from the TV studio because it's different, it's a great way for newer agents to launch their business and help it grow. What sets HomeSmart Premier Living Realty apart from other brokerages? Our culture. We're a non-competitive brokerage where we all learn from each other and are al - ways available to help one another. In fact, it's not uncommon for experi - enced agents to take newer agents under their wing and show them the business. Because we offer a unique brokerage model, we appeal to a different kind of agent. For more information, please visit www.homesmart.com.

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