RISMedia's Real Estate Magazine

AUG 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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58 August 2019 RISMedia's REAL ESTATE Larry Rideout: A Luxury Leader in the Northeast Larry Rideout—chair- man and founder of Gibson Sotheby's International Realty— has been in the real estate game since 1984. Starting out as an agent, Rideout went on to become the SVP of Business Growth for Realogy before own- ing one of the top real estate companies in Massachusetts, serving the eastern part of the state. Since acquiring a 45-year-old company in the South End of Bos- ton in December 2016 with three offices, 55 associates and $250 million in sales volume, he has transformed the business into a 17-office firm with 300 associ- ates and $2.4 billion in sales volume. How would you character- ize your market through the first half of 2019? LARRY RIDEOUT: Massa- chusetts is still a strong market, though not at all like our previous two years. I like to think of it as a normalizing market. The competition in the marketplace is allowing us to be more desirable in the eyes of the consumer. There seems to be a race to the bottom, and we stand apart from that. Do you have plans to grow your firm in the upcoming months? LR: We started expanding our company in the fourth quarter of 2018 and will continue to grow strate- gically as needed. We're always looking for experi- enced luxury associates in all of our markets. What most sets your firm apart in the marketplace? LR: I think the Sotheby's brand raises the threshold for us and we strive every day to meet our clients' and customers' expecta- tions of the service be- hind that brand. Our luxury brand isn't about price points, but more about service. How are you attracting agents to your firm and retaining top producers? LR: Our philosophy from the beginning was to pro- vide enough support for our associates that their main job was to do what they do best: list and sell. We also provide a culture of collaboration through- out our company. This culture and support are critical when it comes to retaining our existing as- sociates and attracting ex- perienced associates. What do you look for in someone new coming into the company? LR: They first need to fit our company culture. Then they need to be experi- enced and able to repre- sent our luxury brand in the manner of our existing associates. When we're comfortable with that, they meet at least two mem- bers of our leadership team, and after a discus- sion, we will offer them a position—or not. How do your agents handle the new millennial buyer? LR: We're aware of the changing demographics and offer courses to all our agents to keep them abreast of those changes. We also hire from the de- mographics we serve, giv- ing us an advantage. What are the biggest challenges you're current- ly facing? LR: Every real estate mar- ket over the years has brought its own set of challenges and competi- tors. Each challenge and competitor must be ac- knowledged, but we should never stray from what has made us so strong. VITALS: Gibson Sotheby's International Realty Years in business: 13 Size: 17 oces, 300 agents Regions served: Eastern Massachuse-s 2018 sales volume: $2.4 billion 2018 transactions: 2,350 www.gibsonsothebysrealty.com "I think the Sotheby's brand raises the threshold for us and we strive every day to meet our clients' and customers' expectations of the service behind that brand." – Larry Rideout Chairman & Founder, Gibson Sotheby's International Realty

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