My Real Estate Update: The Team Approach Works…

Strength in NumbersMy day usually begins before 5 AM (seriously…look at the time stamp on emails you get from me). It is my time to return overnight emails, keep up-to-date through RSS feeds with emerging Technology and the real estate market, write blogs, input listings, feature sheets, read the Globe and Mail, update Virtual Tours, draft Agreements of Purchase and Sale and work on, etc., etc., etc., without the office or cell phone interrupting me.

I will happily admit that I am a “control freak”  and a lot of the listing functions that are done by the office staff, I do myself. I have a home office and my neighbors are always commenting on how they see my lights on late into the night. I am not complaining and as a matter of fact, I am very happy with the status quo and love my job, subject to winning a huge Loto 649.

I love the technology that I use in marketing properties and am addicted to some of it. I always want to see the latest development and how I can use it in my business. More and more though I have found however that the listing and marketing of homes has become a very specialized and demanding service. It requires lots of focus, so instead of becoming  a schizophrenic, I have moved to a team approach and adding Buyer Specialists dedicated to helping clients buy.

The Buyer Specialists are all up-to-date on the new product as it comes to the market and I work with them to help assess the buyers needs. It works well and allows me the time to focus on what I do the best…market homes, and negotiate offers as they come. Their names are Sherille Layton, Janet Piotrowski, Ken James, and France Trudeau. Depending on area and type of home, I will refer them to look after you. We have group meetings and have done some great course work together to serve you better.

I have Jan Robinson who assists me on a daily basis with data entry, building inspections, purchaser visits and when I am unavailable. The full staff of Sotheby’s International Realty Canada Ltd. including reception, management and graphic design are always on hand and of course, there is my Blackberry making me accessible in Toronto or wherever I travel. I am a true “Crackberry” who has been known to have a second Blackberry close at hand in case the main one needs repair…

Of course, success often depends on presentation of the product and for that I am happy to pay for my clients to have a consultation with Luanne Kanerva of Katu Design. We have worked together for years and I appreciate her suggestions and contributions as do the clients. I have a host of good trades that I can also depend on to give my clients good service…

The bottom line is this: Real Estate is a great career. I like helping people bring their dreams to reality. After many years and many changes, I have found that a team approach works best for me. However, as they stay, the “buck stops here” and I am always available and committed to making sure that this team approach works for our clients as well.

This June, I plan to resign as a Director of the Toronto Real Estate Board and as a REALTOR Governor of the REALTORS Care Foundation. I have learned a lot and will continue as a Director of the MLS and Technology Council at CREA (The Canadian Real Estate Association), but it is time to let others move into the positions that I have enjoyed and learned from…Again, let me be clear that barring a win of Loto 649, I plan to work for another 20 years. Like you, I too am facing Freedom 95 rather than Freedom 65. Why not? If the new seniors are Tina Turner and Mick Jagger….the world has changed. A friend in Florida, who left Toronto for a warmer climate is still full of life, selling, negotiating, emailing and just turned 80.

Your thoughts or comments are appreciated. Criticism can be a great teacher and I am willing to learn.

12 Replies to “My Real Estate Update: The Team Approach Works…”

  1. Hey Richard, I would highly recommend a book by Tim Ferriss called “The Four Hour Workweek”… it’s all about doing more in less time, and outsourcing to others. You’ll love it.

  2. Good Morning Richard,

    You have served as “Every REALTOR®” voice at the TREB board table over the last 5 years.

    Your passion, knowledge and experience will be truly missed when you decide to step down.

    What would it take to get you to re-consider ? Your sales team here is a well oiled machine and TREB still needs you !

    BLOG readers, please encourage Richard to stay on !

    TOM LEBOUR – TREB 2009 President Elect

  3. Dear Richard
    I hope that you are not moving.. because reading
    your blog is such a treat .. to see how much you
    enjoy talking about real estate and cabbagetown.
    Just want to say thanks to you Richard…

  4. Hi Richard,
    I’m surprised you would claim to be happy to be a “control freak”.
    I have always claimed to be a “good manager”. By that I mean: “take care of your people and you will float to greatness on their achievements” (may be some pharaphrasing in there!! but I can get the author if you wish)
    Or, if you can’t delegate accountability, whay did you hire them in the first place?

    Hope the conference goes well and the MTC meetings are productive..although I’ve heard…

    1. After a certain time in life, you just learn to accept it and learn not to be too serious about it…You are missed on the MTC and at CREA but you have certainly done your bit. You have done an amazing job!! Congratulations!

  5. What is your opinion of cabbage town new towers
    that are going up fast…What is your opinion of it
    in the middle of Regent Park…Do you think that the
    they will sell at 189 thousand dollars

  6. I have not spent time looking at the floor plans but they seem to be good looking buildings by well known builders and by adding Sobey’s and some other commercial elements they will be definietly change the whole Regent Park energy. The 189,000 will depend on the price per square foot as it relates to comparable buildings…like the towers that are now in the Distillery District. They seem to be performing well after a few years…


    Will you be blogging on Cabbage Town and Riverdale
    soon or are you taking a break..Thanks for the home
    tips they were very helpful..

  8. I will certainly be blogging about Cabbagetown and Riverdale but have been Conferencing for the past few days. More to come real soon and thanks again. If you are in the “hood” and have any updates let me know and I will be happy to post them.

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