Over the past year I have been doing double duty as a REALTOR and as President of the Toronto Real Estate Board. It was a one year term which ended on July1st, 2012. It was a great experience and I got to meet a lot of interesting and committed people and give back to the industry that has been my life for 33 years. I will now sit for one year as the Past President….glad to be the elder statesman.
It was a great challenge and “No”, I have not retired from selling nor will I do so for at least another 10 years. My involvement with organized Real Estate is strictly volunteer. However, one of the perks that my clients benefit from is the knowledge that I have been able to gain at different Conferences throughout North America as well as the many referrals that I have been able to provide for my clients as they relocate or buy second properties in foreign lands.
It was not an easy year as we have had a challenge from the Competition Bureau of Canada. The real estate transaction is a big one and I pride myself on not exposing my clients in any way that would jeopardize their privacy. I have always been happy to discuss the market with the media as long as my clients were not featured in any way. At the same time, I have been a huge proponent of how technology can be used in selling real estate and have happily voiced the opinion that more information should be available to the consumer, however not a the cost of the Buyer’s or Seller’s personal privacy. The Toronto Real Estate Board has also taken a strong stance against some of the requests of the Competition Bureau and soon they will be in court to defend your privacy.
What is the fight about?
A year ago TREB launched a VOW policy which allows the consumer to visit a REALTOR site and set up their own search for product without having to communicate with a REALTOR. It is the information in the VOW feed that the Competition Bureau wants expanded….they want the Seller’s name, the price that the Seller accepted for the property even before it is completed and the amount of commission that the Buyer’s Agent has been offered.
Through all of it I have tried to do double duty and I look forward to getting back to just dealing with one job. I have been very lucky to have the support of my assistant Jan Robinson and Buyer Specialists, France Trudeau, Ken James and Kimberley Ezeard. With their help I have continued to be in the top percentages of the Toronto Real Estate Board (35,000 members) in terms of Sales and in 2011 was the number two salesperson at Sotheby’s International Realty Canada Ltd (over 200 salespersons). I have learned a lot and look forward to putting that knowledge to work in the next few years. Truth be told I am a bit of a knowledge junkie…
As you know, Real Estate is very Internet driven and a search for “Toronto Real Estate” on Google will have www.RichardSilver.com and www.Torontoism.com at the top of 160,000,000 results. Getting to and staying at the top of the Search Engines is one of the most important benefits that I can offer my clients but it is money and time very well spent.
A long time proponent of Social Media (Blogs, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn) and their use in selling Real Estate, I keep honing my craft in this new and ever-changing media. Some of my Community videos have gone viral through the Real Estate Community. You can view all on the front pages of my web sites or here is the Rosedale video.
What does the future hold?
For the next 10 years I intend to keep busy working and waiting for my life partner to reach retirement. With the exception of some travel the goal will be to enjoy our nephews, nieces and their children. The past few years have added a new generation to our family and that means that dull moments are few and far between.
I would like to thank my clients and friends for their support over the years and look forward to helping all of you with changes as they occur within your lives. I consider myself to be very lucky to have a career that is never boring and never without change. I hope to hear from you!