Making Waves in More Ways Than One: Newsmakers in the Spotlight

Dec 9, 2018 by

Whether for commendable growth or inventive thinking, many of RISMedia’s 2019 Real Estate Newsmakers garnered headlines for more than one reason this year. Here, we highlight a selection of stories, with claims to fame that include increased marketshare, an IPO, and a pivotal rebrand.

Brian Bair (Trailblazer)
CEO & Co-Founder, Offerpad

  • In May 2018, Offerpad earned $ 150 million in a financing round.
  • In July, the company expanded its leadership team, adding a new chief of staff/COO and a new chief product and analytics officer. In September, the company hired a new CTO.

Adam Contos (Futurist)

  • In February 2018, RE/MAX acquired booj, developer of lead gen systems, websites, and more.
  • In July, the company was named one of the top 10 “Global Franchises” by Entrepreneur. In October, the company was named one of the top 10 franchises by Franchise Times. In the second quarter of the year, agent count hit a new record: over 123,000 worldwide.

Dean deTonnancourt (Achiever)
CEO & President, HomeSmart Professionals Real Estate

  • In 2018, HomeSmart Professionals Real Estate expanded into Maine, its second marketplace in New England. The brokerage—HomeSmart International’s first franchise on the East Coast—was established in Rhode Island.
  • DeTonnancourt was named 2019 president of the Rhode Island Association of REALTORS® this year.

Cheryl Eidinger-Taylor (Achiever)
COO & President, ERA Key Realty Services

  • In February 2018, ERA Key Realty Services merged with HUNT Real Estate ERA, combining 1,600 agents and more than 50 locations in New England and New York.
  • In July, Eidinger-Taylor was awarded the Banker & Tradesman Women of FIRE award.

Georg Gerstenfeld (Trailblazer)
General Manager of Global Real Estate Solutions, DocuSign

  • In May 2018, DocuSign went public.
  • In October, the company debuted DocuSign Rooms for Mortgage, and in November, in conjunction with the National Association of REALTORS®, launched the “Go Digital” program for associations.

Daisy Lopez-Cid (Crusader)
Broker/Owner, RE/MAX Premier Properties

  • Lopez-Cid is the 2018 president of the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP).
  • In January, she was named Humanitarian of the Year by the Osceola County Association of REALTORS® for her efforts following Hurricane Maria. In November, she was the recipient of RISMedia’s “On the Shoulders of Giants” award.

Diane Ramirez (Luminary)
CEO & Chairman, Halstead

  • In April 2018, Halstead Property rebranded to Halstead Real Estate, complete with a fresh logo, positioning and website.
  • Ramirez was named the 2019 chair of Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® this year.

For the complete list of Newsmakers this year, browse our directory at

For more information on RISMedia’s Real Estate Newsmakers, please visit

Know a Newsmaker? For information on nominating or becoming a 2020 RISMedia Real Estate Newsmaker, please email our executive editor, Maria Patterson, at Nominations will be accepted in early 2019.

For the latest real estate news and trends, bookmark

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Using Your Team’s Strengths to Land More Listings

Nov 26, 2018 by

In a listing appointment, we don’t get a second opportunity to make a great first impression. That’s especially true in the ultra-competitive team segment of real estate.

I really feel like the first step to a great listing appointment is to listen to the seller’s needs. I think this gives you an advantage. Have you ever thought of what a competing team may be doing? Let’s say that an agent for a competing team goes in and feels like they have to do most of the talking to impress the seller. Before we can really impress the seller, don’t we really have to listen and not make assumptions?

I love being the second or third agent to interview for the listing. This is a great opportunity, especially when the other agents print off comparables in a fancy brochure. Don’t get me wrong: Beautifully executed listing presentations are great—but opportunity lies in really getting to know the needs of the seller.

If you are having success as a buyer’s agent, then listening is something you are accustomed to. I think it’s important we use the same skills with sellers that make us great with buyers. Face-to-face experiences with buyers can be really useful on a listing appointment; they can demonstrate your true understanding of what the buyer is looking for. Don’t treat the listing appointment like it’s something different than what you or someone else on your team is already doing with buyers. These different pieces are all part of the same process for selling a home.

After discovering what’s most important to the seller, then it becomes crucial to know the product you’re selling inside and out. Instead of printing comparables, I do this research and studying at home. That way, I internalize the comparables, versus having to point to a piece of paper in front of them. Keep in mind most sellers have the same amount of information available to them, so personal preparation and really knowing what you’re selling are key.

Do you role-play prior to listing appointments? If you are able to, do it. Role-play with agents on your team, as well as with agents you don’t know. The skills you can improve role-playing are incredibly valuable, so please don’t overlook this. One thing I enjoy most about being a Workman Success Systems coach is being able to role-play with agents I have never met before, while also having my own coach moderate that role-play with valuable feedback.

Michael Harmon is a coach with Workman Success Systems and a REALTOR®, associate broker and the managing director for The Harmon Team at RE/MAX Prestige. He’s spent nearly 20 years as a sales agent and manager within the real estate and insurance industries, and has extensive sales training and leadership skills, as well as a commitment to cultivating long-lasting client relationships. For more information, please visit

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