RISMEDIA, November 11, 2009—Real Living, the real estate industry’s first consumer lifestyle brand, and GMAC Real Estate today announced they are merging to become one of America’s leading residential real estate franchises with more than $20 billion in annual home sales.
“We begin today,” said Real Living CEO & Managing Partner Harley J. Rouda Jr., who will stay on as president of the newly combined operations. “We have 10,000 agents on the GMAC side that will begin to convert to Real Living.”
The move was set in motion late last year when Brookfield Residential Property Services (Brookfield RPS), a division of Brookfield Asset Management Inc. (Brookfield), acquired GMAC Real Estate. Earlier this month, Brookfield RPS acquired Real Living Network Services, a subsidiary of Real Living Inc., and as a result will now rebrand GMAC Real Estate as Real Living.
“Basically the Real Living branding will remain the same,” said Rouda. “GMAC went through the process of looking at key franchises to get a sense of what they were looking for in their ideal brand. From characteristics, to identity, to value proposition, the process dovetailed into us.”
“In Real Living, we found the ideal partner and brand for what we are hoping to accomplish with our real estate operations, which we are committed to building even further,” said Graham Badun, managing partner & CEO of Brookfield Residential Property Services. “We explored a number of options, including creating an entirely new brand from the ground up, but our customer feedback and research kept leading us back to Real Living. Both companies share many of the same core values and combined will be part of a bigger, stronger network of brokers and sales professionals.”
“The Real Living Network is now poised for growth,” added Rouda. “We are looking forward to bringing new technology and the Real Living branding platform to the GMAC franchisees to help grow individual franchises.”
Added Badun, “We are thrilled to have Real Living as our flagship U.S. real estate brand, and welcome Real Living’s 2,000 brokers and sales associates into Brookfield RPS’ North American real estate network of almost 30,000 real estate professionals. We look forward to further expanding the size of our network by adding new franchisees that are truly looking for something fresh and different, and we are excited about the opportunity to take the brand to new markets internationally. Adopting and expanding an already established and respected brand will benefit the entire GMAC Real Estate network of brokers and sales professionals from day one.”
Real Living was founded in 2002 and the company has grown to become one of the nation’s premier real estate companies and brands. Its technology platform has been recognized by Inman News as one of the best in the industry, the company has been named “Most Promising New National Brand” by The Swanepoel TRENDS Report, and Entrepreneur Magazine listed Real Living as one of the Top 50 New Franchises.
“We brought a truly fresh approach to the industry earlier this decade when we launched Real Living as the first-ever consumer lifestyle real estate brand, and we will continue to do so by bringing new programs, services, support, training and technology, to our brokers and sales professionals,” Rouda, Jr. said.
“There is an incredible need for a broker and agent-centric brand that is consumer-focused, yet managed by an experienced team that understands real estate. Combined, Real Living and GMAC Real Estate have that team as well as a truly differentiated brand,” he said.
Brokers and sales professionals looking for more information on the launch and rollout of the Real Living brand can click www.realliving.com for more about the announcement. Company executives will also be available at this week’s annual NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® Conference & Expo in San Diego.