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13816.CMay_PhotoTOP 5 IN REAL ESTATE, December, 2009—Christy May
RE/MAX Landmark

Years in residential real estate: 4 commercial: 30+
Region Served: I don’t have a region. I am based in Massachusetts, have a license in MA & RI, but work all over the world using RE/MAX and my IRES designation and network. I also work all of the various sides of real estate from commercial to rental and residential, to farms and developments.
This Just In: Christy has been chosen as the RE/MAX New England Agent of the Month for December!

How are you differentiating yourself in this market?

There’s nobody like me: Differentiating myself is not a problem. I believe I can sell any property so people come to me with wild things—land in Santa Domingo, convention centers, farm land…you name it. I am the go-to lady when it comes to selling large and complex property deals. I have established myself as the RE/MAX “Land Lady,” for my expertise in land sales. This embodies a serious complement of development, zoning and political skills. This combination has resulted in my often being consulted in appraisals, pricing strategies, complex deals and transactions.

What’s the most creative thing you have done to market a listing?

My very first project in real estate was with Fidelity’s FMR Properties in Boston. I worked with a team on a pitch that involved summarizing everything about the bid for Commonwealth Pier – now the World Trade Center with BOSCOM—in a video. I have a background in television news production and was able to make a nine-minute video showcasing the project in 1976 and at the time, that video was a first and it was very creative and informative —it was certainly easier for the review committee than the usual three binders of project summaries and table full of engineering drawings.

What’s your best advice for best value marketing in this market?

Because of my background in television news production, I see the value in making video archives. I do a walking/talking video tour of every property. It’s so much easier than even putting it up on MLS. I also believe firmly in the Internet. I have a dozen websites and a blog,

What’s your strongest attribute?

Communicating. Whatever I do, my talent is in taking something complex or mundane and making it both exciting and understandable through effective communication. An important part of my career effort has been working with the Realtor community in educational and communication efforts. One example of that is I am spearheading the launch of the Women’s Council of Realtors “Digital Zone,” an association blog-site with easy clicks and utilities for Realtor and marketing programs, social media and communications. Check out after our January 19th launch program.

Realtors cooperate and properties compete, says our [Top 5 President] Allan Dalton! I am totally willing to communicate and share programs that work with other Realtors. I am President-Elect for the Greater Boston Women’s Council of Realtors and share and compare notes with this great group. Also I believe in 25% net referrals with the best Realtors—which is the only stress-free money in real estate!

How do you market yourself?

I network. I have a blog, and I use Twitter and Facebook for residential. I am also very active in professional real estate groups, BNI, as well as the Chambers of Commerce and the Builders Associations. I have significant experience in regional planning with Metropolitan Area Planning Council Programs among others. I have always thought about land use and transportation issues. I was the Transportation Advisor to the town of Westwood and helped secure Highway Money and projects for the town. I started the Transportation Track for the New England Environmental Expo and kept in touch. I socialize on digital media and network and communicate.

What’s your best idea for time management?

I don’t have one. I am very reactive AND proactive. I can tell you though that I am happiest when I have a lot to do. In fact, my presentation at RISMedia’s Top 5 in Real Estate Leadership Conference in September was about ROI and my new acronym, ROE (Return on Effort!) I am always evaluating and prioritizing!

How are you/will you utilize the Top 5 program to help build your business? I will use Top 5 as my networking connection to the consumer. It is great to have a market research staff and staff of writers! I used to publish Broker Agent Magazine and now I feel right back at home with RISMedia. My account contacts seem to appreciate my experience, too.

What is the key to a successful life in real estate?

Being diversified and taking on any project or listing. I do a lot of commercial real estate. Today commercial is slow. There is no easy money for the investors and buyers to get in. Commercial Mortgage Backed Securities? Not these days. Land is not selling now. So while I wait for big projects, I am happy to apply my extra-thoughtful market research, planning, and communications expertise to residential properties. Not that difficult and very rewarding! That’s why being diversified is good. Also I am not afraid of short sales and foreclosures. Maybe I should be – but I am not afraid of taking on any real estate marketing project.