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The ever-changing world of real estate can be a daunting industry. The best advice for up-and-comers, according to John Bolos,Broker/Owner of CENTURY 21 J. Bolos in Columbia, S.C., is to be persistent. “If you are willing to learn and grow, there’s a solid chance you will see the fruits of your labor,” notes Bolos. In the following industry, the industry expert will dish out the details on connecting with clients, staying successful, and more.

Bolos_JohnJohn Bolos
CENTURY 21 J. Bolos
Columbia, S.C.

Region served: Columbia, S.C.
Years in real estate: 12
Number of offices: 1
Number of agents: 30
Average time on market: 90-120 days
Average sales price: $150,000
Top tip for agents on thriving in today’s market: The best gestures you can make for a client are to answer your phone and return their emails in a timely manner. Technology is the number one tool in our office that keeps us ahead of the competition.
Best time-saving trick: I have a series of questions and responses for online leads that come into our office that all agents use to learn more about the customer and the services my company provides. I also believe in managing contracts online and using a tablet to sign them in-person. Gone are the days of paper and printing.

What is the real estate climate like in your area?
We believe that the Columbia real estate market is starting to boom again. We’re seeing a continuous rise in values and sales.

What is your favorite piece of advice for new agents?
Be persistent. If you are willing to learn and grow, there’s a solid chance you will see the fruits of your labor.

How has your company embraced social media?
It’s important to stay connected and engaged with consumers. We post interesting news regarding the local real estate market on a regular basis to platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

How do you stay fresh and current? Not only do we stay up-to-date with the latest pieces of technology and software, we also offer training for all of our agents regarding the latest technology. Plus, I personally experiment with different platforms to familiarize myself with the tools, even if we don’t end up integrating them into the office. This way, I’m always ahead of the game.

What would you say is the biggest challenge in your market at this time?
The biggest challenge has been removing the stigma that our previous company was solely involved with the foreclosure industry. I spent two years undoing this perception. I was losing listing appointments “left and right.” I started another brokerage under the previous company to combat this, but in the end, this was still not enough.

How are you and your team working to solve this?
I purchased a CENTURY 21® Franchise back in June 2014. This will be the game-changer in our area and for our agents. Now, I have the resume of my past experience combined with the franchisor of the world’s largest residential real estate franchise sales organization. People will now have a brand, CENTTURY 21 J Bolos, that they can trust and a local broker who they’ve known over the years.

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