While it may not have the fast pace of Northern Virginia and the D.C. Metro area, Jim Napier, president and principal broker of Midlothian, Va.-based Napier REALTORS®, ERA, notes that the Central Virginia marketplace is a strong performer and a great place to do business.
“The Central Virginia marketplace has continued to improve year-over-year with a 5 percent increase in pending sales and a 7.6 percent increase in closed sales, year-to-date for 2016,” Napier says. “We are a 58-year-old firm that has consistently been an industry leader in Central Virginia. We pride ourselves on our culture of support for our sales team, a stellar reputation within our industry and community, and our focus on family.”
That’s one of the reasons Napier REALTORS®, ERA has been voted a “Top Workplace” in Central Virginia for the last three years running, and voted “The Best” real estate firm in Central Virginia by the readers of the Richmond Times-Dispatch and Richmond.com.
A second-generation broker/owner (his father Oscar started the firm in 1958), Napier’s love of the business comes from the freedom the industry provides, which has allowed him to choose the type of career and type of brokerage he wanted to create.
“The nature of our business calls for constant growth, and we work to achieve that through recruiting new and experienced agents as well as looking for strategic acquisition opportunities, as we did with the acquisition of ZipRealty in January of this year,” he says. “The opportunities are endless. We have to constantly improve as business partners for the benefit of our sales team. We have to work to meet the needs of our top sales associates, improve our on-boarding of new associates to get them up and running quickly, and continue our focus on recruiting quality sales associates and acquisition candidates.”
The firm attracts and retains sales associates by being the best business partner it can be. That means providing a nurturing environment where agents can have the type of career they want.
“We have to help them become the most knowledgeable and professional sales team available,” Napier says. “Today’s con-sumer has access to tremendous amounts of information. We have to be the ones that can help the consumer use that information to their advantage, understand the process and set appropriate expectations.”
Technology plays a big role in that, and the firm is fortunate to have a full-time IT director who is constantly evaluating the technologies available, helping the sales team pick the appropriate systems and software for the benefit of their clients.
“We are constantly evaluating the changing technology landscape in order to help our associates best use those technologies to better serve their clients,” Napier says. “We are working hard to help our sales team improve lead generation and lead management, and not just online leads—sphere of influence leads/referrals are the best source of business. Having a consistent approach to this type of lead generation is critical to any agent’s success.”
Vitals: Napier REALTORS®, ERA
Years in business: 58
Size: 4 offices, 150 sales associates
2015 sales volume: $292 million
2015 transactions: 1,206
Region served: Central Virginia, encompassing the Metropolitan Richmond and Tri-Cities area
For more information, visit www.napierera.com.