“My father, Chuck, acquired his first RE/MAX franchise in 1983, so I grew up in the business,” says Ochsner. “As a young kid, I didn’t think I wanted to be involved in real estate, but I took some classes and ended up majoring in it—now I’m in the family business.”
Ochsner’s domain covers Metro Denver through Boulder, and through the first seven months of 2016, he’s seen record numbers.
“Denver continues to make the top three of Case-Shiller’s price appreciation, behind Portland and Seattle; it’s a really hot market,” he says. “We have record-low inventory and price appreciation gains year-over-year around 10 percent. Last I heard, about 1,200 people a week were moving to the Denver area.”
While that is good news, the low inventory and increased demand have created some challenges in the market—especially for first-time homebuyers who are being priced out of certain desirable areas. Ochsner feels that the numbers probably won’t sustain, and that the 40 percent increase in inventory over the last year will be helpful.
RE/MAX Alliance continues to grow, both in agent count and philosophy.
“We have a concentrated effort on bringing in new agents and have three full-time recruiters now helping that cause,” Ochsner says. “RE/MAX has changed its strategy to bring newer licensees in, whereas in the past, we would have let them learn from someone else.”
To that end, the firm has implemented a nine-week new agent course that, so far, 90 people have gone through, with 50 coming aboard.
“We target real estate schools and licensing schools. We’re training and molding them the way we want them to do our business,” Ochsner says. “We have a couple of business coaches for new agents who may need some hand holding, and we look for the very best.”
When it comes to recruiting agents from other firms, RE/MAX Alliance keeps an eye on benchmarks and broker metrics; when Ochsner’s team sees someone with the performance and productivity they desire, they make a move to bring them on board.
Ochsner’s firm recently opened a new boutique office in the heart of Olde Town Arvada, an area on the rise thanks to the soon-to-be added light rail. Other expansion through acquisitions will occur in 2017.
“What sets the firm apart is our 21 offices on the front line; we’re able to have economies of scale,” Ochsner explains. “We can offer a higher level of support, be it better quality, technology, services, marketing or branding. One of the things I am really proud of is the fact that we have some of the best managing brokers in the industry—we really make a concentrated effort to elevate our brokerage.”
Keeping up with the latest and greatest in technology is one way RE/MAX Alliance stays ahead of the curve. Ochsner or a member of his team attend all the big tech and real estate events throughout the year to stay up-to-date. His marketing and IT teams also have quarterly meetings with potential technology vendors so they know what’s coming down the pike.
“We always take time to get a demo and look into everything that’s available to find what’s most beneficial for our agents,” Ochsner says. “Will they use it? Like it? Will it help clients? The end result is choosing technology that helps us help our clients achieve the American Dream.”
Vitals: RE/MAX Alliance
Years in business: 33
Size: 21 offices, 860 agents
2015 sales volume: $4.4 billion
2015 transactions: 12,570
Region served: Metro Denver and Northern Colorado, including Fort Collins
For more information, visit www.homesincolorado.com.