In the following interview, Stephanie Sandoval, broker/franchise owner of HomeSmart Lifestyles in Queen Creek and Fountain Hills, Ariz., discusses the advantages of the brand, the local market, technology, and more.
Region Served: Arizona
Years in Real Estate: 18
Number of Offices: 2
Number of Agents: 145
Favorite Part of Your Job: Teaching and mentoring newer agents throughout their first few transactions and seeing how excited they get when those transactions close.
Top Tip for Communicating With Agents: I use a texting app called Heymarket that allows me to divide everyone up into groups and send messages out on a weekly basis. While I have groups for newer agents, teams, etc., each group is divided by skill level and branch.
How does being a part of HomeSmart help you and your agents do your jobs well?
HomeSmart offers end-to-end technology for both myself as the broker as well as our agents through their RealSmart Broker and RealSmart Agent platforms that house everything needed to perform our various jobs, in addition to marketing technology for buyers and sellers. The systems are already in place and help ensure a smooth transition for brokers and agents coming from another brokerage—or those just getting started.
Please describe some of the current trends you’re seeing in your market today.
In the Phoenix market, we’re still experiencing a lack of inventory in certain price points, and multiple offers on anything priced well under $300,000.
What is one of the challenges your market currently faces, and what are you doing to overcome it?
One of the challenges we’re facing in Arizona is competing for listings against the iBuyer companies who are buying out homes at a much-reduced rate for resale. If you know your value and are able to explain the differences that you provide over the competition, you should be coming out on top with the listing every time. I continue to teach my agents the importance of knowing their value and being able to share that at the first appointment or via their first communication with a prospective client.
In what ways are your agents using technology to stay in touch with their clients?
We have several agents who are using video texting in addition to BombBomb videos to reach out to new leads and past clients. Many of these agents are texting or emailing and implementing videos on their social media sites to remind their sphere that they’re in real estate through video. It’s just another way to keep in touch with past clients.
What’s the secret to your success in real estate?
I always try my best to treat my clients and agents like family. I make it a point to answer my phone as often as I can when my agents call, and if I’m not available, I’m always calling them back within an hour or so.
For more information, please visit www.homesmart.com.