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In the following interview, Virginia Rose, broker/owner, Lewith & Freeman Real Estate, Inc., a member of Leading Real Estate Companies of the World® in Kingston, Pa., discusses the firm’s legacy in the region, recruitment, and more.

Region Served: Northeastern Pennsylvania, including the Greater Wilkes-Barre/Scranton area
Years in Real Estate: 33
Number of Offices: 6
Number of Agents: 120

Lewith & Freeman has a long history in the area. How do you stay ahead of the competition?
Lewith & Freeman has been in business since 1921 in Northeastern Pennsylvania. Our brand and team truly understand the pulse of our community, its needs and all the benefits that come along with relocating to our region. There are many national brokerages in our area, but what makes us different is our willingness to embrace the newest technologies while staying true to our roots. There’s no substitute for an organization that has a legacy of 98 years of success that’s poised for decades to come with a forward-thinking management and marketing team. We all share a vision of local service coupled with the most advanced and innovative capabilities that our industry has to offer, as well as our global connections through Leading Real Estate Companies of the World®. In creating centers of excellence, our leadership team keeps a close eye on local and national trends so that our REALTORS® can focus on their clients and continue to excel.

What is the key to your success?
“Lead. Connect. Succeed.” is a theme that drives our firm’s model and elevates all of us to a higher standard, reminding our Lewith & Freeman REALTORS® that we need to connect on a human level with our clients to succeed. As an independent company, we have the advantage of embracing innovation in real-time based on market reaction and directed by what we see as immediate client needs. Our technology, tools and training give us an advantage and play a huge part when it comes to connecting with clients.

In what ways do you and your agents go the extra mile for your clients?
I can recall agents staging homes with personal items, cleaning windows, painting doors and even mowing the lawn right before a photographer arrived to ensure beautiful listing photos. Our REALTORS® are woven into the fabric of our region. The Wilkes-Barre area recently had a tornado destroy part of our Valley, leading to local businesses and homes being damaged and destroyed. Our REALTORS® were able to raise funds and volunteer, while our commercial department quickly placed businesses that had been affected. We believe that when we support local business, we enrich the region, which benefits everyone.

Please describe your philosophy when it comes to recruiting the best agents.
The most important reason REALTORS® choose Lewith & Freeman is because of our positive, proactive culture. REALTORS® see the advantage in our unique career-enhanced platform that includes exceptional tools, a virtual desk, marketing, service, training and innovation, as well as an aggressive commission structure. Locally, REALTORS® see that Lewith & Freeman provides more training, marketing, tools, analytics, social support, print and digital marketing.

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Lesley Grand is a contributing editor to RISMedia.