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Jonathan Edmiston
Broker/Owner in Charge
HomeSmart Expert Realty
Durham, N.C.

Region served: All of North Carolina. Our main office is in Durham, but we have agents from Franklin to Wilmington and everywhere in between.
Years in real estate: 21
Number of offices: 2, with more coming
Number of agents: 75
Key to staying profitable: Manage expenses and maximize sales.
No. 1 piece of advice for new agents: Get a mentor/coach.
Best recruiting technique: Provide value along with coaching and mentorship opportunities.

How has COVID-19 impacted your business?
From an operational standpoint, it hasn’t. One of the things that attracted me to the HomeSmart model was the “hybrid” option where agents can come into one of our brick-and-mortar offices or work 100-percent remotely if they want/need to. I feel like our company has been leading the way with live virtual showings, open houses and listing presentations.  While we usually see an influx of properties hitting the market around late April or early May for a summertime closing and move, this year, we didn’t get that inventory push. Therefore, we implemented those virtual real estate tactics to enable our agents to still serve our market in spite of it already being low with supply and now further constrained by COVID-19 restrictions hindering the normal flow to enter the market.

Having recently opened a second office, what would you point to as the biggest factor in the growth of your business over the years?
Being a person of value and delivering value to others. Being authentic, transparent and truly caring about others. People don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.

How does being a part of HomeSmart help you and your agents do your jobs well?
HomeSmart provides so much free training coupled with free and automated marketing, as well as a ton of free tools and technology. The amount of free podcasts, webinars and online training they offer is amazing, especially recent trainings on live virtual events and tactics for agents to implement in the midst of COVID-19. No other company gives agents everything they need to build and grow their business without taking a huge portion of their commission.

What is your secret to staying relevant in the ever-changing real estate landscape?
For me, it comes down to serving my agents and helping them achieve their individual goals. Techniques can change over the years, but the principles remain the same. At the end of the day, real estate is about sales, and people like to do business with those they know, like and trust. If you can build those relationships with a foundation of trust, your business will flourish.

What sets HomeSmart Expert Realty apart from other brokerages?
Our culture, which is a mix of business and family, or “bamily.” It’s an environment where everybody belongs, and we collectively strive to help everyone accomplish their individual goals. The 100-percent commission model allows agents to keep more of their hard-earned money, and our training, tools, technology and support allow agents to close more deals.

Looking ahead, what’s on the horizon for HomeSmart Expert Realty?
We are planning to open a North Raleigh office this quarter and a South Raleigh office either Q4 2020 or Q1 2021. We just hired a team leader in Winston Salem/Greensboro and also have plans for expansion in the Charlotte market.

For more information, please visit

Paige Tepping is RISMedia’s managing editor. Please email her your real estate news ideas to