Today’s guest is John Braconnier from Professional Real Estate Group. He is relatively new to real estate, beginning his career about two and a half years ago. In that time, he has developed a database of around fourteen hundred people and is now beginning to get referrals.
[0:57] What industry did you come from originally?
- Like most Albertans, I worked in the oil and gas business.
- It let me see the explosive real estate growth in Fort McMurray, which really piqued my interest.
- When I helped my first client, the feeling let me know that real estate was for me.
[4:03] Are there any areas of Edmonton or the surrounding area that you specialize in?
- I specialize in Sherwood Park and have been building up most of my client base there.
- Every month, I publish a report about the area called Sherwood Park Homes & Lifestyles.
[5:09] What’s going on in Sherwood Park these days?
- We technically have been in a seller’s market. We started with six to seven months of inventory at the beginning of this year, but it quickly turned.
- Starting in April, we dropped down to 2.4 months of inventory.
- The market is not doing well on acreages. It’s because of the aging market and the young people who see that it’s too much work.
[8:26] What are seniors looking for in their new properties?
- They’re going from bigger houses to bungalows around twelve hundred square feet. They want features like granite countertops in these houses.
- They’re also looking for condo-like apartments.
- Some clients are looking for secondary suites to supplement their pension.
[13:38] What do you see going on in the condo market right now?
- The developers have been building a lot of new condo-style apartments, but they haven’t been selling. The prices are down and they’re turning them into rentals.
- Professional Real Estate Group has seen vacancy rates decreasing.
- The rental market tends to strengthen in economic downturns.
- It’s a great opportunity for millennials and seniors to get some secondary income.
- Alberta has a cyclical economy, and when it comes back, it comes back strong.
[17:00] If you look back at your last ten transactions, what other trends have you seen?
- A lot of people that immigrated to Canada in the last five years or so are ready to buy.
- I’ve worked with a number of first-time homeowners. They know what they want, and they generally move in within a month.
- I take my time to lead them through the process because they are usually unfamiliar with it.
[20:10] If you had a family member moving to another part of the country, what qualities should they look for in a realtor?
- You want to find someone that takes the time to develop a relationship with you and listens to what your needs are.
- We’re problem solvers. We need to find out the obstacle in front of the client and then remove it for them.
- The realtor shouldn’t apply pressure. Just be empathetic and enjoy the experience. It’s our job to educate them about the market.
- I ask my clients to rate houses we’ve looked at, and then focus on homes in the same category as ones they rated above eight.
[22:38] Are there any other comments that you have?
- It’s a tough go for a lot of realtors out there now. My suggestion is to get involved with new tools and technologies.
- Treat customers like gold and develop a relationship.
Sherwood Park Homes & Lifestyles: https://www.facebook.com/SherwoodParkHomesandLifestyles/