As you know, I’ve been Durango’s exclusive buyers’ agent for the past eight years. My wife Kathy has been my business associate and partner in our real estate and mortgage businesses here in Durango and previously for 16 years in California. We have decided to expend our business to provide the same superior service and expertise to home sellers.

Recently, we have observed that the overall quality of local buyer and seller brokers has deteriorated considerably. There are two main reasons for this. The biggest factor is the large number of new agents that are attracted to the “easy money” and “casual lifestyle” associated with the real estate business. Anyone who has or is successful in the real estate business will tell you that being a competent agent is hard work and requires long hours. The large brokerages in town are actively recruiting new brokers and not telling prospects that over 80% will never make it long-term; the benefit to the brokerages is the fees they will collect, albeit for a short period of time. The other reason for the declining quality is that a large number of the new agents who have the dedication and attributes to eventually be a quality agent has to exit the business prematurely because there are way too many agents competing for a relatively static amount of sales, they can’t earn sufficient income to survive the four to five years to become established. So the business is made up of the top agents (about 30% of the total) who represent buyers and sellers on 80% of the closed transactions and new or part-time agents (about 70% of the total) who chase after 20% of the transactions.

As a prospective buyer or seller, the odds are that the first agent you come into contact with will not be the best and brightest in the profession; unless you had a previous relationship or were referred by someone who had a positive experience with a particular agent. Many consumers make the critical mistake of working with a friend, relative, or the first agent they meet. Choosing the right agent can have a profound impact on the financial outcome and the overall experience during the home buying or selling process.

Even though Kathy has not been directly involved in sales while we’ve been in Durango, her knowledge and experience in the real estate industry is long and impressive. Kathy was a licensed real estate broker in California for 20+ years. Her Colorado broker license has been inactive until recently. She was a licensed appraiser in California for 30 years, one of the first female appraisers in the state. Kathy was the broker of record for a mortgage company we owed in California for 13 years and has been actively involved processing loans since we moved to Colorado. Additionally, she directed and coordinated all the real estate transactions as part of her duties as my associate at Prudential Realty and more recently with Keller Williams.

If you or someone you know is thinking about selling their home or other property; please give Kathy the opportunity to provide a marketing plan designed to get the property sold quickly at the highest price.