Have you ever wanted to know the exact steps taken that resulted in someone earning the coveted CAR Rookie of the Year award? And then the steps taken after that to get to 24m in revenue just four years later? Today on the show we speak with Stephanie LoVerde who has accomplished both these feats! In her first year she was the single biggest rookie producer in CAR. Four years later, she’s a top 1% producer doing 24m annually. All without purchasing (or being handed) leads. She’s a true rising star and you’re going to love this episode!
D.J. Paris 0:16
Hello, and welcome to another episode of Keeping it real. The only podcast made by Chicago real estate agents for Chicago real estate agents. My name is DJ Paris, I am your host through the show. And we are coming up on our 75th episode, which is very exciting. And we just crossed over the one year mark of doing the show. And when I started this the show you know about that about a year ago? I wasn’t sure really two things. One, would anyone want to listen to interviews with top 1% Real Estate producers in the Chicagoland area? I thought they would but I wasn’t sure. And then also would 1% top producers even be willing to talk to me and share their ideas of how they grew their business and strategies. And thankfully, both of those answers to those questions were Yes. And so we’ve had a tremendous amount of fun doing the show. And people seem to really like it. And based on our the numbers from the listeners. So thank you for everyone that’s done an interview on the show, and everyone that’s listened to an episode and we have almost 70 episodes now. So if you’re new to the show, please go back and listen to old episodes. This information that is provided by these these top producers is really timeless. And it often is something that will give you the best possible education on how to grow your business. Because you’re less hearing it from the people that know how to do that. So keep listening. Please tell a friend if there are any brokers in your office that are not aware of the show, let them know or if there’s any top producers that you feel could be a good fit because they’re doing something unique or interesting or they’re just, you know, maybe it’s not all that unique and interesting, but they’re just out there. We’re doing a great job, we want to talk to them as well. And by the way, we are so backlogged on replying to suggestions. So if you’ve emailed us, or written us on social media and said, Hey, you have to talk to so and so. We have it in a list we will eventually get to it but we have almost 100 People that have written in that want to be on the show. So please keep sending those suggestions. But don’t take it personally if we haven’t yet replied we’re just simply too busy. But we are so excited and thrilled and honored that people want to be on the show so we will eventually get to you and thank you for reaching out. Please also follow us on Facebook you can find us at keeping it real pod. Also, our website is keeping it real pod.com You can listen to every episode we’ve ever done. Obviously find us on iTunes and Google Play and anywhere else podcasts are served. And now on to our interview with the great Stephanie liberty.
Today on the show, we have Stephanie le verde from Jameson Sotheby’s International Realty Stephanie is an accomplished and dedicated broker associate who above all genuinely cares for our clients. Her mission is to provide expert advice and guidance so that buyers and sellers can truly find the home of their dreams or sell their home for top dollar. Stephanie prides herself on being a fierce client advocate by delivering top notch service and partnerships are unique, supportive and built on trust. She believes mutual respect is crucial strives to give each client a positive experience based on prompt and authentic communication. Real estate is not only about the transaction, it’s about developing long lasting relationships. Stephanie’s warm demeanor yet tough negotiation skills ensure that she that her client’s best interests are at heart at all times. When Stephanie isn’t helping people move you’ll find her out and about exploring our beautiful city. Here in Chicago she spends time in her neighborhood with her puppy Louie and also enjoys running on the lakefront, which I should do more of visiting new restaurants hanging out with a close knit family and having wine with friends. And also to put just a cap Stephanie is in her fifth year as a broker already a top 1% producer, which is a huge, massive, massive accomplishment. So welcome, Stephanie to the show.
Stephanie LoVerde 4:10
Thank you, DJ, thank you so much for having me here today. I’m excited to talk with you excited to share my story a little bit and hopefully add some value to your podcast here and the people that are listening.
D.J. Paris 4:24
Awesome. Well, that sounds great. So let’s talk about your story. How did you get into real estate?
Stephanie LoVerde 4:30
So I was in the meetings and event industry for a solid 10 years after obtaining my undergraduate degree. And it was in that environment that I learned to work really hard and juggling multiple clients simultaneously, multiple personalities, multiple timelines and you know, essentially putting events together. And now when I look back, I see that this that profession and and that portion of my life really well informed the skills that I use in real estate because as we know, we’re often shifting and pivoting and putting out a fire. And at the end, I compare, you know, the event whether that had been a party or a meeting, or a conference or a trade show that I used to be planning. It’s very similar to closing, right, we’ve reached the finish line.
D.J. Paris 5:25
You’re right. I mean, there’s, there’s a million steps, even even to putting an open house together. That is like hosting an event, right? I mean, it is hosting an event. So it makes perfect sense, I’m sorry, continue.
Stephanie LoVerde 5:37
So well, without really even knowing it, I was learning how to use these skills that would later really assist me in developing my real estate career. So I had decided, however, with that being said, I had decided that the travel portion of the meetings and event industry had really started to take a toll on me, I felt like I was in these great cities. Specifically, I remember a time when I was in Seattle, and I really wanted to explore and go down to the water and eat some great seafood. And I was stuck in this freezing cold conference room for essentially a week, and then I flew back to Chicago,
D.J. Paris 6:16
it will, I’ll pause you for a second because I was in Seattle this weekend. And being that it was not a work scenario, I was able to do all of those things you wished I could have done, because you were obviously stuck with me in the conference in
Stephanie LoVerde 6:29
the freezing cold conference. All right. So you know, I just started doing some reflection and self discovery. And I had this conversation with myself, like, what do I really want to do when I grow up. And I decided that I was missing something that was a personal fulfillment, you know, I was pulling off these events. without a hitch, I was satisfying my boss and my clients. But I was missing something like in my soul and my core. And after, you know, some conversation and research and things like this, I decided that I would go back to school to achieve my master’s degree in counseling.
D.J. Paris 7:08
Stephanie LoVerde 7:11
And so I applied to DePaul, for the school counseling program, because I envisioned myself actually in a high school environment, working with teens that are sort of struggling to find their way and a variety of issues that have been personally, you know, dear to my heart shows, it really interests me and you know, making a difference in those lives. And so applied to DePaul completed all of my coursework, took out a very hefty loan, sure, completed all my coursework. And, you know, simultaneously decided to take a part time job at a real estate company, because I wanted to be able to, you know, go out for a beer or have dinner with friends. And when you’re in grad school, it’s hard to do that unless you have a little bit of income. Sure. So school was my main focus, working part time at a real estate firm was my side gig. I was creating marketing brochures, I was training agents on how to use Facebook, etc, etc. And fast forward to over a year and a half later, a full time position opened at that real estate company on the corporate side, being a support manager essentially. And it was at that point that I decided to put my counseling degree on pause. I’m not continue forward with the internship portion. I had completed the coursework, so years of schooling, years of, you know, in classwork or classroom work, and explore this full time position with the real estate company. And I, you know, I struggled with it, because I thought, Well, I’m not a quitter. And why is this inserting itself into my life, but I’m a firm believer that opportunities, cross our paths, and it’s our decision whether we want to take that opportunity, right. And so fast forward in two, three years later, I was still employed full time with this real estate firm. And I decided, you know, what, I’m going to use all of that counseling, education and all of that schooling, I’m going to go forward with getting my license, because I feel like that helping piece that I was always missing, could be used in this real estate profession that I’ve surrounded myself with for the last three years. But I know I can do it differently than everyone else in this office, because I would hear people on the phone, you know, and I would see how they worked. And I thought, I want to be a real estate professional. But I want to do it my way. And I want to bring something different to people that are looking to sell or buy a home.
D.J. Paris 9:43
Yeah, I think that’s well thank you for that story. I think that’s particularly interesting because and and I’m someone who does not practice real estate myself. I work on more on the marketing side and in the corporate level. And what I’ve always thought is somebody who’s kind of an outsider really is that like oftentimes I think and I think the top 1% realtors, like yourself completely understand this. But the reality of it is is you are you are helping people or at least if you take that mindset, you’re often going to have deeper and more fulfilling relationships. Because at the end of the day, you we were talking offline about this being such a digital world. You know, clients can find homes, they really don’t need you for that, right? They can go to Zillow, they can search in fact they do, right, they are going to Zillow, and Redfin and all of the Trulia etc, they, they, you are not the key to, I mean, maybe to go see the property, yes, they need a broker, but ultimately, to even just find a property like anyone can sort of do that on their own. But it’s every other step of the of the process, which is incredibly difficult, emotional. And really, you do need guidance. So you are a counselor of sorts, so that even if sorts, you are a counselor helping somebody through that transaction. And so I think that like makes perfect sense why those skills would translate over.
Stephanie LoVerde 11:01
Thank you. Yeah, so I think that, you know, between my counseling background and my meeting and event planning, background, those coupled together, really have shaped my growing business and just using skills from there. And so, in February of 2013, I decided to just hit the ground running not look back, single woman with a mortgage, you know, and I was going to figure out a way to make this happen. I didn’t have a contingency plan, I didn’t have a part time job. I didn’t have any of that I just said, you know, sink or swim, like figure it out, you can do
D.J. Paris 11:39
this. And that’s, it’s incredibly brave, too, because even out of all the top producers we’ve talked to, or I’ve talked to this podcast, and there’s been dozens and dozens, all of them pretty much even though they’ve gone on to great things. Even all of them, you know, had a difficult first year, it’s like that’s just kind of for most people how it goes. There are exceptions, but rarely. So not to interrupt your story. But I’m always curious, like, Hey, you’re like, This is what I’m doing full time. Can you talk about your first year at all?
Stephanie LoVerde 12:11
Yeah, of course. So my first year of sales, I was Chicago Rookie of the Year. Oh, I
D.J. Paris 12:16
did not. I did not know that. That is huge, huge, big deal. So that’s so just so everyone knows what that is. So there’s local associations. Of course, there’s car there’s Main Street, there’s North Shore, Barrington, there’s a bunch and car is is the one that most people who live in the city are going to be members of there’s gosh, probably over 20,000 members every year, probably somewhere between three to 7000 new brokers join that are, you know, essentially in their first year, what Stephanie is saying is she was the absolute top Rookie of the Year five years ago, which I did not know. And that is such a big deal. I can’t even say what a big deal. It is, like the biggest possible deal. So congrats on an amazing first year, five years.
Stephanie LoVerde 12:56
That’s very kind of you. I still get the chills when I say it. Because, you know, like I said, I didn’t really leave myself an option on on how this would play out.
D.J. Paris 13:08
So everyone who’s listening is like, how do you how did you do that? And we were talking offline, because Stephanie’s like, I don’t want I want to make sure I’m boring. And it’s like, no, no, don’t worry about being boring. Because whatever you did to get to that is, you know, whether it makes sense or not sounds super exciting. People are just dying to know. So what what steps did you take in your first year that you can help to get you to that level?
Stephanie LoVerde 13:33
Yeah, so my very first closing was 78 days after I began,
D.J. Paris 13:40
wow, that’s amazing.
Stephanie LoVerde 13:42
And people told me prepare for six months prepare, you’re never gonna have a closing for six months. Like that’s the industry standard. And I was like, okay, that maybe the industry standard. But I’m going to do better. Sure. And, you know, I talked with the colleagues in my office that I trusted. And I said, there’s two guys in particular that I really got along nicely with and we go to lunch, and we talk and stuff like this. And I said, I want all of your open houses.
D.J. Paris 14:11
Oh, so, so smart.
Stephanie LoVerde 14:14
I want your open houses on Saturday. I want your open houses on Sunday, I want to have open houses up properties that don’t normally have open houses. I didn’t prescribe to the school of thought, where make sure you select the type of listing in the neighborhood and the price point, all the stuff. I said give me any shirt. I’ll I’ll sit your 150,000
D.J. Paris 14:38
I’m not that busy. I will do it.
Stephanie LoVerde 14:41
Right. Well in the way that I looked at it is that anyone walking in that door has a slight interest in in buying a home whether it’s now or five years from now. Just even a slight interest. Right so I’m better off spending four hours a day As on each weekend day, they’re meeting these people getting in front of these people talking with these people shaking their hand and building rapport, looking them in the eye getting to know them a little bit than I am, you know, just out randomly talking to someone at brunch or at a bar or something like that, as you’re getting started,
D.J. Paris 15:17
right? No, and that’s a really strong point is yes, getting out meeting people is better than not getting out meeting people. But getting out and meeting people who are specifically looking to buy a home is an even more targeted conversation. So it makes perfect sense.
Stephanie LoVerde 15:32
And thank you, and you know, I just worked the hell out of these open houses, I would be on time I would be professionally dressed, I would have music playing, I would talk with the people about them and not about the home, I would never try to sell the property. Not that I wasn’t interested in helping my colleagues sell the property. But I was interested in talking with those people, and then talking about home, and what their needs were because real estate, you know, I think where some people go wrong is, you know, we’re posting all these pictures of gorgeous kitchens and pretty bathrooms. And that’s all well and good. But real estate’s about the need. Why are we moving? What is going on in our lives? You know, are we getting married? Are we getting divorced? Are we having children? Death, sadness, happiness, all these things? And I think too often we’re obsessed with the fixtures and finishes, and we’re not obsessed with the people.
D.J. Paris 16:26
That’s a really strong point. I think you’re right. It also, you know, for brokers that are just posting, hey, look at my new listing on Facebook, like nobody cares. Because most I mean, it’s not that nobody ever cares, it’s that most people are gonna go okay, that’s fine. That’s nice. But it doesn’t it doesn’t really probably have anything to do with them. Right? Their situation, they might not be interested in moving. But so yeah, I can I can talk about Facebook all day. But But you’re right, I think I think you’re right, this idea of, of getting beyond sort of the superficial aspects, or the more tangible aspects of the transaction, and getting into the more the emotional. And I know for me, too, like, even when I bought my first condo when I was I don’t know, it’s 30, I guess. And I didn’t know what I was doing. And I and I didn’t understand any part of the transaction. And I went and saw place and eventually, I was walked in, I was like, Okay, this is the place. And then I turned to my realtor. And I it was great. It was amazing. And I said, When can I can I think about this over the weekend? Or when do I need to make it offers like you need to make an offer Monday morning by eight o’clock linking to have to, or else this will be gone? And it was it if he hadn’t have said that I wouldn’t have known to do that. And so and I just, he was also a car Rookie of the Year Believe it or not a million years ago. He but I trusted him. I was like, okay, cool. And he guided me throughout the whole process. So I think that’s a really important point is that, you know, I emotionally I was like, this is the right place. And I had to turn him and go now what do I actually do? He was like, Okay, here’s how
Stephanie LoVerde 18:00
well, and that’s thank you for bringing that up, because that’s something in my first year, I, I have a document. And I actually have to give credit to a friend in the industry, Joey Chu pettah, who sat with me and and said, you know, something that has worked for me stuff is that I’ve put the steps of the purchase process in a document. And I’m constantly tweaking it. I’m constantly refining it, I’m constantly modifying it. But having these steps allows you to feel like a teacher, and an educator, and someone that’s providing guidance. And someone that is, you know, the strategic negotiator, and not the person that is scheduling the showing and opening the door. And that’s like always resonated with me. And so I started that document. And since then the document has evolved many times so much recently, as of a week ago. But, you know, really focusing on the stats and the education. And like you said earlier, buyers have information readily available at their fingertips. They probably find a listing before I do if they have a red fin alert on
D.J. Paris 19:15
specifically if they’re walking into an open house. I mean, maybe they just walked by and saw the sign or they saw the open house listing online somewhere.
Stephanie LoVerde 19:23
Yep. And so you know, I think in my first year I was I was constantly trying my best to become a valuable resource and not someone that opened a door and just keeping that as my like my my guiding principle. And I want
D.J. Paris 19:39
to go back to one quick thing on the open house because I think this is so important. So what’s definitely did is basically begged people in our office, I will do any open house for your listings, I will show up I will you know, etc. And then of course, buyers walked in unrepresented and she would of course have those conversations I am cure So what you would do after they left? So let’s say it was a, you know, a Saturday open house, when would you contact them? Obviously, it would depend on the conversation. But what would you do after that? Once you’ve captured their information, you had the conversation and then they leave? How do you proceed?
Stephanie LoVerde 20:16
So before hotspots were as readily available as they are now I paid for one on my on my phone, because I wanted to be able to have Wi Fi in the open house not for a stupid sign in sheet where everyone you know, puts a typo because they really don’t want your email address to have their email address. I mean, but because I wanted to be able to say, and hopefully this is helpful to newer brokers in the business, but okay, well, what do you think of this property after I’ve built rapport and they’ve taken a quick tour, and they come back to talk to me in the kitchen? Yeah, we like it. But we wish we had a bigger second bedroom. And I can say, hey, wait, come here for a second. Let me just pull up a quick search on the MLS. We, they would come to my computer to my to my MacBook look over my shoulder. And I would say, Well, did you see this one right on the street? And it would say no. And I said, Well, let me send it to you via the MLS right now. Because you know what, you can take this brochure, and you can find this online. But if I can send it to you, right from the MLS, right, you have all of the great details, right available at your fingertips. And they’re excited because you’re giving them something they want. And I’m excited because I’m capturing their legitimate email address.
D.J. Paris 21:22
That’s very smart. And now you can really market to them indefinitely, because you’ve captured them. But that is a really, really intelligent way to guarantee that you get their actual contact information. And by the way, it’s not really, there’s no trickery, you’re actually giving them value. So of course, why wouldn’t they want to give you that it’s not just hey, you know, sign in this sheet, which again, you are going to get some bad emails and phone numbers that way. Very smart. No one has ever suggested that on the show. So that is a huge, huge tip for people doing open houses. Very, very smart.
Stephanie LoVerde 21:55
Thank you. And you know, I would follow up that same day, I wouldn’t wait until the next day. I go home that night. And before I went out on a Saturday night or before a job, whatever I would do all my follow up, I would complete my follow up. And my follow up was never like, can you give me some feedback about the home? Right? Yeah, like, what would you change? It’s so boring. It was just, hey, it was great to meet you enjoy chatting with you. I hope you enjoy your time with me as well. I’m a full time broker, I’m available to you, please. No, I’m always a phone call or email away. And you know, I’ve had people contact me three years later saying I met you at an open house in 2014 or something. And you you stuck out because you didn’t pressure as you weren’t you were just, you know, not to toot my own horn, but it felt like people were comfortable, you know, reaching back out to me a few years later.
D.J. Paris 22:47
Yes. Yeah. No, it makes all the sense in the world. So how so you were doing open houses, essentially, every weekend? I imagined until you got too busy.
Stephanie LoVerde 22:59
Yeah, I did. I, I worked really hard my first year. You know, and I still work really hard, of course. But I needed those contacts. When I knew once I had those contacts, I’d be okay, sure. Because I would nurture those relationships and kind of what we were talking about before we jumped on here. The relationship component has become huge in my business, I mean, it’s the source of my growing business. So in my first year, my goal was to first and second year to be fair, I did 6.1 My first year and 11.5 My second, but in those two, my first two years, my goal was to meet to network to grab all these names to put good potential prospects in my, in my database. Sure, not keep it on, you know, piece of paper, but really, what are my database and keep keep a pulse on these people?
D.J. Paris 23:51
Yeah, I, boy, you know, it’s it’s funny, like, Sister earlier, when Stephanie and I, before we started, we were kind of talking about what we would discuss, she goes, Well, this is just going to be kind of boring, because, you know, and and it’s so funny, because it’s anything but boring. But it is it is exactly how people should how brokers should really do it. Right. And, and so in your first to hear oh, I have a question. So and again, it depends on the open house, but how you know, how many leads? Would you average? Or would you get on a on an open house? Would you would you average at least one would there be more? That’s a good
Stephanie LoVerde 24:27
question. So I obviously wanted to meet as many people as possible, but I would justify my time. If I had a connection, not someone that was ready to buy in six months, not someone that but I felt like I had a connection with someone. Right, which is harder to measure because it’s it’s it’s only one sided Right? Like I don’t know how that person was feeling good enough to feel like oh, you know, we connected and that was that was worth my two hours I met one person and oftentimes you’d meet two or three that you feel that way and somebody I’m struggling in Vietnam, right, depending what was going on in Chicago that weekend and all the other variables that we deal with as real estate professionals. But if I could get one connection out of an open house, I felt like that was worth my energy and my time.
D.J. Paris 25:14
Yeah, I imagine and I know you’re wrapped up in your own production now with your own business, and obviously very, very busy. But I imagine you probably still would suggest to people who just get their license, you know, you know, this year to continue that process of ask other brokers in your office to do open houses. I suspect that I would imagine that strategy is really no different today than it was five years ago as far as its effectiveness
Stephanie LoVerde 25:41
with the asterik of Don’t Be Greedy. And you know, $250,000 buyers are just as good and a better use of your time than a million dollar buyers. Sure. Numbers can’t be choosers.
D.J. Paris 25:57
You know, I’ll tell you a funny story. So I don’t know if you know, Nico apostle. He’s, he’s at Coldwell. Now he’s at Keller Williams, and I had him on the show. He’s, you know, the greatest guy, nicest guy ever. And he was telling me what he did. And you’ll love this for open houses. We did the same approach his first year, he, I think he was like, 23. He’s like, nobody is going to list a million dollar home with me. I don’t, I don’t know what I’m doing. I am a moron. And so the same thing, he goes, You know, I just went to everybody in my office, I imagined it was Coldwell Banker. And he said, I will do any open house. And you know, and he just did them. And he but he went one step further, which I love this. He and I’ll just say this to the people who haven’t heard that episode, although they can go back and find it. He said what he did, is he the same thing you did, but he would also show up about an hour early. And he would walk around very politely, because he’s such a polite, nice person, he would walk around to the neighboring homes, and he would just very, you know, sort of softly knock on the door and go, Hey, didn’t mean to bother. You just wanted to let you know that I’m doing an open house for your neighbor down the way it and here’s my card, if you want to come by and check it out, feel free. And that was all he would say. And it was really smart. I said, I was kind of like, oh, that’s That’s smart. And he goes well, the reason why it’s really hard is because everybody’s interested in what their neighbor’s home looks like. So he said, I get people just walk over. And I was like, That is brilliant. So if if it’s if you’re doing an open house, and nobody’s walking in maybe walking very kindly and politely knock on a few people’s doors and say, Hey, if you want to come check it out, you can. But I always thought that was that was a smart approach. If it was, didn’t have anyone coming. So let’s enter right. Yeah, so So that was it. And by the way, we should mention Stephanie has never bought leads, like the every deal. She’s done, she sourced herself. And I imagine almost all of her deals at this point come from referrals. So this is a truly an organic build. And she you know this she’s done this all herself. And let’s talk about so So was that you’re really the the major driver for leads for you in your first year was open houses.
Stephanie LoVerde 27:58
It was yeah, I didn’t spend a ton of money on farming, necessarily, because I didn’t know where to farm or what farmer what to say. But open houses and, you know, referrals from people that basically said, we’ll take a chance on you Sure. You know, my brother in law said, Okay, stop, you can restart my garden condo investment over Roscoe. And so and I remember sitting at his island, kitchen island with my sister, and Natalie and Danny, going through the listing documents, and not even knowing what the heck they really sad, and just laughing my ass off because he’s like, You are clueless. And I started so Well, part of this whole thing is faking it till you make it right. And, you know, I was lucky to have a few people know that I was a hard worker and that they could trust me. And the rest would hopefully figure itself out with their collaboration and patients. And so but but beyond, you know, some family and friends that were willing to take a chance on me after I begged them essentially, it was Mike mate, the strong portion of my first year it was due to open houses and also, you know, rewarding people for giving other people my name. I’m still very passionate about that. I don’t pay a referral gift when I close the second someone connects me I think this is important for people too if I’m hopefully bringing some value to this conversation, but the second someone connects me to a friend, family colleague, whatever. I send them almost a $50 gift including shipping. Wow, remind me
D.J. Paris 29:45
to start sending you all sorts. That’s that’s that’s amazing.
Stephanie LoVerde 29:51
Not that I’m you know, moneybags or something but you know, everyone likes to be appreciated and To be thanks. And I think we’ve gotten so far away from that. So I have an arrangement with a company called good Carmel, and they have these great little Cardinals and they send five Cardinals in a little hurt box for me. And with a thank you note that whether or not this person decides to reach out to me or whether or not they hire me to buy or sell, I totally appreciate that you were able to confidently recommend them to me or recommend me to them. Yeah, you know, and so often people send thank you notes or your gifts once you close, and it’s like, oh, that’s not really right. Someone should be thanked and praised. The second They even
D.J. Paris 30:44
provided value. So by passing your information along is the value. So that’s what should be rewarded. Right? So yeah, you’re sorry. And I want to piggyback on that with a story something that’s just happened to me yesterday. So I, what I do in my job is I recruit Realtors for our firm and one i We have relationships with a couple of the real estates or with one of the real estate schools. And so I often go in when the students are in the process of taking their class and they say, Oh, by the way, when you pass your exam, come look at our firm, you know, I bring in pizza. And that’s really no big deal. But I always do this. And I’ve done this over the years, and I’ve probably done this in front of at least 1000 students. And just yesterday or Yeah, it was yesterday. Because two, yeah, today’s Tuesday, just yesterday, and this is the first time I have I received it. And so like last Thursday, I went to one of the schools I did my little 32nd Spiel brought in pizza and said, Okay, guys, give us a call, give me a call, if you want to learn more about what we offer. And I got a thank you card in the mail from one of the students. I don’t know, he must have just found the address of our firm and sent it to me, he wrote me the kindest nicest note saying thank you for the pizza, which was like no big deal. And he said, I really appreciate you coming in talking to us for a few seconds about what blah, blah, blah. And, and I went, this is the own and I’d have 1000 people who I’ve hopefully provided value to even not even just talking about our firm, I say, here’s a couple things to think about when you want to like, you know, join a firm. He’s the only one that has ever written me a thank you. And I was like, I will never forget that guy. I don’t know if they’ll end up ever joining our firm or not. But I was like, Wow, all I did was bring this person pizza, but they immediately sent me a thank you. And I was like, out of 1000 people I’ve talked to only one’s ever done that. So like a acknowledgement over something that provided value to somebody is such a huge thing. And I appreciate I you know, I think you’re right, like many brokers are going to send a closing gift like that is pretty commonplace, and certainly a nice thing to do. But it’s kind of like, in a way you could say it’s like when you’re, you know, insurance agent sends a happy holidays card. It’s like, okay, well, she also or he or she sent 2000 of those out, you know, and it’s just stamped with their signature, and it’s like, it’d be cool to get a card that goes, hey, you’ve been with me 13 years, I just wanted to say thanks, that was really great. And I really appreciate your business. So any anything that goes a little bit above and beyond, like the Hey, thanks for the referral. Before that referral even becomes a client is is very unique. Thank you for that. Any any other tips? So I’ve taken up a ton of your time. So what any other suggestions you have? Oh, and by the way, I wanted to ask you to so now you are this top producer, you’re in your fifth year, you’re, you’re crushing it, you’re doing a great, obviously a great job. I’m curious how often brokers ask you to do open or asked to do open houses for your listings? Is it common? Are you surprised that it’s maybe not as common? Or are you getting a lot of that?
Stephanie LoVerde 33:43
I’m surprised that it’s not as bad as we have.
D.J. Paris 33:47
We have 600 Realtors at our firm. And I will tell you, they would say the almost always all of them would say the same thing.
Stephanie LoVerde 33:55
It’s funny to me, it’s like you have to put the work in if you want to succeed in this business, and it doesn’t come easy. And you have to give up your Saturday afternoon. She I mean, you just do and
D.J. Paris 34:09
you’re doing the listing agent a favor, or at least most of the time, they’ll probably say yes, not all, maybe not always they might have a different relationship with the seller that would prohibit you from going in there and that’s okay. But you’re likely doing them a giant favor. So or at least you know, making the seller feel like something’s going on and happening. And all it all you ever have to do is ask and the broker will tell you if you can do that or not. And it’s
Stephanie LoVerde 34:35
right. And hey, guess what, when I have an opportunity that maybe I can’t handle because you know, it’s just me and way of my structure. I have a full time unlicensed assistant, and obviously, you know, she does not work on work directly when it’s on open houses or with showings and things like that because you can’t. But when I have an opportunity there’s times when I’m at capacity And, you know, my thing is I won’t take a piece of business unless I feel like I can give those people 100%. So if you’ve recently offered to host open houses, for me, gave me some good feedback, and you did a great job. And my clients were thrilled that, you know, we had that opportunity, you’re gonna be front of mind for me. So, as a new agent, I think, definitely seek out those opportunities and build the relationship with that person that might need need some help?
D.J. Paris 35:27
And then I would like to finish with with I know you had just won a pretty major deal on the construction site. Do you mind talking about that, or just telling us why you think you want that business and sort of as maybe more advice, even for our brokers listening out there?
Stephanie LoVerde 35:46
Sure. So I recently learned that I was hired to sell a new construction project in Logan Square ground up. And these people had interviewed a large handful of brokers, and they decided to select me. So whenever a seller or buyer says that Yep, you know, I’d like to move forward with you. I always say thank you so much. I know you had many options, and what was it that made you feel comfortable working with me? And these particular people said, well, you, we felt that you were more passionate than anyone else we spoke to, which I really love, because I am super passionate about what I do. And obviously, when the energy my voice, like, I get excited about real estate, and secondly, you spoke a lot about the relationship component and how that’s important to your business. And, you know, we want someone that values that as well, because we operate that way. And I think, you know, all of us in this crazy profession we couldn’t be so transaction focus, like, you know, that appraisal just came in low or that inspection was terrible, and, like, sort of tactical and logistical. And when we can really think about the relationship piece in the bigger picture of it all, and I give a lot of credit to Jim Miller for instilling that thought process in me. You know, it’s more about the big picture in the people. And yes, we have to keep our deals afloat. But to speak to that relationship piece and wanting what’s best for your clients. I think that that goes a really, really, really long way. Yeah,
D.J. Paris 37:20
well, obviously it did, at least with with this client, which is a big, big deal. And when when construction opportunities come up, you can bet that they they definitely looked at more than a few names. Because, you know, of course that’s destined to do the due diligence process. So to win that in your even in your fifth year, when you’re up against probably people that have been doing it much longer is quite impressive. So congrats on that success, although not not surprising, but certainly certainly a cool thing. All right, we’re gonna wrap this up because I know you’re busy and you have provided so much incredible value. I think we could just stop there and we can always have you on for a part two. But for now, let’s see if there are any buyers or sellers listening who would be interested in talking with you about a real estate transaction. What’s the best way they should reach out to you?
Stephanie LoVerde 38:16
Whatever is best for them. They can call text
D.J. Paris 38:19
email, your give your
Stephanie LoVerde 38:22
Instagram, whatever what’s your what’s your phone number email. So, so my cell phone is 847-903-8589 I am a city agents. However, I have retained my very first cell phone number from growing up hence the 847 area code. And my email address is Stephanie Ste P hanie. At Stephanie Ste p h a n ie lo Verde, L O V E R D e.com. You
D.J. Paris 38:54
can also and you can also visit Stephanie liberty.com as well. Well, Stephanie, thank you so so much. It was a real pleasure talking to you today. And you again, I think this will be one of our more listens to episodes, maybe even our most listened to episodes. So I I have really, really excited to get this out to the audience. And again, thank you. And I guess on behalf of Stephanie and myself, we will see you on our next episode. If you are a broker, which of course most of you are listening are tell your friends about the show. We have 1000s of listeners, but we can always use more. So anyway, Stephanie, thank you for being on the show.
Stephanie LoVerde 39:33
Thank you, DJ, thank you for having me. I hope I was helpful and provided some value, and I look forward to talking with you soon.