Success Is About Showing Up Every Day • Dan Hellweg

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Dan Hellweg with @properties Christie’s International Real Estate tells the beginning of his journey into real estate. Dan discusses how crucial it is to build deep relationship with the clients in order to provide the best service. Next, Dan also discusses the importance of building good relationship with other agents. Dan talks about discipline and how it helps in building a successful career in real estate. Last, Dan discusses the behaviors he adopted in his journey that he attributes to his success.

Please follow Dan in Instagram here.

If you’d prefer to watch this interview, click here to view on YouTube!

Dan Hellweg can be reached at 312.647.6102

This episode was brought to you by Real Geeks.


D.J. Paris 0:00
This episode of Keeping it real is brought to you by real geeks. How many homes are you going to sell this year? Do you have the right tools? Is your website turning soft leads and interested buyers? Are you spending money on leads that aren’t converting? Well real geeks is your solution. Find out why agents across the country choose real geeks as their technology partner. Real geeks was created by an agent for agents. They pride themselves on delivering a sales and marketing solution so that you can easily generate more business. Their agent websites are fast and built for lead conversion with a smooth search experience for your visitors. Real geeks also includes an easy to use agent CRM. So once a lead signs up on your website, you can track their interest and have great follow up conversations. Real geeks is loaded with a ton of marketing tools to nurture your leads and increase brand awareness visit real geeks.com forward slash keeping it real pod and find out why Realtors come to real geeks to generate more business again, visit real geeks.com forward slash keeping it real pod. And now on to our show.

Hello, and welcome to another episode of Keeping it real the largest podcast made by real estate agents and for real estate agents. My name is DJ Paris, I am your guide and host through the show. And in just a moment, we’re going to be speaking with the newest, youngest superstar we’ve had on the show in a while Dan hallwag. Before we get to Dan, just a couple of quick announcements. One, as always, thank you for continuing to listen and support our show. If you want to keep helping us grow and reach more agents, please tell a friend just think of one other realtor that you know that could benefit from hearing from top producers like Dan and send them a link to this episode. Easiest way is shoot them right over to our website, keeping it real pod.com. Or if they are a podcast listener, just have them pull up whatever podcast app, they’re using Ron all of them, and hit the subscribe button when they find keeping it real. And then also, if you could leave us a review in whatever podcast app you might be using, whether it’s Google Play or Apple podcasts or Stitcher, Pandora, Spotify, etc. Amazon, anywhere you find us. Let us know what you think of the show, even if it’s a one star review. Actually don’t leave us a one star review. No, I’m kidding. Leave us whatever review star that you think is appropriate and really helps us to not only know what our audience thinks about the show and how we can improve, but also helps us with visibility with the different podcast directory engines. So please leave us a review and tell a friend and that’s all we ever ask of you. But now enough about me let’s talk to Dan Halleck. Today on the show we have Dan Helic from App properties Christie’s international real estate here in Chicago. Now Daniel was born raised and currently resides here in Chicago and Dan Holic has a devout passion for the city. Unlike others as a third generation Chicago and with both his father and grandfather working for the city, Dan brings a unique perspective to his business. His approach to real estate incorporates a philosophical component regardless of buying selling or transaction type, which gives the control to his clients all while he guides maneuvers everything else around the deal. The greatest joy comes when he helps someone accomplish something they thought they could never experience, which for many is no surprise buying their first home now. Dan also trains for Iron Man’s he listens to Rick records while sipping whiskey and he enjoys time with friends family and that’s what he does when he’s not helping his clients buy and sell real estate. Please everyone up oh Dan, I apologize. I forgot to grab your Instagram everyone should follow Dan on Instagram which is a life with Dan which is there are periods between that is that correct?

Dan Hellweg 4:15
It’s periods between it but it’s get real with Dan sorry. Whoever this all life is forget that guy it’s get real with

D.J. Paris 4:24
that Screw that guy. Get Real with Dan periods in between we will have a link to his Instagram profile in the show notes. Hopefully I’ll fix that in post production as well. So we won’t sound loud sounds so unprepared. By the way, we’ll pull back the curtain just to see what kind of disaster unfortunately Dan has had to go through on because of us on our end. Not only that, so so we actually tried to record this the other day and we had for the first time in a long long I can’t even remember if it’s ever happened before the power went out in our office when we were about five minutes into the episode and and then We were like, well, what happens if it goes out? We could start it again. But what happens if it goes out again? So we had to reschedule Dan for today. So that was sort of problem number one poor Dan had to, you know, reschedule and he was so nice and sweet about it, then then today, I’m recording another episode earlier, and I get an this urgent message from my producer going, I think I put the wrong time on the schedule. Because I looked at it and I go, I thought it was three. And here, we’re doing a two. And so I go, Oh, my God. And so that happened. And then I just got danced, Instagram wrong. So we’re gonna make it up today, for sure. But we’re really excited. I’m really, really excited to have him on the show. Because Dan, I believe reached out to us. And you know, we love featuring younger, newer talent in the real estate pool. I think sometimes, you know, we over focus here at the show on people who are, who have made it to the very top of the mountain. And then oftentimes, those people, it’s harder for them to even remember that struggle of what it took to get up the mountain. And I think it’s so interesting to hear people who are on that way up, and are still dealing with some of those struggles, but have figured out a way to sort of persevere. And Dan is that guy, and we are so excited to have him. So Dan, welcome to the show. It’s all very long intro, but I did screw up your your Instagram, so I apologize.

Dan Hellweg 6:25
Okay, I feel I feel bad for the other person. They’re probably like, Hey, I got some extra people follow me who are?

D.J. Paris 6:32
Well, I did make Dan feel a little better. And I won’t, I won’t say but we just turned down a very important guest that just to have not not to have Dan on the show. But I told Dan, there’s been all these problems with us recording this episode. But I said, Guess we just turned down. So. So anyway, Dan is very special to us. And we’re grateful to have him. But tell us, Dan, tell us let’s start at the very, very beginning of your sort of journey into real estate, tell us how you got into it, why, and how you got to where you are today?

Dan Hellweg 7:03
Yeah, I have like a couple of variations of talionis. So I want to try to make it the most impactful for people who are listening and that, you know, all too touchy feely. But um, let’s see, I worked for a company that we did kitchen services in colleges. And during that time, I was there for about 2010 to about 2017 2018. And I had the ability to provide or see how I want to put it, I just got to experience a lot of roles, right, I did it from account management, to HR to marketing, and it was a lot of seeing the problem and providing a solution, which you know, at the time, you just kind of take for granted, you think that’s like what people do when they’re in those positions. And very fortunate to have that job. Got to the point where you know, it’s kind of like the seven year itch, I think I just kind of was getting a little burnt out a little spent wanted some new challenges, new things. And, you know, I think I kind of opened it up to the universe to provide that opportunity. And unfortunately came in the way of me being like, Oh, I kind of butt heads with the operations director there at the time. But it’s funny, because everything really does work out. And I’ll tell you more about that later. But um, so you know, it’s day one, then you’re like, hey, what do I want to do? What, Where am I going with this. And my passion has always really been, like marketing in connecting communications. And so it was really day one, I went to a shared office space. And I was like, I need to just keep showing up to something, right? And started working on a few little projects here and there. But I’m like, You know what, there’s, I’m not going to have the dedication to this, like what I know it needs. And I’ve had some, you know, friends in real estate, one of my best friends who we’ve been buddies, since we were little, I mean, we are best friends, you know, through and through. He has always been kind of he’s in he’s been in real estate for about eight years. And, you know, at that point, I mean, it was eight years now. It’s been, what, 1213 years. And he was basically like do real estate man, like, come on. You’ve been saying you’ve been wanting to do real estate. And it has always been on the backburner. He used to take me to different trade events. And you know, I was at guaranteed rates of rooftop parties and meeting people who are you know, top producers now and it was kind of like me now, you know, doing the hustle doing the thing and trying to figure it out. And at that time, it was kind of like, well, I’ll do it eventually. And I think it was a little bit of having an ego back then. And just, you know, I was happy with what I was doing. So it’s you know, happens when it happens. And so anyways, fast forward, I, you know, was like, Okay, this is I think this is the time to do it. Why not? I things were kind of lining up. I think it’d be a cool profession to get into. And, yeah, you know, that was kind of the way I got into it. And now it’s been you know, a few years. So

D.J. Paris 9:55
how did you go about prospecting? I know you’re, you’re from here your family least from here. So you, some people would say, Oh, you have this advantage where you must have this massive sphere of influence, and perhaps you do. But I always like to get into that, because I think even with a huge sphere of influence, it doesn’t necessarily mean that the clients just come calling because you got exactly. So talk a little bit about how you went out and found clients.

Dan Hellweg 10:23
Yeah. So when I when I had the, you know, the piece of paper saying congratulations, you can real estate now. I, I met with a bunch of brokers, right, and managing brokers, from larger companies, to smaller companies to very boutique companies. I just wanted to understand what made a brokerage successful, right. And so I wasn’t what that property is, versus another one. And the very question, one of the questions one of masters like, what’s your, you know, how big is your sphere of influence? I’m, like, a sphere of what and? And I heard that before, but you know, in my mind, it was like, the super close people in your life, right? Surely, like just the ones that I can call up and be like, hey, it’s Dan, what do you got? And I didn’t really, you know, I think at that point, because, you know, where I was at, in my life, it was the communications I was having with these people. It wasn’t from a, you know, quote, unquote, business perspective. So when I got started, it’s it was it was, it’s, it’s like, difficult, right? Because you think you have this identity with people? And I would do the thing is like, and I still do them, and I love doing them even more now. But I write letters to people, I would text people, I, you know, give a book, pick up the phone. I mean, that’s like, the strongest thing nowadays. I mean, that is like, picking up the phone, calling other agents and that kind of stuff, whatever, but picking up the phone, and just being like, Hey, how are you? And, you know, it’s like, I don’t even know what to talk about. I’m just, I was thinking about you, I just wanted to see how you’ve been doing. And, you know, I think when you get into real estate, you hear from everybody, you know, there’s obviously these top producing, you know, coaches out there, you know, five calls a day 10 text messages, and you’re like, I don’t even know, like, you know, this is gonna be one week’s worth of people. But that’s when you’re like, okay, hey, I’m meeting new people. Like, I just started, like, you know, I went to that shared office, you know, I’ve made clients through that, you know, I’ve, you know, done different things with charity, and you help out and you, you know, you, you start off, I feel like, especially for newer agents listen to this. And I see it with newer agents, they do the thing, and I think I did it too, was you do it for a few weeks, and you’re like, Well, I got nothing from this. And you’re like, Okay, and let me step back. Like, why am I doing this? If I’m only trying to touch base with people, because I’m a business? Like, what? Like, why am I doing that, right? And I think you start to evolve a little bit, you know, and then when you do get a few, you know, transactions behind you, and you start to get into the lives of people. And you know, you go out on showings with people, and you just learn, like, Oh, my God, like, life, what happens and you’re like, Oh, my God, like, I need to help people, it’s not even a want anymore, like, this is going on in people’s lives, and I want to be there for them. And it just gets easier than because then when you do make these phone calls, you’re not coming from the lens anymore. Like I want business. It’s a genuine, you know, like, innate thing in you and you want to be able to help them and you know, so yeah, I

D.J. Paris 13:20
think I think we’re talking about intimacy, I think intimacy is really well, realtors have a unique ability to develop these deeper sort of connections with their prospects, their clients, you get to help them make pretty important financial decisions, right? Like buying, selling, investing, possibly renting, there’s a lot of people’s emotion and identity are tied into where they live. And it becomes as, as we know, everyone listening knows just how powerful that experience is, especially when someone gets to buy their first home. I mean, that is truly a remarkable moment. I remember the day I bought my first place. And I’m sure everyone listening who owns a place probably remembers that as well. And real estate agents are uniquely positioned to sort of be a part of that, obviously, you’re part of the transaction, but be part of the emotional component of it and the intimacy of it. And then, you know, people intimacy is really what gets people to want to, you know, you tell other eight title or their friends about you, and it’d be like, Wow, my agent really cares about me, my agent knows about me, my agent calls me and just checks in and sees how I’m doing or reminds me that it’s the, you know, anniversary date of my purchasing this home three years ago or things like that. And I think that is so cool, because all of that stuff. It’s not that you’re also not providing value and information about the housing market and maybe some strategies that they may want to consider. I mean, there’s a skill set that is absolutely needed, but there’s and just understanding what’s going on in the market and the news and Being able to relay that to your prospects and clients. But there’s also this like, like, even my financial advisor doesn’t really have an intimate relationship with me. I mean, they know what my finances look like. But they don’t really know that much. I mean, they know my life, but it’s not the same. They’re not walking through me in their house, they’ve never seen where I live. My account has never seen where I live, they’re super important people, but real estate has, has this sort of built in intimacy and, and empathy. I think that is really cool. And it absolutely binds people together. And that’s why the vast majority of buyers decide that, you know, assuming they had a good experience, they use the same agent over and over and over again. So I didn’t I didn’t mean to go on a rant there. But I just I just touched on that. And I think that’s really, really important.

Dan Hellweg 15:50
Yeah, yeah. And just, you know, on top of that, it’s, we all have things that have occurred in our lives from the moment I mean, even before we’re born, the things that happen to everybody else impacts that person, you know, we’re all just seeing and pushing against each other at the end of the day, right? And, you know, we go out, and I’ve had some people who they’re like, oh, you know, I either have seen a few plays, it’s like, okay, we’ve got to reset, like this. And that’s why I use that term philosophical, because it’s, there’s a deeper thing going on. And it’s, you know, you want to have you want to have emotions, you want to have happy emotions, good emotions, but especially, you know, if anything, like the last year is proven, you know, it’s, it was hard on people, because, you know, so many people I talked to, and they’re like, oh, you know, you must, like real estate must be going great right now. And it’s like, yes, and no, it’s it is, but it’s difficult, because, you know, when you’ve gone out, you know, 20 3040 places. And, you know, I was very, like I looked back at all my numbers, and I couldn’t, I was trying to figure out why I had such a great conversion rate. But it’s again, it’s it’s not even just working with your clients and getting to understand where they’re at what they need all those things. But once you’ve positioned them to that, it’s really connected with that other agent then, right? That’s when you know, you’re making those phone calls. I worked with, you know, and just kind of a quick story I was working with, with this couple, and you know, we saw probably like 30 places almost just kind of mixed around the city. Yeah, you know, nothing that was ever really hitting, but we were like honing in in you know, they’re kind of right. And they’re kind of like, you know, does what we want exist, I’m like it does, I’m like it’s a timing thing. I’m like, you know, the first few, you kind of get that contrast the next few, you kind of really see what you need, you know what you don’t need what you learned about yourself, then you start to hone in, right. And that’s where we’re at, took a little bit longer. And that’s fine. It takes as long as it takes. But of course, the one they went to was just a random open house. And they’re like, Hey, Dan, we went to the open house. And you know, as I asked him all these questions about how many people were there telling me blah, blah, blah. So I called the agent. And I’m just like, hey, so guess what? I usually, you know, get out there with my clients. They just wanted they popped in, and any kind of know where we’re at, because they’re interested. He’s like, Well, we had about 45 showings today. And I was like, Wow, I’m not Yeah, I’m like, not surprised. I used to get offers, we are okay. I’m like, well, here’s what I, here’s what I need to do, I’m like, I need to get in there, I need to get in there with my clients, you know, I need we need to see this place all together. I’m like, however, that means, you know, I’m the type of agent where it’s like, you can’t make it as a client, I’m going on your behalf, we’re gonna, you know, FaceTime, we’re gonna, we’re gonna make this thing happen, right? Because I need to know really what the weight is. So we can position ourselves, you know, and we learned about what the sellers wanted all those conversations with the other agent. And, you know, we want to offer and, you know, it’s knowing those kinds of things. And that’s where that, you know, as you just said, that intimacy, it’s, it’s crazy, because it’s, it’s the deep level of those people. It’s knowing where they’re positioned. It’s, it’s knowing everything, and they’re just, you know, I would, I could sit here and ramble for, you know, days about how deep this goes. But, you know, if you’re on the outside, if you’re not in real estate, or if you don’t have that view, I think it just kind of like on a level, it’s like, oh, it’s somebody who wants to buy a home. It’s like, you know, that’s, you know, it’s everything, but just that so

D.J. Paris 19:03
how important is it for you as the let’s say the buyer’s agent, in this example, having a good relationship with the selling agent, the agent representing the seller, I should say, because it’s, yeah, like, are you able to eat because we know that on paper, these are commissions are called cooperative commissions, which means the two agents are supposed to cooperate to close a transaction. But But again, the sellers right now are sellers, selling agents, listing agents are of course, I always get confused because in Illinois, we call a selling agent, the person who represents the buyer, I always think why don’t we do that? Why don’t we maybe I’m just so we’ll say buyer and seller. So anyway, and working with the listing agent, the seller, how important is it for you to have a good relationship with other agents so that not that they’ll do you any Take our favours, although that certainly could happen. But just understanding what it’s going to take to get this deal closed, understanding what the seller is looking for, you obviously know what the buyers are, how important is it to have that kind of relationship?

Dan Hellweg 20:14
Oh, it’s, it’s, you know, the pinnacle, it’s the highest thing, it’s the most important thing, really. I think, especially in this business, you know, if you want to go on with it, you get an identity, or you get, you know, this thing attached to you. And, you know, it’s I like to be as transparent as possible, right? Of course, you know, this is a game of poker, in a sense, I could be holding pocket aces, you know, the agents around me don’t need to know that. But how I play him, you know, there’s a way to do it. Right. Right. You know, you can’t just go all in and everybody falls, and you’re done. But with the other agent, you know, it’s it’s being on the same page. We’re all from different walks of life as well, you know, we’re all come from different industries. I know agents who just got started during COVID. And they, you know, like we’re talking about, you know, closing, isn’t it like you go to closing as well? Yeah, I always go to closings. And I don’t go it’s like, oh, right, because you start at a time where you couldn’t go, right. So going back to the whole relationship with the agent, knowing who they are, and how they view and interpret real estate’s very critical to me, and even so much that if I feel this, you know, some discomfort from them, like on just a recent if this was actually me being on the listing side, just recently, but I had the agent, you know, he’s got that they won the offer. And he was like, Okay, we’ll take it off the MLS. I’m like, just slow down, like, just, you know, like, you just, we just accept that, like, just, you know, Where’s this coming from? Well, you know, so why is right so quickly, like, he thinks that I was going to entertain other offers, and you know, I got that things happen again, you know, he got the earnest money Summit. I’m just like, you know, get me the sign count, you know, just all the things that you have to have crossing the t’s dotting the i’s. And as soon as he did that, he again, he messaged me, he’s like, Okay, go ahead, like, hurry up, like, take it out. I’m like, Oh, hey, free for a call now. And I call them up. And like, I said, Hey, how, you know, how’s it going? I’m like, Do you have a little bit of time to talk right now? I’m like, we need to make sure on the same page. I’m like, what has happened in the past? You know, has it what’s going on? Right, right. And he pushed back a little bit, and then all of a sudden, he opened up and he’s like, no, like, there have been times am I you know, and I’m like, Well, you know, I don’t want to slip up and say his name. But I’m just like, look, I’m like, I, we have both interests of both of our clients at stake here. And I need to make sure we’re on the same page. Because if something comes up through now, you know, there’s a lot of things that go on between kind of tried to close. And I’m like, if we can’t be on the same page, what are we doing for our clients? And I’m like, I need to know where you’re at. I’m like, I’m not here to change you in any way. But I just need to understand some agents that you worked with, like, I don’t know what happened. But you know, and I can tell you that I will do things a little bit differently until it happens, you don’t know, right? Because, again, it’s interpretation of the individual. But I go into it with that, because I have, you know, the saying that, you know, I tell my clients, I tell everybody, I like to sleep at night, and I know you do too. If I’m gonna go to sleep, you know, thinking like, Hey, this guy is kind of being a little you know, scatterbrained all, we’re all over the place a little worried, what’s going to happen, and then if something happens to the deal does fall apart at some point. And if I did feel that discomfort, how am I supposed to go back to my client and be like, well, I guess the deal died? It’s like, no, like, I you know, we had these conversations, we were on the same page, you know, if something has happened along the way, that’s, that’s understandable that maybe it’s beyond our control, we have to just position ourselves to deal with that. But I know, you know, I’m working hard to make sure I have that reputation with the other agent. And even if they they’re like, you know, whatever, and hang up on me or something, you know, they know, that never happens. But you know, if there was somebody who was like that, great. Now, I know, that’s how they view business too. So I get more information that way, too. And that goes for both sides of the deal, then.

D.J. Paris 23:46
I think that’s really interesting. I wonder how often agents really even view the other the CO broker, you know, as as an ally, in a lot of ways, yes. Yes, you you are representing your client’s best interest, and you’re looking to either get the highest or the lowest price depending on what side you’re on. And you are it is a little bit of a battle in that sense. But it’s a cooperative battle. And both both parties really want to get to the end goal, and developing good relationships with agents, it seems so like, well, doesn’t everyone do that? But a lot of people don’t. And so Dan, I think you did something very emotionally intelligent, which was when the person started having that request about hey, get this off the MLS get this off the MLS. And by the way, for stories like this, if anyone is probably almost all of our listeners are members of labcoat agents on Facebook, it is a perfect place to learn about how agents treat each other because every day there’s probably 30 examples of you’re not going to believe what these other agents said to me, you know, and it’s shocking and it’s like wow, um, playing nice in the sandbox is really a great skill. And I have a quick question for you. This is just a simple question. So you were talking about being on the listing side? How often with and we’re in this situation with, even now I know the mortgage rates just climbed again today, but they’re still crazy low. How often because we have so many people now who can afford things because of low interest rate environments that weren’t able to buy as much property as before. So you get, as you said, a lot of offers a lot of a lot of requests for showings. How often does an agent call you and say, Hey, I already read I’ve read everything on the MLS, I feel like I have a decent sense of this property. But can you give me a couple of key things to mention when I go to the showing, as the buyer’s agent? Like, do you get those kinds of calls? You know, where you’re like, Hey, Dan, helped me sell this home for you. Does that happen a lot or not that office? So

Dan Hellweg 25:57
you know, it’s funny. You know, I think a lot of people when they get a real estate, they do a lot more by side first, right? Sure. And then you start to pick up listings, and I think that just, you know, typical, but as listing I, I get calls, but I think it’s because I was doing, I was doing that I call up agents, you know, and be like, hey, you know, we’re gonna be going to the showing, I either have seen as to, you know, photography, or whatever, you know, this is something, you know, whatever keeps give me a little bit more insights, right? You know, I’m not asking for a lot, maybe if it’s something important to my client. And then it’s like, okay, they always are like, yeah, here’s your something. And I like, you know, if you give silence to people, they’ll usually keep giving you more, and then all of a sudden, it turns into, like, well, also, I just want you to know, the seller or the, you know, this, this seller has actually already moved and you know, they want to sell quicker, it’s like, okay, well, now I’m getting more information that other agents don’t have. But yeah, I think, you know, with my listings, I’ve been surprised because I get like, offers sent to me, and nobody even calls me and I’m like, I don’t know anything about you. Like, could you have least picked up the phone and be like, Hey, Dan, just wanna let you know, I submit an offer. Like, if you have questions, let me know, give me a call. And they’re just like, throwing contracts me in the email. And I’m just kidding. They were like, poorly written. And, you know, it’s like slot when I buy it. You know, I know me, it’s, you know, there’s a lot of phenomenal agents out there. I get, you know, where they pack it up nicely. Everything’s there. But, yeah, I just, I feel like some agents I’m not, you know, getting like that due diligence, and it doesn’t take a lot. And it’s not like you have to do it all the time. But just a quick, you know, hey, can you tell me a little bit more? Is there something about it, you know, my clients, I think they’re gonna really like this place. If we were to come in with an offer, possibly, you know, is there anything I can get them, you know, ready to roll on? So, but,

D.J. Paris 27:41
yeah, conversations can be had, especially right now where you can get really creative and you can talk to the other agent, assuming they’re, they’re available to talk and say things like, hey, what if What about a buyside? Contingency? Oh, what’s that? Well, let’s talk about that. Or, or what about a warranty or whatever, you know, there’s a million different little things you can put in. But that all happens with with conversation. And it is tough when you’re getting, you know, dozens scores of offers, right? But it is also the job, right? So it’s like one of those things where I want to talk about discipline, because you’re an Ironman athlete, and to me, there is no greater display of discipline, physical discipline than the ability to perform in an Ironman competition. I, I have a trainer, a personal trainer, and I work out three times a week for an hour, three times. And that is the only way I will get to the gym. It’s embarrassing, because I spent a fortune. But it works for me, because I do not have that discipline. So I am curious on what what, how the role of discipline has played into, obviously, athletics for you, but also how that’s translated over into your real estate business.

Dan Hellweg 29:02
Yeah, and it’s funny, so the Ironman thing, I did a full Ironman in Cozumel. Last year in November, it was my it was my first one, actually. So by calling him I still even saying like, I’m like an Iron Man, I am because I did the one. But you know, meeting other people there, and it’s very similar to real estate then because it is that it’s a lifestyle, right? It’s not just you don’t, you know, and my goal was to finish. I think, as most people who do an Ironman for the first time, you know, I’ve never even swam over two miles, my wife and I did do 2.4 miles in the ocean. And, like, it’s those things that live in you that right? And so it does create a new level of discipline, it creates a new, you know, ability to process things differently. And, you know, those are the kinds of things that when I signed up for it, I signed up for it about, what eight months before it and with real estate, there would be things like you know, making tough phone calls, or you know, having Long days or going out to, you know, scheduling, you know, and you’re going to do like 14 showings and it’s like, that’s, you know, pulling data on 14 places doing an analysis on 14 places, driving 14 places parking at 14 places working with client, you know, I mean, like, I’m not telling you anything agents don’t know, oh my god, like, it’s it’s not just physically draining, it’s incredibly mentally draining, you know, and those are different clients to you know, it wasn’t I mean, there’s no way I’m going to show one person 14 places we did like which one was that again, but, um, so it’s like they go hand in hand, but it is the ability to recognize that, hey, I have the right you have the right, we all have the right to move at a pace, you know, whether we, you know, hit the throttle a little bit harder, or we can, we can come back a little bit, I think to know, when you need, you know, whether it’s a day in real estate, where you take, you know, good, you know, half half day for yourself, and, you know, you just kind of relax and you read and you know, you move your blocks around and maybe you know, a few blocks on our client related, you know, move to another day, whatever it is, we have that right? And it’s that mindset, you know, it’s always as this, you know, the, you know, term for this, as you know, it’s like the show saying, Hey, we commute, we broadcast the 1% Well, to me, 1% isn’t the agent, it’s a mindset. And it’s that push to stay focused, you know, to, if there’s going to be something that stresses you out to just get it fixed, right, then whatever that might look like, but kicking the can down the road, not going to do anything. And then if you allow those things to keep happening, your mindsets just gonna fall backwards. And that discipline is gonna fall apart in similar to mindset or just similar to Iron Man, you know, you’re just going to start to, you know, to fall apart. So,

D.J. Paris 31:40
how important is it to know your why. And again, let’s relate it to the Iron Man. So the Ironman is, is a goal of sorts. I personally, I’m not a huge fan of goals, versus direction. For me, what works better for me personally, is pushing myself in the right direction consistently. Now, if I want to run an Ironman, I have to do whatever is necessary. Sorry, I shouldn’t say run I park to compete in Iran, I have to do run biking. So I have to do all of those things in a very disciplined way to be able to get to a place where I can then go to Cozumel, and, you know, part and participate in a brutally difficult, you know, physical endurance situation. So, that, but how important is it to know why is that important for your mindset? I’m just kidding. Oh, my God. Yeah, let’s, let’s talk about that.

Dan Hellweg 32:44
Yeah, the y is in Oh, my gosh, like, the Y is your that’s your little power plant. That’s your source of energy. And I’ve been trying over the last probably, you know, a couple of years, especially getting into this, you know, to figure that out. And it’s always I think some people depending on where they’re at in their life, it can be anything, right are wise are all going to be different. And I think for me, so like, my why to go to the Connect, it was, you know, over a decade ago, somewhere when my grandfather passed away, you know, the house that you know, my grandmother lived in, my grandmother passed away a few years before him. I always like dreamt of owning it, like I wanted it. I when I was a little kid and I go over there used to think like, I’m gonna own this one day. But you know, you don’t, like you don’t know the reality of the future. You just see the future as you are right now. And you’re like, everything’s be great. Like, I’m gonna Oh, my grandfather’s house, he’s still gonna be here. It’s like, well, that doesn’t make sense. But, you know, so when he passed away, I ended up buying it from my father, my aunt, who was left to then, and I did not work with an agent at the time. The transaction to me was, I mean, at the time, I’m just like, I’m gonna make this work, I’ll figure it out. But I was really I would not have like, if I would have been out on a search by myself. I would not have bought a home I would not have bought that home. There’s nothing in the whole lineup that made sense on paper, but I was like, I’m gonna make half because I wanted it. It was early on it was important to you. Exactly. It was but the thing was, it was 100% emotional purchase and you know, if you make any decisions with a with a background or with a push of emotion, it’s not going to turn out well usually even if it’s like a super high level emotion because that energy just fades away. It turns off because emotion just like you know, it’s a drug. So throughout that time, you know, just a whole bunch of stuff. You know, I obviously obviously things like his taxes because you know, he has senior freeze on it. And this was like an Edgewater. So you know all of a sudden I’m like getting hit with like these, you know, yearly taxes of like 8000 $9,000 I basically I kind of just taken a box of whatever money I had it just lit on fire and just been there would have been the same thing. I mean, you know, like but so you know, I fast forward you know, a couple years I would just spent on it everything man it maintaining a home by myself, you know, just, it was an emotional drain on me and you know you also If there’s other things that go into it and not to go into but, you know, then I felt like a failure on that. And you know, it just like, obviously then I felt bad. Like, I felt like I let my grandfather down. And then I had to sell and and that’s a whole nother level of emotion. So I saw both ends of the spectrum of emotions in the home, tied to me. So then when I had to sell it, I had to go through all that. And then of course, you know, when I bought it, you know, I didn’t have any agency support. So selling. I’m like, learning how a listing sell a listing agent works for the first time. And then just also to remind you, I bought it like, it’s funny. It’s funny, oh, eight. And I saw that like, and I saw, like, I bought it. Yeah, I bought it in 2008. And then they sold in 2011. So like, oh, yeah, just the worst times real estate to buy at a time and then to sell at a time, you know, that’s when somebody who was buying and they gangbusters in the future, but again, money aside, but um, I’ve looked back at that a lot, and to go to the power of the why it’s changed a lot for me now over the last few years, because I’ve seen it show up and other clients, I’ve had clients are like, Oh, my God, Dad, I need to have this house. And I’m like, Okay, there’s things here like, no, like, you know, and I, I’m, I come to the become the voice of reason for them. Right? Yeah. You know, and all of a sudden, like, Oh, my God, like, you, it’s, I, when I work with clients, I tell them, like, you see things right here, your present, I see the future, I don’t, you know, I’m not selling for right now, that goes for everything that goes for, you know, your referrals for selling with you in the future buying with you in the future. You know, if a parent passes away, I want you to give me that call. I’m not I don’t care about right now. But I also, you know, in, you know, when they’re like, We want to have kids, and I’m like, why are we We’re looking at a two bedroom home and stuff, like, you want to have a family, all that kind of stuff. But the y gets activated at different times, and it charges you and it’s really powerful, because I think it’s for a lot of us, especially as agents, I mean, we’re all probably, you know, our past lives are just, they’re crazy. A lot of us, you know, it’s we’re either spent and burnt out in corporate world, or we had a transaction similar to mine, were just like, I never want anybody else to feel that pain ever again. And so those are the things and you know, when that’s the why, and it could be for whatever, it’s when you really find it, it’s it’s becomes it’s it’s like magical. You know, it’s so hard to explain, but and that’s the thing, like it’s still happening, right. So

D.J. Paris 37:24
yeah, I think I think he just said a lot. And it’s really, really good stuff. Because I think the ability to really be able to bring ideas to your clients based on what you know about them that are outside of the Hey, Dan, can you help me go see this property? Which of course, you will and can do. But this idea of being like, Hey, by the way, you told me you wanted children, we’re looking at two bedrooms. Why are we doing that? That’s, that’s an amazing question to ask somebody, many agents, I think, are afraid to push back or confront and this isn’t a negative, it’s just challenge. They’re their customer, and just say, hey, let’s let’s think about this. What do we really want here? What do we want in three years? What do we want in five years? How long are you going to be here. And you then can also say, let me tell you a story about a decision I made. That ended up being emotional. And it was important that I’m glad I made it, it ended up not really working out. But I want to sort of like you even just sharing what you did with our listeners, is a story that we all can relate to. Now, we all haven’t bought our grandparents home. But we’ve all made decisions like that, that we went past that I really did it for the right reason. But I didn’t really have all the information. And I wish somebody would have guided me through that process. That I think is the cornerstone of a good agent, the ones that can say I see the future here. And it might not line up with what you actually want versus you love the home. We want to put an offer in great, let’s do it. And yes, you have to do that too. But I think you going one step beyond that and said, Well, yes. And this is going to let’s just hold tight for a moment. Let’s really think about this. How long do we want to be here? You know? And is this actually the best fit? Because emotionally it’s way more fun just to make decisions with emotions, right? Yeah, you get excited. You go, this is perfect. Let’s do it. We’re we’re seeing that now in the building I live in to new development. And we’re starting that we’re in the process of converting the ownership from or the board from the, you know, the developer over to the homeowners. And it’s so funny because we’re on this WhatsApp, this long WhatsApp chat of all the owners, and it’s just, and the owners are lovely, wonderful people. This is not a look at any of them, but they’re always talking about what’s wrong and what’s missing and what wasn’t done correctly, which is what owners do. And I mean, look, I do the same thing. And if you were to just read The text, this text thread that is never ending it, you would think, Oh my gosh, like the developer really must have dropped the ball. And it’s like, wow, that everyone’s so unhappy. And then and then you realize, like, emotionally we react to things. And then we want to talk about those things. And oftentimes, it’s like, no, 99% of what the developer did is perfect. It’s really, really great. We’re hyper focusing on this, these issues. And now it it feels like this is everything, like these little issues are the oh my god, are we going to have to sue the developer? Like, who knows? You know, there’s, there’s a lot of those those emotions that go into it. And and I think realtors have this unique ability, if they have the experience, and they’ve been around long enough to just go hang tight here. Here’s how these things usually go. And, and especially first time homebuyers, they’re the most freaked out. And of course they are I mean, I was, and and so I think then you what you’re saying is really important, which is, you know, you’re guiding someone through the process, but you’re also making sure that they that you understand, you can be their sort of support system as they go through this process. And the discipline of your business, I think gives you the freedom because you’re so disciplined. Dan is incredible. I mean, anyone who runs, I keep saying run, anyone who participates in Ironman, triathlons have to be obviously incredibly discipline, there’s just no other way to do it. So Dan has a discipline to his business. And that enables him to then learn continually learn he’s he’s always pushing the ball forward, and enables him to be there for his clients, where he’s not reactive. You’re a proactive, realtor versus reactive. Can you talk a little bit about that? Like, what do you think as you’ve been in this business a few years? What are some? What are some of the behaviors that you’ve seen other agents do that were really impressive to you? Or things you’ve adopted into your own practice? Just Just out of curiosity?

Dan Hellweg 42:07
Yeah. Oh, man, there’s a lot and but one of the things is all these like concepts and ideas and practices and beliefs and things like that. It’s something that, you know, since I got into it, when I got into real estate, it was, okay, what do I like about, you know, this agent, what they’re doing, it could be the way that they communicate something, it could be a showing schedule, it could be like, you know, hey, we’re only going to do weekends, whatever. And sometimes I view it like, Okay, how is that beneficial to me? And how is that beneficial to them? You know, whatever. One of the things that it was actually brought up on one of your recent shows, and I think, actually a couple you’ve said it, but you’re like, there’s 46,000 agents in, you know, Chicagoland area, that means I am going up against, you know, you know, 45,999 people. Now, of course, they direct competition, no, but who, how we set that bar it is it’s in because even if I had an area that I’m in, or, you know, my niche of, you know, doing multi units or something like that, if I don’t stay at, you know, you know, my strive to become the top. If I’m not there, then you know, how am I helping the clients? How am I benefiting the industry? How am I helping community? So, you know, to answer that question, like, you know, what kind of things are out there? You know, it’s so it’s doing this, right? It’s telling my story, because I want other agents who are either thinking about getting in real estate, or currently in it, to understand like, you don’t, you don’t just show up and get business like, but you also don’t have to aggressively aggressively go seek it either. You’ve got to be you, one of my, you know, recent, you know, every year I come up with a monitor, I don’t do like resolutions. But I come up with something that’s going to be a nice reminder, last year was be better than any day, you’re having a bad day, or just, you know, situation a little weird to tell yourself be better. Like, what does that mean? In the moment you figure it out? This year, it’s show up, be you, you know, you’ve got to show up. And that’s like me coming to this office every day. I come every day, you know, even if like the day is like, not a ton of business going on a day, maybe I don’t have a lot of showings, maybe I’m not doing a lot of, you know, the act of work for things. But I still am, you know, sending out my Postcards, I’m still making phone calls. I’m still going out, you know, getting coffees or drinks or lunches with people. You got to just keep going. Right. And I think that’s like the biggest thing I’ve learned from agents who are successful. And it’s everybody has the ability to be successful, right? You know, you can’t just sit around at home because you can have a good day, a good day, a good day, then all sudden, a day that you’re just not really feeling it. What are you going to do? You’re going to turn on the TV, you’re going to do things you shouldn’t, you know, no business comes to you just sitting on the couch. So it’s like these constant reminders. And I know it’s kind of like I’ll run around to the answer, but those are the things that I’ve seen in other agents because I watch you know, who’s the ones come to the office, top performers who’s, you know, shocking, right? Like, you know, you got all these crazy Real Estate shows out there. But you know, the girls are selling sunset aren’t going to their home every day, they’re going back to the office and talking and you learn so much like my managing brokers on the other side, I hear him telling stuff. And, of course, none of those details are, you know, if he’s talking about a deal with another agent, like, I don’t even I will never know who it is. But I’m hearing stuff. I’m like, wow, that’s a great idea. Or like, oh, like after remember that? Or like, Oh, my God, like, that’s an interesting situation, you know, and they’ll, you can even go in and be like, Hey, I wasn’t I didn’t mean to eavesdrop, you know, but what’s going on? And like, well, you know, like, we’re dealing with this client who’s doing this and you’re like, oh, wow, like, didn’t know that. You know what I mean? And it doesn’t matter who you are, how long you’ve been in this business, you’re gonna come across something I just like, that’s different. And, you know, that’s where like something again, the pursuit of like, you know, making it like, do you ever really make it? Because even if you touch number one, you got to hold on to that. And what does that mean? You’re, you still gotta be pushing hard. So yeah, that’s, you know, again, kind of the runaround of the answer. But

D.J. Paris 46:00
right before I started this podcast, no, it’s a great answer. When I first started this podcast, I was actually doing a version of this for the agents in our office where I was funny, I was at home, I’m really I was raised in Peoria, Illinois, which is like Central Illinois. And but I I’ve lived in Chicago, pretty much my whole adult life. And so I was in curio and I was going through the paper. This is a million years ago. And I saw a name that I recognized for a realtor advertising. So you know, some property, or maybe all the properties. This is back when Realtors did newspaper ads. And I recognized the last name. And it turned out to be the brother of a girl, I a woman, I knew that I knew when she was in high school. And so I said, Oh, hey, your brother’s seems really successful. I just got into real estate, we have a bunch of agents, would it be okay if I interview him? To ask him about how he became successful? And he’s, she’s goes, Oh, he’d love it in. And so I talked to him. He’s the seventh highest producing Realtor in Peoria at that time. And he’d been in business a while and I said, What’s the secret to your success? And he goes, You know, I show up at the office every day at I don’t know, like, a reasonable hour, like it was eight o’clock, I think, or it wasn’t later than that. But it was around 8am. He goes, there’s 100 Some agents in his office, he goes, I’m the first one here. Or maybe he shows up at 730. I mean, what it wasn’t a crazy early, right wasn’t like a 4am person. Wasn’t he wasn’t that guy. And he, oh, by the way, he sells 100 And like 15 homes a year. So it’s a home every, like, couple of days, basically. And he goes, I show up at you know, 730 or eight, I do my calls, I bet but you know, he had his whole routine. And he goes, I see I start to see agents funnel in around 930. And then they’re out to lunch. And he goes, you know, if you just show up and, and time block and actually have, you know, sort of, you know, your your day scheduled. And you know, your why? Because his whole thing was he goes, You know, I just want to be available for my kids in the afternoons and evenings because he had young kids at the time. And he said, I want to be there for their events. And you know, real estate, oftentimes, you’re not there during those things. So he goes, I’m going to try to do as much as I can during the day so that most nights and weekends that I’m available, and and he goes and I saw 100 and some homes a year and it was just him. And I went I went oh, and he goes, it’s amazing DJ, he goes, the only people that show up at the office are the people that are in his office are the ones that are actually doing a lot of business. And he goes probably not a coincidence. And so certainly not suggesting that everybody listening needs to get an office space. But Dan said something also when he started and he was doing shared office space, and oh, by the way, other people are going to be there too. And that’s a great opportunity to interact and meet people and just go somewhere and do like if you want to train for an Ironman, you have to make plants, right, you have to know where you’re swimming, where you’re biking, where you’re running, probably for a full year, you got to have that figured out. Because at some point your that’s all going to be put to the test. So you can’t just kind of go well, I need to find a pool and I need like it all has to be really, really meticulously thought out. And I think Realtors Realtors oftentimes forget that, that building your business. It doesn’t have to be as intense as an Ironman, but it really is an Ironman. I mean it truly is. I mean, you’re putting that kind of time and dedication and and I mean look, finishing an Ironman is a perfectly amazing goal. Like that’s an incredible goal. And and one that 99.99% of people will never be able to achieve. Dan did it through small consistent action that you know, over a prolonged period of time, eight months, which is by the way, impressive, but But you know, that’s real estate’s kind of the same thing. And if you can just focus on those tasks. And as Dan was saying, the driver is the why the driver is, hey, I want to do this for these reasons, you know, for Mike Amelie for myself for financial reasons for freedom for whatever, whatever those reasons are, you can lock into that every morning and then the day’s kind of exciting. And then realizing that oh yeah, now I gotta go, you know, swim for miles or, you know, or whatever it is, it’s like, that’s the part that sort of sucks, but that’s what’s gonna get me to the goal. So the part that sort of sucks is actually, you know, nobody really wants to lift weights. Nobody really wants to pick up the phone and call 50 people, but it’s a good idea. And I remember just and Dan with picking up the phone. And just because I just mentioned it, I know you’re a big, I feel like nobody picks up the phone anymore. So we talk a little bit about the importance of of the phone just as a really practical tool for for our listeners.

Dan Hellweg 50:49
Yeah. Oh my god, it’s one of my differentiators. When people like ask, you know, what’s, what’s something that’s different from other agents? I’m like, I pick up the phone, I use the phone. You know, it’s something that when you talk to other agents, you know, it’s funny, because you get some other agents like, Oh, when I call people they don’t answer. It’s like, Have you ever thought they could be at showings and meetings, just busy eating lunch, they’ll call you back? You know, hey, this is the you know, leave a quick voicemail. You know, it’s, it’s Dan, I’m gonna you know what I usually do, too, for some people, if you know, you know that they’re going to be a little apprehensive using phone. It’s like, hey, you know, Dan, just wanted to discuss whatever. Give me a call any chance? Otherwise, I’ll give you another call. Maybe later at three o’clock? You know? Yeah. So now it’s like, if they hate the phone, like crap, this guy’s gonna call again, I want to just call. But you know, and then you get them on the phone, whatever it is, if it’s a situation, if it’s a deal, if it’s just making a phone call with somebody, you know, it’s usually you start talking a little bit, you get these people who’ll be like, I only have a couple minutes, I’m like, you probably have more if you answer that means you have the time, like, and I respect that. But then they start going on and rambling. And you know, they’re telling their whole life story, and you get off the phone, and you’re just like, well, now I know too much information. And that goes for anything. It doesn’t matter what it is. It’s like me right now, when you ask me questions, I just keep going until basically stop me, but that’s what we do. Yeah. It’s, you know, and that’s something I value, especially I think, as Israel tours, you know, we, we got to remember to listen. And when you call somebody and you pick up the phone, they’re giving you something they’re giving you first of all, they’re giving you time, they’re giving you information, they’re giving you something, and you have to appreciate that, you know, you don’t get that from, you know, you could send text messages, that’s great. There’s nothing wrong with that either. But then you’re getting in this dialogue, you’re getting this back and forth, you know, and you’re losing the emotion, you’re losing the value, people will set their phones back down. And, you know, they write it and they forget to respond, because now it’s not fresh anymore. It’s stuff like that. So you know, there’s another person that an agent choose, you know, and just, she was a little bit younger, and that’s fine. But she was asking, like 10 million questions, their email, and just like, just pick up the phone, you know, and then she like, we’re gonna write an offer. And I’m, like, awesome. And then during it, she’s asking more questions. I’m just like, Oh, my God, I’m like, you’re one of those people that are gonna say, you’re super busy. But you’re super busy, because you’re making things so much more difficult for yourself. You know, so, the phone, the phone is definitely powerful. And, you know, I also have some clients where it’s like, you know, you call them and they’ll never answer. So, couple text messages here and there, whatever. And I that’s fine, too. But, you know, I’m not, I also don’t want to put people in a position of discomfort for things that they don’t enjoy. But yeah, it’s, it’s powerful. So if you’re, if you’re thinking, you know, if you’re listening to this, and you’re like, Well, I don’t like picking it up. It’s like, just pick it up, make it start getting comfortable with it, call your best friend and start getting comfortable talking to people on the phone again. So

D.J. Paris 53:49
yeah, it’s becoming a bit of a lost art. I mean, I am shocked at how few phone calls I get throughout the year other than from my closest friends. I almost never get them from service providers, accountant, financial advisor, you know, insurance, person, realtor, I really don’t, you really don’t get many calls anymore. And I think it’s a really easy way to build intimacy, I think it’s harder to build intimacy on on text. It certainly can be done and there are people that prefer it that way. But, but I think, you know, going the extra mile picking up the phone demonstrates a level of care. That is really, really important. And obviously part of the secret of Dan’s successes, but Dan’s an Iron Man, you know, participant This is a guy who knows that if you do all these daily actions, you can achieve some really big things and and he’s doing that I really encourage everyone listening to follow Dan on Instagram. And that is get real with Dan. And there’s periods between that so let’s get period real period with period Dan. We’ll put that link in our show notes. The podcast episode. have notes, but get real real with Dan on Instagram, you can learn more about what Dan’s doing. Dan also goes to the office every day. I think that is just an amazing thing. Dan, this has been a great episode. I really definitely want to have you back on and we can talk more about. Dan’s just crushing it isn’t is just a few years, and he’s really doing well. He’s got great attitude. We absolutely everyone listening knows he is on the way up. So Dan, we thank you so much for your your willingness to share, be vulnerable. Also tell us some great suggestions about how agents can stay focused and stay busy, and really build better relationships with their with their clients. And so on behalf of the audience, we want to thank you for taking time, two different times now, because if you’re just probably not tuning in now, but Dan, and I actually attempted to record this a few days ago, we had a power surge. So Dan is a super easygoing, great guy. And he’s going to be a lot of fun to watch as he continues to, you know, go up that mountain of success in real estate. So on behalf of the audience, we thank you for being so, so diligent with us, and a pleasure sharing with our audience. And then also, on behalf of Dan and myself, we want to thank the audience for listening, participating. And also please tell a friend, that’s the best way you can help our show continue to persevere, is by letting other agents know about this episode. So I guarantee you know an agent that could benefit from hearing from somebody like Dan, so please send them a link to this episode. And then also leave us a review whatever podcast system or delivery system, you might be listening to us on Apple podcast, iTunes, Google, play, Spotify, Stitcher, Pandora, etc. Let us know what you think of the show that really helps us improve and also tells us what you think. And gets us more visibility. So we appreciate the help there. Dan, really great chatting with you. Thank you so much. And we will see everybody on the next episode.

Dan Hellweg 56:54
Yeah. Thank you. It’s been a pleasure.

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