Podcast Episodes

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Melanie Stone is a top 1% producer in Chicago and her business isn’t even four years old! She’s the author of the popular So You Want To Buy A Condo seminar that she hosts every few weeks at various locations throughout Chicago. She also has been named one of REALTOR ® Magazine’s 30 Under 30 and has an impressive social presence (including the hashtag #MSC). She writes a blog post about each of her clients after the transaction closes, and on this podcast episode shares additional strategies that distinguishes her from the thousands of brokers in Chicago!

Melanie Stone can be reached at melanie.stone@cbexchange.com and 630.536.7723.


Melanie Stone

After twenty years working as a consultant, Thomas Downing moved back to Chicago and started a new career in real estate. Without a sphere of influence or any leads handed to him, he produced over 12 million in his first year and earned Chicago Agent Magazine’s Rookie Of The Year award. Three years later he is a consistent top 1% producer and continues to build his business. In this interview Thomas explains why his customer-experience background helped prepare him for real estate and gives advice to brokers on what they could immediately implement to grow their practice.

Thomas Downing can be reached at 847.778.9952 and thomasdowning@atproperties.com.

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Due to housing prices having risen over the past two years, homeowners are now sitting on an addition six trillion in tappable equity. So, what should they do (if anything) with it? Joel Schaub, Vice President at Guaranteed Rate, discusses several ideas such as contacting clients currently paying PMI to re-appraise their home to see if they are now eligible to remove PMI. There are also cash-out refinancing options for owners looking to pay down other debt at higher rates. The bottom line is this now gives real estate brokers the opportunity to reach out and communicate with their clients and provide a value added touch.

Joel Schaub can be reached at joel@rate.com or 773.654.2049.

Joel Schaub

In the past 12 months Weston Harding and his brokerage X Plus Real Estate has doubled their production from 20m to 40m. Aside from being a top 1% producer, Weston is also the largest seller of 2-4 flat properties in Chicago. During our conversation Weston talks about how he transitioned from West Texas to Chicago, why he focuses on investments and investors, and how he gives years of free value to prospects before he ever earns a commission!

Weston Harding can be reached at Weston.Harding@XPlusRealEstate.com and 312-669-4343.

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Welcome to the September edition of Monday Market Minute with Carrie McCormick!

In this episode Carrie talks about whether the market is slowing down. Days on market has recently risen for EVERY major Chicago neighborhood. Carrie shares some seller tips including having exterior photos done before the winter arrives, and making sure the property is move-in-ready. Then, I provide a marketing tip about making weekly 60 second Instagram videos for your contact list to get them hooked on YOU!

Carrie can be reached at carrie@atproperties.com or by phone at 312.961.4612.

Carrie McCormick D.J. Paris Monday Market Minute

Today we sat down with fellow podcaster and top producer Steven Weirich who shared his unique and brilliant strategy of podcasting to provide value to his community. Steven hosts Arlington-Prospect Advice Givers, a show dedicated to showcasing local businesses in Mount Prospect and Arlington Heights. By providing this service to local merchants, Steven has generated a tremendous amount of goodwill which has naturally translated into real estate business. In this episode Steven shares why he became a podcaster, why he NEVER mentions that he’s a real estate broker, and why giving value without immediate gain is the key to his success.

Steven Weirich can be reached at 847.607.6711 or csw@stevenweirich.com

Steven Weirich Podcast



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!

Stephanie LoVerde can be reached at 847.903.8589 and sloverde@jamesonsir.com.

Stephanie Loverde


Santiago Valdez has an impressive track record. In addition to being a top 1% producer himself, he trained Elizabeth Pyle in her first year as a broker. She ended up winning the CAR Rookie Of The Year, which is given to the top producing first year broker. In our conversation Santiago and Elizabeth of Relux International talk about how they have built their business, and why they have constructed a team instead of working individually. We go into the specifics of how to choose team members, how to make teams profitable, and why process is more important that outcome. This episode is full of usable tips brokers can employ today to further their production.

Relux Interational can be reached at Santiago@Chicago773.com and Elizabeth@Chicago773.com.

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Welcome to our new monthly series Learning With A Lender!

Each month Guaranteed Rate Vice President Joel Schaub discusses anything and everything related to lending. Joel is in the top 1/10th of 1% in loan production at his company, and his insights on what brokers and consumers need to know about mortgages is incredible. In this episode Joel discusses changes in Fannie Mae that allows for condo buildings with commercial space easier access to lending. Also, condos where the buyer is putting down more 25% are no longer subject to 50% rent caps. Last, Joel mentions that buildings under litigation are okay, as long as it not the association that is being sued.

Joel Schaub can be reached at joel@rate.com or 773.654.2049.

Joel Schaub

When Ryan D’Aprile talks, brokers listen. Not only was Ryan a top 1% broker in Chicago, he now spends 100% of his time training his hundreds of agents at the firm he founded, D’Aprile Properties. Ryan has helped his own real estate brokers become top producers and has a step-by-step approach with a proven track record. In this conversation Ryan talks about some of the underlying strategies and principles paramount to a broker’s success. This episode is chock full of actionable steps brokers can take right now to increase their production!

Ryan D’Aprile can be reached at ryan@daprileproperties.com and 312.492.7900

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