A recent MSN Real Estate article counsels consumers on “How to Find a Superstar Real Estate Agent”. What you need to ask a real estate agent, according to the article, is “What sets you apart? Will you really go the extra mile for me?” My recent personal experience with Gateway Real Estate provides some valuable, honest insight in this regard. In March, I decided to transfer my broker’s license to Gateway Land & Development Real Estate. I love the quality of their marketing, their philosophy of personal, gold-star service, the level os support given to their brokers, and their affiliation with Leverage Global Partners. Overall, it just a good fit for me and how I like to do business. Little did I suspect how prescient my decision would be. Within days of joining Gateway, I had a traumatic ski accident, which landed me at Vail Valley Medical Center with double-knee blowouts. After overcoming a sense of utter disbelief–I had skied my whole life without an injury–I struggled to find the “blessings of a skinned knee”. Fortunately, there were many:
- I live in the best place on the planet for expert knee repair and rehabilitation; thanks to my amazing surgeon, Dr. Robert LaPrade, the Steadman Clinic and the team at Howard Head Sports Medicine, I have progressed from wheelchair to walker to crutches to walking again without assistance in just three months.
- My wonderful family, friends and even some clients were incredibly giving of their time and resources–even from afar–to provide support and practical help. I cannot imagine those initial bleak times without them.
- And, what I couldn’t have anticipated at all, Gateway became an ever-present, reliable force in my recovery.
Gateway’s owner, Suzi Apple and Julie Weihaupt, our uber-competent office manager, organized the troops to provide daily rides, sometimes twice daily rides, to physical therapy; track down ski equipment from emergency responders; run errands, fetch groceries; provide house-cleaning, deliver medical equipment (thanks, Judd!), do paperwork and marketing work for me, and assist in any way to keep me involved to the extent possible. If I had to organize all this at the time, I think I would have just given up. Through this journey, I discovered in a direct and tangible way, the true ethos of Gateway Real Estate, which can be summed up as follows:
- Relationships matter
- If a situation requires you to go to extraordinary lengths to stand by your relationships, then that’s just what you do.
- If you see a need, offer help without being asked.
- The ability to move into action, figure out a solution, and in the process, save someone else lots of time, money and worry, is in their bones.
- Remain sensitive to others–keep them involved, but allow them to make their own decisions without pushing or pressuring them.
- The sense of esprit de corps and the can-do attitude flows from the top.
All this adds up to working with a team you can trust. It has been said that true character is doing the right thing when nobody is looking. That’s what I found in abundance at Gateway. Many thanks to Suzi, Julie, Judd, Rick, Bethany and Teri. These are people you want in your corner. If you are thinking, “I like my friends to be nice, but my real estate broker to be tough”, not to worry. Collectively, we’ve closed or have put under contract more than $70 million in Vail Valley real estate sales since January. Thank you, Gateway, for helping me to get back on my feet–literally. I look forward to upholding the standards of care and professionalism you have shown me.
Nancy Burton is an Associate Broker At Gateway Real Estate. For information on the Vail Valley real estate market, please contact her at 970-343-2869 or via email: email@example.com