Blog : home ownership

Shakti and Service Dog Ember

Shakti and Service Dog Ember

Yoga is well known for its benefits to the mind, body and spirit. But for Canine Companions® graduate Shakti, it also led to service dog Ember.

Shakti, who’s had multiple sclerosis (MS) for 21 years, is an avid yogi and instructs yoga classes for people with disabilities. Two of her long-time students, both of whom have MS, would bring their Canine Companions service dogs to the weekly classes Shakti had been teaching. Shakti was able to see firsthand how expertly-trained assistance dogs can help a person with a disability.

Shakti’s journey to Service Dog Ember

Shakti’s MS causes her to have issues with her legs, and she uses an electric wheelchair for mobility. After observing her students’ dogs and the benefits they provide, Shakti decided to apply for a service dog herself. By having an expertly-trained service dog by her side, Shakti was hopeful her independence would be increased.

Shakti was as matched with Service Dog Ember – free of charge – by Canine Companions for Independence. Ember picks up dropped items and delivers them to Shakti, opens and closes, turns on and off lights, and so much more. Shakti says, “I can count on Ember to help me and be by my side wherever I go.” She continues, “This is such an amazing thing to happen for me.”

To learn more about the Veterans Initiative offered through our partners at Canine Companions for Independence, click here!

NextHome welcomes a new office to Charlotte, North Carolina

NextHome welcomes a new office to Charlotte, North Carolina

Bobby and Jayme Downey

Pleasanton, CA — June 14, 2019 — NextHome is proud to announce our newest addition to the franchise, NextHome Downey Properties. The new brokerage represents the 17th NextHome franchised office in the state of North Carolina.

NextHome Downey Properties will be led by broker/owner Jayme Downey. She will handle all day-to-day aspects of the company including mentoring, training and brokerage growth. Her husband, Bobby, will be joining her on the leadership team and will handle all sales components for the brokerage.

Based out of Charlotte, NextHome Downey Properties will handle real estate in all of the Charlotte metropolitan area including the counties of Mecklenburg, Union, Cabarrus, Iredell, and Gaston. The brokerage will also serve residents on the South Carolina side including the cities of Fort Mill, Indian Land, Rock Hill, Lake Wylie, and Clover.

The Charlotte metropolitan area is home to more than 2,500,000 residents and is the most populated city in the state of North Carolina. Bobby was born and raised in this area and loves the “big city with a small town feel.”

With expertise in working with first-time home buyers, move-up buyers, investors, new construction and military housing and relocation, NextHome Downey Properties is proud to state that 86% of their business comes from either repeat clients or referrals.

Jayme and Bobby met in 2002 and married in 2004. The couple met while both of them were in restaurant management. Bobby started entering real estate as a part-time loan officer in 2003 and saw how he could turn this side passion into a full-blown real estate career.

In 2004, Jayme felt the stress of managing a restaurant, so she stepped away from it and got her real estate license. With her father being a North Carolina real estate broker, Jayme was excited to follow in the family tradition of being a REALTOR®.

Jumping fully into her new career, Jayme had a very successful start and ended up making the move to Keller Williams in 2006. At the same time, Bobby moved completely over to mortgages and was a top producing loan officer for many years.

While Bobby did well in mortgages, he recalls coming home in 2014 and telling Jayme how he didn’t like being on the mortgage side.

“I remember him coming home and saying he was miserable as a loan officer,” said Jayme. “I asked him what he wanted to do and he said, ‘I want to work with you.’”

The newly formed real estate team – The Downey Group – grew to be incredibly successful, selling more than 50 properties a year.

Seeing how they were a self-sustaining real estate team, Jayme and Bobby realized it was the right time to go out on their own and launch their own real estate brokerage, where they could do business on their terms. In 2017, the Downeys opened their own brokerage – Downey Properties.

They continued to sell at a high level, but wanted more technology and support to provide better service for their clients.

“We Googled real estate franchises and really looked into some of the up and coming brands, rather than the more traditional and familiar names out there,” said Bobby. “We wanted to be able to run our brokerage with that boutique personalized touch, but with the support of a national franchise. NextHome fulfilled everything that we were looking for.”

The Downeys say the biggest difference between their brokerage and other companies in their local market is that they treat the paycheck as a secondary part of the sales process. The focus is fully on the client’s needs and how they help buyers and sellers first, above all else.

“We have a philosophy of taking care of the clients first,” said Jayme. “We know that in our experience, if we do right by our clients every time, the money will come. We will always have that mindset and expect all of our agents to adopt that philosophy as well.”

“It’s the best feeling in the world when you can help that client find their perfect home,” added Bobby. “We want to have a long lasting relationship with these buyers and sellers. That is so important to us and always will be.”

The Downeys are proud parents and are involved in all kinds of activities with their children. Jayme has served on the PTA Board for five years and Bobby has coached flag football, basketball, and soccer.

The Downey family spends their downtime on the water, whether it be fishing, boating or hanging out beachside.

Please join us in congratulating Jayme, Bobby, and the rest of the team at NextHome Downey Properties on the opening of their brand new NextHome brokerage in Charlotte, NC!

Interested in being a part of the NextHome Real Estate Franchise? Contact VP of Sales Charis Moreno at Charis@NextHome.com.

 

Each office is an independently owned and operated business.

The NextHome franchise continues expansion in Iowa

The NextHome franchise continues expansion in Iowa

Travis Hiatt

Pleasanton, CA — June 13, 2019 — NextHome is proud to announce our newest addition to the franchise, NextHome Beyond. The new brokerage represents the fourth NextHome franchised location opened in the state of Iowa.

The company will be owned and operated by top producing REALTOR® Travis Hiatt. Based out of North Liberty, the brokerage will provide real estate services throughout both the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City metropolitan areas. Additionally, NextHome Beyond will serve the residents of Johnson, Cedar, Iowa, Linn, Jones, Louisa, and Washington counties.

North Liberty is directly north of Iowa City and is home to approximately 20,000 residents. Over the past 19 years, North Liberty has been known as the second fastest-growing city in the state of Iowa.

The brokerage will provide various real estate services such as working with first-time homebuyers, investment properties, new construction, ranches and farms, and land lots and parcels.

Travis bought his first house while attending college at the young age of 19. This early entry into real estate inspired him to help others buy and sell homes right after college.

In 2003, he started his career at Skogman Realty in Cedar Rapids. He spent his first years in the business gaining trust with clients using all the traditional methods of real estate – knocking doors, handing out flyers and business cards, and attending community events. While these methods may have seemed simple, they were very effective in helping Travis establish himself in the local market.

In his second year, Travis sold nearly $4 million in volume – a huge accomplishment for a young agent.

In 2007, he made the move to Ruhl & Ruhl Realtors. Working there for nearly ten years, Travis built a business in both the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City markets. In 2011, the owner of the company asked Travis to step in and manage a new office that was expanding into Cedar Rapids.

Two years later, he became the manager for the Coralville office location and led that office for the next five years.

While managing the brokerage, Travis attended the Iowa Association of REALTORS® Convention in 2015 and had a chance to meet NextHome’s Vice President, Imran Poladi, who was the keynote speaker for the event.

“I started researching the company and thinking about how I wanted to one day open my own brokerage,” said Travis. “What NextHome had to offer made me really excited about the possibilities.”  

While he ended up leaving Ruhl & Ruhl Realtors, Travis held off opening his own company. He worked at Keller Williams in Cedar Rapids – first as a Team Leader and then as the General Manager for the company. With more than 100 agents at the brokerage, Travis and the leadership team worked hard to make the company one of the top real estate brokerages in the area.

In 2018, after nearly seven years in management, Travis was finally ready to go out on his own. He knew exactly who he wanted to partner with.  

“I knew that when it was my time to go out on my own, I wanted to franchise with NextHome,” said Travis.

Travis says that the NextHome Beyond difference is exactly what the company name describes.

“I wanted to name my company NextHome Beyond because I want our company to provide a level of service above and beyond what the client is expecting, as well as providing support and real estate services beyond the buying or selling period,” said Travis.

Travis has a passion for teaching and is a certified Dotloop trainer, helping agents with online transaction management systems and tools.

Outside of work, Travis loves spending time with his nine-year-old daughter, Emersyn. Travis is a huge Chicago Cubs fan and does everything he can to catch a Cubbie game at Wrigley Field in Chicago.

Please join us in congratulating Travis and the rest of the team at NextHome Beyond on the opening of their brand new NextHome office in North Liberty, IA!

Interested in being a part of the NextHome Real Estate Franchise? Contact VP of Sales Charis Moreno at Charis@NextHome.com.

Each office is an independently owned and operated business.

Understanding Homeowners Insurance: What all new and prospective homeowners need to know

Understanding Homeowners Insurance: What all new and prospective homeowners need to know

If you arrange a mortgage, your lender will want you to have homeowners insurance. This coverage is critical for protecting your home and personal property against various potential liabilities.

A homeowners insurance policy is actually a package of coverages. These policies commonly offer the following forms of protection:

*Dwelling coverage insures your house and any attached structures, including fixtures such as plumbing and electrical and HVAC systems, against damages.1

*Other Structures coverage is included to compensate you for damage to structures unattached to the main dwelling on your property, such as a detached garage, tool shed, or fence.1

*Personal Property coverage addresses damage to your personal possessions, such as your appliances, furniture, electronics, and clothes.1

*Loss of Use coverage reimburses you for additional living expenses if you are unable to live in your home due to damages suffered.1

*Personal Liability coverage is designed to pay out claims if you are found liable for injuries or damages to another party. As an example, say someone attends a barbeque held in your backyard, then stumbles over a tree root and breaks a wrist or an ankle.1

*Medical Payments coverage pays the medical bills incurred by people who are hurt on your property, or hurt by your pets. This is no-fault coverage. If someone is hurt at your house, any resulting medical bills may be sent by that person to your insurer.1

These coverages pertain only to losses caused by a peril covered by your policy. For instance, if your policy doesn’t cover earthquake damage, then losses will not be reimbursed.1

The types of covered perils will depend on the type of policy you buy. Special Form policies are the most popular, since they insure against all perils, except those specifically named in the policy. Common exclusions include earthquakes and floods. Typically, flood insurance is obtained through the National Flood Insurance Program, while earthquake coverage may be obtained through an endorsement or a separate policy. Some homeowners are reluctant to buy flood or earthquake coverage; they think it is too expensive and may never be needed. The thing is, the future cannot always be guessed by looking at the past.2

Your policy will of course limit the amount of covered losses. If you have a valuable art collection or jewelry, you may want to secure additional insurance on those items.

When you scrutinize a policy, see if it insures your residence for replacement cost or actual cash value. Actual cash value is less preferable: it may not cover all your losses, as the value of your personal property can be affected by wear and tear, and your home’s value can be affected by housing market fluctuations. If your home is insured for replacement cost, then the insurance carrier will pay the expenses of using materials of similar kind and quality to rebuild or repair your home.3

As a last note, you may also want Umbrella Liability coverage. Do you consider yourself wealthy? You may find the liability limits on your current homeowners policy inadequate. For a greater degree of coverage, you might elect to complement it with an umbrella policy.4

Shane Westhoelter may be reached at 858-428-3929 or shane@gfainvestments.com
www.gatewayig.com/nexthome

This material was prepared by MarketingPro, Inc., and does not necessarily represent the views of the presenting party, nor their affiliates. This information has been derived from sources believed to be accurate. Please note – investing involves risk, and past performance is no guarantee of future results. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. This information should not be construed as investment, tax or legal advice and may not be relied on for the purpose of avoiding any Federal tax penalty. This is neither a solicitation nor recommendation to purchase or sell any investment or insurance product or service, and should not be relied upon as such. All indices are unmanaged and are not illustrative of any particular investment.

Securities offered through Registered Representatives of Cambridge Investment Research, Inc., a brokerdealer, member FINRA/SIPC. Advisory services offered through Cambridge Investment Research Advisors, Inc., a Registered Investment Adviser. Gateway Financial Advisors, Inc., and Cambridge Investment Research, Inc. are not affiliated.

Citations.
1 – https://www.iii.org/article/what-covered-standard-homeowners-policy [12/3/18]
2 – https://www.valuepenguin.com/types-homeowners-insurance [9/25/18]
3 – https://www.thebalance.com/replacement-cost-insurance-vs-actual-cash-value-4154015 [11/18/18]
4 – https://www.kiplinger.com/article/insurance/T028-C000-S002-why-you-need-an-umbrella-insurance-policy.html [9/25/18]

NextHome Neighbors opens their new office in Texas

NextHome Neighbors opens their new office in Texas

Gonzalo & Amy Egana

Pleasanton, CA — June 12, 2019 — NextHome is proud to announce our newest addition to the franchise, NextHome Neighbors. With the opening of the new brokerage, the NextHome franchise launches the 25th franchised location in the state of Texas.

The company will be owned and operated by top-producing REALTORS®, and husband and wife team, Gonzalo and Amy Egana. Gonzalo will serve as the broker of record and handle the day to day operations of the company. Amy will be in charge of the company’s marketing, listing inventory, and social media outreach.

The brokerage will provide real estate services throughout the cities of Tyler, Flint, Bullard, Whitehouse, Chandler, Lindale and the remainder of Smith, Cherokee, Henderson, and Wood counties.

Known as the “Rose Capital of the World,” Tyler is located 90 minutes east of Dallas and is home to more than 100,000 residents. The area has a long history of rose production and boasts the largest rose garden in the country.

The brokerage will provide various real estate services such as working with first-time homebuyers, investment properties, relocation, ranches and farms, and land lots and parcels.

The couple has been married for 16 years, and have been business partners since 2012. Their professional backgrounds previous to real estate have served them perfectly.

In 2005, the Eganas began investing in real estate and flipping houses. They had a fondness for buying and selling homes, and upon the suggestion of his father-in-law, Gonzalo took the leap and got into the real estate sales side of the business.

Gonzalo first attained his real estate license in 2007 after a very successful sales career. As the owner of a kitchenware manufacturing business, he was most known for his creation of what many feel is the best manual juicer in existence – the OrangeX Juicer.

During the time that Gonzalo started working in real estate, Amy had a very successful business herself as the owner of Joy Creative Consulting, a marketing consulting firm.

From 2007-2014, Gonzalo worked at RE/MAX in Tyler. During his years at the brokerage, he worked his way up to becoming one of the top five agents in the entire 60+ agent office. As the business grew, Gonzalo saw how Amy could bring a lot of value to the business. With her exceptional marketing skills and eye for detail, she got her real estate license in 2012. With their youngest child going into kindergarten that year, it was perfect timing for the Eganas to partner in real estate.

In 2015, they made a move to a smaller brokerage, WP & Company.   

“We really liked being a part of a smaller office with a culture of having that family feeling,” said Amy.

In 2018, the couple sold more than $15 million in volume. An incredibly impressive number with the average home sale at $250,000.  

With more than 10 years in the real estate business, they felt it was time to go out on their own and open a brokerage. In 2018, they turned to a real estate friend and learned about NextHome.

“We connected with Ben Andrews through Brian Buffini Coaching” said Gonzalo. “As the owner of a NextHome franchised location, he told us a lot about the positive benefits when he converted his brokerage to NextHome. The more we saw, the more we liked.”

“The branding and signage was unique and different,” added Amy. “Having that brand consistency meant a lot to me and spoke to a higher standard of marketing that often goes missing in today’s real estate.”

Gonzalo and Amy are proud to say that NextHome Neighbors will stand out from other local brokerages by focusing on building a company with career-oriented agents who not only want to grow professionally, but personally as well.

“In my experience, most brands develop a story that makes them the hero,” said Amy. “Companies that truly succeed make the customers the hero. We want to be that kind of company.”

The Eganas have three children – Isabella (age 14), Alex (13), and Sophia (10).

Please join us in congratulating Gonzalo, Amy, and the rest of the team at NextHome Neighbors on the opening of their brand new NextHome office in Tyler, TX!

Interested in being a part of the NextHome Real Estate Franchise? Contact VP of Sales Charis Moreno at Charis@NextHome.com.

Each office is an independently owned and operated business.

NextHome GoodLife launches in New York

NextHome GoodLife launches in New York

Stephen and Delica Herman

Pleasanton, CA — June 11, 2019 — NextHome is proud to announce our newest addition to the franchise, NextHome GoodLife. The new brokerage represents the ninth franchise location opened in the state of New York.

The company will be owned and operated by top producing REALTOR® Stephen Herman. He will be joined on the leadership team by his wife, Xiao Hua “Delica” Herman. Stephen will be the principal broker and handle the day-to-day activities for the company, while Delica will serve as the office manager and handle marketing for the brokerage. Additionally, Delica speaks three dialects of the Chinese language and works with many overseas investors from Taiwan, Hong Kong, and China.

Based out of Scarsdale, the brokerage will provide real estate services throughout the counties of Westchester, Putnam, and Dutchess including the cities of Scarsdale, White Plains and Yonkers. With NextHome GoodLife just 20 minutes away from the Connecticut border, the company will also serve the residents in the southwestern part of Connecticut, including Fairfield County.

Scarsdale is 20 minutes north of Manhattan and is home to more than 17,000 residents.

The brokerage will provide various real estate services such as working with first-time homebuyers, investment properties, vacation and second homes, multi-family properties, and international buyers.

The couple has been married for 24 years and entered the real estate industry within a couple of years of each other. Stephen obtained his real estate license in 2006 and Delica obtained hers in 2008.

Stephen started in real estate part-time while he served as a Sergeant with the New York City Police Department. He spent the first five years of his career at Prudential Serls Prime Properties in Brewster, New York. Delica joined him in the second year of his business because of the need to interpret for Chinese buyers that Stephen was working with. In time, the translation became less her focus and she became more of an agent directly helping these Chinese clients.

In 2011, the Hermans moved their business to Douglas Elliman in Sommers, NY and spent the next eight years at various locations of the brokerage, including Scarsdale.   

Stephen attributes their success to constantly working on building relationships within their community. This commitment has helped their business grow each year, with the team doing more than $10 million a year in sales.

In 2018, the Hermans looked at opening their own brokerage after more than 12 years of being in real estate.

“We are very involved in Brian Buffini coaching and seeing that lots of agents wanted more from their brokerage and were willing to pay to get that training and coaching that they weren’t provided,” said Stephen. “We wanted to own and run a brokerage that lived by these principles of client care and helping buyers and sellers with their needs in mind.”

“NextHome provided the new fresh brand to the area that allowed flexibility as to how to provide more to our agents without a huge overhead,” he added. “NextHome has been the perfect partnership to align with.”

“Going out to California for training with the franchise team really helped Stephen and I put into perspective how great the company is we franchised with,” said Delica.

The Hermans have three children – Samantha (age 21), Kimberly (20), and Joshua (18). Delica has spent years volunteering at the children’s school in helping with translation between school faculty and parents. While Delica donates this time without expecting anything in return, she has earned a lot of goodwill and trust by parents, who in turn have become real estate customers.

Please join us in congratulating Stephen, Delica, and the rest of the team at NextHome GoodLife on the opening of their brand new NextHome office in Scarsdale, NY!

 

Interested in being a part of the NextHome Real Estate Franchise? Contact VP of Sales Charis Moreno at Charis@NextHome.com.

Each office is an independently owned and operated business.

4 Ways Home Warranty Plans Can Help You Win More Listings

4 Ways Home Warranty Plans Can Help You Win More Listings

Adding more listings is one of the most effective ways to build your real estate business, but it’s not always easy. Gaining listings can be especially challenging in low inventory markets, for new agents, and even for veteran agents trying to establish themselves in new areas. If you’re looking to boost listings, it’s important to use all the tools at your disposal, including home warranty plans. Here’s how:

Distinguish

An American Home Shield® Home Warranty Plan can help a listing stand out from others in the market. Listings that include home warranty plans can offer added value, show good faith, and may attract additional interest in the home.

Reassure

Household breakdowns can happen even when a home is on the market, and such malfunctions can bring additional anxiety to an already stressful time. By choosing an American Home Shield Home Warranty Plan with the Seller Coverage Option*, sellers receive all the advantages of AHS ® ShieldEssentialSM package protection for up to six months until the coverage transfers to the new buyers. ShieldEssential includes coverage for major components of the most crucial home systems that are the most expensive to repair or replace, including heating, air conditioning, plumbing, and more.

Differentiate

Adding a home warranty plan as part of your concierge service model can help differentiate your service from other agents. When sellers see that you care about their needs, they’ll likely want to work with you on the transaction. Paying for the Seller Coverage Option or the entire warranty as a closing gift adds unique service value and helps build the kind of long-term relationships that can garner referrals and repeat business.

Offset

If a client is worried about the marketability of a home with older systems and appliances, an American Home Shield Home Warranty Plan can help offset those concerns for both sellers and buyers. As American Home Shield customers, sellers can also save on updating appliances through the AHS Appliance Discount Program.

For questions or more information about how American Home Shield Home Warranty Plans can be beneficial for both you and your listing clients, contact your dedicated AHS Account Executive, visit ahs.com/realestate, or call 800.735.4663.

*Subject to a $2,000 cap for all trades during the listing period. An American Home Shield Home Warranty Plan covers major components of many home systems and appliances, but not necessarily the entire system or appliance. Please review the American Home Shield contract for limitations and exclusions.

For more home warranty tips, check out the American Home Shield blog!

NextHome Northstar Properties opens in Goldenrod, Florida

NextHome Northstar Properties opens in Goldenrod, Florida

Paul Stennett

Pleasanton, CA — June 10, 2019 — NextHome is proud to announce our newest addition to the franchise, NextHome Northstar Properties. The new brokerage is the 57th NextHome franchise location opened in the state of Florida.

The company will be owned and operated by top-producing REALTOR® Paul Stennett. The 11-year real estate veteran will lead the Goldenrod-based NextHome Northstar Properties. As a virtual office, the brokerage’s agents will provide real estate services throughout the state of Florida, including Winter Park, Goldenrod, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, West Palm Beach, Orlando, and Port St. Lucie.

The brokerage will provide various real estate services such as working with first-time homebuyers, investment properties, vacation and second homes, condos, and multi-family properties.

As a graduate of the University of Central Florida and a holder of a Master’s Degree, Paul’s commitment to education shines through in everything he does. Before real estate, Paul taught elementary and middle school students.

This high education standard is reflected in his expectations of his agents and their commitment to staying on top of their knowledge in the real estate field. This expectation has set NextHome Northstar Properties agents apart from the competition.

Paul started his real estate career in 2008 with a local Century 21 office before making a move to (current NextHome Z House Realty’s owner) Janice Zeisig’s office. Working with Janice was a very beneficial experience and shaped Paul to be ready to go out on his own in 2013.

That year, Paul opened AmCar Realty Group – a play on the words “American” and “Caribbean.”

Along with traditional buyers and sellers throughout Florida, the brokerage partnered working with the national real estate purchaser Invitation Homes and grew the business to close more than 100 transactions a year.

Paul handled most of the brokerage business and resisted the temptation of growing the company with lots of agents. This changed in 2018 when he made a conscious decision to grow and help agents personally and professionally.

“I got the chance to get to know NextHome and the people behind the brand – specifically (NextHome’s VP of Sales) Charis Moreno,” said Paul. “I was thoroughly impressed and really enjoyed the fact she was so informative, but not pushy in any way.”

“Being a part of the NextHome franchise has allowed me to have the power of a national company that encourages me to run my brokerage the way I want,” he added. “Our agents are now able to provide clients a level of service they never had before.”

Outside of selling real estate, Paul spends time with his wife of 19 years Tanisha, who teaches kindergarten. Paul lives and promotes a healthy lifestyle. He runs 10 miles several times a week and adheres to a vegetarian-based diet. He is also a self-proclaimed “Star Wars fanatic.”  

Please join us in congratulating Paul and the rest of the team at NextHome Northstar Properties on the opening of their brand new NextHome office in Goldenrod, FL!

 

Interested in being a part of the NextHome Real Estate Franchise? Contact VP of Sales Charis Moreno at Charis@NextHome.com.

Each office is an independently owned and operated business.

NextHome HomeFront opens in Mississippi

NextHome HomeFront opens in Mississippi

Crystal Boggs & Bobby Wantland

Pleasanton, CA — June 7, 2019 — NextHome is proud to announce our newest addition to the franchise, NextHome HomeFront. The new brokerage is the fourth NextHome franchise location opened in the state of Mississippi.

NextHome HomeFront will be owned and operated by top-producing REALTOR® Crystal Boggs. The brokerage will service the cities of Ocean Springs, Biloxi, Gulfport, D’Iberville, and the remainder of Jackson and Harrison Counties.

The brokerage will provide various real estate services for the local community such as working with first-time homebuyers, investment properties, vacation and second homes, multi-family properties, land and lots, and military family relocation. Crystal says more than half of NextHome HomeFront’s business involves military housing.

Crystal will have another top-producing REALTOR® serve as the company’s broker of record. Bobby Wantland brings years of experience to NextHome HomeFront and Crystal is happy to be in business with him.

“Bobby brings a lot of experience and I really love how he builds relationships with people,” said Crystal. “He’s been like a big brother to me and I am so happy to have him be a part of this journey.”

“I never thought I would want to work in a partnership format,” said Bobby with a laugh. “But I couldn’t pass up a chance of working with Crystal. She has a great heart, she is always wanting to grow personally and professionally, she is totally selfless… why wouldn’t I want to be in business with her?”

After selling off her very successful party rental business, Biloxi Bounce House, which did more than 1,000 rentals annually, Crystal decided to go into real estate. Her interest in becoming a real estate agent sparked from the positive experience that she and her husband, Bryan, had with their REALTOR® – Bobby.

Crystal first became licensed in real estate in 2016 and started with Keller Williams Realty.

While she spent most of the first year learning the marketing and prospecting side of real estate, that paid off just a few months into her second year in the business. Within the last three months of 2017, she sold over $1 million in real estate – an incredible number considering the local average home sales price at that time was just under $140,000.

Crystal made the move to a local NextHome franchised office where Bobby was working. That move paid off and in 2018, she sold 24 homes with more than $5 million in total sales volume.

In late 2018, Crystal felt it was the right time to open her own brokerage. As the previous owner of a successful business prior to real estate, her experience and track record gave her the confidence to open NextHome HomeFront.

“NextHome HomeFront will be a boutique brokerage company where the agents will be treated like family,” said Crystal. “That will allow them to connect with the ownership/leadership team and know they will be heard and treated with respect.”

In 2019, Crystal was honored with one of the most esteemed awards a military spouse can receive – Armed Forces Insurance Keesler Military Spouse of The Year.

The Boggs’ have been married for 17 years and are the proud parents of Mecquela (age 15) and Bryanna (13). The family enjoys all types of outdoor activities including four-wheeling, fishing, and crabbing. They also love to travel and visited Germany, England, and France last year.

Please join us in congratulating Crystal, Bobby, and the rest of the team at NextHome HomeFront on the opening of their brand new NextHome office in Ocean Springs, MS!

 

Interested in being a part of the NextHome Real Estate Franchise? Contact VP of Sales Charis Moreno at Charis@NextHome.com.

 

Each office is an independently owned and operated business.

NextHome Champions opens second office location in Michigan

NextHome Champions opens second office location in Michigan

Tom Smolinski

Pleasanton, CA — May 31, 2019 — NextHome is proud to announce our newest addition to the franchise, NextHome Champions – Grand Rapids Branch. The new brokerage is the 5th NextHome franchise location opened in the state of Michigan.

NextHome Champions – Grand Rapids Branch will be owned and operated by broker Tom Smolinski. The brokerage will service the cities of Grand Haven, Grand Rapids, East Grand Rapids, Comstock Park, and the entire Grand Rapids metropolitan area.

This will be Tom’s second office location. He opened his first NextHome office in May of 2017 and has steadily grown his business to where a secondary office location became necessary. Located 25 miles northeast of his first office, this expansion will allow him to help his growing clientele of the Grand Rapids area.

After many years in engineering, Tom was looking for an opportunity that was a better fit for him. Thanks to the suggestion of his former co-workers, Tom entered the real estate industry in 2005.

“At that time, several of my engineer friends had recently sold their homes,” recalled Tom. “They were really unhappy with how they were represented and suggested there was an opportunity for me to come into real estate and provide real estate service that was lacking in our local market.”

With his commitment to world-class service and his attention to detail, Tom steadily built his business to the tune of more than 100 transactions annually.

He has been ranked as one of the top-producing agents in his local market for several years. Tom ranks as one of the top 10 REALTORS® out of 3,000+ agents in his local Multiple Listing Service (MLS).

After years of selling real estate under a real estate broker, Tom started his own company, Epsilon Resources, which focused on local needs of homeowners who were facing foreclosure.

“Our community was one of the hardest hit in the entire nation when the recession happened,” said Tom. “I wanted to provide a service to help homeowners facing foreclosure. By providing options including short sales and relocation assistance, our company became known for reaching out and helping our neighbors.”

In early 2017, Tom wanted to add a higher level of technology to his brokerage business services.

“I found NextHome through a simple Google search,” said Tom. “The three things that stood out to me were the commitment to technology, the ability to allow me to run my brokerage in a formatted, yet flexible way, and the tools provided to my agents.”

Tom added that since being with NextHome, his clients have loved the added technology, the professional photography, and the 3D tours.

“I am proud to say that our agents are all about growing our business through great relationships with our clients,” he added. “I want them to know they will be treated like we would treat our own family.”

In addition to his commitment to the real estate industry, Tom dedicates time to volunteering for the less fortunate.

He is actively involved with his local Board of REALTORS®. Tom is also involved in the Leadership Academy for the Greater Regional Alliance of REALTORS® (GRAR), and will be the Chair for GRAR’s West Chapter, which provides a voice for the Lakeshore agents for the large Association.

He has served on the Board of Directors for Pathways – a human services organization which provides services such as counseling for those with addictions and adoption services.

Tom also volunteers time as a member of the Executive Board at the association for Zeeland Quest – a school where his ten-year-old daughter Abby is a student.

Outside of selling real estate, Tom spends time with family. He says his “number one priority is being the best husband to his wife of 18 years, Lori, and the very best father he can be to his daughter Abby.

Please join us in congratulating Tom and the rest of his team at NextHome Champions on the opening of their second NextHome office!

Interested in being a part of the NextHome Real Estate Franchise? Contact VP of Sales Charis Moreno at Charis@NextHome.com.

Each office is an independently owned and operated business.