NextHome announces new Knoxville brokerage

NextHome announces new Knoxville brokerage

Michele & Marty Bass

Pleasanton, CA — May 22, 2020 — NextHome is pleased to announce the newest addition to the franchise, NextHome Premier Properties, based in Knoxville, Tennessee. The brokerage represents the 10th office location opened in Tennessee for the NextHome franchise and the 475th NextHome office opened nationally.

NextHome Premier Properties offers quality service for first-time home buyers, military relocations, and retirees. In addition, the brokerage can provide expert insights into lake property or condominium purchases. 

NextHome Premier Properties will serve the needs of clients across Maryville, Lewisville, Alcoa, Farragut, Lenoir City, and the greater Knoxville area.

The brokerage is owned by Knoxville real estate veterans Marty and Michele Bass. Together, they offer clients a combined 65 years’ worth of experience in real estate and small business ownership. 

Marty obtained his real estate license in 1978 and became a broker just two years later. In the early days of his career, Marty saw some of the highest rates of inflation in United States history with interest rates rising to nearly 20 percent. 

Eventually, Marty diversified his career and took ownership of Brothers Bedding Company in Knoxville. He maintained ownership of the local mattress factory for almost 20 years. 

However, Marty remained drawn to real estate. In 2001, he opened Assist 2 Sell Marty Bass Realty in Knoxville. Michele joined the brokerage as an agent in 2002. 

Michele’s own real estate journey began in 1997. She started her career at a small independent company before joining RE/MAX and working as an assistant to one of the top agents in the office.

After joining Marty at his brokerage in 2002, Michele learned all she could about franchise ownership and building excellent customer service.

In 2005, Michele opened her own brokerage: Assist 2 Sell Smart Choice Realty. She continued to build that business for the next six years. Meanwhile, Marty sold his real estate franchise and returned to running his mattress production company full-time. 

From 2011 to 2014, Michele and Marty weathered the fallout from The Great Recession as best they could – Marty at his mattress company and Michele opening a mobile dog grooming business. 

However, the pair remained close to both each other and to real estate, and in September 2014 Marty and Michele were married. 

Michele returned to real estate full-time in 2014, eventually opening her own brokerage – Assist 2 Sell Bass Real Estate. Marty sold the mattress company and, again, delved into real estate full-time alongside Michele.  

“Everything was going really well,” Michele recalled.

As business improved, Marty and Michele began to think critically about their branding and how they wanted to position their business in the Knoxville market. 

“We wanted to build a brokerage that focused on five-star, high-quality service,” Marty said. “To accomplish that, we knew we needed to partner with the right franchise.”

As Michele searched for the right fit, NextHome caught her attention. 

“When we saw that the Knoxville area was available to franchise through NextHome, we were absolutely thrilled,” Michele said. 

Today, NextHome Premier Properties offers clients classy, streamlined marketing that connects the right buyers and sellers. NextHome Premier Properties also offers agents unparalleled support, technology, and training. 

“We have so much to offer now,” Michele said. “Everything is seamless and digital, we have virtual tours, we have streamlined marketing, we have the cute little dog mascot, we have it all.”

Both Marty and Michele are active in their community. Marty works with the Knoxville Volunteer Ministry Center, where he helps the homeless with access to basic necessities. 

Michele is passionate about helping animals and volunteers with rescue groups around town. 

In their downtime, Marty and Michele enjoy watching movies together and working in their yard. 

Please join us in congratulating Marty and Michele on the opening of NextHome Premier Properties in Knoxville, Tennessee!


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


Each office is an independently owned and operated business.

NextHome opens newest brokerage in Northern Virginia

NextHome opens newest brokerage in Northern Virginia

Michelle Hale

Pleasanton, CA — May 21, 2020 — NextHome is pleased to announce the newest addition to the franchise, NextHome NOVA Realty, based in Warrenton, Virginia. The brokerage represents the 11th office location opened in Virginia for the NextHome franchise and the 474th NextHome office opened nationally.

The brokerage will offer cutting-edge real estate marketing and technology to 13 counties across Northern Virginia. NextHome NOVA Realty provides buying and selling service to clients in Fauquier, Culpeper, Prince William, Fairfax, Loudoun, Stafford, Spotsylvania, Orange, Madison, Rappahannock, Warren, Clarke, and Frederick counties. 

Located just 45 miles west of Washington D.C., Warrenton is four-square miles brimming with small-town charm. The area attracts residential investors, retirees, and professionals relocating for work with Government contractors or one of the many military facilities, like the Marine Corps Base in Quantico. Warrenton is also attractive for buyers seeking prime equestrian properties. Under the leadership of owner Michelle Hale, NextHome NOVA Realty offers expertise in all these types of real estate transactions – and more. 

Michelle will be NextHome NOVA Realty’s broker of record and owns the franchise alongside her husband, Mark Hale.

Michelle delved into real estate in 2002. Prior to becoming a full-time REALTOR®, Michelle worked in information technology, specializing in databases and end-user applications. 

After obtaining her license, Michelle built a reputation for compassionate client care and service that went above and beyond expectations. Michelle studied architecture and interior design in college and has been the general contractor for two of her own personal residences.

“When I’m looking at new construction, I’m able to clarify anything clients may have questions about,” Michelle said. “When it comes to home inspections, I can also explain things that the average agent might not catch.”

Michelle started her real estate career with Long & Foster, but spent most of the past decade in the business with Century 21 New Millennium in Gainesville.

Eventually, Michelle recognized that in order to continue exceeding her client’s expectations, she needed to take her technology offerings to the next level. 

“As I looked around at my options, other firms didn’t seem to have the tools or eye-catching marketing that is so important to me,” Michelle said. “So, when I stumbled across NextHome, the marketing and technology really caught my attention; the colors, Luke, it all just spoke to me.”

Today, Michelle is building a brokerage where high-quality agents can feel truly supported, can have access to plug-and-play marketing, and receive ethical compensation. 

“I wanted to run a brokerage where agents could see the value of being a NextHome agent,” Michelle said. 

As a top-producing agent, Michelle understood the pain point of getting beautiful marketing produced quickly. That’s why NextHome’s ability to build almost-immediate marketing packages was so attractive. 

In addition to its cutting-edge technology offerings, NextHome NOVA Realty is making a difference for area clients through Michelle’s compassionate leadership and approach to sales. 

“Once clients work with me, they find I am very easy to talk to,” Michelle said. “I think a big part of how I operate is that I can absorb the stress of buying or selling a home so that my clients don’t have as much to worry about. I have a way of creating calm in an otherwise stressful situation.”

Outside of real estate, Michelle enjoys serving in her community. Michelle serves on the Board of Directors for the Fauquier Habitat for Humanity – a position she has held since 2013 minus a one year pause. Her passion for Habitat for Humanity’s work extends into how she runs her business – a portion of every transaction her firm closes goes directly to the organization. 

In addition, Michelle enjoys working with local animal rescues to find forever homes for abandoned dogs, two of which are now members of their family.  

Michelle and Mark have been married since 1992 and together they have two adult daughters. Mark recently retired from commercial construction management and served as an Aviator in the US Army.  

Together, Michelle and Mark enjoy traveling, hiking, and playing golf. 

Please join us in congratulating Michelle and Mark on the opening of NextHome NOVA Realty in Warrenton, Virginia!


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


Each office is an independently owned and operated business.

Web Visits to For-Sale Listings Rebounding as Spring Unfolds

Web Visits to For-Sale Listings Rebounding as Spring Unfolds

  • Page views on for-sale listings on Zillow fell as much as 19% year-over-year in mid-March, but have rebounded sharply since then.
  • Traffic on listings in some metros have recovered more quickly, including Los Angeles, Houston, Dallas and Atlanta.

Web traffic to for-sale home listings on Zillow fell off dramatically in mid-March as the U.S. coronavirus outbreak began in earnest and stay-at-home orders were expanded, effectively shuttering large parts of the economy. But by mid-April, overall visits to for-sale homes had rebounded to levels — perhaps surprisingly — that are actually slightly higher than a year ago.

In early March, the market was still looking forward to the impending busy spring home shopping season. Market fundamentals were largely strong, and traffic to for-sale listings was higher than it was at the same time a year ago. But starting March 11, web traffic began to slide. Even in a month jam-packed with bad news, that date stands out. On March 11, the World Health Organization officially classified the coronavirus outbreak as a global pandemic; President Trump announced a travel ban from Europe as part of a televised national address; and the National Basketball Association cancelled the rest of its season. Over the next week and a half, culminating on March 22, traffic to homes listed for sale on Zillow dropped by almost a fifth compared to the comparable week in 2019.

But not every market dropped in tandem. In Seattle, home to Zillow headquarters and site of some of the first known U.S. cases of community transmission of the novel coronavirus, traffic was below-normal as early as February.

The New York metro area, now home to the nation’s biggest outbreak, has experienced some of the biggest daily traffic declines: It fell more than 30% for the 7-day period ending March 22, and remained down about 24% in the first week of April. The most recent available data, for the 7 days ended April 13, show New York still down about 8%. Late-March/early-April traffic to listings in the Boston area, also currently grappling with one of the nation’s largest outbreaks, fell more than 20% by the week ending March 20 and remained below that depressed level through April 8, when it began to recover toward normal levels.

San Francisco experienced a more acute drop than Boston, down about 28% for the week ending March 22 and subsequent 7-day windows through March 26. But it recovered steadily soon after that, and in the week ending April 13 verage traffic was higher than the same week in 2019.

The traffic dropoff was less severe in Los Angeles, with a nadir 20% lower than 2019 for the week beginning March 16, the same day the LA Department of Public health issued an order prohibiting gatherings of 50 or more. But traffic to Los Angeles-area listings on Zillow subsequently rebounded quickly, and has actually been substantially higher year-over-year through the first two weeks of April.

It’s a similar story in Minneapolis, which was experiencing strong year-over-year growth in traffic in the days prior to March 11, before dropping off sharply. Minneapolis’ biggest one-week drop in traffic also came on the week starting March 16, the day Minnesota Governor Tim Walz ordered restaurants, bars and other public gathering areas closed. But by mid-April, Zillow traffic was up by double-digits in the twin cities.

While traffic to listings in some markets still remains down from a year ago, the national total has rebounded significantly, up 13% year-over-year for the week ending April 13. In fact, in 30 of the 35 largest metro areas, web traffic to for-sale listings was up year-over-year during the second week of April. Of those large markets, only the Pittsburgh, Detroit, Philadelphia, Boston, and New York City metro areas continue to show depressed traffic.

It’s impossible to know precisely what’s driving this recent spike in traffic: It could be coming from optimistic buyers hoping to get an early jump on their plans as soon as restrictions are lifted, or simply from aspirational viewers stuck at home and seeking an escape through real estate. Early data on home sales show significant drops in mortgage purchase applications in March, so one simple explanation could be that many of the home shoppers who would have bought in March are still on the sidelines, keeping tabs on the market alongside everyone who began eyeing Zillow listings in April.

We do know this April turnaround does not reflect positive economic news. In the four weeks from March 15 through April 11, roughly 22 million Americans filed claims for unemployment assistance, or almost 15% of all workers who were otherwise employed as recently as the middle of March. The total scale of the economic slowdown is not yet clear, but it is almost certain that more people will soon be out of work for an indeterminate period of time.


All page view events of for-sale homes on and the Zillow app are tabulated by day and the listing’s ZIP code, and then aggregated to day and MSA. Figures are presented as rolling 7-day trailing averages to smooth out daily noise. Page views exclude real estate agents and other professional users on Zillow. Year-over-year comparisons are done after offsetting 2019 data by 2 days, in order to compare the same days of the week, e.g. we compare Sunday, March 29, 2020 with Sunday, March 31, 2019.


For more tips from our partners at Zillow, check out their blog!

NextHome announces new brokerage in the Dallas/Fort Worth area

NextHome announces new brokerage in the Dallas/Fort Worth area

Aixa Galarza

Pleasanton, CA — May 20, 2020 — NextHome is pleased to announce the newest addition to the franchise, NextHome Preferred Properties, based in Grapevine, Texas. The brokerage represents the 35th office location opened in Texas for the NextHome franchise and the 473rd NextHome office opened nationally.

Located in historic downtown Grapevine, this bi-lingual brokerage will serve residential buyers and sellers across the Dallas/Fort Worth region. Located a mere 10 minutes from the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, Grapevine is known for its attractive architecture and appealing downtown. From this vantage point, NextHome Preferred Properties can skillfully serve the needs of clients in Plano, Frisco, Dallas, Fort Worth, and the remainder of Tarrant, Denton, and Dallas counties. 

Owners Aixa and Jose Galarza bring a history of real estate excellence to their brokerage. As one of the highest producing REALTORS® in the state of Texas, Aixa has a history of delivering superior service – especially to the area’s Spanish-speaking population. 

The Galarzas recognized the need for bi-lingual real estate resources in the Dallas/Fort Worth area, and through NextHome Preferred Properties they aim to give the Latinx community concierge-level service. Aixa is a member of the National Association of Hispanic Real estate Professionals (NAHREP) and is actively involved with the association’s Dallas/Fort Worth chapter. 

As business owners, the Galarzas also feel strongly about giving back to area veterans. Jose spent 20 years in the U.S. Army Reserves, including one year serving in Operation Iraqi Freedom. With their background, NextHome Preferred Properties offers unique expertise for home buyers and sellers who are currently serving their country or have recently re-entered civilian life. 

As NextHome Preferred Properties Broker of Record, Aixa will be running the office’s day-to-day operations, supporting agents, and providing superior sales service. 

Jose is NextHome Preferred Properties Chief Operations Officer and will be handling the brokerage’s marketing, finances, and basic operations. 

Although licensed in 2007, Aixa stepped into real estate full-time in 2015. Her career took her to three nationally franchised brokerages: Keller Williams, Redfin, and Century 21. 

In 2019, Aixa was in the top one percent of producing agents with the local Century 21 brokerage. Her customer satisfaction ratings were among the best in the business, and that dedication to her clients propelled Aixa to statewide prestige. In 2019, Aixa ranked No. 91 out of the top 200 producing agents in the entire state. 

As her success grew, Aixa and Jose began to think about their career-long goal of opening their own brokerage. 

“Ever since I got my real estate license, I knew I wanted to be a broker,” Aixa said. “I also knew that I needed to partner with the right franchise to really build on my success.”

One day, she was browsing through REALTOR® Magazine and NextHome’s branding and value caught her eye. 

“I emailed (Vice President of Sales) Charis Moreno on Sunday and by Monday morning she called me,” Aixa said. “We went more in-depth about the company, and from that moment on my excitement got me thinking this is something I want to pursue.”

Today, NextHome Preferred Properties is using the franchise’s unparalleled technology, robust back-end support, and crisp, clean branding to serve clients across the Dallas/Fort Worth area. These tools now bolster the Galarza’s unparalleled customer service. 

“The main thing is that we treat clients like they are family,” Jose said. “One of the biggest decisions of their lives will be buying a home for themselves and for their family. I want our clients to know that we are supporting them the whole way.”

In addition to their added level of care for clients, NextHome Preferred Properties benefits from Aixa’s non-stop work ethic. 

“Aixa is very motivated – she is a go-getter,” Jose said. “She is always checking in and following up with clients, she makes every relationship a personal one.”

Jose has worked for many years with the Transport Workers Union of America. He currently heads the Union’s veterans support operations where he raises funds for and provides support to area veterans. 

The family also volunteers with Flags for Fallen Veterans. Each Memorial Day, the group makes sure that an American flag is displayed at every burial site at the Dallas-Fort Worth National Cemetery.

The Galarzas are the proud parents of two daughters: Isis (23) and Frances (21). When they are together, the family loves traveling. 

Please join us in congratulating Aixa and Jose on the opening of NextHome Preferred Properties in Grapevine, Texas!


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


Each office is an independently owned and operated business.

The Marathon No One Signed Up For

The Marathon No One Signed Up For

Step, step, step, breathe. Step, step, step breathe. Step, step, step, breathe.

This is the rhythmic pace of running. After a while it becomes almost hypnotic as one’s mind drifts from thought to thought only to be interrupted by some sort of discomfort or pain.

Step, step, step, breathe. Step, step, step breathe.

As a runner and prior track cross country and 4-minute mile runner (in High School average pace was 4:08 – 4:12, undefeated for three years), I assure you this is the breathing pattern, I was trained. As were my friends who are runners like Ed Deutschlander, CLU®, CLF & CEO of North Star Resource Group (who gave me the inspiration for this message recently.) Ask any long-distance runner and they will tell you the mind games are simply part of long distance running and we all have to find a way to overcome them to finish. We must force our self to go back to our own pace and remember to step, step, step breathe.

Most of us can relate to this as we are all finding our new cadence and routine. Shelter-in-place and work from home have been going on for months now. Similar to a marathon, the initial few weeks flew by both figuratively and literally. The beginning of a marathon provides a shot of adrenaline to runners, seducing them into a more hurried pace than their training was. Before long, a good part of the race is over and now a different reality enters. But to finish the race they must fall into their own pace and stride, and keep that step, step, step, breathe rhythm. They must learn to shut off the negative thoughts of “this is too hard, this is too long, my body feels a pain, I am not sure I can finish.” On my long runs, now normally 5-7 miles, I must still go through the routine of step, step, step breathe, brain stop thinking of negative things, let’s sing a song, let’s think about goals, what do I need to get done this week, wow look at that view, what’s that down there in the distance, if I make it to that sign, I am a champion, and the list goes on of the mind games I play to keep my pace and finish my run.

Step, step, step, breathe.

This is a marathon no one signed up to run. This is also a marathon where the mile markers and finish line are neither distinguishable nor discernible. Yet as this race continues, glancing at our fellow “runners,” we may find solace in that we are all having the same experience and going through the same emotional roller coaster.

Step, step, step, breathe.

As we navigate this marker-less course the challenges increase. Mentally it is taking a toll. The voice inside of our head was mute at first as we burned through the initial wave of endorphins. That voice is slowly becoming a kettle drum and each step, each day, we not only hear but feel the vibrations coming off of the large drum being struck with every step we take.

Step, step, step, breathe.

In the world of running, what we are experiencing is known as, “The WALL.”

It is a sudden wave of extreme fatigue coupled with some doubts and fears that creep in and are amplified when one is under long periods of prolonged energy exertion and stress. It is when all “pre-race” plans go out the window.

This is a race where the “wall” can’t be avoided. The reason is because this is a race that no one ever trained to run. What we are going through has never occurred in any of our lifetimes. The phrase, “times like this” really don’t apply. There have not been “times like this.”

Some of us have hit the wall, the rest of us will hit the wall at some point.

Having run numerous marathons and half marathons there are several key lessons that will help us through this tough stretch:


Even though it may seem there is not an end in sight, there is an end to every race. I have never run a race in which I did not know where or could not see the finish line at the beginning of the race. The finish line usually appears only at the very end of the race, but we always knew where it was or how long it was to get to the finish line. One will run perhaps 5 miles, 10 miles, or 26 miles, but eventually will be able to see the finish line the last few hundred meters. What enables the runner to carry on is knowing there is a finish line. This too has a finish line. It most likely isn’t around the next corner but one needs faith to know that a finish line is ahead and will be crossed.


Every runner and marathoner has a reason why they are running the race. The reasons vary for as many runners as there are, but there is a reason someone elected to endure the difficult task of running a marathon. This is no different. All of us have our reasons for our careers. We all have responsibilities, obligations, goals, commitments, promises, role-modeling and a host of many other important reasons as to why we do what we do.

In challenging times, it becomes even more important to draw, focus and reflect on these priorities and values, in essence our “WHY,” to keep us as strong as possible when fatigue sets in and makes us more vulnerable to not finishing the race.

What is your “WHY?” What is going to pull you through? What is your win going to be from this experience? Focus on the person you will be at the end of the race and how much better you will be for completing this race. Don’t focus on the temporary pain or setbacks that are inevitable with any growing and worthwhile endeavor. STAYING POSITIVE during this fragile stage of the race is imperative and makes all the difference.


The most important part when “hitting the wall” is simply to keep moving. Don’t stop. If you must walk a bit, go through the “water station” slowly and have an extra cup of water, but the key at this stage is to “keep those legs moving.”

Just as we started this journey together with the cadence of step, step, step breathe, it is that same cadence that will have us cross the finish line together. I don’t know many people who run marathons in isolation. It is easier and better to run with others. Support is what pulls one through, and the continued support of the entire Gateway Leadership and Administration will have us all collecting the finisher medals of this race.

Yes, this is the marathon no one signed up for, but when I look at my life there have been many “races” I didn’t sign up for, and I know the same is true for ALL of YOU. Yet I crossed every one of those finish lines a better, stronger and more capable person. I know it also has been the same for you. This race will be no different in that regard, we didn’t sign up for it, we didn’t train for it, yet we will finish it and be the better for it.

So let’s keep taking our steps and breathing.

Step, step, step, breathe.

Shane Westhoelter, AEP, CLU, LUTCF
Gateway Financial Advisors, Inc

For more helpful advice from our partners at Gateway Insurance Group, Inc. click here.

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.
NextHome announces Southern Nevada brokerage

NextHome announces Southern Nevada brokerage

Beau McDougallPleasanton, CA — May 15, 2020 — NextHome is pleased to announce the newest addition to the franchise, NextHome People First, based in Henderson, Nevada. The brokerage represents the fifth office location opened in Nevada for the NextHome franchise and the 472nd NextHome office opened nationally.

Located just outside of Las Vegas, NextHome People First will serve clients across Clark County, including Henderson, Boulder City, and North Las Vegas. 

The brokerage is owned by second-generation REALTOR® and Nevada native, Beau McDougall. Beau brings a love of Southern Nevada to his new brokerage, along with a knack for world-class, people-first service. 

Beau grew up in Henderson, the son of a real estate appraiser and a brokerage owner. After earning a Bachelor’s degree in public administration from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Beau began a career as a firefighter/paramedic in Boulder City. In 2011, Beau transferred to the City of Las Vegas Fire Department. He spent the next eight years as a firefighter/paramedic, eventually attaining the rank of Captain at Fire Station No. 1 in downtown Las Vegas – one of the busiest stations in the area. 

However, Beau continued to feel an attraction towards real estate. 

“I remembered running MLS reports with my mom when I was a kid,” Beau said. “At 15, I had the opportunity to do a renovation/rehab with my dad and we went on to do two more together.”

Beau’s father, Matt McDougall, has been a real estate appraiser for about 35 years. His mother, Julie McDougall, has run the McDougall Real Estate Group for the past 20 years.

In 2010, Beau obtained his real estate license and began selling with the McDougall Real Estate Group. Beau found his niche working with local firefighters, many of whom knew Beau as a trustworthy and ethical business professional. 

“Most of my clients came from my firefighting profession and I feel like I’ve treated them well,” Beau said. “As we were sitting around the station, questions about real estate and investing just came up organically and it led to really good conversations.”

In 2018, Beau decided to delve into the commercial, REO, and property management sides of real estate. To best serve these clients, he opened his own independent brokerage – McDougall and Associates. Over the course of a year and a half, he grew the brokerage to five agents, personally closed more than 14 transactions, and increased the REO side of the business. 

However, Beau knew that in order to continue to grow, he needed to partner with a franchise. 

“So often I felt like I was chasing my tail with so much busywork,” Beau recalled. “I was on my second website and third CRM and putting all those pieces together was keeping me from building a solid foundation for my business. If you don’t have a good foundation, your house will never be built. So I started looking for a franchise that fit me well, that I could be proud to be associated with, and that could help me build that lasting foundation.”

Beau found that perfect fit with NextHome. 

“When I inquired, NextHome contacted me right away,” Beau recalled. “As I started doing more research about NextHome, I fell in love with the foundational ideas of the company. The NextHome approach to business fits my goals and aspirations. My approach is about taking care of people – I truly live the ‘Humans Over Houses’ philosophy.”

Today, Beau is focussing his attention and expertise on helping NextHome People First agents grow to their full potential. As they do, he aims to make his office the one place where locals know they will receive high-quality, ethical, and attentive service. 

“At the end of the day, it really is all about our client’s needs,” Beau said.

Beau is so dedicated to serving his local community that a portion of each NextHome People First transaction goes to area charities. Recently, Beau has been giving back to Boys Town of Southern Nevada. The non-profit organization provides counseling and behavioral development resources to local children in need. In addition, Beau volunteers with the Sanctuary Project in Tucson, Arizona. The organization is an animal sanctuary and adoption program that finds loving homes for abandoned pets. 

Beau also began a two-year term in January serving on the University of Nevada, Las Vegas’s Alumni Association Board of Directors. 

Beau and his wife Diana are the proud pet parents of two rescue dogs: Lilly and Chester. When they aren’t working or serving their community, Beau and Diana compete in IronMan and half IronMan events all across the world. Beau has run the Great Wall Marathon – an annual event where athletes run along the Tianjin section of the Great Wall of China. Currently, Diana is training for a 100-mile running event and Beau is participating in a 100-kilometer run. 

Please join us in congratulating Beau on all his achievements and the opening of NextHome People First in Henderson, Nevada!

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

Each office is an independently owned and operated business.

10 Tips for Avoiding Germs While in the Field

10 Tips for Avoiding Germs While in the Field

When you’re out and about showing homes, meeting clients, and networking with colleagues, you may be exposed to harmful germs that could possibly lead to illness. As a busy real estate professional, unplanned time away from work can cause disruptions for you, your clients, and your transactions. While you can’t avoid every single germ, it’s important to take prudent steps to protect yourself and to give yourself the best shot at remaining healthy and productive. Here are some practical tips to that can help keep certain types of germs at bay:

1. Wash Your Hands

Wash hands often and well with soap and warm or cold running water, then rinse and dry them. When you don’t have access to running water and soap, substitute with hand sanitizer. Remember to clean under your fingernails and around rings and jewelry, which can harbor germs.

2. Social Distancing

Avoid standing or sitting too close to people, leaving at least six feet of space on either side of you. Remember to do this even when standing in lines or sitting in waiting rooms.

3. Wipe Down Surfaces

Frequently wipe down surfaces such as your phone, keyboards, door knobs, desk and counter surfaces, and car door and faucet handles.

4. Avoid Touching Public Items When Possible

When in public spaces, such as restrooms or elevators, avoid directly touching things like door knobs, handles, hand rails, and buttons. Instead, use a disposable wipe, paper towel, or operate the items with your clothed elbow if you can.

5. Avoid Touching Your Face

Avoid touching your face as much as possible. When you must, wash your hands first.

6. Don’t Share Personal Items

Don’t share food, beverages, straws, cosmetics, dishes, or towels with others.

7. Stay Up to Date on Vaccinations

Make sure to get an annual flu shot, and check with your medical provider to see if you’re up to date on other important vaccinations.

8. Use Technology for Interactions

Meet clients at showings instead of driving them in the same vehicle to avoid close contact. When possible, use FaceTime or Zoom to connect and communicate.

9. Take Common Sense Measures

To avoid food poisoning when you’re eating at restaurants, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention suggests taking common sense measures like checking health inspection scores and food safety training certificates, watching for safe food handling practices, ordering properly cooked food, and avoiding food that’s served lukewarm.

10. Take Care of Yourself

Take care of yourself. Give your immune system every advantage by eating a balanced diet, getting adequate rest, exercising, staying hydrated, and avoiding stress. Talk to your doctor to see if you should be on a vitamin regimen.

If you feel like you’re getting sick, stay home and isolate yourself from others as much as you can. While you might not be able to protect yourself at this point, you can protect others and help prevent the spread of some illnesses.  Even if it’s a false alarm, it’s best to err on the side of caution. With online access and remote office capabilities, you may even be able to stay in contact with your clients and get some work done when you’re feeling better.

For more helpful tips from our partners at American Home Shield, check out their blog!

NextHome Navigator becomes first brick-and-mortar brokerage in Tiffin, Iowa

NextHome Navigator becomes first brick-and-mortar brokerage in Tiffin, Iowa

Jeff Tackaberry

Pleasanton, CA — May 14, 2020 — NextHome is pleased to announce the newest addition to the franchise, NextHome Navigator, based in Tiffin, Iowa. The brokerage represents the sixth office location opened in Iowa for the NextHome franchise and the 471st NextHome office opened nationally.

NextHome Navigator also represents a milestone for the city of Tiffin real estate industry – it is the first brick-and-mortar brokerage to open in the fast-growing community. 

Tiffin offers the best of small-town living with a 15-minute commute into Iowa City and a 30-minute commute into Cedar Rapids. From this vantage point, NextHome Navigator will serve clients up and down the Interstate 380 corridor between Iowa City and Cedar Rapids. The brokerage’s service areas include Johnson, Iowa, Cedar, Linn, and Washington counties.

NextHome Navigator is owned by Jeff Tackaberry. Jeff is bringing more than 17 years of experience to area buyers and sellers. Although Jeff finds working with first-time homebuyers exceptionally rewarding, he is also experienced in relocations and upward mobility clients. 

Jeff began his real estate career in 2003 in Iowa City. Over 17 years, Jeff has worked with two nationally recognized brands and two large locally recognized brands. During his time at Iowa Realty, he became a top producer in the Iowa City company. Later he worked with Skogman Realty. 

“During my time at these larger companies, I began to dream about a more personal brokerage where management was firmly grounded in real estate experience and a place where new agents receive the personal mentoring they crave,” Jeff said.

He learned that bigger is definitely not better. Most importantly, it was during those years that he began to lay the groundwork for the creation of a relationship-based business where people come before profit. 

“Being a top producer was a wonderful accomplishment,” Jeff said. “But in the end, what I’ve always been driven by is the ability to serve folks and do good business for them. The people I serve are truly my greatest motivating force. Helping folks effectively navigate the housing market is my focus. The name “NextHome Navigator” was inspired by the desire to do just that.

“I know that there are many young agents in the area who could benefit from closer mentoring relationships with experienced agents and a broker willing to give them the time and attention they need,” Jeff said. “I saw an opportunity to create a management culture that could truly build service-minded agents – and that is the legacy I want to build in Tiffin.”

As he began researching opportunities, he stumbled across NextHome. The franchise stood out among other options. 

“Despite their good intentions to serve well, it seemed to me like other franchises I looked into got lost in bureaucracy and their own organization,” Jeff said. “In the end, the agent, and how well that agent is supported, will determine how well the client is served. NextHome was the perfect partner to build a supportive, relationship-based brokerage.”

“I really believe that people don’t care what you know until they know that you care,” Jeff said. “If you aren’t serving your agents and your clients with compassion and understanding, then those agents and clients will easily see through the fallacies of your business model. If you genuinely take care of people, that’s good business.”

When he isn’t building his brokerage or supporting his agents, Jeff is active in his community. He is often found working to give back to the community in service as a Clear Creek Amana School District Board Member. 

Jeff and his wife Amy have been married for 28 years and together they have three daughters. Jenna (Smith) is a music teacher in North Carolina, Mikayla is a Sophomore at Olivet Nazarene University in Illinois, and Haley will be starting her senior year of high school this fall. To add even more excitement to the family, they enjoy their two Golden Doodles; Wrigley, a 105-pound gentle giant, and Marley, a sweet new pup they recently welcomed into their home.

Please join us in congratulating Jeff on the opening of NextHome Navigator in Tiffin, Iowa!


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


Each office is an independently owned and operated business.

NextHome announces new Waco brokerage

NextHome announces new Waco brokerage

Cristi McGowan

Pleasanton, CA — May 13, 2020 — NextHome is pleased to announce the newest addition to the franchise, NextHome Our Town, based in Waco, Texas. The brokerage represents the 34th office location opened in Texas for the NextHome franchise and the 470th NextHome office opened nationally.

Located in the heart of Texas, the growing Waco area is home to more than 234,000 people. NextHome Our Town will serve clients across McLennan County including Waco, Woodway, Hewitt, Robinson, China Spring, Lorena, McGregor, and other surrounding cities.  

NextHome Our Town is owned by Waco native and real estate veteran Cristi McGowan. With more than 20 years of experience in Texas real estate, Cristi is happy to help clients with all types of residential transactions. 

After graduating from the University of Houston, and working for a brief time in technology sales, Cristi began a career in new home construction. For the next six years, her won’t-quit work ethic benefited builders in the Houston area. 

However, Cristi began to long for the simplicity of her Waco hometown. In 2007, she moved back to Waco and worked with StyleCraft Builders. 

Cristi obtained her real estate sales license in 2011 and immediately chartered the Heart of Texas chapter of the Women’s Council of REALTORS®. Cristi was the group’s founding president from 2011 to 2012 and remains an integral part of the organization to this day. 

In 2012, Cristi had the opportunity to take over a team and book of business from a top REALTOR® client she met through her with StyleCraft, it was then that her real estate sales career really took off.  

“It was a wonderful opportunity,” Cristi said. 

For the next five years, Cristi excelled as a team leader and top-producer with RE/MAX Centex Associates. 

Although she was successful under Centex Associates, Cristi always knew that she was built to be a business owner. In 2017, she opened her own independent brokerage – Waco Home Team. 

“I’ve always been incredibly entrepreneurial, creative, and independent,” Cristi said. “Owning my own company is in my DNA. I love learning by doing, thinking outside the box, and rising to new challenges.”

Cristi spent the next years growing her business and doing incredibly well. Waco Home Team was busy enough to employ a full-time executive assistant and transaction manager. In 2019, she hired a marketing manager. 

However, Cristi has always been forward-thinking in her approach to business and she began to see changes on the horizon. 

“As my business grew and the market evolved, customer expectations shifted,” Cristi said. “I wanted to think about expanding and adding more services. As industries change, we need to be constantly learning and evolving. That’s when I started exploring opportunities to franchise.”

As she was talking with a potential franchisor, it became clear that Cristi and the franchisor didn’t agree on several key points. 

“Exasperated, she finally told me that I just needed to check out NextHome,” Cristi recalled. “And NextHome was the last call I ever made. It was a perfect fit.”

Cristi had the unique experience of first speaking directly with NextHome’s Chief Executive Officer, James Dwiggins.

“Nothing he said was canned or rehearsed,” Cristi said. “He was incredibly honest and filled with motivation for NextHome’s philosophy. I thought, that’s a franchise I could work with.”

Also appealing was NextHome’s fresh approach to real estate and its unparalleled portfolio of tools. 

“I’ve always had to piece together back end technology tools and figure out how to make them work with each other,” Cristi said. “As a result, the percentage of agents who actually use these tools to provide superior service can be really low. With NextHome, there is one login for everything and all the technology and marketing works seamlessly together. The portfolio of tools that are available through a single sign-on helps create less time in front of a computer and more time in front of clients.”

As she leverages NextHome’s marketing and tools, Cristi is creating unparalleled service packages for Waco-area clients. 

“I’ve always been hell-bent on delivering the best,” Cristi said. “I pride myself on always knowing what is going on in the market, knowing what is coming down the pipeline, and integrating that into our service package in an efficient and effective manner so it truly makes a difference for our client. At NextHome Our Town, we are all about serving the client and making their experience next-level.”

Cristi is also very active in real estate leadership and community service. Throughout the years, she has remained active with the Women’s Council of REALTORS® on both the state and local level. Her love of the Waco community shows through her service with the local Lions Club and her son’s Scouts BSA troop. In addition, Cristi is a passionate supporter of The American Cancer Society. 

“After my mother passed away six years ago from brain cancer, it became very personal,” Cristi said. “I don’t know anyone who is not impacted by cancer. Through my service, I’m able to fill a need for some of the work and education that Cancer deserves.”

Cristi met her husband Chris while attending Texas A&M University. They have known each other for almost 30 years and have been married for 21 years. Together, they are the proud parents of one son, Oliver, who will turn 10 in May. 

When Cristi isn’t building her business, she loves to spend time at Waco’s downtown farmer’s market, enjoy the sights at Cameron Park, and bake. 

Please join us in congratulating Cristi on the opening of NextHome Our Town in Waco, Texas!


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


Each office is an independently owned and operated business.

NextHome CNY Realty opens in upstate New York

NextHome CNY Realty opens in upstate New York

Samantha Dougherty

Pleasanton, CA — May 8, 2020 — NextHome is pleased to announce the newest addition to the franchise, NextHome CNY Realty, based in Fayetteville, New York. The brokerage represents the 12th office location opened in New York for the NextHome franchise and the 469th NextHome office opened nationally.

Located in Fayetteville, NextHome CNY Realty will serve residential clients in the Syracuse area and surrounding suburbs encompassing five counties (Onondaga, Cayuga, Oneida, Oswego, and Madison).

NextHome CNY Realty is owned by Samantha Dougherty – a high-producing REALTOR® with a history of successful team building. Although she was licensed in 2004 in New Jersey, Samantha began selling full-time in the Syracuse area in 2012. For the next five years, Samantha sharpened her sales and customer service skills. Samantha has worked with both Keller Williams and regional brokerage Howard Hanna Real Estate Services. 

It was during her time on a top-producing team at Howard Hanna that Samantha discovered her passion for helping other agents reach new career heights.

“I really loved mentoring other agents and I had accumulated a lot of experience and knowledge in the industry,” Samantha said. 

In 2017, Samantha created the Dougherty Home Team where she had the opportunity to truly let her mentoring abilities shine. By 2019, the team was four-agents strong and had become one of the top 20 highest producing teams in the area. Last year, the Dougherty Home Team accomplished $17 million in sales volume with about 100 transactions. That achievement is even more remarkable in an area where the average sales price hovers around $150,000.

In the midst of this success, Samantha began thinking about the next steps for her growing career. 

“I began thinking, ‘How do I expand? How do I take my sales career to the next level and also help my agents achieve their career goals?’” Samantha said. 

Her entrepreneurial spirit and leadership abilities made Samantha a great candidate for business ownership. However, she needed to decide whether franchising or opening an independent brokerage was the right move. As she researched her options, NextHome made the decision easy. 

“The feeling I got the minute I learned more about NextHome was unlike anything I experienced with another franchise,” Samantha said.

She called the company for more information the week of Christmas 2019 and quickly got a return call from NextHome’s CEO, James Dwiggins. 

“He said that despite the holiday and people being away from the office, they wanted to get back to me right away,” Samantha recalled. “It was very impressive. My first impression was such a positive one that everything else that I learned about NextHome was just icing on the cake.”

The franchise’s smaller, family-oriented feel aligned with what Samantha wanted to offer at her brokerage. She was also attracted to NextHome’s focus on creating quality agent experiences rather than explosive agent rosters. 

Today, NextHome CNY Realty is using NextHome’s unparalleled suite of technology tools to serve buyers and sellers across the Syracuse area. 

“In addition to the access they get to me and my team’s expertise, clients can also expect us to use all the tools at our fingertips to market their home and provide them with excellent service,” Samantha said.

For area REALTORS® who are looking for a change, NextHome CNY Realty offers a flexible commission structure that will help associates achieve their best fit. 

“I am so happy to share my years of experience,” Samantha said. “From being a buyer’s agent on a team to leading a brokerage myself, I can help agents achieve their best potential. When NextHome CNY Realty agents need support, I operate from a place of service and helping out.”

Samantha also loves to show her appreciation for her clients through several events each year including a summer barbecue to collect school supplies, Thanksgiving pie giveaways, and an Easter Bunny brunch. Through these events, Samantha aims to find opportunities to give back to the community. 

In addition, she serves the community by volunteering with a local organization that feeds the homeless, as well as offering her time and support when needed at church or other local events. 

Samantha has been married to her husband Jim for 15 years and together they are the loving parents of five kids. 

When she isn’t supporting her team or building her brokerage, Samantha enjoys community service, traveling, cooking, dancing, playing volleyball, and board games. 

Please join us in congratulating Samantha on the opening of NextHome CNY Realty in Fayetteville, New York!


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


Each office is an independently owned and operated business.