One Oklahoma City metro-based realtor is revolutionizing the real estate industry by not only helping people find homes, but find careers too — successful professions in real estate.
Ruthie Gallardo-Owens, founder and team leader of Oklahoma Real Estate Experts with RE/MAX at Home is using her team as an incubator — a place where she takes on motivated realtors, teaches them the industry and guides them into being self-sustaining and finally launches them out on their own when they are ready.
A former educator, in her years as a successful realtor, Gallardo-Owens found herself often teaching her clients how to navigate the real estate market with more knowledge and less stress.
“My ability to take a step back and look at this business from an educator’s perspective, always seeking to understand and learn rather than just to sell homes has played a huge part in my success,” she said.
However, as she saw how the traditional real estate team structure left many hopeful realtors feeling used, abused and burnt out, she decided to do something different, to help other realtors become successful by giving them proper training, guidance and a space to grow.
That’s when she founded Oklahoma Real Estate Experts as not only a real estate team, but as a kind of incubator for real estate agents.
“One of my favorite parts of having a team is seeing my agents reach their individual goals,” said Gallardo-Owens, explaining her motivations for the unique approach. “When they succeed, they are more excited to keep collecting wins and that means that the team as a whole wins.”
As a background on the real estate industry, realtors entering the industry typically either begin as independent agents or they join a team working under a brokerage. Working with a brokerage, realtors typically split 20 to 30 percent of their earned commission with their brokerage in exchange for an office, use of a recognizable brand, name, logos and so on.
Further, as members of a team, their team doles out leads from which realtors make sales, splitting their commissions to their team and brokerage.
What makes Gallardo-Owens’ team concept different from the traditional real estate team is that whereas most brokerage teams are largely focused on the success of the team and its lead, her team is focused on developing successful agents while building a successful team.
“I look at the agents on my team as my business partners and focus on making sure their needs as agents are met in order to empower them to be productive in their business,” she said. “The focus is on them. Not me.”
As another example of what this difference looks like, a traditional team typically buys leads and doles them out to it members, making the agents dependent on the team and its lead.
Oklahoma Real Estate Experts, however, in an effort to make their agents successfully independent, trains their agents to produce their own business, even letting them earn more commission when they generate their own clients than when they are given clients by the team.
Also, in a traditional team setup, only the team lead, otherwise known as the “rainmaker”, is allowed to list properties. The other agents on the team meanwhile are only permitted to work with buyers and must give their listing leads to the team leader. In return, the agents only receive a 25 percent referral fee of which 20-30 percent goes to the brokerage.
With Gallardo-Owens’ team, agents are encouraged to list their own properties while being mentored by the team and the team takes on the cost of marketing and advertising the listings.
“What I give my agents is the power and the latitude to develop their career in real estate and to get out what they put in and maybe even more.”
Additionally, in most legacy real estate team outfits, social media presence is centered on the team, never building a brand for the member agent. Plus any closings for the buyer’s agent are recorded in the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) under the rainmaker’s name only.
Under Gallardo-Owen’s model, agents are provided with their own custom logos, can choose their own brand colors and can post their own professional content on a co-managed real estate industry-compliant Facebook page. Additionally, the agents are always named as co-listing agents on all buyer and seller deals, all to help the agents build their own resumes.
“Here they will be able to literally make a name for themselves, both in branding and on the houses they’ve sold.”
In fact, Gallardo-Owens has so structured the concept toward building independent, self-sustaining and successful agents, she expects team members to be ready to fly on their own after three years with her team.
So while in real estate “location, location, location” is said to be key, when it comes to creating a career in real estate, real estate is much like any other career.
To be successful, one needs education, training, guidance and an environment to grow … and that is what Gallardo-Owens wants to bring to aspiring real estate agents in Oklahoma at Oklahoma Real Estate Experts.
To learn more about Oklahoma Real Estate Experts, go to www.oklahomarealestateexperts.com.
Oklahoma Real Estate Experts
Oklahoma Real Estate Experts
3224 South Broadway