Agent Spotlight: Sarah Jaffe

Sarah Jaffe Agent Spotlight

There’s one piece of wisdom that Sarah Jaffe reflects on often — a quote from the writer Gail Sheehy:

“If we don’t change, we don’t grow. If we don’t grow, we aren’t really living.”

Sarah certainly is the living embodiment of growth and change. After all, she made the decision to dive headfirst into a new real estate career — in the middle of a pandemic. 

“Real estate was probably never on my radar until May of 2020,” Sarah says. “I already know I made the right decision. There’s not a day where I look back.”

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How to Choose the Right Brokerage for Your Chicago Real Estate Career

How to Choose the Right Real Estate Brokerage

As you get started in real estate, joining the right brokerage is one of the most important steps you will take on your journey. The support of your brokerage is one of the biggest contributing factors to getting your new real estate business off the ground quickly and successfully. But with so many choices out there, how will you find the brokerage that will be the right fit for you — and for where you want to take your career next?

I encourage new-to-the-business brokers to look at seven factors when researching real estate brokerages. From most important to least important, those criteria are: 

  1. Access to management and support
  2. Training and coaching
  3. Office culture
  4. Technology
  5. Broker services
  6. Business opportunities
  7. Commission structure
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Chicago 2021 Market Forecast

2021 Chicago Market Forecast

2020 was an unusual year, to say the least. In the real estate industry, this past year really reinforced the importance of being able to adapt and pivot to new challenges, in order to keep business moving forward.

As we wind down the year, now is the time to look ahead — and start setting down goals and plans for 2021 and beyond. 

Whether you’re an experienced agent doing some yearly business planning, or you’re considering whether or not now is a good time to start pursuing a Chicago real estate career, it’s important to know what’s going on in the market, and what we might expect to happen throughout 2021. 

Like any marketplace, Chicago’s housing market is driven by two primary forces — supply and demand. Let’s take a look at where we expect those factors to be as we head into 2021:

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The Top 5 Things for New Brokers to Focus on When Starting a Real Estate Career

The Top 5 Things for New Brokers to Focus on When Starting a Real Estate Career

There are as many ways to build a real estate business as there are brokers — but in my experience, people achieve the greatest success when they invest time into executing a well-thought-out business plan that emphasizes their expertise and talents. 

Here at the Baird & Warner Lincoln Park office, one of the first things we do with all new agents is sit-down with them  to strategize how they want to build their business.  In our office, our management team spends as much time as necessary with new brokers to help make sure their business plans and goals are ambitious yet achievable. Our management team also schedules regular check-ins throughout the year to help new agents closely monitor their progress toward their goals. 

What goes into a real estate business plan? Simply put, this is the outline for what your business is going to look like, including your goals for the next year — perhaps even on a quarterly basis. 

As a new-to-the-business broker, there are going to be five main things to consider when putting your plan together: 

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Lincoln Park Agent Spotlight: Millie Rosenbloom

Millie Rosenbloom Agent Spotlight

Millie Rosenbloom has had a long and celebrated career in Chicago real estate — and her unique perspective on the industry started at a young age. 

Growing up, Millie says, her mom and dad used to buy properties to fix up and sell. She moved a lot during grade school, while gaining a lifelong understanding and appreciation for architecture, building homes, and the many kinds of work involved in real estate along the way. 

Once she decided to start down this career path, Millie initially had something of a turbulent beginning.

“When I first started, I interviewed with Habitat. And they did not hire me because I didn’t have any experience. So I found a small little firm and went to work there, and six months later they closed their doors, unfortunately,” she says. “So I wound up going back to Habitat.”

This time, Millie interviewed and got hired. She then spent 15 years working her way up the ladder, eventually becoming part owner of the company. Over this span, she grew the brokerage division from 15 agents to 120, before selling it to Baird & Warner in December of 2007. 

“And I’ve been here ever since!” Millie says.

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What Goes Into a Day in the Life of a Chicago Real Estate Broker?

What Goes Into a Day in the Life of a Chicago Real Estate Broker?

One of the best things about a career in real estate is that no two days are exactly alike. With that being said, the most successful real estate brokers have a very intentional approach to each and every day — and put a structure in place that allows them to make the most of each day, while still allowing for flexibility. 

A “Typical” Day In Chicago Real Estate

An active real estate broker is a true entrepreneur — which means wearing many different hats. On any given day, brokers at Baird & Warner – Lincoln Park might spend time on any number of activities. Generally, the most important pieces of a broker’s day center around two core areas:

  • Generating and facilitating new relationships
  • Servicing existing business opportunities
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This Real Estate Life S2: E4- Jason Finn

We’re not bluffing when we say that Jason Finn has a proven track record of success in real estate. A poker aficionado (that’s 2 this season if you’re keeping track), Jason leverages his poker face and ability to stay calm under pressure to navigate contract negotiations, often winning the hand for his clients. With a background in consulting, Jason has always been solution-oriented and takes that approach to every transaction. And he know *a little something* about technology and SEO too…so many skills that benefit his clients on both sides of the transaction. We are excited to share the man with “a passion for compassion” with you…and wait until you hear how he turned a casino into his remote office!

Lincoln Park Agent Spotlight: John Lyons

John Lyons, Baurd & Warner Lincoln Park

John Lyons is known as one of Chicago’s most trusted real estate agents. As a broker, he is passionate about always continuing to learn and find new ways to improve his business and provide a better experience for his clients. And for John, the support he gets from Baird & Warner Lincoln Park helps him to do all that and more.  

John got started in real estate after losing a corporate sales job, which forced him to think differently about his career options.

“That failure made me realize what I didn’t like, and pushed me towards entrepreneurship,” John says. “I was just burnt out and tired, and I realized I didn’t want to work for anybody anymore, particularly a middle manager.” 

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How New Agents Can Become True Market Experts

How to Learn More About the Market as a New Real Estate Agent

As a real estate broker, one of the core parts of your day-to-day responsibilities is helping buyers and sellers navigate the real estate market. In a city like Chicago, that can be more easily said than done. 

As a city, Chicago is dynamic and ever-changing. No matter how much time you’ve spent here, there’s always something more to see and learn. As the writer Dominic Pacyga once put it: “there seems to be a different Chicago around every street corner, behind every bar, and within every apartment, two-flat, cottage, or bungalow.” 

So, as a new-to-the-business broker, how can you learn more about all of the wonderful aspects that make our area unique — and develop the skills and understanding you need to provide a top-tier experience to your clients? 

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