Agent Spotlight: John Irwin and Jackie Lafferty

Baird & Warner Agent Spotlight: John Irwin and Jackie Lafferty

With more than 11,000 real estate agents serving the Chicagoland area, choosing just one agent to represent your interests when you’re buying or selling a home can feel like a daunting task. Luckily, when you work with superstar Baird & Warner Lincoln Park agents John Irwin and Jackie Lafferty, you don’t have to choose just one agent. John and Jackie are independent brokers who maintain a consulting relationship — when you hire one, you’ll receive the accumulated knowledge, experience, and wisdom of both.

When asked about the transition, Jackie puts it this way: “we have been consulting for the last five to seven years. We ask each other questions and consult on our properties, and we’ve decided that it’s a better process for our clients if we just get both points of view from the get go.”

The increased flexibility afforded by this unique consulting relationship means that clients can take advantage of an innovative, collaborative approach to their home selling or buying experience. John and Jackie have over three decades of combined experience, and they’ve seen a myriad of stressful experiences a buyer or seller might face. Together, there’s no strange circumstance they haven’t faced and handled, meaning that they can solve virtually any problem that might arise from both a buyer and a seller’s perspective. As John explains it, “we approach the business from different angles. It’s helpful to have multiple perspectives, so that when we come to a decision, I’m very confident we’ve made the right decision.” 

One thing both John and Jackie understand about the real estate business is the importance of relationships. Both generate most of their business from referrals and repeat clients, and cite the benefits of growing with clients over time as their lives change to be one of the most personally rewarding aspects of their businesses. Jackie describes the growth of her practice with her clients: “the people you start with become ‘move-up’ buyers as their families grow and  they buy a larger home. Then later their children buy homes, and they become empty-nesters who downsize to a smaller home.”

Both also emphasize the importance, for young agents, of finding a niche. For agents just starting out, this can be tough, but John explains that finding what you like to do and focusing in that area is critical to success and satisfaction. “As a new agent, look around and talk to people who are successful and find out what they do. Find out what you like to do. I once worked with an agent who made 50 cold calls every day, and who loved that part of his practice. Others focus on referrals and only do a few deals every year. New agents have to decide what they want to do and what makes them happy.” 

Staying disciplined helps. Building a real estate business is like building something from scratch, and both advocate for the importance of discipline and planning for new agents. John recommends that new agents take their first year to explore all aspects of real estate, before deciding on a niche practice, and Jackie cites the importance of keeping a schedule that allows new agents to balance the different parts of their practice, especially in the early years. 

Both also agree that the training, mentorship, and support of Baird & Warner’s Lincoln Park office has been a key component to their success. Jackie, who has spent her entire 21-year real estate career with Baird & Warner, points to the support offered by noncompeting managing broker David Bailey, and “the training offered by Baird & Warner. They don’t just tell you ‘go be a Realtor,’ they want you to be successful and teach you how to be an agent.” John mentions Baird & Warner’s Chicagoland focus, explaining that other firms “don’t relate to what happens in Chicago. I love that Baird & Warner is a Chicago company – everything they do is geared toward Chicago real estate.”

When they’re not hard at work for their clients, John and Jackie both enjoy traveling and exploring to find new Chicagoland faves. For fans of Italian, John recommends Sal’s Trattoria at Wolfram and Southport. For a wine bar with great food, Jackie recommends Volo in Roscoe Village to locals and visitors alike.

To connect with John, you can check out his webpage, or follow him on Facebook and Instagram at @johnirwinrealestate. Jackie can be found on Facebook or on Instagram @jackielaffertyrealtor.

Curious about how the training, support, and services at Baird & Warner – Lincoln Park can help take your business to the next level? Get in touch today to get the conversation started.

Agent Spotlight: Scott Curcio

Scott Curcio wasn’t in the real estate business when he bought his first property, but that purchase sparked an ongoing interest and put him in the “real estate mindset,” as he tells it. In fact, prior to embarking on his career at Baird & Warner Lincoln Park, Scott was an events and marketing professional, skills that have undoubtedly contributed to his rise to the pinnacle of his profession, as one of the top 1% of Realtors in all of Chicago. Scott’s hardworking, meticulous approach sets him apart from the crowd and has allowed him to create a successful, results-oriented practice for each and every client he serves.

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A Day In The Life Of A Baird & Warner Lincoln Park Agent

A Day In The Life Of A Baird & Warner Lincoln Park Agent

As any licensed real estate professional  knows all too well, no two days in the real estate business are ever quite the same. However, even though this business requires — and rewards — a certain amount of flexibility and adaptability, the most successful brokers are the ones who make sure their schedules include time for the most important parts of their business every single day.

While there is no “typical day,” just about every broker’s day will include lead generation and follow ups, business servicing, and training and learning opportunities. All of those pieces work together to form a structure. I think the biggest mistake that people make is that they don’t give themselves a structure to follow. Those who do set a structure and approach each day with intent are going to see a more consistent level of growth, and a faster path to success.

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Agent Spotlight: Lyn Harvie

Agent Spotlight: Lyn Harvie

For Broker Associate Lyn Harvie, simplifying the process is always at the forefront of her dedication to client service. An experienced investor, Lyn explains that she first obtained her real estate license “to buy properties for myself. I had no intention of selling real estate full time.” 

Now, with nearly a decade of experience as a professional in the real estate business, Lyn has a wealth of experience and a diverse skill set that translates into fantastic results for her clients. The recipient of Baird & Warner’s Chairman’s Club Award, Lyn has an unparalleled ability to build relationships and close deals for her clients.

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Agent Spotlight: Marjorie Allabastro

Baird & Warner Agent Spotlight Marjorie Allabastro

As the daughter of an architect, real estate is practically in Marjorie Allabastro’s DNA. Visiting job sites with her father sparked a lifelong enthusiasm for the subject that is evident in her passion for her work. Marjorie started out in real estate development, then took a career detour into the corporate world, but nothing could hold her back from a return to real estate. She brings a sharp focus, clear love of the subject matter, and a tireless work ethic to every transaction, building an enviable loyalty among her clients, who return to seek her services again and again as they navigate home purchases over the years.

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Agent Spotlight: Kate O’Neill

Kate O'Neill Agent Spotlight

Though she is still early in her real estate career, broker Kate O’Neill has already learned a lot of valuable lessons — and earned some impressive successes in less than one full year in the business. 

For one thing, Kate has yet to have a buyer of hers pay above list price, “which is pretty big in the current market that we’re in,” she says. “I’m pretty proud of that!”

For another, Kate has quickly earned a glowing reputation around the Baird & Warner – Lincoln Park office for her social media savvy, particularly using Instagram as a channel to speak to her sphere, sow the seeds for long-term referral relationships, and reach her ideal millennial buyers. 

“One thing with my social media that I always keep in the back of my mind is to treat it like my business card and my social proof,” Kate says. “That way, when people look me up, any potential new clients or friends of mine who know I just got started in this can see that I’m busy and that I’m actively working. That I’m constantly hosting open houses, or selling a property, or teaching them something that they didn’t know.”

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Ask Yourself These 3 Questions to Crush the Second Half of 2021

Ask Yourself These 3 Questions to Crush the Second Half of 2021

As a real estate broker, it’s important to regularly check in on your most important goals, and make sure that you’re executing a strategy that will help drive your success. Ongoing monitoring, self-evaluation, and targeted training are critical to implementing a sound business plan that will help you get where you want to go. 

As we head into the second half of our incredibly strong 2021 real estate market, this moment is an excellent opportunity for real estate brokers to evaluate their performance through the first half of the year. Here are three important questions to ask yourself:

  1. Are you doing everything you need to be doing right now to reach your business goals for 2021? If not, what needs to change?
  2. What are you doing really well right now, and in what areas can you improve?
  3. What are you doing in the second half of the year to invest in the single most important asset to your business — YOU
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Agent Spotlight: Mike Greco

Mike Greco Agent Spotlight

When broker associate Mike Greco started looking for a new opportunity after a first career in retail management, he knew he was really looking for not just a new occupation, but a new life — one where he could be more in control of his time and lifestyle. 

“I wanted to have flexibility and I wanted to feel rewarded for the time and effort I put in,” Mike explains. “And I wanted a job where every day was a new challenge and I got to spend a lot of time with people — where it was a mix of being out in the field, and only having to be behind a computer for a couple of hours a day.”

That search for a more flexible, rewarding, and active career quickly led him to real estate — and to Baird & Warner – Lincoln Park. 

Though he interviewed at a few different brokerages, it was meeting the staff at Baird & Warner – Lincoln Park that helped him ultimately decide that this office would be the right fit — especially as he started out in his real estate career.

“I really liked the culture that Baird & Warner has,” Mike explains. “You really get the feeling of support, not only from David, Negeen, and Diana, but also from the other brokers. It’s a very welcoming community. And that’s the type of person that I am. I like winning as a team!”

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Agent Spotlight: Jim Abbott

Jim Abbott Baird & Warner Lincoln Park Agent Spotlight

Consistently ranked as a Chicago Top Producer and one of the highest-performing agents at Baird & Warner year after year, Jim Abbott is no stranger to getting asked about the keys to his success. He has two simple pillars that he always shares, he says. 

Number one:  “Over-communicate and stay organized.  Although we buy/sell homes daily, the average buyer/seller only does this every 3-5 years on average.  The market and technology will be different than the last time they bought or sold and we need to walk them through that.  Give updates, let them know the next steps are, and create a timeline to follow.  Be their go to person that keeps in contact with their lender, attorney, inspectors, etc.  They have so much to do, anything we can do to help them will be appreciated!”

And number two: “Any chance you get to exceed someone’s expectations,  do it!   Your job is to execute at 100%  but people will remember the small stuff that is unexpected or above and beyond that.  It can be as simple as stocking their refrigerator with some snacks and drinks for the day they move in or helping them coordinate painters/movers/etc.”    

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