Baptism by fire into the profession of Real Estate.
Started working with The Melissa Miller RE/MAX Team in 2003. The first “product” I helped launched was Very Famous Local Private Residence (names withheld to protect the clients). This was back in a social media-less world, to spread the word you would mass email/W.OM./personal invitations and specific calls to all the Realtors and “Connectors” in the area. After working to gather the curious, the day before we arrived to do a “quick walk through” (one hour tops). This house was in the million dollar range, it should be easy, right? Hmmm. We get to the property and due to circumstances beyond control, the caretakers had not be able to do the promised clean up of a house that had not been occupied in a year. We had to roll up our sleeves and dig in, clearing cobwebs, clean dirty windows, vacuum everything we couldn’t sweep, scrubbed toilets white again, staged every room and the outbuildings, ensuring the protection of personal items, and then the yard work in 90 degree heat sweating everywhere because you do what needs to be done for your clients.
Our first day on market we hosted a 300+ person open house and ran quickly out of cookies.
My life before and during RE/MAX Real Estate.
I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Business/Marketing from Belmont Abbey in Belmont, NC.
After graduation, I started my life long passion of traveling around the world. I have lived and worked on 6 continents on my own dime.
Like 99% of all Realtors, I have had an eclectic working life, but I realize that some part of every job I have ever done can be applied in Real Estate. I have highlighted some below.
- Ice Cream Scooper, Bartender, Jello Shot Seller in Ibiza (customer service).
- International/National Tour Guide (helping people understand what they are seeing).
- Mobile Marketing Manager (extreme guerilla marketing, garnered millions in free advertising through my own personal PR ideas).
- 2 Internet Start-ups (planning events for 4000+ people & other capturing international attention).
- HR Training (public speaking extraordinaire in India & Dubai to attendees from 3 continents, 100+ people in attendance).
- Office Marketing Manager for a NY Metro Real Estate Office (demanding instant creation of property specific marketing materials needed yesterday).
- An Organizer of Zambian National Fishing Competition (event planning in jungle on the shores of a huge lake where 18ft. crocodiles call home).
- SOP creator, process flow mapper & designer of necessary forms (work smarter, not harder).
- Squeegeed Cars on streets of Brisbane, Australia (ain’t too proud to beg).
- Skilled Photographer (a picture equals a thousand words)
And Of course, a licensed New York State Associate Broker
Being an Entrepreneur in Real Estate.
My father started a cutting edge, energy-saving company way back in the 80’s, our dinner time was filled with lessons of a struggling entrepreneur.
In 2004, Melissa opened her own RE/MAX. I helped her literally build the first office, leveling floors, helped design layout, picked doors, lighting, furniture, sanded, painted and gluing carpet baseboard. Bought the wrong kind of door knobs for a commercial building – (won’t do that again.) I am privy to the trials and tribulations of owning your own business circa 2016.
After coming back from India, I started working on various projects, as a freelance Social Media & Marketing/PR/HR Consultant in addition to marketing Melissa’s RE/MAX properties until getting back in Real Estate sales full time again at the start of 2016.
Real Estate Career Wins & Losses
Admittedly, I haven’t kept great stats of my sales. I always think that the client could care less if I was the number one selling agent. It isn’t about me, it always about them. They are solely and only concerned with how I was handling their unique deal right here and right now.
When I started Real Estate there wasn’t the whole social media rating system that there is now. I believe many past kudos are lost to the universe. Back in the day, I got actual paper, paid postage, US mailed, thank you notes from many happy clients. I can give you references from people about how hard I worked for them.
One of the innate shortcomings of a true marketer is that sometimes can be you are all about promoting your client and you forget about yourself.
I have helped sell $1,000,000+ homes and a $27,000 trailer and everything in between. I have sold in Cayuga, Cortland, Seneca, Schuyler and Tompkins Counties. I have helped buy and sell in Auburn, Aurora, Brooktondale, Cayuga, Cayuga Heights, Cayuta, Cortland, Danby, Dryden, Enfield, Freeville, Genoa, Groton, Hector, Ithaca, King Ferry, Lansing, Locke, Moravia, Newfield, Seneca Falls, Scipio, Spencer, Trumansburg, Union Springs, and quite possibly I am forgetting more.
I currently live on the lake in a community with an HOA . Essentially, every lake house has some kind of an HOA, usually geared to protecting the communal road and ensuring plowing during winter. For every house I have sold or helped Melissa list or sell, I estimate that there are probably 5 that I have had to understand in order to guide a client through. Our office is extremely cooperative, we share our knowledge freely, which helps you learn indirectly. I have been involved as a buyer or seller agent on Cayuga Lake with Honoco Road Association, Wayne’s Point Association, Farley’s Point Association, Carr’s Cove Association and Firelane 21. In King Ferry with The Oberons, The Deer Trails and the Atwaters. In Ithaca, the HOA in Commonlands and Sevanna Park. Again, I may have missed some.
You must do your due diligence regardless of what action the buyer takes in the end.
My pictures have sold at least one house completely over the phone, a Deer Trail $350K+ Neighborhood home with the Buyer clients sitting at home on their computer and the Buyer’s Agent walking through rooms to confirm that the house was exactly as the pictures showed.
Through my ability to assess and react to the situation and jump immediately I got a property I was the Seller’s agent on into the NY Times. This is a really big deal for a village of maybe 500 people in CNY (this was 11 years ago). This was all completely free above the fold five column piece in the New York Times. The real deal, New York Times.
Here’s the exact article:
If you would like to interview me in person, to either help you buy or sell your property please call me at 607-279.3071 or email me at RealtorMichelleMiller@gmail.com
Thanks for your time!