Bill Hurme’s career prior to real estate was all over the map. He tried his hand in music, advertising and property management. But it wasn’t until he started his real estate career in 1975 that he found his true calling. Then in 1979, almost by chance, Hurme jumped exclusively into the new home sales niche - a decision that has made the 37-year veteran a millionaire real estate agent many times over. Last year, his company TeamBuilder JLS, closed $117 million in volume and 316 units.
Hurme stumbled into the new home niche when a property management company asked him to sell a condo development with 880 units. He ended up managing four large projects. Along the way he picked up processes and perfected his systems.
On stage with Gary Keller during day two of Mega Agent Camp, Hurme shared his secrets to building confidence between the new construction players and real estate agents.
Currently, TeamBuilder JLS is made up of 10 people: administrative staff, quality control, auditors, trainers and landmen. Then there’s the three account managers who manage no more than five builder each.
Hurme’s team also employs salaried sales staff, which is unusual in the industry. Sales members work on-site at developments and show homes eight hours a day, seven days a week.
Currently, the TeamBuilder JLS team is employed by 14 builders and aim to increase that number to 20 by the end of the year. Hurme and his team work directly with builders to sell their new construction properties. Their goal is to represent only the seller.
What’s makes Hurme’s business model work? “We think like a builder,” he says. “Through training and education, the entire staff knows the construction business so that they can be knowledgeable about their product and accurately represent the communities they are selling,” he adds. This puts the team at a significant advantage regardless of market conditions.
In fact, the new home sales niche has been on the decline since the housing crisis. As a result, many builder - as much as 44 percent - keep their sales team in-house, instead of partnering with real estate agents. Hurme expects this number to worsen in the coming years, but knows that with his proven model and with the value he provides, his company will be able to maintain their hold on business. This allows builders to focus on their ONE Thing, building, while Hurme’s team handles the rest.
As for other more traditional business, they have a policy of referring it out so that they can focus on their niche.
Today they are on track to have their 2nd best year to date and by 2015 they plan to sell 1000 units per year.
More articles on the new home sales niche:
Breaking Ground on the New Construction Business http://blog.kw.com/2013/06/14/breaking-ground-on-the-new-construction-business/