Monday, March 5, 2012

Informational Interview

Interview With: Steve Herring 
By: Dustin Dugan
FIN 180
Dr. Hansz

                       For my informational interview I chose to interview a realtor form my hometown of Visalia. The realtor I interviewed was Steve Herring. Here is a little background information on Steve and our relationship. I have known Steve most of my life, I have went to school and been friends with his son since we were kids. Steve is married with two kids. He has been a realtor for thirty-six years and works for Caldwell Bankers. When he was going to school at COS he took a night class in Hanford very similar to the course I am taking right now titled Real Estate Principles. For a long time before that he had been interested in real estate. After that course he made the decision to stick with it. Steve went on to get his Bachelors of Science degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Real Estate Finance.
Q: Why did you get into Real Estate?

A: Mr. Herring made his choice become a realtor because of an interest he had for a long time and also the idea of becoming his own boss. The ability to make his own hours and help people achieve the dream of homeownership has made him very happy with his career.

Q: What is the most satisfying about being a real estate agent?

A: When I asked Steve this question he told me about a specific situation that makes his job as rewarding as it can be in his eyes. When he gets the privilege to meet a young couple who is looking to purchase their first home but are not sure exactly how to go about it, he said the great satisfaction is helping them through the process and helping them fulfill their dream of homeownership. In situations like these it is easy to see why all parties involved are smiling in the end.

Q: What is the most difficult thing about being a real estate agent?

A: As amazing as those moments in a real estate agents lives when they get to hand the keys to a new homeowner are, the job is not always that amazing. Steve told me that one of the most difficult thing is real estate has come of age in the past few years as the economy has slowed. Finding financing for people ten to fifteen years ago was easy because banks were almost giving money away. Today it has become one of the most difficult things to do in real estate, and is making those moments of giving the keys to a brand new homeowner and seeing that smile light of their face not as common as it was in previous years.

Q: What is the most important thing to consider when buying real estate for both personal and investment purposes?

A: Steve told me there are three rules to real estate; location! location! location! He told me statistics show that people move on average every 5 years, and if they do not consider location when purchasing real estate when they go to move and sell it could affect the value. Whether the property you are selling was being used for personal living or was an investment property you want to get the highest value possible for your property. He talked about how when investing in real estate you do not make your money selling properties you make it buying them. When considering a real estate investment you have you have set goal. Picking a strategy and sticking to it is important. Steve told me that knowing how much work you want to do on the properties, how much managing you want to do on the properties and how much money you want to spend are very important. He also said people need to consider these things and realistic goals for return on investment. A very dangerous way to invest is by falling in love with your investments. It is important to understand why you bought the property and not waiver from your goals you have set.

Q: What is the most important characteristic for a successful real estate agent?

A: Ethics. He said this because if realtor were unethical they would not be working with the interest of the client in mind, instead they would working with the desire to make money. To be successful you need operate with ethics and with your clients in mind and not the commission. If you operate and believe in this way of doing business you will have happy clients and build a good relationships and a strong reputation. Since statics show that people move every five years it is important to have clients stick with you and recommend you to their friends and family if you want to be successful.

Q: Why do we need to study real estate?

A: He said because of all the laws have become more complicated and are ever changing. It is not just sales technique anymore; in today’s litigious society it is really important to represent your clients interest of buy or selling in a way that can keep from lawsuits. Real estate is not just salesmanship it is about fallowing laws while representing your client’s interest in all transitions.

            Overall I learned a lot form this interview it was great to talk to someone who has been in the industry for so long. Steve was able to give me insight into aspects of real estate that I had never thought about. After this interview there are two things I will be sure to take away and look for in real estate, people with good ethics and places with good location. 

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