Spotlight on Success was created to showcase the achievements of Top Producers within the d’aprile properties family, so that their ambition, work ethic, and integrity might serve as an inspiration to others looking for fulfillment in their professional and personal lives.
JENNIFER HAWBAKER, REALTOR®
2018 D’APRILE PROPERTIES DIAMOND KEY SALES AWARD WINNER
You had found success in this industry, and with this company, before 2018. What factors do you think contributed to last year being your best yet?
It was a combination of factors, really. The first is good, old-fashioned hard work and dedication, which has resulted in a flood of personal and professional referrals. They are my driving force – almost all of my business comes directly or indirectly from people I’ve worked with before. The second is a changing market; people are simply moving more frequently than they used to. Statistics show that home buyers become interested in moving after 7-10 years of their last purchase. That is easy math, because I’m in my 8th year in the business. Ryan D’Aprile told me from day one that building a business takes time and patience, and his words have always resonated with me. It was year five that my business truly took off, and it has just continues to build and build.
At this stage in your career, how do make sure that the personal and professional referrals keep rolling in?
Every potential client that I encounter knows at least a dozen real estate agents personally. Most have a close friend or family member in the business. Yet I find that I can still succeed in winning their business by simply being available. The sheer number of agents out there makes each of us disposable – if you don’t respond, your clients will find someone else to give their business to. That’s why I always answer my phone no matter the time of day, and no matter what I’m doing in that particular moment. If I am in a meeting, I will text the person back within 5-10 minutes to let them know that I’ve received their message, and will get back to them as soon as I can. My personal life always comes second because – for a home buyer – every minute that goes by means that the house they are interested in could be gone. For a seller, every day their home stays on the market feels like money out of their pocket. That’s why I always remain so vigilant about staying in constant communication.
I also don’t ever want the amount of referrals that I receive go to my head! When someone passes along a potential client to me, I of course thank them, and will always be grateful for their faith in me. But that is where their involvement in the process ends. It is my job to earn the business of the person being referred; I want them to meet me, and make the choice to partner with me all on their own. I take pride in my process, and I take pride in my presentation. My listing appointments usually run more than two hours. Why? Because you can’t make friends out of your clients, it just has to happen. You spend so much time together; you end up learning about their personal lives, their family routines, and what they’re going through outside of this little bubble that is the world of real estate. My absolute favorite day of the year is Mother’s Day, because you wouldn’t believe the number of texts and messages that I receive from past clients! The fact that they think of me at the holidays blows my mind, and motivates me to always provide the most personalized service that I can.
You’ve only been with one real estate company. Why did you choose d’aprile properties from the beginning, and what has kept you here when so many others have tried to recruit you?
When I first met Ryan D’Aprile, I just gotten my license. Before that I was always buying and selling homes, flipping them. I had always had so much interest in the industry. Ryan and I sat down to talk about my goals and he was so energetic, so passionate. Here was this guy who saw something in me that he related to, and he was practically bouncing off the walls, so excited to share his vision with me.
I’ve never lost faith in Ryan, or in his positive and honest approach to the industry. No matter how successful I become, or how much d’aprile properties as a whole grows and expands, the personality of the company has always remained the same. Be a good person. Believe in yourself and in your potential. Think outside the box, and become more than an agent for your clients – become their advocate.
I’ve been with d’aprile properties since the beginning. The d’aprile style, it keeps the fire burning, keeps my hunger up. After that first meeting, I said to myself, “Ryan is going to do something big, something truly special.” Eight years later, and I’ve never lost my faith in him or in his approach, not one bit. I want to help him see that vision through, and can’t wait to see what direction he takes it in next.