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Published: Thursday, 1/24/2013

Report lauds RE/Max firm for its 10-year performance

BY TYREL LINKHORN
BLADE BUSINESS WRITER
Toledo's RE/Max Preferred, office seen here with national CEO Margaret Kelly, has about 80 agents. It sold 2,024 homes last year, with more than $218 million in sales volume. Toledo's RE/Max Preferred, office seen here with national CEO Margaret Kelly, has about 80 agents. It sold 2,024 homes last year, with more than $218 million in sales volume.
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During the last decade, the housing market took quite a beating. To be successful in that difficult period, brokerages had to identify the changing market and adapt their strategies accordingly.

A recent report from Real Trends Inc. says one of the nation’s best at that was RE/Max Preferred Associates in Toledo.

The Colorado-based research and consulting firm has for years ranked the Top 500 residential brokerage firms in the country. As the market started to recover late in 2011, Real Trends editor Steve Murray wanted to see how well those Top 500 had fared since 2002.

Mr. Murray found just 17 brokerages in the United States had been able to grow in three key areas during those 10 years.

One of those was RE/Max Preferred, which Real Trends said closed more deals, had more agents, and had increased productivity each year.

“I was really quite taken aback by that,” said John Mangas, co-owner of RE/Max Preferred Associates. “I know how we do year-over-year, but I can’t tell you how our 2012 numbers were versus our 2003 numbers.”

Turns out it was pretty good.

Mr. Mangas said his leadership team, facing the downtrodden housing market, knew it would have to become good at selling distressed properties or they wouldn’t survive. “It’s certainly not a glamorous part of the business, but we spent a lot of time with our agents on how to handle short sales, how to negotiate with banks on short sales, how to handle bank-owned properties,” he said.

RE/Max Preferred also focused on staying in front of technological change about how people search for homes and kept good people in its ranks, Mr. Mangas said.

“We’ve been successful at attracting and retaining some of the absolute best agents in the country, not just in our market,” he said. “That’s something we're very very proud of.”

Mr. Murray said the success of RE/Max Preferred was a testament to Mr. Mangas and his team.

While the report focuses on the firms that did the best, it also illustrates just how bad things were in the real estate market during the recession.

Of the Top 500 brokerages in 2002, Real Trends found 24 percent didn’t survive to 2011 — making the accomplishment of those 17 all the more noteworthy.

“I don’t want to say this is like the second coming, but in our business what these people did was pretty amazing,” Mr. Murray said.

RE/Max Preferred has about 80 agents. It sold 2,024 homes last year, with more than $218 million in sales volume.

“We see no reason we can’t continue going forward,” Mr. Mangas said.

Contact Tyrel Linkhorn at: tlinkhorn@theblade.com or 419-724-6134.



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