In 1995, we moved to Watkinsville from Atlanta. I had 18 years of experience working for a commercial landscape and lawn maintenance company in Atlanta but didn’t find an opportunity to use this experience in Athens. The agent who listed our home for sale in Atlanta made the process seem easy, so this was the beginning of my real estate career in 1996.
After getting my real estate license, I called a few companies, thinking that I had to interview to be hired as an agent. I only met with one broker (a local company in Watkinsville) and started work the next day. For new agents, it’s typical for brokers to pay expenses in return for a percentage of the commissions they generate so it’s not hard to get the job.
There were a few challenges along the way in my real estate career, one being with directions to homes I was showing! I didn’t know the area so had to depend on directions printed on the listing sheets when showing homes.
Everything went along smoothly, despite the fact that I made very little money the first year. When I had been active for about a year, a difference of opinion with the broker caused me to reconsider what I wanted for my long term career.
Move to RE/MAX in 1997
I met with the RE/MAX broker, Faye Kemp, and immediately knew that was the place for me. I loved being a RE/MAX agent. There I was totally independent and paid a set fee to have my own office, office support and corporate marketing plus I believe RE/MAX had the highest name recognition available at that time.
After a couple of year with RE/MAX, Paul decided to become an agent. This has worked well for us over the years since we work separately but still know what’s going on with the other. We were very happy with our office and being part of the RE/MAX Associates Athens family.
Moving to Athens Real Estate start-up in 2014
As things changed in the RE/MAX office, we saw more and more agent leaving for better opportunities elsewhere. In April 2014, we decided to open our own firm, just a few months before the RE/MAX office closed.
Around 2000 we had one of the first real estate websites in the area, www.MovingToAthens.com. We had been successful with the website so figured that would be a good name for our company.
Since 2014, we have enjoyed working for ourselves. I sometimes wonder if not being connected to a big name brand hurts us but are fortunate to have hundreds of past clients repeat and referral business. So far, it’s been an ideal set up for us.
It’s satisfying to help buyers and sellers obtain their real estate goals. Our 20+ years of experience helps us makes it “seem easy” for our clients too!