Green: What do you do as a real-estate agent?
Salomone: The majority of my business is residential sales, which means I'm trying to facilitate transactions between property owners who want to sell their property and purchasers who need housing. I'm trying to help those buyers achieve the American Dream, and that's home ownership.
Green: I know oftentimes it can take viewing three or more houses to find the right fit when looking to buy a new house. What are some of the challenges of facilitating those transactions?
Salomone: Well I think every situation has challenges because each is unique. That's what makes my job as exciting and interesting 42 years later, because each family has different needs and wants. I think from a seller’s standpoint the biggest challenge is making sure you have the property in a physical condition and a price point that's competitive in the marketplace. We all feel that what we have in life may be worth a little bit more than the market bears. Sometimes owners will start out higher than maybe the market point shows, and it’s a process to get the property at the right asking price.
From a buyer’s standpoint, you always have to distinguish between needs and wants. Some buyers are extremely realistic. Others may have more wants than what their real needs are. Those needs will sometimes dictate what they can afford from a mortgage standpoint, or how much cash they're working with or from their savings. There are challenges on each side. Eventually people will get to a point where the property is priced properly and the buyer will key in on the needs of their family.
Green: What is an average day like for you?
Salomone: Every day it's different. The beauty in today's world is your office is pretty much anywhere you have a laptop computer. One day, we may have an appointment with a seller first thing in the morning to talk about marketing their properly. The next day, maybe we're meeting an appraiser to assess a property that is already under contract. The next day, maybe we're meeting an inspector who's doing an inspection on a property that's been purchased. The next day, maybe we have an appointment with a buyer to show a certain number of properties. The exciting part of this job is that every day in the course of a week, each day could start out differently.
The requirement, then, if you want to be a great real estate agent, is you've got to be available seven days a week. The people who need to look at property or talk to you about marketing their property are normally going to be available after work. That may be at night or on the weekends.
Green: Since you’ve been in the real-estate industry for more than 40 years, you’ve worked throughout the burst of the housing bubble and other economic crises. Did your business or clients experience any challenges during that time?