With 14 locations throughout North and South Carolina, the Wilkinson ERA team managed more than 5,400 real estate transactions last year, generating $ 1.3 billion. Eb Moore, CEO of the firm, was a big reason why.
Moore first started in the biz in the mid-’70s after he and his wife purchased a home and felt lost throughout the process. He went to a real estate class to figure out what he had gotten himself into, and the broker that sold him the house convinced him to get a real estate license.
“I had no intention of doing it as a career, but I kept getting more and more involved, and more than 40 years later, here I am today,” Moore says.
According to Moore, his market is doing well, but he feels too many REALTORS® compare 2017 to the heyday of 2004-2006, and, therefore, think business could be better. But the numbers tell the real story: Last year, the firm was 25 percent ahead of the previous year, and so far in 2017, Moore is seeing a 10 percent increase in units and a 24 percent increase in gross commission income.
“Like everyone else, we’re a little lean on listings, but the market is getting stronger and more solid, and I think there are a whole bunch of people waiting on the sidelines,” he says. “I think there are people who would put their homes up for sale if they thought it would put some bucks in their pocket. As we see the prices rise, I think more of those people will be selling.”
Wilkinson ERA is actively looking for acquisitions and hopes to be adding to its office and agent count in late 2017. The firm recently did an expansion in the Winston-Salem market, with a 1,800-square-foot coffee bar-style office, which has been great for recruiting.
“We have the best compensation plan in every market we’re in and we won’t be beat,” Moore says. “Therefore, our agents earn more on every transaction they close with us. That allows them to reinvest in marketing themselves, which, in turn, helps them grow their business even more.”
The company places a great deal of importance on technology, as well, looking at every product and program that can help its sales professionals connect more quickly and effectively with consumers.
“Any time we think we are ahead of the pack, we’re probably just on par with everyone. Our philosophy is that we have to stay out in front,” Moore says. “The consumer today is more connected to technology in more significant ways and you have to stay on top of that, which we do through our networking and investigating the latest and greatest.”
Of course, the main goal of the firm is to make sure no one feels like Moore did when he was a confused homebuyer.
“We teach our agents not to treat the consumer as an opportunity to make a sale, but to approach every interaction as an educational opportunity,” he says. “A chance to sit down and help the consumer step by step through the process and make it an experience they will appreciate.”
Vitals: Wilkinson ERA
Years in Business: 17
Size: 14 offices, 900 agents
Regions Served: Greater Charlotte area and throughout North Carolina and South Carolina
2016 Sales Volume: $ 1.2 billion
2016 Transactions: 5,484 sides
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