936: Staying Top of Mind Made Coltyn Simmons Real Estate Rookie of the Year

November 9, 2020
Are you a new Realtor who’s looking to bring in big business without a big budget? Today’s guest, Coltyn Simmons, won real estate rookie of the year after starting out with only $5 to his name. By staying top of mind with his SOI, Coltyn managed to scale his business without overspending on advertising. Hear how you can do the same on this Real Estate Rockstars. You’ll also hear how experience as a general contractor can help you win listings and what to look for in a real estate team.
Listen to today’s show and learn:
  • About Coltyn Simmons [2:17]
  • Real estate during the global financial crisis [8:11]
  • How Coltyn won Rookie of the Year [14:31]
  • Coltyn’s strategy for converting from SOI [18:14]
  • Coltyn’s construction services for sellers [23:56]
  • The “Update Before You List” program [24:55]
  • Why Coltyn hates most real estate teams [31:58]
  • Tips on starting a team [37:45]
  • Coronavirus’ impact on Las Vegas real estate [43:21]
  • Plus, so much more.
Coltyn Simmons Coltyn Simmons is a Realtor in Las Vegas & Henderson Nevada. He is also a construction consultant for remodeling and building new homes. Coltyn was born and raised in the construction and Real estate industry in Nevada and Utah. He has built 3,000sf-16,000 sf custom homes and remodeled everything between. Coltyn has also helped sellers and buyers achieve their goals in buying or selling real estate. Even though Coltyn has been an agent since 2009, it was not his one and only profession. He also professionally played baseball in the Tampa Bay Rays organization as well as owned/operated a residential construction company. Coltyn grew up in Las Vegas with his 4 sisters and 2 brothers most of them however grew up just outside of Las Vegas in a small town call Logandale also mistaken for Overton or Moapa Valley. Coltyn has 31 years experience with this market. He feels like his knowledge of construction that he learned at a very young age going to work with his father and brothers for their family construction company is a advantage that he holds over most all other realtors. He thinks of it as going to look for new car with a mechanic that has work on all cars his whole life. Coltyn also believes that his mother, sister, and brother being realtors has also given him a great advantage as well basically this has allowed him to be involved in real estate one way or another since he was 8 years old. Coltyn purchased his first home at 18 and built his first custom home at 25. He has experienced the good, the bad, and the ugly of the Las Vegas market. Coltyn takes it upon himself with every client to help from a personal standpoint when buying, selling, or investing in Real Estate, he will not encourage something that he himself would not do. He will explain, communicate and educate his clients every step of the way. He is not perfect unfortunately, he knows this and that is why Coltyn tries to learn something new everyday and he is always open to the thoughts, concerns and feelings of his clients. Thanks for Rocking Out Thank you for tuning in to Pat Hiban Interviews Real Estate Rockstars, we appreciate you! To get more Rockstar content sent directly to your device as it becomes available, subscribe on iTunes or StitcherReviews on iTunes are extremely helpful and appreciated! We read each and every one of them, please feel free to leave your email so that we can personally reach out and say thanks! Have any questions? Tweet meFacebook me and ask Pat anything. Don’t forget to head on over to Bare Naked Agent for Pat’s answers, and advice. Thank you Rockstar Nation, and keep rockin!

Aaron Amuchastegui:. Real Estate Rockstars, this is Aaron Amuchastegui and I’m back for another episode for you today. Today I get to talk to Coltyn Simmons. Coltyn has a company called Custom Fit Real Estate. His real estate office is in Las Vegas. We’re going to get to talk a lot about what’s happening in the Las Vegas market. He also has some different things that his team and him do in order to get sales. I’m looking forward to hearing that in his story of how he went from construction into real estate. Coltyn, thanks for joining us today.

Coltyn Simmons: All right, thanks. I’m excited to be here. Thank you so much.

Aaron: You live out in Las Vegas, when did you become an agent?

Coltyn: I technically took the test in 2009 when I got done playing professional baseball and I passed it and I was using it for my own use. Once I got to the point where the construction side of my life was really dominating, I actually let my license go for a couple of years. Then I had to retest in 2012 and passed it. Then since basically in 2012, ’13, I’ve really focused on the growth of the real estate side and just had the construction side just be a tool to the real estate team.

Aaron: You very quickly skipped over after always playing professional baseball and then went into construction. What is that transition like? How long did you play baseball?

Coltyn: My whole life, I wanted to be either a general contractor or professional baseball player. In school, I would get in trouble for not sleeping, but drawing floor plans of office buildings that I wanted to build and houses I wanted to build. My mom was a realtor, so I would go on her MLS and I would search for land and draw floor plans of houses I was going to build and then I’d run to baseball practice.

I went to Durango High School here in Las Vegas, Nevada. I was drafted out of high school. I played about six years with the Tampa Bay Rays Organization. Then I had a rough off-season in 2008 and I had my mom pass away. Her and I were very close. Then my wife at the time said, “Hey, I’m pregnant.” I just said, “I think I’m done.” So I called my only coordinator who was Mitch Lewkowicz. I still remember his name.

I said, “Hey, Mitch, I think I’m done. I think I’m going to retire.” He was just like, “Oh my gosh.” From there I was like, “All right, so what am I going to do with my life?” I always wanted to be a general contractor, but I always had that real estate side of me too so I just hybrid it together and started doing both. At the time, we were just starting the recover. I wouldn’t say the recovery, we’re kind of right in the middle of the 2009. Nobody really knew what was going on, banks weren’t lending.

I had my license, but I wasn’t really getting too much business that way. I focused on the construction side of things, residential remodels, small tenant improvements for commercial, that kept me busy. Then eventually I just got burnt out on the construction side of things. I was like, I want to get full-time and focus on real estate. That’s what I did is, I made a commitment to really start focusing on real estate and by 2013, I was rookie of the year at Keller Williams. Then from there, I closed 20 deals, then 36 deals, then 42 deals, then 47 deals.

Then I was like, “All right, I’m overwhelmed. I need to start a team.” I don’t want to get too far ahead of you, but that’s when I decided to start the Custom Fit Real Estate Group. Then from there, that’s where we ended up.

Aaron: That’s an awesome story, man. The so 2009– 2000 time is when I was a home builder up until 2007, 2008. Market started crashing in 2009 it was the first time we bought a foreclosure on the courthouse steps and for agents that weren’t around back then, the crash had been happening, but it was a really strange time because it feels a little bit like now in the sense that it was feast or famine.

Some agents had a lot of business agents that were the REO listing agents and the short sale listing agents. They had a lot of business people that were the bigger buyer agencies, they had a lot of business because people were still buying and selling houses back then, but there wasn’t a lot of normal inventory. The banks had picked– Most of the listings were REOs. In Vegas especially, in Northern California and in Vegas, 90% of the listings were REO or short sales.

Coltyn: A few of the agents that I know they’ve basically made a name for themselves in that market. They absolutely killed it. One of my business partners, he was like the top REO agent in Vegas. He couldn’t keep up. He had hundreds of listings and he really made a name for himself during that time period.

Aaron: Well, I think it was it what they did have a big need for, with all of us had a need for as we were investors buying was construction. There was so much construction going on because when banks were getting foreclosed back then, when houses were getting foreclosed back then, they weren’t nice when they were getting foreclosed on. There was so much animosity, like the one out of 10 houses we would buy was in good shape, but nine out of 10 didn’t have cabinets, didn’t have anything.

People would go through there with bats and dump concrete on it. It was crazy. There was a high need for construction. You came into that. How did you find clients when you first got into construction in that time before you went all the way into real estate?

Coltyn: I was born and raised in the Las Vegas area and my dad was a contractor and my mom was in real estate, so I had a large network. One of the things that people are like, I can’t believe that. My mom was a realtor, but what her main job was though is the Las Vegas or the Clark County school district was growing so fast that my mom was actually employed by Clark County school district. Whenever a new school would open, she would work in the front office and help get the office up and running and help put things together.

Every year from the time I was in kindergarten to ninth grade, I went to a different school every single year. Every single year, I had to meet new people, learn how to become the most popular kid in school and then right when I started feeling uncomfortable, “Oh, hey, next year you’re going to this school with me.”

I’ve met a lot of people during that period of time, and it made me become social because I had to. I didn’t want to just be the quiet kid in school that got picked on and then leave and go to the next school and be the quiet kid that got picked on. I became friends with everybody. I made friends with anybody that I came in contact with. I had a large network. I literally didn’t do any marketing. I didn’t do anything. I would just get phone calls. “Hey, I heard you do- I got a call from one of my friends says that you do residential remodels. Can you come over and take a look at our house?” “Yes, sure. No problem.”

A friend would buy an investment like what you’re talking about. Would buy REO, and say, “Hey, I’m thinking about buying this house. Can you come take a look at it real quick before we buy it?” “Yes, sure. No problem.” That’s when I was like, “Look, I can do that. I can do the whole spectrum. I can do the purchasing. I can do the construction. Why don’t I go get my license?” Then that’s how it morphed into I’m going to go get my real estate license also. Referral only really was how I started.

Aaron: Very personal question. As you went from one school to another to another, so some people will say, “Hey, we don’t want to pull our kids out of school and move because they’re a certain age and we think it will be unhealthy for them to move.” Did you feel like moving around so much as a kid actually helped? It sounds like it made you more successful as a result of it.

Coltyn: In my opinion, that’s how I’m able to talk to people so freely and openly is that from a very early age, I had to either fit in or I was out. I never had the personality that would just sit back and just let people walk all over me and I was never one that got picked on. Somehow, someway I ended up through humor and just making people laugh and just being a good person, I always became the most popular kid in whatever school I was for the short period of time I was there, and I had a lot of friends. I learned how to talk to people.

My brother calls me a chameleon. No matter what setting I’m in, I’m able to just blend in and by the end of the night, it’s like the party was for me. I’m not loud and wanting to be the center of attention. I just talk to people and I get to know people and I make people feel comfortable, because I had to, that’s how I had to survive basically growing up.

Aaron: My wife and I have a homeschool book called The 5‑Hour School Week and it’s total side note stuff, but there’s so many people talk about socialization in normal school environments and things like that. I always like to hear stories from people that had abnormal environments, whether it was moving around a lot or anything else. I appreciate you sharing that.

Coltyn: I was forced to fit in. Nowadays you have kids that their iPad is their best friend, and I can see the other side of it where these days kids have a hard time fitting in because they don’t know how to be social. That’s a whole nother topic for a different day.

Aaron: Whole nother topic being forced to meet people, being forced to be social and try these new uncomfortable experiences, I think is one of the healthiest things that can be out there. You had been around, so you said that you got rookie of the year. I think it was 2015. You’d been in real estate for a little. Was that right?

Coltyn: ’13 or ’14, but yes.

Aaron: How did you become rookie of the year? What was your first year like? I know we’re going to talk a little bit about your semi turnkey construction stuff, where you help a homeowner fix it up. Were you doing that back then or was there something different that helped you? What helped you set apart your rookie of the year?

Coltyn: My first year, I didn’t close a deal for four months. I was still doing little side jobs and stuff just to keep gas in my tank, and it got to a point where I specifically remember the time I was out in Centennial Hills, they had just finished this shopping center and there was a Lowe’s that I just got a little bit of material for this job, and I have five dollars to my name and there was a Del Taco. I had the choice of do I get dinner, which was the only meal I was going to eat that day or put gas in my tank to make it back to Henderson? Actually, I got, I got three 39 cents tacos and the rest I’ve put in my gas tank.

That was my rookie year, and I was constantly asking myself, how can I get a deal? How can I get a deal? 30 minutes a day. Every 30 minutes I would ask myself, how am I getting closer to my next transaction? I was starting to do open houses. At the time, I was playing a lot of softball and I was talking to people about it.

My first transaction was, I still remember it, it was a house for $159,000 in Old Henderson and it was a lead that an agent in our office, who’s actually, one of my best friends was like, “Look, a guy walked into one of my flips. I don’t have time here. Take him.” That wasn’t my first transaction four months into my first year, and then from there my next transaction was a friend’s mom moving here from Texas, and then my first year I closed 19 or 20 transactions, 90% of them were referrals from people in my sphere of influence. Then pretty much my second year is when I started doing more open houses, started doing more open houses that I started getting a few transactions from there.

I’ll tell you what, if I went back and I looked at my first three years, which would have been about 20, 50, it’s about 75 transactions, I would say close to 80 to 90% of my transactions were sphere of influence. My own database from softball, from either church softball, just my childhood, social media, it was all from people I knew. Next was probably open house, and then I started tinkering around with Zillow when it was not the enemy, and I had a few transactions from there. Sphere of influence, my database referrals was all my meat and potatoes.

Aaron: You went four months, no deals, and then you closed out the year with 20 and you had this sphere of influence, but like you said, your sphere of influence was people you went to church with, people you played softball with. People that you just were socially you knew them. How did you convert that to customers and the clients?

Coltyn: Story-telling.

Aaron: Did you call the people? Did you email them? How did you start talking to them?

Coltyn: I’d go onto the softball field and I would just talk about real estate. Not like, oh my gosh, you guys, blah, blah. I would be talking to somebody about a house I showed. “I went and saw this house with a client today and it was a disaster. We’re probably going to end up remodeling the whole house for him.” I wasn’t the guy that was in your face talking about real estate. Here’s my card. I would make it a point. I would have conversations by design.

I would always bring it up. I don’t care if you’re talking about your kid’s soccer and I’m like, oh, that’s awesome. Yes, my kid’s playing soccer too, but the other day I was late for practice because I had to show this fricking $500,000 beautiful house up in Summerland, but yes, back to your kid’s soccer. I would always sprinkle in a little bit of real estate. Oh, that’s right. You do real estate. I’m trying to make myself top of mind without beating them over the head with a real estate hammer.

Because the way I see it, that will actually push them away because there’s a fine line between making sure people know that you’re a realtor, that you’re not an undercover agent and pushing them away with annoyance, because all you talk about is real estate. You’re trying to like, Hey, do you have a referral? Hey, do you know anybody that wants to buy, sell or invest in real estate? For me personally, it’s a turnoff. I really tried not to do that.

Aaron: I love real estate for that. I love that real estate can be something where really, as you get into it and people, and you just tell people that you do it. There’s all sorts of methods. All the people that we interview have so many different ways of going and attacking their sphere and getting the people but really just letting people know, you just have friendly conversation with people, “Hey, what do you do today?” Hey, I did this. It’s one of the few businesses out there where you can tell somebody, hey, this is what I did today and it might turn into a business.

If your friend’s a banker, or they’re in admin or they work at a dentist’s office, “What did you do today?” That doesn’t always convert into something that grows their business but real estate is that unique thing that just by sitting at the soccer field and talking to somebody about your day, it brings it to top of mind, and three weeks later, six months later, and I think that’s a lot of when you talk about your first four months, nothing happened. Then all of a sudden, you had 20 deals, and then the next year, those are also the conversations that snowball, right? Like you keep Top of Mind, not everybody’s gonna list their house in the first four months.

Coltyn: Yes, the first four months, I was farming, I was planting seeds. I was planting seeds and then the last months of the year, I’m reaping the harvest. I mean, I was constantly trying to plant seeds and in a way that wasn’t repulsive really.

Aaron: Tell us about what you’re doing now. Now you have an additional niche. Somewhere along the line, you made a transition and said, hey, you’ve been you were doing this real estate team but now you do a thing where you kind of you help sellers get their house ready by using your construction and your real estate team. What’s that, like?

Coltyn: I was already doing construction services for my clients. Just like hey, yes, you want to clean up the house a little bit for me? Yes, I can do this. I can take care of that. Hey, don’t worry about that. I’ll take care of it. I’ll have my guys come over and knock this out. Then I’m watching what was it it was someone Property Brothers where they’re updating houses and something like the guy that people are going to find the fixer-upper, and they renovate the house and I find out I’m like, how do these people have this much cash to do it?

Well, then I find out no, it’s a two or three k loans. They’re actually getting a loan, a mortgage and a construction loan at the same time and they’re funding it that way. I’m like Oh, wow. Okay, I started learning about that and then I go well, what, I look at the MLS and there’s much garbage on the market that have the old oak counter cabinets, the white tile countertops, like these houses, are struggling selling for 275. If I went in there and spent probably $6,000, just refinish the cabinets in the kitchen, put new countertops on, I could probably get 300,000.

I tested my theory with a couple of friends that were going to sell their house and the number one objective that I was getting was, I don’t have that kind of money Coltyn. Like, I have equity in the house. That’s like my savings account I have, I don’t have $7,000 just to go throw in a quick little remodel before we list the house.

I was like, well, I’ll pay for it and they’re like, what? I was like, yes, I’ll cover the cost of the renovation and then you just reimburse me. You got equity in the house. Just reimburse me and close of Escrow, you reimburse me 7000 and you’ll make an additional 25,000. You’re going to come out profitable on the other end, and they’re like, okay. It just evolved into what we do now, which is the update before you list program.

We cover all expenses, you reimburse us at close of Escrow and then there’s the time where, they’re like, hey, the house looks beautiful. I can’t find something in the market that’s as nice as this. kind of like the show love it are list it. They come back and they go, look, we’ve been looking at houses. We think we want to stay. Okay, no problem. Just reimburse the construction cost and you’re good. We can give you we could do a refinance, and pull out some equity and then you can stay in the house. We’re helping them from any angle and then from there, they want to go buy a house and we’re like, when we go show the house to them, I’m pointing out things that other normal realtors don’t see.

When you and I go look at a house, we have this construction curse, I call it I’m looking around, and I already see the baseboards off over here, they didn’t patty the seam on the baseboard there. You can see the minor is back like I’m seeing all these things. When I go walk a house with a potential buyer, I go, Hey, guys, there was definitely a leak under the sink, look at the way that this is they look at these, angle stuffs there, these all got to be replaced and people appreciate that they’re like, I’m so glad I’m walking this house with you because I would have never noticed that.

I’m like, well, 98% of realtors wouldn’t notice it either because all they’re thinking is I got to get them to make an offer on a house so I don’t have to show them another house I can get a commission check. If you come from a place of value, and helping them and really caring about them, things start to evolve into good things, just the way that I’ve seen it.

Aaron: Yes, I love that program. We had done some similar things for clients out in California, around that same time, like, 2011, 2012 when a lot of the times, we were house flippers originally, right? We would buy foreclosures, fix them up and sell them and then it became similar to where we’re like, oh, well we can help you remodel the house, you pay us back a close of Escrow when you do it. It becomes such a good program. I like the idea too that some of your remodels are nice that people said, Hey, we actually don’t want to sell now, this is what we want it to look like as we get there.

For agents that are out there listening, if you have a construction company, well that’s great but if not, maybe you could partner with a construction company being in it now. It’s really like you’re partnering with the seller, right? You’re helping them flip their own house. If their house needs updating, somebody might buy it, and then they’re going to go put work into it and go try to sell it for more, but if you do the work ahead of time that you’re helping them capture even more, that’s definitely a way to add value and set yourself apart.

I think anybody can do it. Any agent right now, you can find a contractor to partner with and say, Hey, and if you’re pitching that idea to a contractor and saying hey, you can get more work right now by doing this, but you just have to hold on to it until they sell it like they record a second lien or something. I think everybody wins in that scenario. How many of your clients right now, do the update before you list the program.

Coltyn: Right now, we have out of the active listings, we have six, and three of them are really update before– I don’t consider like paint touch up and like a professional cleaning. I don’t consider that update before you list. That’s all part of our listing. We already include that. Update before you list, three of our six or remodels. One we got about $24,000 in an update. The other one we have about at this point we’re up to about $26,000 on an update on that one, and then about 12 on the third one and then we have– I have four listings in Escrow that two of those are update before you list–

Aaron: That’s about half. It’s only about halfway through that program. Essentially by that extra value add you’re doubling your business. It’s like twice as many listings and your customers are going to get more which generates more to that word of mouth and what’s out there.

Coltyn: The first thing I say is, “What’s the catch?” There is no catch. Honestly, I get to sell the house faster, and I got a better product to sell and you make more money on the other side, so that there is no catch.

Aaron: Everybody wins. Anyone you’re investing alongside them like that, talk about building trust and faith. I’m going to invest my own money.

Coltyn: Yes, exactly. That’s one of the main talking points I have with them is like, “Look, most real estate agents are just here to list your house on MLS, take some photos, maybe even with their own phone and cross their fingers, hope it sells. I got skin in the game now. You and me are partners here. The one on Opera House Street, I got $26,000 invested into your house. I have anxiety that I need to get this place sold for you. There’s nothing that’s going to light a fire under my ass like having money out there. No other realtor’s going to have that type of motivation if they don’t have skin in the game.” We got skin in the game.

A lot of people love that. They love the fact that now you have something in the game and so now I know you’re doing everything you can to sell this house otherwise, you’re just another realtor that’s crossing your fingers and hoping it sells.

Aaron: Yes. Let’s fast forward. In 2017, you decide to start the team model. What was that transition like? Were you excited about jumping into a team– why did you do that, and how have you made that work?

Coltyn: I hated teams. I hated teams. I thought teams were the biggest fraud in real estate, the way that I saw it. I’m thinking, “Why would you give somebody 50% of your commission? What are they doing? They let you use their logo and most of the teams it’s like the Colton Simmons team.” It’s like you’re going into a listing appointment and you’re going, “I’m here to list your house. I work for the Colton Simmons team.” For me, everything about a team was repulsive. I thought it was just a way for a realtor to make somebody else make them without really doing anything in return.

Then I started learning about other teams that were bringing some value to the table, then I found out that those teams that were bringing a little more value than others were actually charging 60% to be on their team and I’m mind blown. “How is this even legal?” I said, “Look, I’m overwhelmed, I need to get somebody to come help me because at this point, things are falling through the cracks, I’m not calling people back, and they’re just not getting good customer service.” I go to one of my friends that just got his license I said, “Hey, why don’t you come join me? I’m going to start a team, it’s going to be the Custom Fit Real Estate Group, and you can be a buyer agent.”

I was like, “You can be a listing agent too. You can do whatever you want. I’m not going to pinhole you into what you can and can’t do.” Then I go, “Just for the first few transactions where I’m going to obviously have to help you because you’re a new agent, we’ll do 50/50, but then as you close transactions, your split will get better and better and better and better then you’ll pretty much cap out around 75/25 because I’m going to be providing you with leads, I’m going to be providing you with an office, with a CRM, we’ll do events, all these things that we’re going to be providing.”

Then the coach I had at the time was like, “Does your value diminish as they close more transactions? Why would you give them more money?” I said, “No, my value doesn’t diminish, however, their value is appreciating. Why would I not reward somebody for their value appreciating? If he’s going to close 30 transactions, he needs to be rewarded for it. If he’s going to close five transactions, well, then he should make a comparable pay. As you close more transactions, you get paid more, that’s the way that I would want it if I was an agent.”

Everything I did when I created my team was if I was him, how would I want it to be? I want to be rewarded for performance so I have a pay scale, a split that gets better and better as you close more transactions and it’s a netsplit. A lot of teams it’s 50/50, and then you pay your office dues and your fees, and your everything out of the 50%. We don’t do that. We cover everything from transaction coordination, our office fees, even our MLS fees after you’ve closed 10 transactions we’ll cover as a team so that when you close that transaction, you are getting literally 50%, 55%, 60%, 65%, 70%, 75% of that commission net. That’s going into your account. All the other fees, we take care of.

Aaron: How many people are on your team now?

Coltyn: Right now we have 10 and as of next week because we have three agents signing up today, we’ll have 13 as of next week.

Aaron: Of your 10 how many of them cap out– and when they cap out the big services that you said, is it still like you have an admin that helps and then cut down on some of the other fees?

Coltyn: We have two admin staff that are agent services, they help you with everything from flyers to setting up open houses, to whatever it is. Literally, I only want my agents to focus on talking to people, reaching out to people, communicating with clients and focusing on selling. Everything else on the back end from paperwork to setting up open houses, everything, ordering signs, I want our staff to do it so that you’re free to do everything. We cover all of that and then I guess– what was the other part of your question?

Aaron: Well it was just, what you’re covering and how many of your people are actually maxing out as team members where they get to start keeping the biggest chunk of their commission?

Coltyn: Well, from day one, from your first five transactions, if you’re a new agent if you’ve closed more than 15 transactions the year before and you join our team, you start out at a 60/40 split, you keep 60%. Nothing else will the team take from the 60%. You get 60%. I pay everything else out of the 40% that we take. All the transaction fees, all the office fees, and everything. Now, if you’re a new agent and you haven’t closed that 15 transactions the year before, your first five transactions and 10 transactions are 50%, 55%. Again, they keep the full net 50%. We don’t take anything else out of that, everything else gets paid by us.

Aaron: If someone’s listening and they either want to join a team, or they’re thinking about starting a team, what are some things they should be thinking about and questions they should be asking or things they should be thinking about as they’re setting up the team?

Coltyn: I think there’s two mindsets of starting a team. There’s the mindset that I had somebody from the Keller Williams World say because I said, “I don’t want turnover. I want to keep my agents happy. Turnover to me is I’m not doing my job.” Their response was, “Do you know how you overcome turnover?” I said what? “You get more agents,” and I’m like, “No, that’s not how I want to do it. I want to get my agents, I want to keep them happy.” You got the teams that are just like, “You’re going to start a team, and you have the mindset that I’m going to provide this value, it’s 50/50, take it or leave it.” That’s my model and that’s actually easier than what I-

Aaron: Like a recruitment model?

Coltyn: Exactly.

Aaron: You keep hiring new team members.

Coltyn: Keep hiring team members. I know I’m going to lose about 60% of them every year and I’m just going to keep on the revolving door, bringing people in. That’s actually easier to me than what I do because, with me, it’s actually a moving target because these are human people that have needs and wants and ambitions. I want to make sure that they’re happy so there’s some times where the splits can change or we can renegotiate a split if you close a certain amount of transactions and there’s bonuses.

We do a point system where every day you have to accumulate four points on our point tracking system and at the end of the month, whoever has the most points wins an additional 5% on their commission. We do a bunch of things based around that to try to incentivize them to perform because you get rewarded for performance. The other teams, the other model, there is no incentive to perform. You’re going to get the same split no matter what.

Aaron: You’re trying to create a team that lasts and one that you’re not going to have that turnover. You’re going to have less team members, less time recruiting, more time helping it value. If somebody is going to join a team, what questions should they ask that prospective team? If they’re thinking about joining, and they go in and sit down with you what are the questions that people should be asking to know if this is the right team for them?

Coltyn: Honestly, I think one of the main questions that personally I would ask is, all right 50-50. I get it. I’m joining a new team, there systems and stuff that I’m going to need to learn, you’re going to have to put some time and energy into me but is there a way for me to make more after time? Is there a way for me to grow? What are my possibilities? Can I grow out of the 50-50? Can I increase that as my production goes up? Because if you’re not going to be rewarded for your hard work and your performance, then maybe that’s not a good fit for you.

For me as an agent, when I first started, if I was going to join a team, I would want a place that’s going to reward me for my efforts, performance bonuses, and stuff like that. That’s the things that I would want to ask. Then also like, “Hey, if I have a question, who am I going to be asking? Who’s going to be there like, is it going to be you, the team leader that’s already closing 60 transactions himself that will barely have time for me? Or do you have an agent services coordinator that’s going to help me literally write my first RPA? My first listing agreement. Are you going to go on listing appointments with me so that I don’t sound like a fool in front of my clients?”

The other thing that some people do is you’re only a buyer agent. For me, I think that that’s putting a fish in a very small container and expecting it to grow. You’re not going to grow if you pinhole into a specific, now you can say, well, they’re being ultra-focused on buyers only. At the end of the day, I want my agents to grow, I want them to be better than I am, and if I’m there helping them grow to be a listing agent, buyer agent, and whatever, then–

If I can help enough people get what they want, I’m always going to get what I want in the end, like Zig Ziglar always says. I’m in it more for the agents than necessarily me netting the most money at the end of the year, if that makes sense. You want to ask people those questions because there’s a lot of people out that are just like, “No, you can’t grow.” You’re a buyer agent, you get 50%.

Aaron: I like the simple question of what’s my future look like? Also saying, who’s going to answer my questions? Who’s going to help me on my first listing, who’s going to help me on the paperwork? Because that’s really the person they should be interviewing. If there’s a big team leader, but they’re not the one that’s going to be helping them out, it’s like saying, “Hey, can I meet those people?” We only got a couple of minutes left but tell us about the Vegas market, what you’re seeing COVID related meaning it’s been a lot busier but we’ve seen in places like New York or San Francisco, people are leaving the cities they’re going to the outskirts trying to finding something else.

Vegas right now is– the casinos are open but I guess gambling is probably the biggest part of their income, but the extracurricular stuff now the clubs, the other things, the shows, the things that people do in Vegas are still closed down. What’s the feeling out there? What’s the real estate market doing outside kids getting back to school? What’s it look like?

Coltyn: Everybody was petrified earlier in the year when this all started going down, we had the shutdown and they thought that our market was just going to completely tank and things were falling out of Escrow and it was ugly. Soon as we lifted the quarantine and we started trickling back into jobs, it’s like somebody turned on the fire hose and we haven’t come up for air since. There’s a lot of agents that are having their best years ever. Residential is through the roof right now. Houses are selling in less than eight days on the market. Out of most of our listings, we’re getting multiple offers within the first couple of days so our residential market is hot.

Now as for work, you’re right. Some of the casinos haven’t gotten full-back to staff. Some of the casinos are on a hybrid schedule where they’re only open Tuesday to Saturday but that really affects more of the lower end of the residential world so our market is growing and then the people that are leaving the San Francisco, Southern California because they’re just tired of all that, they come here for the tax benefits and they either rent a home for a year and buy or they come straight here and go, “I can get this house for $400,000?”

This would be a million-dollar house in Southern California and so they’re buying a house and the problem I’m having right now is that a lot of our listings aren’t appraising because the market is so far ahead of the appraisals so that’s one of the problems that we’re seeing right now. The price that people are willing to pay for these houses is much higher than what the actual appraisal comes in at.

Aaron: That’s really interesting to be seeing that right now. That’s how you know you’re in an increasing market when people are continuing to willing to be paid more than others. I remember that in 2012 and 2013 and the market has only gone up since then, is we’ve been out there. Well, the Coltyn, this was a lot of good fun stuff for the agents to be thinking about. I think the idea that just being social and just talking about real estate with people helped get your sphere to start trusting you remembering that takes time, right didn’t happen right away, it took four months, six months, 12 months.

Then you had this new value add that came down to helping people with the update it before they list it. I love that program. I think so many of our agents out there could be thinking about partnering with a construction company or having your own construction company do something like that. They’ll add that extra value and you also had some stuff about how to structure a team and what to get there. If people want to reach out to you for extra questions if they want to ask you what you include in those updates or more questions on team? How can people find you?

Coltyn: I’m more on Facebook than I am Instagram, but just Coltyn Simmons on Facebook. Then we also have Simmons Custom Fit Real Estate Group on Facebook, you can private message us there or you can email me at coltynsimmons@kw.com and that’s Coltyn with a Y. I’m always here to help and one thing we didn’t really touch on just real quick is right now, I always tell my agents it is your sphere of influence, but it’s about how you influence your sphere and the easiest way to influence your sphere right now to stay top of mind is social media.

You got to have a strong social media presence. That’s the best way to stay top of mind with people because I can tell you a message and then it will take me three months to tell 50 other people that message I can do a video and share that too and 1,200 people will see it in the first eight hours and you just got Top of Mind with those people so social media is huge, huge, huge right now.

Aaron: Especially right now. I love that as an ad of the and like you said Coltyn it’s C-O-L-T-Y-N Simmons if you find him on Facebook or Instagram or email him out there. Coltyn this was awesome, man. I appreciate you coming on here today. Coltyn said he might also send us a video of some of the remodels and stuff he’s been doing originally we’re going to try to do this interview while he was on-site walking around so if you are listening to us in the car, go check the YouTube videos see if we had a video ended up adding to the end. If you’re on YouTube stay tuned because maybe we’re going to have a video at the end of this, the Real Estate Rockstars. Thank you for listening Coltyn. Thanks for being on the call.

Coltyn: Hey, thanks a lot. See you.

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