A Conversation With a Luxury Real Estate Agent With Over 4.5 Billion Dollars in Sales.
Written by Simon Alcott: Published Aug 12th, 2020 | Updated Aug 12th, 2020.
Simon Alcott is the driving force ⚡ behind Turf.Press. a property management software company that helps multi-family real estate investors level up their multi-family website.
10 Minute Read
What it Takes to Sell 4.5 Billion Dollars in Luxury Real Estate.
Turf.Press, the designers of your favorite condo website theme, recently had the opportunity to chat with Joyce Rey, an LA based luxury real estate agent with over 4.5 billion dollars in real estate sales. She represents breathtaking properties like the one below and we’re excited to have the opportunity to pick her brain about the luxury real estate niche.
Let’s jump in!
💬 Hi Joyce and thank you for taking the time to chat with us today about your experience in the luxury real estate space. Let’s have you kick off the interview by telling us a little bit more about what it was about the luxury real estate market that pulled you in and never let you go?
In the early years of my marriage to actor Alejandro Rey, we had moved several times and I very much enjoyed the house-hunting process and admiring different types of homes, architecture, etc. It looked easy to me, as a client back then, and in those days we had 1 page contracts and inspections were very simple. My husband knew an actress who had become a realtor and she encouraged me to get my real estate license. I agreed and thought it would be advantageous to have the knowledge. Once I started I was hooked. I loved everything about the business. Each day I was challenged and honestly found that real estate satisfied me far more than my prior teaching career.
💬 Let’s rewind a little bit. Can you tell us a little bit more about what extra barriers or obstacles real estate professionals face when trying to get involved within the luxury market? Early on in your career, how did you overcome those obstacles?
I never really sensed too many obstacles in my earlier career path. In the 70’s when I began my career, there were many extremely successful female realtors. Many of them owned companies, etc. and I looked up to them as role models. I was one of the few agents at the time with a graduate degree in business which was very beneficial for me back then.
Now, there are so many agents, and so much competition, I would say that’s the largest hurdle to face when trying to break into the luxury market, especially here in LA.
💬 You have a huge following on Instagram and many of your uploads get a sizable amount of engagement. How important has Instagram been for you as a marketing channel?
I have loved my engagement on Instagram. When I began in real estate it was obviously not around, but is very important to use Instagram to help build your business today. I have really enjoyed learning about others interests, seeing their listings, their work, and following them as well as posting beautiful photos of my own properties. I increased my following fairly quickly and nothing is more satisfying than when I meet someone and they tell me they follow me on Instagram. Haha! I feel my business is enhanced from Instagram and I am glad I began in earlier years.
💬 What are your three best marketing channels and why do you think that is?
I would say Instagram, The MLS/Caravan magazine, and marketing through my own personal network of friends, clients, etc. There is nothing more important than relationships and connections in any business and my network is based on that.
💬 You represent some commercial luxury properties as well. Can you tell us a little bit more about the major differences in approach when selling commercial vs. residential luxury properties? How does your approach to marketing change based on if the property is commercial or residential?
When it comes to listing commercial properties, I think it’s important to partner with an expert in the commercial field. Many of my important clients not only buy beautiful homes but also invest in commercial real estate. I am certainly not an expert in the commercial field, but I have many connections there, so I always bring on a top commercial broker. Marketing is similar in many ways, but target audience is often different.
💬 Also, have you ever been involved in luxury mult-family properties like buildings or condos? What you’re outlook on luxury properties in this space? Is this a space you like to be involved with? Why or why not?
I love beautiful condominiums but have never had this type of project. I would love to though. I would be most interested in taking this on, co-listing, and partnering with someone in this area. I have always been very admirable of my colleagues who have sold-out entire buildings. I have watched the condo industry grow vastly in LA since I started in the business a long time ago.
💬 In your experience, what are the most challenging parts of working with luxury clients on the selling side? How do you overcome those challenges?
Each client is different and presents a different set of circumstances. I always have to look after their best interests first. The client needs to always feel that they are your first consideration. I built a team so that my clients always feel they have coverage 24/7. I love representing sellers because of the wonderful challenge of doing the best possible job at marketing, which we are constantly innovating in that area to make sure our properties have exposure on a national + international basis.
💬 You do a lot of international marketing as well including advertising on sites like caimeiju to access luxury property buyers in China. How big of an international market is there for American properties overseas (specifically in China)? Do you see this as a growing internal market?
Right now, we will probably see some short-term impact from the current viral epidemic there. I also see a large migration out of Hong Kong due to their political issues and money restrictions out of Hong Kong. I anticipate a large market from China in the next few years. I have made several trips there and I plan to go again in the near future, as I believe it’s a good source for business. I was one of the first agents to travel to China in 2010 to solicit business and it has definitely paid off.
💬 Lastly, if you could go back in time and give a younger version of yourself three pieces of advice with regards to what it takes to be a successful entrepreneur in the luxury real estate space, what would those three pieces of advice be?
👉 Work and network as hard as you possibly can because there will always be competition looking to fill the #1 spot.
👉 Be genuine with clients and potential clients, they will feel the sincerity and always come back to you.
👉 Try to be trained/versed in both residential and commercial so all doors are always open to you.
💬 Thank you for taking the time to chat with us today Joyce. To our blog readers, if you’d like to learn more about Joyce and see her spectacular portfolio of projects, then head over to her website here.