Group Estes Realty
23515 NE Novelty Hill Road
Suite B-221, #402
Redmond, WA 98053
About Christine Estes
When I started my real estate business in 2002, it may surprise you to know that it wasn't just because I like houses. Yes, of course, I enjoy seeing a model home as much as the next person, but it wasn't that love of houses and design that beckoned me. I was after a business - a business where the relationships that I build with my clients are the fuel, rather than the individual transactions. Listening to you, helping you to determine what your options are and what will best meet your needs - that's where my enjoyment comes from. And the fact that, to serve you, I get to work with interesting homes, designs, colors and architecture is the bonus.
It was clear very early that I wanted to be sure that my time was well focused. Rather than trying to find just anyone to serve, it felt better to focus on serving the people already in my life, and through them, other people that they know. By building a business based on referral, I am not spending my time, attention and dollars on passive activities like Open Houses and advertising (you won't see my picture on a grocery store cart!) and other traditional ways to 'find' clients. Rather, I continually work to find ways to surprise and serve my "A" list - those people whom I have served, are currently serving, and /or who have referred me. They know that I am here to serve them, and to ensure that the people in their life get the same exceptional service that they do.
- Enhanced Customer Service
- So what can you expect from a real estate professional, beyond the basics of buying a home or selling a property? Hand-in-hand with service is a commitment to excellence and accountability. We choose to affiliate with the National Association of REALTORS® – an organization that holds us to a high code of ethics. We feel that this investment and commitment are important components of our level of service; not all real estate agents do.
We also maximize one of the benefits to us as REALTORS® as much as possible… and that’s making the most of access to local Real Estate Attorneys in courses and clock-hours. As the law evolves, and it always does, being in the room with the resources on the front lines enhances our knowledge base.
And why was it important to me to secure the credentials of a Managing Broker? In order to serve you to the best of my ability, I am committed to consistently upgrading and enhancing my expertise. In 2009, that meant taking the extensive time and making the financial investment to become licensed as a Managing Broker. While I am not managing my own brick and mortar office, although now that is an option, I am delighted to have added this additional level of knowledge to my skill set.
In concert with the focus on consistent improvement is a commitment to the technology that best serves my clients. Whether it is the information that you find on this website - well beyond the buying and selling process and focused on conveying market trends and timely real estate, home ownership and property management guidelines. Or the way that we convey the information and photography on the properties that we are offering for sale. We are always looking for enhancements to the services that we provide.
There is another important component to the philosophy of service that I have had since joining this profession in 2002. Of primary importance to everyday life are the reliable connections to service providers - people need windows, gutters and carpets cleaned; plumbing, garage doors and roofs repaired; furniture refinished, homes refinanced, window coverings added or replaced, interior design assistance, a financial advisor, comprehensive insurance coverage (the list is endless!) far more often than they need or want to sell a property or buy a home. My business offers access to those connections all the time, and this same information is available to everyone who asks. Periodically, my A list - and others who have asked to be part of this group that I serve, all are welcome! - also gets interesting information - perhaps about credit scores, the tax benefits of home ownership, or remodeling, but also vacations, managing energy, goal writing... And since mid-2007, we have been tracking local market statistics that go back to early 2002. All of this, and more, can be found on this site.
Recommendations to reliable vendors. Helpful information. Statistics and trends. The people in my life know that I am always trying to find new ways to add value.
You may have noticed the "group" in my logo: we are Group Estes Realty and that is a conscious choice. This isn't marketing hype - there really is a group here to serve you. I cannot deliver the level of service that I am committed to alone, so there are several components to the "group." And I am always focused on adding resources to continue to serve your needs.
I believe it is important to deliver value to you beyond my personal expertise and training. So, early on in my business, I started cultivating a group of service providers that I can brainstorm with about service, and to share ideas about doing business consistently by referral. This allows me to tap into their referral networks in order to serve you best, whatever your needs. It really is true - people who deliver quality attract other people who deliver quality, and nice people attract nice people. How better to keep adding to the connections that I can offer to you? And although I've heard some superb success stories about vendors found on craigslist (my highly trusted north-end contractor is one of them!), I have heard many other disastrous ones. Everyone that I refer has either performed work for me or has been recommended to me by a client, a trusted realtor, or a trusted vendor. We can - and do - improve your odds for satisfaction! (We also follow up with you after referring a vendor to be sure that their service 'today' meets or exceeds the prior experiences. Unfortunately, they don't always… and then they are deleted from our list.)
Additionally, when you are working with me to buy a home or sell a property, I have lending, escrow, and title organizations that I've worked with many times ready to serve you. When it is possible and practical, I will always encourage you to use these organizations as they provide the highest level of professionalism and client support. I have worked with many other lenders, escrow companies and title companies - there is no comparison to the level of service and accountability that the teams who consistently serve me and my clients offer. But, of course, the final decision on who to work with for your financial, escrow and title needs when buying a home or selling a property is yours.
I realized quickly that to deliver consistently excellent service, given that my focus is on face-to-face time with the people I serve, I must have someone readily accessible during weekday business hours. Several years ago, I added a full-time assistant to my resources. And that was Bob Ferguson, now the co-founder of Group Estes Realty, the firm, and also a Managing Broker. Although much of what he does is in the background, Bob's job is to ensure that you receive the timely responses that you need, count on and deserve. Bob not only offers a time enhancement component to the business, but he is another set of eyes and another level of accountability that you can depend on. The two of us as a team are committed to meeting your needs and exceeding your expectations of creativity and communication.
- Personal Credibility
- Having personally bought and sold several homes on both coasts, I know how easy it can be if the right team is working for you, and how stressful it can be if things go sideways. And I can tell you from experience that when things do go sideways - and you might be surprised how often something does - you don't just want an average team serving you and your interests. When the going gets tough, average - average communication, average expertise, average listening and negotiating, average creativity - just isn't good enough. My job - and my passion - is to make whatever challenges that present themselves as transparent as possible to you by delivering exceptional service and creativity.
- Community Service
- From my earliest days with Windermere Real Estate, I have contributed to a charitable organization with each transaction that I have closed. This continues with Group Estes Realty, through transactional charitable donations, as well as hosting quarterly fundraisers for Northwest Harvest. At one time, our client events ranged from shredding day to movie tickets to garden store gift certificates. The feedback that I received from many of you is that you really wanted to see your participation leveraged to benefit the local community. And so in 2012, we launched our wine tasting fundraisers in support of Northwest Harvest. There are so many worthy causes. And those of you who already know me aren’t surprised that I also donate to several animal-rescue charities. But it is people – and in Washington State we have more hungry people than most other states – that benefit when we gather for some tasty wine and light bites. Find out more about Group Estes Realty's community service commitment.
- Whether you're Buying or Selling
- Buying a home or selling a property is frequently an emotional experience, introducing change and complexity, and requiring lots of timely decisions. I believe that the last thing anyone in the midst of these decisions wants to feel like is a 'transaction.' We each deserve to be heard, to be advised of our rights as a buyer or seller, to receive consistent communication and follow-through - in short, to be served so that the results that we want and need are achieved.
This business that I have created goes way beyond exchanging keys. My business is about serving you and the people in your life, whatever your goals, whatever your timeframe, whether locally or beyond. Years of business coaching and collecting knowledgeable real estate connections throughout the country allows me to have access to this same kind of information and service for you almost anywhere in North America and beyond.
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