'Meet the Agent' - Ben Rego - Rego Sotheby's International Realty
This month for ‘Meet the Agent’ we interview Ben Rego, Sales Associate, from Rego Sotheby’s International Realty. Ben discusses why he enjoys working as an agent at Rego Sotheby’s International Realty having returned to the island from working for a Sotheby’s International Realty affiliate in Boston, his top tips when looking for a new home and also Ben's outlook for the Bermuda property market in 2017.
How long have you been a real estate agent? I have been a real estate agent for almost seven years, although only actively in the Bermuda market for the past year. I began my career working for a Sotheby’s International Realty affiliate in Boston. I worked in their marketing department and assisted some of the top agents in the US for four years. The experience of shadowing agents such as Beth Dickerson, George Ballantyne and Julie Harrison aided me in the negotiation process and taught me a great deal about how to present and be prepared to market luxury homes. The marketing experience showed me what’s really possible under the dynamic global SIR brand and I utilized some of that expertise by heading the marketing department back here in Bermuda for just over a year before transferring into sales.
Why do you like working for Rego Sotheby’s International Realty? The passion I feel for this island, this business and especially this company and our history drives me every day to improve. I love the multi-layered reputation and story of our company, from the local ‘Rego’ brand to the connection with an international firm which benefits buyers at all price points. When you see a blue RSIR sign, you immediately associate it with quality and a company backed by amazing support staff and seasoned agents all striving for excellence. This company loves being on the cutting edge of advancing the ways in which we do business and that is what I am all about.
What is the favorite part of your job? I love the notion of being self-motivated. I see real estate as a business with no ceiling, one where the rewards are greater if you work harder and are innovative in your approach.
What is your favorite property on the market right now? I would have to say Shore Bird in Southampton, priced at $2.4 Million. It’s unlike any other home on the market and these dynamic homes with unique personalities are the most enjoyable to show to prospects. Homes built on the coastline as such have more character in that they are truly crafted into the hillside, just as this one is overlooking the private beach. With an elevator, an indoor plunge pool, and a large deck looking over the turquoise sea, it is quite a special property.
What property on the market right now, in your opinion, do you think is really good value? ‘It’s Mine’ on Spice Hill Road in Warwick, priced at $1.1 Million, without question. With 2 assessment numbers, the lower 2-bedroom apartment rents for an impressive $2,600/month and the entire property is in immaculate condition. The meticulous work that’s been put into this home is evident. It’s a great investment with the added income potential. There are over $500,000 worth of renovations that have been lovingly put into the property since it was purchased by the vendor in 2004. With manicured grounds, the home has curb appeal and is move in ready. It even has a roof deck, not the norm for a Bermudian home!
How do you see the Bermuda property market over the next 12 months? 2017 has started off very well and there is clearly an abundance of buyers out there. Ultimately, when things are priced correctly they are moving and moving quickly. Unfortunately, the condo market, especially in older developments, may continue to struggle because today’s buyers demand more modern upgrades on the interior as well as condominium amenities and benefits on the exterior within the development. The America’s Cup will certainly bring continued optimism and buyer confidence, while there will undoubtedly be hesitation due to the upcoming election.
What are your top 3 tips when looking a potential new home?
1. Be open-minded with your ‘must haves’ and willing to compromise especially on such a small island where there may not be as much supply. Renovations can always be made over time, or you can always look to ‘move up’ or ‘downsize’ and purchase a more ideal home as your needs for a growing family or change of lifestyle occur.
2. Always look to the location first. Be comfortable not just knowing that the neighborhood is safe and somewhere that is convenient for your way of life, but one that has a plethora of neighboring homes of at least the same value of the property you are considering so it is ‘more likely’ to hold or improve its value in time.
3. Be patient and try not to get discouraged. There will always be a home that truly captures a buyer, and even if it doesn’t work out, new opportunities will always arise. I dealt with a situation last month where my prospect ended up losing out on a property, yet I was able to find an even more suitable listing that came on the market a mere 3 weeks later and they couldn’t be happier.
What do you think of propertyskipper.com (we promise not to edit!)? From my experience in Boston and being familiar with the benefits of utilizing a local MLS, Propertyskipper.com has given the Bermudian buying or renting populace a great resource for scanning a wider database of what is available on the island. Having been in marketing and working closely with Peter and his team at PS over the past two years, I know there are even more improvements on the horizon for PS and I praise their dedication to continuing to make the Bermuda real estate experience even better than it already is.
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