“We were born on the ropes,” says Kerry O’Neal, Principal Broker of Strategic Realty, LLC. The Bend-headquartered real estate company came into the world with a brisk slap in 2008, just after the national economy took a beating. Principal Broker Josh Hansen joined the firm in 2009, and the two leveraged their real estate development and brokering experience to innovate, diversify and ultimately thrive by finding opportunity in recession.
How has your business been impacted by the economic downturn?
When the real estate market fell, things obviously became more difficult in many ways. However, it also created opportunities in other areas. As competition fell off, some businesses had a difficult time redefining themselves after doing things a certain way for years. We were able to combine years of experience with a model developed in the middle of the storm.
How have you reinvented yourselves to stay in business?
We got very serious and focused, putting systems in place that have allowed us to offer the benefits of a much larger company. We leverage technology to multiply our time and effort for seamless reporting, tracking and market forecasting. We evaluate various cutting-edge tools at least twice a week so that we can be as effective and efficient as possible for those we serve.
What are your goals going forward in our present economic climate?
We are working to streamline our company even further through automation you’d normally only find in a much larger company. People are already amazed at how much they can get from a small, local firm with the added benefit of individualized, hometown service.
It’s our driving ambition to continually give our clients more, so we take education seriously; we strive to be the experts in every area of our field. We want every client we serve to be darn glad they didn’t go anywhere else, whether their price range is in the thousands, or the millions.
What have been the keys to your continued success?
Having the expertise to work with a diverse variety of real estate types has given us an edge that our clients appreciate. Most realty agencies serve a narrow range, but we take an integrative approach. The result is that our commercial clients come to us for their residential, and residential clients trust us with their commercial interests. We handle all of their real estate needs under one roof.