Welcome to Meet the Agent, an ongoing series profiling real estate agents from across Canada. With more than 150,000 agents, brokers, and salespeople working in 75 different boards and associations across the country, we thought it was about time they had a place to properly introduce themselves.
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Name: John King
Brokerage:Engel & Völkers Ottawa Central
Personal Channels: Website | Instagram | LinkedIn
Years of Experience: 29
Areas of focus: Centretown, Ottawa West, Sandy Hill, Westboro, Wellington West
Where did you grow up?
I grew up in a small town of 1000 people in Southern Ontario. Traditionally a farming community, but has become a bedroom community in Toronto. My parents had a farm; my mom was a nurse and my dad a school principal.
What neighbourhood do you live in now?
We live about 10 minutes west of Downtown Ottawa.
What made you want to become a real estate agent?
We had purchased a home and I was quite intrigued by the process. I thought to myself, “I could do this…and I might be really good at it.” 30 years later, I have never looked back.
What’s the biggest challenge you see facing the market today?
There are so many challenges today; especially for newer agents. The industry is very competitive (there are about three times as many realtors in my marketplace as there were 30 years ago). Agents have to be smart, energetic, and strategic. The market is now changing as well; with fewer sales and inventory rising. Moving into the future, it really will be about servicing your listing clients as things are taking longer to sell.
What’s the single best advice you have for sellers?
Hire a local expert that knows your marketplace well. It hasn’t changed; pricing and strong representation is the key to a successful sale.
What’s the single best advice you have for buyers?
Hire a local expert; same as above. Also, someone that knows the market very well and can represent you so that you are informed and make the right decisions.
What’s the best thing a realtor can invest in for their brand (a bus bench ad, a solid Instagram strategy, etc.)?
Social media seems to be dominating how we market ourselves. Consistency in marketing, regardless of what type of marketing, is critical. It takes time but it works.
Who do you look up to in the industry and why?
I have had some great mentors over the years and I respect those agents that came before me; worked hard and been successful. There is no easy way to get to success in our industry; it is hard work; long hours and true commitment.
Is there anything you wish people knew or understood about realtors that you think they’re constantly getting wrong?
The role is completely different than consumers believe it is. We often take things very personally. Successful realtors just want to do what's best for their clients; they work hard and they care. Many of my colleagues are just good people.
Tell us about your favourite (or most memorable) sale.
I have had many, but I got a lot of publicity around selling Alanis Morissette's property in Ottawa. That was a good one.
What are the three words you hope your clients use to describe you?
Kind. Caring. Knowledgeable.
What’s your favourite thing to do outside of selling houses?
Spending time with my two dogs and my husband. Long and quiet walks with talking and not talking!
This interview may have been edited for both length and clarity. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the interviewee and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of STOREYS.