Thursday, October 15, 2015

Member of the Week - Joe Maez

Joe Maez
Keller Williams
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When you want something done right, you call an expert. And when you want an expert in real estate, the answer is simple. You call Joe. Joe Maez is a proven real estate professional who knows how to do things right—every day he is out there working to make the home-buying or -selling process easier for you. No wonder that, regardless of which way the market has gone, Joe’s sales have gone up every year. This year is his best year yet, and that is no accident. Joe says, “If you really do a good job, you’ll always have clients,” and his track record proves it. 

Joe, who has personally sold more than 500 homes in Rio Rancho and Albuquerque, has unique and extensive knowledge of the local markets. More than that, he is the kind of person you instinctively trust. The first thing you notice about Joe is the sincere pleasure he takes in meeting new people—he honestly looks for and finds the best in you. The other thing that stands out is his optimism—talking with him, it is hard not to feel that everything will work out for the best. “I love helping people through the real estate process,” Joe says. “Every day is fun and different; in fact, it doesn’t even feel like work!” Clients can sense his passion and enthusiasm and know that they are welcome to contact him any time.

The second thing you notice about Joe is how he really listens to what his clients want and need. Whether they are relocating, first time buyers, or just ready to downsize, Joe really takes the time to find common ground and listen to where people are coming from. “When I meet new clients, my first objective is to make friends with them and get them to trust me. The relationship always comes first,” Joe explains. He doesn’t just look at his clients’ choices; he looks at the whole person. Only after out finding out what they really need and want does he start talking about locations, options, and getting them the most he can for the price they can afford. “My goal is to really understand what you’re looking for and only show you a few homes that I think you’d love. We can save you the time and stress of being dragged all over town to look at dozens of homes that you would never buy.”

Just as important as listening is knowing the ins and outs of the business. The former top salesman in the nation for Pulte Homes, the country’s largest new home builder, Joe knows homes and he knows what buyers are looking for. He not only understands construction and helps his clients assess the quality of workmanship in a new or resale home, he can also fill them in on the strengths and weaknesses of all the major builders working in Albuquerque and Rio Rancho.

Sellers who work with Joe get the unique advantage of working with a natural salesman who knows exactly what to do to make a property appealing to a buyer. He cautions against rushing to put a house on the market without doing the necessary preparation. “If you plan everything carefully and set up the marketing and staging before you put it on the market, then you can leverage the fact that it is fresh and sell it within the first 30 days. If not, you’ll never be able to regain that advantage,” he says.

Joe makes no secret of his marketing strategies. “It’s not just knowing what sells. You also have to put in a lot of time and out of pocket expense to make the home visible to buyers,” he says. For Joe, that means not just holding open houses but also developing a strong Web presence by making homes available on over 24 real estate websites, craigslist, and more. The market is always changing, and Joe stays ahead of the curve by combining his old-fashioned, client-focused salesmanship with the latest tools. “What worked yesterday isn’t necessarily what will work today, so I am always looking for new trends,” he says.

Many of Joe’s homes are sold before they even hit the market, and his extensive network of contacts within the real estate industry ensures that his clients have special access to all of these opportunities. When he was a sales team director at Pulte homes, Joe teamed up Realtors across the region to sell homes and impressed them with his knowledge and dedication to helping clients. A founding member of the local Rotary Club and an in-demand motivational speaker, Joe has expanded those ties—while simultaneously broadening the exposure and opportunities for his clients.

One thing Joe focuses on is really knowing what he is talking about, inside and out. He believes that he has a responsibility to answer questions about any aspect of the building and buying process. “We can always keep on bettering ourselves and honing our skills, and I want to be a wealth of knowledge for my clients,” he insists. For example, Joe’s expertise with financing and the mortgage industry often comes in useful, and he can answer his clients’ questions without needing to refer them to other offices. “I’m not just going to tell you to go talk to my mortgage people about that. I’ll tell you your financing options right away so you can use that information to make decisions,” Joe says.

Because Joe is focused on listening to his clients instead of promoting himself, they may not know his own extraordinary personal history. When asked if this is where he pictured himself, Joe laughs. “Definitely not!” he says. “Real estate wasn’t even on my radar.” But looking back, the connections are all there.

Joe grew up in northern New Mexico in the tiny town of Abiquiu, surrounded by national forests. His parents encouraged Joe and his brother to think big and to strive for a better life. “They didn’t give us a lot of things. What they gave us were the tools to work hard and get what we wanted, which was so much more valuable,” Joe says.

The entrepreneurial spirit was evident early on. When Joe was thirteen, he and his brother co-founded their first business: guided boat tours of the local lake, which took advantage of Abiquiu’s widespread tourist industry. Although Joe and his brother were just kids they ran their business like pros, establishing a company name, Storybook Tours, and printing up impressive brochures. “It was great. We learned to be comfortable with public speaking and communicating with all kinds of personalities, and we met a lot of really cool people,” he says.

Joe’s childhood sounds picturesque, but the next step was what really changed him. At the age of 17 he joined the Army Reserves, where he would stay for the next eight years. “My dad was in the Marines and my grandpa was in the Army. I have always looked up to both of them and respected their leadership, so I wanted to do the right thing,” he explains.

A combat engineer, Joe was deployed to Iraq with the 101st Airborne Division in 2003. His 13 months overseas changed his entire outlook on life. “I learned never to take anything for granted and to appreciate everything we have. No matter what, everything has a good side to it and you just need to discover that,” he says.

When Joe returned home from Iraq, his wife, Rosie, told him that she had been thinking about a career in real estate. “It sounded good for her, but I never even thought of it for myself,” Joe admits. While Rosie earned her Realtor’s license, Joe finished his Bachelor’s degree in Entrepreneurial Studies from the University of New Mexico. One requirement was an internship, and Joe found a listing that seemed to fit him to a tee. “It said they were looking for someone who loved marketing and meeting people, and I thought, ‘Wow! Those are the two things I want to do in my job,’” Joe remembers. The position was with Pulte Homes of New Mexico.

It was the beginning of a meteoric rise. Within two years Joe had moved from shadowing another professional to being a licensed Realtor and a regular member of the sales staff. Soon he was promoted to the selling sales manager. Six years later, he was directing the top sales team in the nation and the company had won two J.D. Powers awards for customer service. He was at the top of his game when he gave up that position to become a full-time Realtor, but Joe never had any doubts. “I loved being part of planning whole subdivisions and communities, but the best part was seeing individual families find their dream house. Now I can put my experience to work every day in making that happen,” he says.

While Joe is the public face of his business, his clients really get two experts for the price of one. Joe’s wife, Rosie, is also his partner, doing the behind-the-scenes work that most clients never see. Herself a licensed Realtor, Rosie has an eagle eye for details, and she handles the paperwork and legal requirements. The two Realtors perfectly complement each other’s strengths; in Joe’s words, they are the “yin and yang” of the business.

As real estate experts, Joe and Rosie have a passion for handling all the intricacies of a real estate transaction so that their clients never have to. “What we can offer clients is the assurance that everything will be handled quickly and smoothly in the most professional manner,” Joe says. The proud parents of a son, Timoteo, they look forward to continuing helping other families make their dreams come true. As Joe says, “Seeing people happy and excited about their new home—that never grows old!”

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