Region served: Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex Years in real estate: 15 Number of offices: 2 Number of agents: 760
Paige Tepping: Nick, why do you believe so many new and experienced agents choose United Real Estate?
Nick Bristow: As new agents interview various companies and compare them to United Real Estate, they can clearly see and feel the tangible assets (e.g., mentoring, training and technology) to which they’ll have access. We have a culture that is very, very supportive, and agent candidates feel that from the start. With an always available, quickly responding broker and office staff, it’s truly an “agent-first” culture. When it comes to experienced agents joining the company, it all boils down to the consumer-driven dynamic of commission compression.
Agents are under pressure to deliver services at a lower cost, and they simply don’t want to pay large commission splits to their brokerages anymore. Because we have the services and tools they need, and they keep almost every penny of their commissions, we are an incredibly lucrative option for them. Agents looking for a change are Googling United Real Estate, seeing our five-star reviews, our impeccable reputation and our quality brand name. The reaction of those joining our ranks is that they’re getting more than they were getting when they were part of a brokerage that charged them commission splits.
PT: Tell us about how those who join United are learning about the company.
NB: Our agents are our best source of attracting top talent. The fact that they love this company and are authentic champions of it has everything to do with why 70% to 75% of those agents currently joining us have heard about us from a United Real Estate agent. Without agents, we don’t have a company. Agents are our No. 1 stakeholder, so we have to take exceptionally good care of them.
PT: How is United Real Estate unique among its competitors?
NB: While United’s transaction fee-based agent compensation model is super important and makes us unique, the culture and the level of care we provide to our agents really makes us stand out. When agents join us, we align ourselves quickly so that there’s a level of comfort, trust and friendship. The culture benefits them, and they’re able to engage and prosper quickly. This is crucial to having a great agent-attraction strategy.
PT: How does diversity play a role in your offices and recruiting?
NB: Dallas is a diverse city, and our office and leadership embrace and take great pride in our diversity. Over 40 languages are spoken by agents in our Dallas office. United is one of the most diverse real estate companies in America. We focus on the effort to onboard agents who are keenly interested in delivering exceptional client experiences and then we help them change the financial trajectory of their careers—and sometimes even their lives. When I have an interview on Zoom or in person, I’m genuinely excited to hear their story. One of the most inspiring stories I’ve heard—and am proud to be a part of—is that of Helen and Helena Homavand, sisters from Iran who have found their freedom in America and at United.
PT: Nick, you helped ensure our freedom as a Marine Special Operations veteran. How has United Real Estate helped you find your freedom?
NB: After my honorable discharge in 1997, I found myself going from a role that was full of non-stop danger to standing on the streets of Dallas wondering what had happened and what would be next for me. It took me some time to get to the point where I was slowly ready to open up. I can’t necessarily say getting hired was a rebirth, but it was the first time since 1997 that I felt like I had found myself again. United offered me the trust and autonomy I need to make decisions without being micromanaged and allowed me to flourish and dig back into who I really am. That’s when I turned the corner from being a Special Operations veteran, lost out in the world, to being a broker who happens to have a military background.
PT: Helena, tell us your story.
Helena Homavand: My sister and I came to the United States from Iran in 2014 as refugees and have been with United Real Estate since I obtained my real estate license three years ago. Women have very limited opportunities in Iran, and it was nearly impossible to be a female real estate professional while living there. Because of the freedom and opportunities I’ve had since coming to the U.S. and joining United, I’ve been able to establish myself as a successful real estate practitioner.
PT: Helen, as sisters, how do you and Helena work as a team?
Helen Homavand: We support one another when it comes to showings, contracts and writing offers. While the first year in the industry was hard for us, Nick was not only positive and supportive, but he also encouraged us to stay strong and keep going when we felt like giving up. Nick and his staff are always available, and they support us 100%. They truly respect us and have allowed us to believe in ourselves.
PT: To what do you attribute your business success?
Helen Homavand: We attribute our success to the good energy and environment that’s at the core of United’s business model. United isn’t looking to simply add more agents to the brokerage. Nick and our company want to help people like us grow our businesses and succeed.
PT: In what ways do you communicate with those who speak another language more fluently than English?
Helen Homavand: Having come to the U.S. on our own, knowing virtually no one, we turned to social media to introduce ourselves. We put together a lot of videos in Farsi that explain how real estate is transacted in the U.S., and how it is totally different from the real estate industry in Iran. We’re at the point where our audience trusts us, as they know that we’re really knowledgeable about the real estate industry.