by Andreas Dakos

My first listing story

How it all started

When I started College, I had to work to support myself. I was working various part time jobs, and managed to save 7000 euros. My goal was to buy a used car with my savings.

I randomly met with my then broker who pitched me the idea of becoming a realtor. It was Feb of 2005 when I decided to join RE/MAX and I was just 21 years old.

I spent 3.500 from my car savings on ReMax training – the quick start and success program. It involved forming a business, getting business cards, printing materials etc.

I spent the other half to buy myself a used Yamaha moto, so I can have a vehicle to move around easily. And that was it! I was starting my first business at the age of 21, and I was broke.

Andreas moto

Everyone I knew thought I was crazy!

“You are too young”, they insisted.
“You are never going to make it”, they said.

“Nobody will trust you. To become a realtor, you need a lot more experience.”

However, I stood my ground. I focused on the process I was trained for by Remax trainer.
He said…

Don’t worry about what people say.
Remember, when I tell you to jump, don’t ask why, ask how high.

Alexandros Kaminaris

ReMax training is a global, proven method that works for everyone, all over the world.
You or your age are not an exception.
If you want to succeed, you will. Just stay focused on the training program. Oh… and buy yourself a few suits. You will look at least 5 years older.”

This became my manifesto. I wasn’t going to quit.
I was aiming for victory, personal success, financial freedom, being a master of my own time and most importantly, doing something that I absolutely loved!

“3 months”, he said.
“You will be working every day, full time, sharing business cards to everyone you know, without any success, BUT on the third month you will get your first sale.”

But as I told you, I was broke.
My 7K car savings vanished the moment I decided to join Real Estate.

Starting at 21, broke

No Sales = No Income

Meanwhile, my wife (girlfriend at the time) and I had just moved in together.
Without an income, I couldn’t provide the very basics: bills, rent, even food.

So, after my main job as a realtor, I also worked as a waiter in another city (a 1 ½ hour drive away).
The goal was to work for some extra cash, WITHOUT getting spotted in town by my prospects and leads. You can’t walk around all day long in a suit, exchanging business cards, telling everyone you are a licensed professional realtor, and then be seen in a restaurant serving meals…

I was a waiter for 90 days, and then…

I got my first listing

Just like everyone remembers their first love and first kiss, I’m guessing all realtors remember their first listing.

It was one of the most challenging properties a realtor could ever have; a basement apartment.

The walls had mold and you could smell the humidity the minute you walked through the front door. The house had old broken furniture, a damaged ceiling and dust everywhere.

The good thing was that the owners trusted me! They believed that I would do a great job promoting it. They also accepted what the right price was for their property.

I changed from a realtor in a suit, to a worker in a tracksuit!
Within a day of work, I rearranged the furniture to make the house look bigger, dusted, scrubbed the walls, added an automatic air freshener and finally, brought my coffee machine from home, to fill the house with the aroma of fresh coffee. (A lot of free time back then!)

I then borrowed a professional camera from a friend to get some nice pictures of the house and started promoting it using the assets from 15 years ago…

Old School Marketing

Old School Marketing

Do you remember newspapers? Like physical paper, not digital…
I bought the front page of three newspapers to promote the listing!

Image of Andreas Dakos in the frontpage of a newspapper with the first listing he got
Instead of using regular ads, I was promoting my listings at the frontpage of the newspappers

This gave me a lot of traction with leads.

37 visits.
37 people visited that property and 36 of them ran away…

But, 1 of them didn’t see it like the rest.

For one person, this place was the home she could live in.

Even when I told her about the moisture and the humidity, she didn’t care. She was going to repair it. The house was cheap enough to save up for the restoration.

And she was happy!

It was then that I realized, “Every property has its buyer”.

Just like one person’s trash can be another person’s treasure and someone’s garage can be someone else’s office.

Every single property has an owner who will love to own it.

Within those 90 days, just like the trainer told me, I got my first sale.
The earnings just covered the basics, but that was OK.

I got my very first real estate sale!

Outcome

4 months after that day, I managed to become Realtor of the Month (across 400 realtors in the Re/Max network in Greece), selling ~$2 millions worth of properties (October 2005).

In the same month, I sold my temp bike and bought myself a brand new 20K valued car.
The choice I made 8 months ago to invest my savings, instead of buying myself a liability, paid off.

quote: Every single property has an owner who will love to own it.

My very first year in Re/Max I got awarded for

An award, a cd and a wine box
Some of my awards among with my marketing gifts
  1. Top 30 Realtors in Greece – 2005
  2. Best Performing Re/Max Realtor – Among my broker’s team
  3. Outstanding Practices Award – 2005
Author

Andreas Dakos