In a digital age, real estate clients come to the marketplace prepared. Buyers typically search on their own for many months before engaging an agent to represent them. And we know this just isn't about being casual, most people want to avoid engaging the wrong professional. But how do you know you've got the right agent? Is it 5-star reviews? Sponsored ads on social media? Sure, this is a good start. But if you dig deeper, you'll see it's about chemistry. You should hire an agent that makes you feel empowered. "Meet the Agents" is the guerilla realty guide to our professionals.
Meet Makeda Phillander
How long have you worked in Real Estate, what did you do prior?
I have worked in real estate as an agent for the past 7 years. Before that, I worked as a Cobra and benefits, administrator, but have also been investing in real estate as a landlord since 2008.
I am originally from Trinidad and Tobago. I am a graduate of Brooklyn College and have lived in New York City and Holland before moving to Baltimore in 2003.
You have a lot of investor-clients, how does this impact your business?
I like the contrast of having different types of clients with investors. It is a little easier to navigate the deals as their emotions are not so involved. It's all about the numbers. With homeowners, I love being part of the process of helping them to find THEIR home. This is the most rewarding part of being an agent.
I'm mostly sought after by investors for evaluating, building, and managing their real estate portfolios. I also enjoy dealing with 1st time homebuyers, current homeowners, and developers.
You are a Certified international Property Specialist and you grew up outside the US, how does this perspective inform your work?
Working with international clients is such a treat. Like myself, most view homeownership as extremely important. The CIPS designation is also important to me as I recognize that the world has become so accessible that people are now not just looking at living options where they are, but globally. I always want to be in a position to facilitate the needs of my clients.
How are you incorporating new technologies into your practice? Where can people follow your work?
I fully embrace technology and find that it has far-reaching benefits. I also love that we now have so many different modes of communication. This makes it is so much easier to reach people where and how they would like to be reached. Everyone can visit my website and blog, join my Facebook Group, follow me on The Gram, and watch me on Youtube.
You're one of the "OG's" aka "original guerilla's - what made you take the leap?
I was looking for a brokerage that did not make me feel or treat me like a number, and I definitely made the right decision by going with guerilla, What was also important to me was having full access to my broker and over the years we have grown our relationship into a friendship. How many agents truly say that they have a "real" relationship with their Broker?
Real Estate is a wild business, can you share a few memorable experiences?
The most recent comes to mind. I had an inspection and got to the house only to find that squatters and their dogs were living in the property. we had to have the police, as well as animal control, come out. Needless to say, most of the neighbors were out on their front porch wanting to know what was happening.... the dogs were taken away, the squatters "disappeared" and the buyer passed on purchasing.