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Fresh face of real estate

Brittany Geotes doesn’t make deals — she builds relationships

Becoming a Realtor, Brittany Geotes often tells people, only takes passing an exam. But becoming a respected, top-producing Realtor — that’s something else entirely.

“It takes long nights, working weekends and a positive personality,” says the owner/Realtor with NextHome Simplicity, “but most of all, you have to really love people.”

After graduating with honors from the University of Southern Mississippi in 2012, Geotes went back for a business/marketing degree — hoping to improve her odds of getting into a good master’s program for industrial organizational psychology. She changed direction — which she thought was temporary — after taking real estate classes with a friend.

Although Geotes ultimately chose real estate, she says her psychology studies helped prepare her for the challenge of comforting, teaching and providing for a diverse real estate clientele.

“I absolutely love helping people understand the real estate process and helping them accomplish their goals,” Geotes says. “I also love how this career lets me develop long-term relationships with people from all over.”

VISION BECOMING REALITY

As a Realtor himself, Brittany’s husband, Andrew Geotes, understands the dedication needed to be successful in the industry. The husband-and-wife team are always on call — during dinner, on weekends and even on their honeymoon. The culmination of their hard work and sacrifices came in January, when they launched their NextHome Simplicity business.

“We have been working from the moment we wake up to the moment we get into bed,” Brittany Geotes says. “We have a vision to build a brokerage of full-time, experienced professionals and provide them with tools and training to simplify the process and provide our clients with a consistently excellent real estate experience.”

The couple is operating out of a temporary location while their permanent office, on Klondyke Road in Long Beach, undergoes renovation.

“(Brittany) has been instrumental in everything, from the design and layout of the office itself to the aesthetic — then we’re working together to put together policies and procedures for our agents,” her husband says. “She’s a workaholic who does great at everything she does.”

Photograph by Brandi Stage Potraiture

OVERCOMING OBSTACLES

Dyslexia was one of several challenges Geotes faced during her formative years, and she learned valuable coping skills from a young age.

“I didn’t have the storybook childhood,” she acknowledges, adding that she moved out at age 16 and was engaged by 17. She survived an abusive relationship and put herself through college, she says, only to come out stronger.

Clearing those hurdles helped her develop a fierce work ethic that has served her well, yielding opportunities by the age of 30 that she never thought possible.

The Realtor also credits God for His guidance.

“He has answered very specific prayers that have helped me accomplish many goals, Geotes says. “One of my favorite sayings is ‘get on your knees and pray, then get on your feet and work.’”

EACH DAY IS DIFFERENT

No day is the same for the busy Geotes, who sometimes shows properties from sunup to sundown. Other days are taken up with emails and talking to clients, or conducting research and counseling other agents.

In the last few years alone, Geotes has witnessed a dramatic shift in the real estate industry, toward an ever greater emphasis on technology. Growing up in the information age, she can’t remember a time without computers and cell phones, and she was using social media as a marketing tool long before its potential was known. Fresh approaches are propelling Geotes and her young, ambitious female peers to the top of the local real estate pyramid.

“I’ve created hundreds of social media marketing posts, and I regularly do short videos on my YouTube channel and other social media platforms,” Geotes says. “Nowadays, past clients are so happy to see how far I’ve come. The support they give me really warms my heart.”

Emily Clemens, her former broker at REMAX Along the Way, is among those who are pleased — but not surprised — by Geotes’s accomplishments. Clemens says she been impressed by her “dear friend” since Geotes contacted her in 2014, looking for a broker to work under.

“It’s been a blessing to watch her continue to grow and succeed as she recognizes and puts into action the gifts I saw in her from our first meeting,” Clemens adds.

Photograph by Brandi Stage Potraiture

CHANGING WITH THE TIMES

Like Geotes, Clemens has sought to keep pace with an ever-evolving business — “particularly technology, both what’s available to the consumer and the agent.”

“While nothing replaces the personal connection with the public that’s vital to our industry, the ability to see the benefit of combining the two is proving to be an asset,” Clemens says.

While agents generally have access to many of the same tools, Andrew Geotes says not all invest in them or use them to the same extent as he and Brittany. For instance, the couple recognizes the power of professional photography to show a home in the best light, and they also take advantage of Matterport — a 3-D platform that allows viewers to virtually walk through a property.

“It’s like Google Earth inside your home,” he says. The technology also allows the Geotes to provide buyers with an accurate, printable floor plan, including room dimensions.

According to the couple’s website, theorangedog.net, marketing is now entering the “visual” phase, and nine out of 10 homebuyers are starting their search online. Video marketing is essential to reaching the largest audience, and Geotes strives to keep up with the trends.

“Also, NextHome offers our buyers a personalized app for them to search for available properties,” she says. “Search engines like Zillow and Trulia do not always have up-to-date or accurate information, which is why buyers love using our app.”

Geotes’s efforts to stay on the cutting edge have been rewarded with several top producer awards since she was just 25, including Platinum Top Producer recognition in 2017. In the same year, she and her husband were named the third top-producing team in the nation with $14 million in sales, beating teams of seven-plus agents in large states like Texas and California.

Most recently, Geotes announced that she and Andrew will be headed to Las Vegas to accept their 2018 national NextHome award.

In any client interaction, Geotes says her objective is not to close a deal, but to forge a relationship. Some want to enter real estate because they like houses, she says, “but it takes so much more than that.”

“A good Realtor is someone who has knowledge and experience of the market they are working in, someone who cares about their clients’ needs and wants and someone who strives to be professional,” Geotes adds.

In her husband’s eyes, Geotes’s enthusiasm and energy set her apart. He’s seen her lose sleep over situations where her clients’ interests were at risk, and no matter the size of the deal, she’s committed to caring for them like family.

“She’s extremely passionate about what she does and helping people,” Andrew Geotes says. “That’s her whole mission — to provide service in the way she feels clients deserve.”

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