Steve Dainard speaks with Ryan Johnstone the Broker/ Manager of Royal LePage Niagara.
Before getting into real estate, Ryan attended Niagara College. After an internship with the ministry of transportation, he got a job as a business analyst with the ministry right out of school. But when business was picked up at his mom’s brokerage, so she asked him to come on board. The original plan was for him to get into commercial sales, but the demands of the business moved him into management. Today he is the Broker/ Manager of the Royal LePage office in Saint Catherines and works with over 400 Realtors and other employees. He is proud to call Royal LePage Canada’s brokerage.
Steve and Ryan talk about Royal LePage, what activity is happening in the market, and what to look for when picking the right Realtor for you.
- Saint Catherines
- and more
- Did you start with management or did you sell first?
The original plan was for me to start selling commercial but I ended up focusing on training then moved to management.
- Where do you operate?
Grimsby, Smithville, Dunsville, Niagara, and Saint Catherines.
- How many agents do you employ?
We have about 150 Realtors at the main office, with 390 agents in Niagara and 65 agents at a satellite company up north.
- In your opinion, what makes Royal LePage different from other brokerages?
We are Canadian owned with great company culture and are proud to call ourselves Canadas real estate company.
- What are the hot markets in Niagara currently? And what is the market on the whole like?
April – May was our peak but numbers are levelling out.
We are continuing to see a 25% increase year over year.
Recently, mortgage changes and foreign buyer taxes have made a difference in the market.
- Do you specialize in any areas?
We cover all areas of real estate, from commercial to residential to luxury properties.
- Where are the luxury buyers coming from?
It depends on the market. We thought we would see a bump in buyers from the US due to the exchange rate but this has not been the case. We have seen a decent amount of buyers from the GTA.
- Are there any Realtors actively marketing in the US?
No, if you get a referral we will help them but we do not actively seek business south of the border.
- What are some of your biggest challenges as a broker?
Because the internet MLS listings are going to more people, it makes the landscape more competitive.
- What does a marketing plan look like?
We have a full marketing plan that we offer to our staff from head office to help them with marketing and social media.
- What advice would you give to someone looking to work for a brokerage?
They need to be people-oriented, know how to set goals, and be willing to take it on full time.