With 33 years experience in real estate, Carlo Racioppo knows the business at its best and at its worst. From his early beginnings as an agent and a student of commerce and economics, Carlo has turned obstacles into opportunities.
Throughout his real estate career, Carlo excelled in residential and commercial sales, management and ownership. Recognition came early. Carlo was the youngest president of the Mississauga Real Estate Board, where he served for seven years. He also served as a director for both the Toronto Real Estate Board and the Ontario Real Estate Association.
“I’ve been through the really tough times in the early ‘90’s with 5 years of declining prices, when only the top 10 or 15 percent of agents not only survived, but became stronger. Since our market has experienced 18 years of growth, newer agents might not appreciate the advantages that type of schooling offers.” ~ Carlo Racioppo
The new graduate, who opened his first brokerage just before the high mortgage rates of the 1990’s, has thrived. Since Carlo purchased Royal LePage Realty Plus in 2004, the brokerage has tripled in size, from 40 to 130 sales associates.
The stylish, high tech office is different from other brokerages in several ways. Associates benefit from the mentorship of three full-time managers offering a combined total of over 100 years of management and sales experience in the real estate industry.
“Our job, our focus,” says Carlo, is building careers.” The mission statement is not simply words on a plaque. It’s Carlo’s personal creed. He is a non-competing owner, constructing the optimum climate for success in real estate.
“No one else is taking it to this level. We invest heavily in training and support. We’ve developed a strong, collaborative environment of professionals,” Carlo says. This necessitates that sales associates be handpicked for optimum success. “We foster a cooperative, helpful culture and look for productive team players with an impressive work ethic,” says Carlo.
To create an environment whereby practicing our core values we can provide the highest quality support, training and coaching services to our associates so that RLRP is the company where every salesperson, buyer and seller can achieve their financial and home ownership dreams.
Integrity, professionalism, competence, respect for individuals, productivity and financial responsibility.
A career in real estate is not for everyone. “People new to the business may try and flounder then leave, after 3 or 4 years,” says Carlo. “There’s no special formula to decide who will make it. You don’t know until you try.”
The brokerage offers everything possible in the way of training, coaching and monitoring. “We can tell within 3 to 6 months whether or not it’s for them,” Carlo explains, “We’ve become efficient at gauging and can save those individuals that large setback in their lives,” he says.
As for real estate agents already in the business, Carlo strives to help them find and exploit their unique strengths.
“There are a lot of good, experienced people who are not attaining their goals, who are not getting to where they could be,” he says. “We take people who are doing well, who could be doing great.” Carlo says there’s nothing more satisfying than helping others realize their full potential. He has made this his life’s work.
“Experience is knowledge and skills, but also mistakes. We’ve been there; we’ve learned. Our learning never stops. Our goal is to give our associates the benefit of everything we have, this wealth of experience, this rich environment, to ignite their own real estate careers and surpass their goals for personal, professional and financial success.” ~ Carlo Racioppo
Dan Levy is just a phone call away for real estate agents needing urgent, on-the-spot advice. With over 50 years experience in the industry, Dan is a true veteran. He’s enjoyed the trenches with a successful career in both residential and commercial real estate.
For decades since, Dan has honed his coaching, training and mentoring expertise with major brokerages. His priority as Broker/Manager at Royal LePage Realty Plus is guiding agents to discover their unique strengths and to realize their ultimate potential.
Helping new real estate agents master the ropes
“In this industry,” Dan says, “50% of one’s business is simply showing up. The other 50% is knowing what to say and do once you arrive. This is where we excel.”
Resources and training programs provide agents with the skill set they need to compete. “A lot of new agents don’t really know how far they can go,” says Dan, “it’s our job to show them how self-accountability will cause personal and financial power.”
Most people looking into the business don’t appreciate the level of commitment it takes to reach their goals. Dan says real estate is tough because it’s competitive and takes a huge commitment but it’s easy in the sense that there are no barriers. “Earning power is unlimited for the confident self-starter,” Dan says.
“Not everyone will make it. Not everyone will earn three or four million dollars a year because not everyone is prepared to give what it takes,” he says, “but when someone leaves a job paying $50,000 to $75,000 annually to earn $150,000 or $250,000 with us, they’ve evolved. That’s achievement.”
Helping experienced real estate agents surpass their expectations
Although he’s faced every imaginable market, hiccup and obstacle, Dan Levy says: “Anyone who thinks they know all there is to real estate is kidding themselves. I’ve been in the industry over 50 years and I’m still learning.”
Dan feels many real estate agents with mediocre earnings could be exceeding their own expectations. “How is it that agents coming from another brokerage can join us and double their income in 18 months?” he asks.
First, the management team boasts a combined 100 years of experience in real estate. Dan says this translates to lead generation ideas that agents have never heard of – ways to expose themselves to consumers on a whole new level.
Second, Dan invests in building strong relationships to support an exchange of information. His goal is to reveal each agent’s personal, unique trigger for success. “It’s not about dishing out the same message all agents get from all brokerages,” he explains, “The message needs to resonate with the individual.”
“Everyone is unique and everyone has this pearl, this hot button at their core. It’s our job to find it so they can activate their talents and grow – to write their own ticket and surpass their goals.” Dan says, “The life of a real estate practitioner is like none other. It offers independence, being your own boss and the potential of unlimited income but most importantly, it offers a very high level of job satisfaction.”
Throughout her banking career, Elizabeth Peters felt an attraction to the real estate business and in 1995 she took the plunge. She quickly found her niche in London’s residential market, particularly with first-time buyers in the community.
An investment background was beneficial, but Elizabeth’s forté was building relationships with her clients. “I took my business seriously and I took my clients’ needs to heart,” she says. “I truly enjoy meeting new people, making a connection with them and I feel honoured to be entrusted with one of their biggest investments.” Her favourite saying is “a house is a house, a home is a home”. The biggest compliment “is when our clients entrust us to represent their homes”.
Elizabeth’s approach earned her repeat and referral business, achievement awards and success throughout her career. Since 2001 Elizabeth has been living and working in Oakville as well as helping new and experienced real estate agents with their career goals. She joined forces with Royal LePage Realty Plus in 2014.
“The brand is prominent in the market and the franchise is dynamic,” says Elizabeth. “Real estate professionals come to us because we are leading the way in quality, hands-on training and we have the expertise and resources to get careers on track.”
Elizabeth’s role at Royal LePage Realty Plus includes hiring, recruitment, organization and management. She is most passionate about one-on-one mentoring. “I thoroughly enjoy the success of others as much as my own,” she says. “The feeling is genuine, to see the realtors grow, the company grow, and to know the clients are getting the professional care they expect and deserve.”
Melissa Salazar’s zest for real estate and helping others began when she was still in high school. From hands-on customer care to launching a new brokerage to working with the #1 team in the world, Melissa has lived and breathed all that happens behind the scenes in real estate. She is an endless resource of energy and creative solutions.
As Director of Operations for Royal LePage Realty Plus, Melissa oversees more than policies and productivity of the brokerage. She plays an integral role in leadership and coaching of both new and experienced real estate associates.
“The learning never stops. I attend every speaking engagement and all new courses so I know the content. This way I can support agents who want to implement the concepts introduced. I also want to ensure every program is the best it can be – if anything can be added or improved upon.” ~ Melissa Salazar
Extensive training and experience allows Melissa to tackle a comprehensive list of challenges. In addition to shaping the brokerage’s training programs, Melissa works one on one with each associate to help them achieve their individual goals. She provides tried and true strategies specific to the area of need:
Marketing – branding, image, market share, print and online material
- Promotion and public relations
- Small and large-scale event management
- Time management – systems and checks, focus, planning and efficiency
- Client experience, presentations and prospecting
- Connections with service providers
Melissa facilitates the transfer of new agents to the brokerage and furnishes them with essential systems and tools for a successful business. Experienced agents, she says, often benefit from guidance on productivity to enable them to reach their goals and potential.
“Everyone is different, with different needs, different questions. Some of the agents I’m working with now can double their business. I’m here to help them do that, to make sure it gets done. We work together to increase market share, with lead generation and prospecting strategies. I see where they can save money and when it’s time to get an assistant.” ~ Melissa Salazar
Melissa has spent her entire career helping agents, leaders, brokers, and owners achieve their goals. “I love to help people – it’s my natural state,” she laughs. “I like being part of the career building process – their achievements and triumphs are also my success.”
Melissa has a flare for design and enjoys the creative side of marketing and advertising. Ultimately, she says her favourite thing about the real estate industry is helping people sell or buy their homes.
“Originally I worked directly with buyers and sellers and I loved that. Whether their situation at the time was negative or positive, I felt we were helping them to move onto a new chapter in their lives, where the future would be brighter. Now that I work in operations I still know that, indirectly, I touch the client.”
~ Melissa Salazar