2024 Crush It In Real Estate Kick Off Recap

The 2024 Crush It Kick Off event was our largest and most triumphant to date!

Miss the event? Here is your chance to watch the replay!

On February 1st, 2024, Crush It In Real Estate held its annual Kickoff event at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston with an audience of over 800 people; our largest turnout yet.   Keynote speakers at this year’s event included: Anthony Lamacchia and Brian Moses, a well-known real estate speaker and coach. Also gracing the stage were industry experts Michael Carucci, Bess Freedman, Kevin Sears, Jessica Edgerton,  and our very own rock stars, Rosalee Discipio and Michael McDonagh. Jackie Louh effortlessly emcee’Ed the event while Lindsay and Dave conducted thought provoking interviews. From learning about the ultra-luxury real estate market to best practices to navigating new changes in our field, each speaker shared valuable and relatable insight.    

If you were to take away only three pieces of wisdom from Thursday’s event, take away this: establish trust with your clients, cultivate face-to-face relationships with your industry peers, and never stop learning.  These simple, yet often overlooked recommendations were echoed by each of the speakers as the foundation for building a successful real estate business. 

Anthony Lamacchia

Anthony took to the stage to provide updates on the market.  2023 was a challenging year, and as Anthony put it, “If you’re feeling down, welcome to the club”, but remember that “challenging times create opportunities”.     

2023 had the lowest existing home sales since 1994.  National inventory is low, in fact it is the lowest in recorded history. High interest rates and home prices have raised concerns for buyers and sellers that the housing market will collapse in a similar fashion to what occurred in 2008. Anthony reassures that this is not the global financial crisis of 2008.  In examining the data, at this time in 2008 there were 43,000 homes listed for sale.  Right now, there are only 5,000 homes listed for sale.  Prices on homes decrease when inventory is high, so it is only natural for prices to remain high in this low-volume market.  A contrast to the high volume of listings available in 2008. Yet, people are sitting still, afraid to buy.  According to Anthony, those who are acting are only doing so because they have experienced one of the “4-Ds”: divorce, death, diamond, or diaper.  Build trust with clients, get to know their wants and needs, and educate them.  Show them the data, and how 2024 is not a repeat of 2008.      

Anthony predicts that sales will be up 5-7% in 2024, but the approach to clients needs to change. “We are no longer in a time where it’s about running fast and receiving multiple offers”. This is a different market and to be successful, agents must be experts in their business. REALTORS® should know their markets inside and out because “when you educate, you attract”.   

Additionally, Anthony echoed Bess Freedman’s concerns regarding the reputation of REALTORS® as it extends to social media.  He encourages agents to focus more on sharing the stories of their clients rather than how quickly the home was sold.  Focusing on the speed of the sale only propagates the misconception that REALTORS® do not have to work hard.     

Kevin Sears - President of the National Association of REALTORS®, Broker/Owner of Sears Real Estate

“[Kevin] hasn’t slept in his bed in three weeks”- Anthony Lamacchia 

Recently promoted ahead of schedule as president of the NAR, Kevin Sears has been involved with the association since 1998.  He knows the history, the “good and the bad”, and acknowledges the need to “know where we came from so, we can know what’s coming at us”.  Sound advice from Sears included returning to the fundamentals of best practices: go to work, go to local, statewide, and national events, show your community what you do, share your story and use it to influence good legislation.  Additionally, Sears encouraged REALTORS® to explore the robust database of information on the NAR website for online endorsements, training, and other resources. 

Moving forward, some of the regulatory goals of the NAR include advocating for more tax incentives for property ownership, removing the marriage penalty, and staying in touch with the federal government to lower interest rates and increase affordability.  Sears believes the new normal will be around 5%, but it may not get there this year.     

Regarding the current pending lawsuits, both Sears and Anthony stress that change in business practices is inevitable.  This is the time to grow, adapt, and reinvent. 

Bess Freedman - CEO of Brown Harris Stevens

She has been featured on CNN, CNBC, Fox, Bloomberg Television, and is the first ever Chief Executive Officer at Brown Harris Stevens.  In addition to empathizing with the challenges of 2023 in the real estate market and offering her predictions regarding interest rates and affordability in 2024, Bess Freedman delivered a powerful impact during her segment.  When asked how agents should look to build a successful business, she reiterated the importance of face-to-face relationships with clients and colleagues and moving away from Covid-inspired practices, like working from home exclusively and conducting meetings over Zoom.  Not only is human interaction crucial in this career, it is also a necessity for maintaining a healthy mindset. “We are in the relationship business– you have to show up and get to know people”.   

Freedman also challenged REALTORS® to reverse the inaccurate image reality television shows like “Selling Sunset” and “Million Dollar Listing” have created. In contrast to these shows, Freedman acknowledged that “REALTORS® are constantly hustling but only get paid for the results”.  This is something that clients can easily overlook, however, being transparent about your services, and the time and value of those services, helps the client to see the immense amount of work and effort that goes on behind the scenes.   

Jessica Edgerton, Chief Legal Officer/ Executive Vice President of Industry and Learning and Michael McDonough General Counsel at Lamacchia Companies, Inc.

Jessica, Michael, and Anthony took to the stage to provide updates and some much-needed comfort regarding current lawsuits, counterpoints, and what to anticipate.  Following the legal loss on October 31st, 2023, the only option is to look to the future.  Post verdict motions are in progress likely for the next few months, and Jessica echoes Kevin Sears’ stance: change is inevitable.  Don’t let that scare you, as Anthony said earlier, this is an opportunity to learn and reinvent how you do things.  Somewhere between 15 to 18 states, including New Hampshire and Connecticut, already require buyer agency agreements.  If you are worried a buyer won’t want to work with you because of the new laws, Jessica asserts that “over 80% of buyers want to work with a buyer’s agent, and they need us now more than ever”. 

So, what can be done to get ahead?  Anthony, Michael and Jessica all advise knowing your agreements like the backs of your hands.  Get comfortable talking to clients and expressing your value as their agent.  Show them all you can provide and what they stand to lose without your services.  Have your buyer’s agreement signed early and well in advance of closing.  Above all else, get training, and listen to the legal advice.   

Brian Moses - National Real Estate Speaker, Trainer and Coach of Brian Moses Coaching

 

$50,000 in debt to the IRS, Brian Moses rummaged through his car for the last two dollars in change he could scrounge up to buy one chance at $1 million dollars, courtesy of Megabucks.  Spoiler alert, he didn’t win.  But he still holds that ticket today, many years later as a reminder of where he once was.   

Now, he has thousands of real estate transactions to his name, is the owner of Brian Moses Coaching, and operates as a successful national trainer. A far cry from rummaging for change to buy a lottery ticket.  Moses shared his story of how a change in mindset, inspired by author and life coach, Tony Robbins, changed his life and showed him a world he didn’t know existed.  The Created World.  In this “created world”, beliefs control thoughts, thoughts lead to actions, and actions create results.  If beliefs are the catalyst for results, why not dream big?   

Rosalee Discipio - REALTOR® at Lamacchia Realty

A self-described, “mother, wife, pats fan, feminist, tequila-drinking, bacon, and taco-eating REALTOR®”, Rosalee Discipio crushed it in 2023 bringing in $23 million in sales.  Rosie has been in real estate for 13 years, though she wanted nothing to do with it initially, and struggled for the first two years while working for another company due to the cutthroat nature of the business.  She found her stride at Lamacchia, having another record year in 2021 with $18.5 million in sales.  She also found support in her colleagues following the devastating loss of her father-in-law, which caused her to take a step back in 2022.   

For Rosie, it all comes down to goals. Set goals, share goals, qualify goals. Have an action plan and let that be the guide. “Show up and be present in your business.” Perhaps one of the most impressive tools in Rosie’s toolkit is her color-coded calendar with daily tasks she knows she needs to complete. Tasks include anything from writing thank you cards to meeting with vendors to making phone calls to clients. If there is a task that you struggle with, work with others to find a way around the barrier and to improve. Rosie also stresses the importance of a healthy mindset, self-care, and knowing your value because “every day is an opportunity to make $1,000”.   

Michael Carucci - Executive Vice President of Gibson-Sotheby's International Realty

Carucci captivated the audience by delving into his experience selling ultra-luxury homes to some very high-profile clientsWith perks like traveling in his clients private jet and dining in the personal kitchens of James Beard award-winning chefs, one might wonder if there are shared commonalities between the ultra-luxury market and the average client most REALTORS® encounter. According to Carucci, there are many. And, it all comes back to building trust because, “if your client trusts you, everything becomes easier on you. Carucci also provides a “concierge service” to his clients. While your first concern might be regarding the price tag for such a service, Carucci emphasized it is more about thoughtful details and gestures rather than expensive gifts. Though he can’t remember the last time he worked with a mortgage, and he may have lost a $9 million deal over a dining room table, his advice was straightforward and relatable:  listen to your clients, learn about them and the business, and be patient and true to yourself throughout the process  

At the close of the event, the audience left the room buzzing with excitement, inspiration, and most importantly, practical strategies to grow their business. The event showcased the remarkable strength of the real estate community, particularly when they come together for a shared goal.