As a testament to his level of service, Michael Waddell has been cited among the top 10 per cent of RE/MAX real estate agents in Edmonton in 2015, as well as among the top 5 per cent in the same region last year.
Tell us how you first got involved in the real estate industry.
I’ve always wanted to do real estate, but I never really got into it until I was around 28 or 29. I wanted to do it sooner, but I also felt I was maybe too young to do it and people won’t take me seriously. But finally, I just decided to go for it, and I’ve never looked back since then.
In the years since you’ve started, how has the industry shaped you as a person?
When I first started, I would entertain anyone who would call me. Whether it’s a referral or an online lead, I would pounce on it and schedule them. But now, I’m becoming much better at pre-qualifying people over the phone. I now take the time to ask the necessary questions, and because of that, I end up having more time off for myself.
I realize now that people will be okay even if you say “no”, as they will realize that you actually have your life and your family. When you say “no”, they are usually very accommodating of your schedule. So I think I’ve become better at that.
How does a typical day for a real estate professional go?
Every day is different, but you’ll always want to try to meet new people. That’s the name of the game: if you’re not meeting new people, then it’s highly unlikely that you’ll be successful. I always aim to make friends and be friendly, because that is the foundation of success in this business. I probably don’t have much of a fixed schedule every day, but at the minimum, I call up all of my leads and clients, check listings, and update my sellers.
What trends are you seeing in Edmonton right now?
Especially compared to last year, I think that things are now looking up a bit. It may not go up very much, but I definitely think that the worst is now over for the Edmonton market. I think we’re out of the market slump that has started around a year or two ago, and with all the new builds, I think it’s looking brighter for Edmonton.
How would you entice those in the fence to cast their lot with Edmonton?
I think Edmonton has become way more promising, especially downtown with the new arena district. Even as recently as 5 years ago, downtown Edmonton wasn’t much to brag about, but since the closing of the old airport, new and bigger buildings have been erected. Combined with the new arena, the sheer number of development downtown has made the area more desirable. At this point, I’ve even heard people compare downtown Edmonton to the arena district in Los Angeles, especially since there are brand-new apartment condos being built continuously. Also, prices are fairly low compared to markets like Vancouver or Toronto, or even Calgary.