To read the newspaper pdf of this post, click Robert James Realty Welcomes Deni Castle
This week I’d like to say a warm welcome to one of Noosa’s most successful agents Deni Castle, who has joined the ranks of Robert James Realty (RJR).
While the community will be well acquainted with Deni’s face, those who don’t know her closely might not realise she was an education guidance counsellor with 26 years of educational training. Perhaps this is what gives her the edge in selling real estate, or one of the things, as she also prides herself on being one step ahead of the game, often travelling, educating herself and ensuring she knows about the next best thing in technology and social media before most.
After spending over an hour getting to know Deni, it was obvious how much she loves and is interested in technology. She bought her first computer in 1984 and was part of creating the first real estate based website –ebid.com in Australia in a joint venture with American partners. She has a long list of firsts, including the first in Noosa to advertise in colour, the first to advertise in the weekender magazine and was a data tester for realestate.com.au when it was new (and very small).
In 1999 she was invited to talk at the Brisbane Convention Centre for the Real Estate Institute of Queensland about technology in real estate in front of hundreds of agents who hung on to her every word. The invitation came about after she returned from a trip to Orlando, Florida in 1998, where she heard Stefan Swanpoel speak about the future of real estate. It was a time when Australia was emulating the United States’ ‘ big agency’ scene, and Stefan predicted that 50 per cent of real estate agencies and agents would not be in the industry in 10 years time.
“It was so true, we are going back to a ‘cottage’ industry and agency sizes have dropped down now,” she says.
One of the driving factors for her change to RJR was that she wanted to be a part of something new and with a good depth of support in the
way of experienced, long-term agents like Cheryl Smart and Penny Neep who know what it is like to run a business.
“They’re well travelled, well educated and experienced with high expectations of themselves and successful backgrounds.”
Deni will be a fantastic member of the RJR team, because in addition to her obvious thirst for knowledge and dedication to the Noosa property market, she has won a
swag of awards she wasn’t even hunting, from international agencies including LJ Hooker’s Captains Club to Multi-Million Dollar Chapter Member and coveted Best Business Growth awards. Plus she is an expert in the most important thing a real estate agent needs to have – communication, as she says “communication is key”.
Something that has come from her love of technology is her database of clients she established in 1998. I think it’s just a backup as she seems to remember an extraordinary
number of sales and many clients, and has outstanding local knowledge. She doesn’t use her database to spam or call, but to remember people, resulting in about 20 per cent of her sales occurring off the market.
“I’ve just sold a property…and it’s a property that wasn’t even on the market,” Deni says.
“The young couple had seen eight to nine properties with other agents and I just asked them questions (because of my background as a counsellor). When they told me what they were looking for I knew the perfect place for them. The property was rented but I knew the owner, I took the wife, she liked it and the husband like it too. It’s all about product knowledge and asking the right questions.”