2 reach home sales mark of
8, 2005 -2 reach home sales mark of $50 million
by Joseph Barrios
You'd think being at the top of their game would bring more
enthusiastic responses from Robin Sue Kaiserman and Russell
P. Long, both of whom made record home sales in 2004 of approximately
Kaiserman, something of a celebrity in the business, was
tops in sales for nine years, according to Tucson Association
of Realtors' Multiple Listing Service data. Then in 2002,
she was "dethroned" by her fellow Long Realty agent
when he sold $41.1 million worth of homes in the Tucson market,
about $5.5 million more than Kaiserman.
This year, they tied. Both made record sales in a marketplace
that many in the business have described as "crazy."
It's good to be at the top of the game, right?
Well, sorta. Kaiserman doesn't work long days and weekends
to be on top of a list. She likes to help people, she likes
to be successful, but she doesn't really like the competition.
"We're sort of stuck with it. Between Russell and I,
we'd really like to get rid of it," Kaiserman said. Long
says there's no doubt about it. It's fun to be number one
- when you haven't made it there before. Once you have - and
for Long, that happened after almost three decades in the
business - that laurel has lost its luster. "I've had
my turn at being number one and I just want to do a good job
for people," Long said. "As far as I'm concerned,
the being number one thing is totally overrated. You can't
get a big head about it. You get a big head, it's just a larger
target for a two-by-four."
According to Long Realty, the $50 million figure for any single
agent and/or their buyer agents sets a new record for the
Tucson area. Many Tucson agents saw a busy and profitable
year in 2004.
Rosey Koberlein, president and CEO of Long, said 44 additional
Long Realty associates each achieved more than $10 million
in sales in 2004. Four years ago, there were only about 20
associates in the Tucson area who achieved $10 million or
more annually in sales.
Kaiserman said she's busy, but she doesn't just take any client
who comes along. When potential clients are interviewing her,
she interviews them right back. "The people need to be
nice. I know it sounds trivial, the word nice," she said.
"I want to deal with nice people with nice homes."
People who aren't nice can often be impossible to please,
Maybe it's real-life success stories like Kaiserman and Long,
maybe it's those pie-in-the-sky promises of wealth from late-night
infomercials. Either way, something is encouraging people
to get their real estate licenses in Arizona. According to
the Arizona Department of Real Estate, there were approximately
50,000 licensees in 1999. In 2004, that number increased to
And while the number of licensees has gone up, the staff that
handles license renewals has gone down.
Thus, Real Estate Commissioner Elaine Richardson is giving
a valentine to the thousands of folks who deal in real estate.
Beginning Monday, licensees can go online at www.az.gov/real-estate,
to fill out a simple form to renew their licenses. The Online
Renewal System, developed by the state Government Information
Technology Agency and IBM, can also be used to change employment
status, report on continuing education, change personal information
and pay by credit card.
The ballooning number of real estate professionals also explains
another department endeavor: an education committee. Mary
Utley, department spokeswoman, said real estate educators
will be pulled together beginning in March to review standards
At a recent Tucson chapter meeting of the National Association
of Women Business Owners, Richardson was asked if she was
concerned about the number of people obtaining real estate
licenses in Arizona. She said she wasn't concerned about the
number per se but does want to examine the quality of education
available to new agents.
Copyright 2005 The Arizona Daily Star