Summit County’s Number one Agent Shane Herbert on Utah’s Real Estate Market

We are here today with Utah Real Estate Agent Shane Herbert. His experience allows him to pair clients with the perfect home.

Shane Herbert Real Estate Utah Business Innovators MagazineQ:  Shane, what were you doing before real estate? What led you to shift to the real estate market?

A:  Before real estate, I had a successful career in retail, at stores such as Nordstrom, Barnes & Noble, and Linens-n-Things. A very close friend convinced me to try real estate.  Initially, I was hesitant but excited at the prospect of a new venture, I jumped in feet-first and started running as fast as I could. I found real estate fascinating as it allowed me to take my corporate retail experience to the next level. My retail career instilled in me an understanding about the importance of customer service, which I have utilized throughout my real estate career.  I view real estate as a department store, and treat each neighborhood like a different department. This customer service oriented mindset is key to my success.

 Q: What has been a key element of your success?

 A:  I’m frequently asked this question – the answer is, I do not like limits.  I like the fast-paced, spontaneous nature of my job. I have an insatiable appetite, and I am extremely optimistic.  I choose to go the extra mile, educating myself thoroughly about the market so that I can present an authentic perspective to every client, which has contributed immensely to my success.

 Q: What sets your team apart?

 A: After working with some of the top companies in the retail industry, it was easy for me to see that Sotheby’s International Realty is absolutely the best brand in Real Estate. I envisioned building the highest quality team within Sotheby’s and that is just what I have done. I have a tremendous support system that works as a cohesive unit. Each team member contributes with a specialized field in the marketplace, and working together efficiently, we are able to offer each client our comprehensive knowledge. Because my name is on the door, I utilize my expertise, experience, vision, and leadership to assist with each client and transaction. 

 Q: Are their differences in selling luxury properties versus selling in the common market?

A: There is a misconception that selling in the luxury market is more luxurious and you will make a million dollars overnight.  While that can be true for a lucky few, what is often misunderstood about the luxury market is that it doesn’t move as fast.  I sometimes work with homebuyers for years before they decide to purchase, and when I list a luxury property, it can take a year or more to find the right buyer.

Q: What trends have you seen in the luxury home market, particularly with the market crash? What’s happening right now?

A:  I love discussing market trends!  Just when you think there is nothing new a litany of new trends emerge, or old trends come back modernized.  One prevalent trend right now is moving away from defining each room; rather, rooms and spaces are more flexible: the second family room can double as a bunk room, bedrooms can be gyms or temporary home offices. The traditional home office is disappearing. Garages are being treated as a part of the house, with flooring (epoxy, tile, carpet, etc.) and built-in cabinets of the same quality as the kitchen.  People are purchasing their homes based on their lifestyles – beyond skiing and golf, people want easy access to their everyday recreational activities, like yoga, swimming, and paddle boarding.  Buyers are looking to have their favorite activities nearby, without having to drive across town.

Q:  What is a common problem you see your clients have in choosing the right property, and how do you help them to decide?

 A:   Homebuyers may envision a home that is actually not suited to their lifestyle.  To help them, I simply listen.  Instead of focusing on the traditional questions, like how many bedrooms or bathrooms they would like, I have a conversation to learn who the homebuyer actually is – their activities, interests, and hobbies.  I am an expert in my area, and by listening to them and understanding their lifestyle, I instinctually know what they are looking for – which is often not at all what they had pictured for themselves.

Q:  What are the top three questions a buyer should ask their agent while looking at a property?

 A:   Excellent question, as I believe buyers are too often afraid to ask questions.  Important things to consider asking include:

  • What are the historical trends in the neighborhood?
  • What is the city’s long-term vision for the neighborhood? (A trip to city hall can also help answer this question)
  • How were the home sales over the past 10-15 years?

 Q: If you were giving advice to a family member outside of Utah who was in the market for a property, what would you suggest they look for in an agent?

 A: Honesty.  You want an agent who has your long-term goals and happiness in mind.  It’s easy to get caught up in the emotional experience, but home buying should be fun, as it’s a big decision.  The buyer should feel that the agent has their best interests, and not just their own pocketbook, in mind.  Real estate is a commission-based profession and we only make money if the deal closes.  In my experience, it works better to put the client’s needs ahead of my personal finances.

Tavis Bucklin

Tavis Bucklin is a #1 Best-selling author, and contributing iReporter for CNN covering leaders in Business, Health, and Personal Development.Tavis has been published in ABC, CNN, NBC, FOX and Forbes Magazine among other outlets.