Andrew Paul Uilkie Larry Goldstein Taking the Gamble Out of Realty By Haley Freeman T he real estate industry has long been a staple in Arizona. With an urban sprawl that has multiplied in the last few decades, it is no wonder that it has been a thriving marketplace. The real estate crash a few years ago, hit Phoenix hard. Now as we are recovering, homes are being built and bidding wars leave homes on the market for only a few days. This uptake in the market has the real estate industry on the rise. Larry Goldstein became a Realtor soon after getting married to Sue Person. Between his wife and himself, they have over 40 years of real estate experience. Goldstein’s role has changed slightly, though. He is now the designated broker for Clients First Realty Referral Company. This is an innovative branch of the parent company, which recruits and develops referring agents. Goldstein is excited about this new opportunity in his career. “I’m inventing an industry. This is really something I’m creating from scratch, and it’s nothing but positive,” he said. Referring agents are licensed real estate professionals who refer clients to an active agent and earn a percentage of the agent’s commission. Becoming a referring agent requires that an individual pass an Arizona-approved real estate course, complete the licensing examination conducted by the Arizona Department of Real Estate, and pass a background check. Referring agents are not authorized to conduct business directly, to list or sell real estate, or to draft contracts. Referring agents are not members of the National Association of Realtors, the state or local Realtors association, or the local multiple listing services. In this way, they also avoid many of the fees associated with being a real estate professional. “Since they only refer deals and are not active in the transaction, the referring agent receives his compensation as a business arrangement between two cooperating brokers,” Goldstein explained. Clients First Realty and Goldstein undertook this project because they understand that agents have different strengths. Some agents are able to effectively market themselves to new clients. Others are less capable at gaining new business and better able to complete transactions. By developing referring agents, Goldstein is able to help real estate agents gain new business. Like attorneys, Realtors gain a lot of their business from referrals. The rest of their business is gained through marketing efforts. They have to learn to get their name out in the community. According to Goldstein, “Realtors typically spend about 30-40 percent of their revenue finding clients.” Therefore the opportunity to create a partnership with a referral agent is certainly a positive in their eyes. This opportunity allows “Realtors to remain focused on the transaction instead of worrying about finding the next listing,” Goldstein 24 www.AttorneyAtLawMagazine.com ???