With a passion for serving their community and their sales associates, EXIT Realty First Choice owners, Honora and Ric Giumenta, say family culture is what makes their office unique and keeps them EXIT proud.
EXIT Realty First Choice Difference
Located in Flagler County, Palm Coast, Florida, the Giumentas describe it as one of the best kept secrets in Florida. When people walk through the door of the office, they feel very welcome with the friendliness from the EXIT Realty First Choice team.
“People tell me when they visit our office, they get a nice feeling and a welcoming vibe,” says Honora. “Our sales associates are happy because we have a close relationship with them. They are well-trained and knowledgeable. OtherBrokers constantly try to recruit our sales associates, but our sales associates are happy growing their real estate career with EXIT Realty FirstChoice. This makes a difference in how they interact with their customers and one another. It makes for a very nice work environment,” Honora said.
They want to be the first choice on the customer’s mind when they need a Realtor. “When we first purchased the franchise, no one had heard ofEXIT. Now, people see the signs everywhere and understand who we are.”Honora said.
The duo also focus on training their Realtors and in turn theirRealtors are better equipped to service their customers.
“We provide exceptional service and have the most trained and competent Realtors in the area. We provide continual training and tools through the Giumenta School of Real Estate. We offer support with personal coaching. We have around 30 sales associates and every day, whomever is around, gathers with us for lunch to catch up with current events about real estate,” Honora said. “We’re very social and this is our second family.”
Ultimately, this culture, from the top down, is what keeps the Giumentas with EXIT and they have now renewed three times since establishing their franchise in 2004.
Why EXIT – Culture and Leadership
The partners had many years in real estate including Honora working with her parents at their Century 21 office. As an independent company, they missed the opportunities that a large franchise offers, and research brought them to EXIT Realty.
“Ric had been approached many years earlier, but the time was not right to purchase the franchise. In 2004, we researched numerous franchises, theEXIT culture was the deciding factor. And, when we went to the first broker-owner meeting, we knew we had made the right decision. We were so impressed by Tami Bonnell and the leadership. We loved the support and camaraderie. It is just a wonderful company,” Honora said.
An important part of the culture for the Giumentas is corporate and regional support.
“There is no other company with the type of leadership we have with Tami (Bonnell), Stacy (Strobl) and Annette (Anthony). Any time I make a phone call to anyone on the team or franchise support, they always answer and patiently help us with any questions about the programs they offer. It gives me the chills to think about that. Other franchises don’t offer that everyday support. We also appreciate the regional and international events. They do a great job of getting sales associates involved and that means a lot too,” Honora said.
Best Advice for New Realtors
Learn the inventory, learn the land and know what is happening in your market is some of the best advice they have for new sales associates.
“We tell Realtors, the first thing every morning look at the MLS and know what has sold, expired, is back on the market and or has had a price changes. Use your elevator speech on market statistics when you are out and someone asks you how the market is. Also, learn how to do the many forms we have. Be prepared before you sit down with a customer and practice! Network with other Realtors because you never know who you’ll be doing a transaction with and attend every class you can,” Ric said.
The Giumentas take this commitment to continuing education very seriously and founded in 1991 the Giumenta School of Real Estate. Both are instructors with unique styles to appeal to a variety of Realtors.
“Ric will teach, train and coach sales associates so they are prepared to implement their skills. I will teach, train and help you do it. This gives people two different styles from which to choose. Each associate will choose which style works for them,” Honora said.
Ric is also an instructor for the Florida Realtors and has earned instructor of the year in 2008. Ric and Honora have both served as state presidents of the Real Business Institute. They have supported women Realtors by starting the Flagler County Chapter of the Women Council of Realtors and are major investors in the Realtor Political Action Committee which supports local, state and national issues impacting the real estate community. Currently, Honora is chair of the Flagler County Association of Realtors (FCAR) PublicPolicy Committee.
Considering An EXIT Franchise
To anyone considering buying an EXIT franchise, do your research, compare to other companies and talk to other Realtors and owners.
“When Realtors graduate from our school, we tell them to see whatis out there and what everyone is offering. For people thinking about a franchise, talk to other owners to see why they keep renewing,” Honora said.
Another benefit to ownership and being an EXIT Sales Associate is the unique system of offering residuals through sponsorships which the Giumentas use to reinvest in their Florida franchise.
Walk The Walk – Community Service
Parents of four children and six grandchildren, ages one to eleven, the Giumentas still make time to serve their community which they challenge their sales associates to do too. They volunteer with Flagler County EmergencyServices, as well as being involved with the Flagler County Association of Realtors.They have both served as President of FCAR and District Vice President forFlorida Realtors.
Annually, they contribute to a unique charity called the Frank Celico Memorial Foundation. A good friend’s son passed away ten years ago, while serving as a Sergeant of the Flagler County Sheriff’s office. He over saw the Bicycle Patrol and Bike Safety for kids. In December, Ric, who maintains his beard year-round, is hired as Santa for local events. The money is donated to the foundation and then used to buy bicycles and safety equipment for children in need. If you want to hire Ric for an event, contact himatPalmCoastSanta@gmail.com.
You can reach Ric and Honora Giumenta at 386-246-3161 to learn more about Flagler County. You can also visit their website at www.ExitRealtyFirstChoice.com or email Ric@ExitRealtyFirstChoice.com or Honora@ExitRealtyFirstChoice.com.