Family Owned & People First Since 1963

Dated: February 12 2024

Views: 37

Welcome to Page Realty Live. My name is Chris Rao, and together with my parents, we run a family-owned and people-first brokerage here in Massachusetts. The goal of all this is each week we'd like to bring you some interesting local stories, some insights, and some happenings on what's going on in the real estate market, so that you can be better educated and hope you enjoy.

Hey, Al, thank you so much for being on our first inaugural episode here. You've been with the company a long time, for a while. I graduated from college in 1975, and at the time, it was a challenging market for recent graduates. My Uncle Roger Rogero had started the business in 1963, and I spoke with him about coming into the business short term, maybe for a year or two to carry over. I actually graduated with honors from Brown University, so I did have some good opportunities, but at the time, there were some, again, it was a sluggish market, and I decided to give real estate a try. So I got into the business, I became a realtor in January of 1976, and upon entering the business, I really enjoyed it. I really enjoyed working with people, helping people on what I considered to be one of the most important investments of their lifetime, you know, the American dream, investing in their own home.

And how much did a home cost back then in 1976?

Oh my God, most of the properties we were selling back in the '70s were, well, when I first got in, you could buy properties in the $30,000 range. Yeah, you could buy a brand new home in the $50,000 to $60,000 range. I purchased my first home in 1978. I remember that year because that was the year that we had the big blizzard, the Blizzard of '78, when we had, you know, and one, in fact, I showed homes that day. That was an amazing story. Really, you need a snowmobile. I almost couldn't make it home. The next day, on the cover of the Boston Globe, they had 128 completely snowed under. They actually had to bring in big payloaders to shovel out the cars that were stuck on 128 and on some of the secondary roads. Yeah, yeah, people died because of that that year, right? Yeah, because they got stuck in their cars. It was pretty amazing. We had like three feet of snow in one day in high winds.

But anyway, I did purchase my first home in Medway. It was a six, paid $60,000 for it. It was a brand new, four-bedroom, two and a half bath Colonial, on a nice lot. And I can remember my, I mentioned to my father at the time, I was doing pretty well. I was a good salesperson right from the get-go. And I mentioned to my dad at the time, I said, "I'm buying a home," and I was single, you know? And he looked at me and he said, "What, are you crazy?" I basically said, "I think this is the right thing to do." And as it turned out, it was. I sold the house about five years later for about another $50,000 on top of what I had paid for it. And wow, that catapulted me to another real estate investment.

So, yeah, geez, that's, so you got like a 100% return on investment on that. I mean, after taxes and stuff, it was a little less, right?

But yeah, just above. And that was going back, that was between 1978. I sold it in 1983. So, it was, you know, real estate, it's a great investment. And that's one of the reasons why I love this business, is because you help people, not only, you know, what their families got a, you know, a base to start, and, but it's also from an investment standpoint, it's a great, it's a great investment, always has been, and as far as I'm concerned, always will be. I think it was John Wayne that said, you know, that they're not making any more land anywhere. So, it's true. It's a, that is, that's a good point. I mean, it's cool to be in a career and profession where we are helping our clients sort of move along in their lives, and whether it's a, you know, a new family member or one less family member, whatever it is, we're always sort of like in those transition periods, you know? That's a lot of the training that we've had as agents starting out is like, okay, well, look out for these transition periods in people's lives, because that's where the transactions happen, for the most part, unless it's an investor that's just boom, boom, boom, you know? You work with some investors as well in your career?

Yes, yeah. And again, our focus has always been on giving high-quality, professional service, and it pays off. I've had some clients that have purchased five or six homes through me over the years, starting off with their starter home, and then their needs changed, they got married, they got another home, a child came along, they needed more space, another home, the children grew, they needed more space, bought another home. So, you know, half the way, our focus is really to be clients for life with our customer.

Yeah, the forever agents is pretty big with Berkshire Hathaway. Now, when you started, when you bought the company, I know it's gone through a few different brands. We have Berkshire Hathaway now. We were Credential Page before that, like, circa 2014. And then,

 before that, we were what, GMAC and what was before that?

Before that, it was Prudential Page. We affiliated with Prudential in 1987. So, we were Prudential Page from '87 until about 2014, and then we became Page Realty. And then about five years ago, we became Berkshire Hathaway Page Realty. So, you know, we feel that Berkshire Hathaway is the top brand in the world right now. You know, Warren Buffet's involved with that company. And it's a company that people recognize. They know the brand, they know the name, and it's a trusted name. So, we're proud to be affiliated with Berkshire Hathaway.

Yeah, it's nice to be able to pull in some of those referrals from other parts of the country, too. You know, like if someone moves from, you know, Michigan, from Grand Rapids, Michigan, to the MetroWest, it's nice to be able to, you know, hook them up with a Berkshire Hathaway agent on the other side. And Berkshire Hathaway's got their fingers in so many different things. It's like, you know, real estate is just one, it's just one part of it. But it's a big part of it, but it's still just one part of it.

Absolutely. And that's one of the things I think that separates us from our competition, is that we are a global company. So, we're not just local, we're not just regional, but we're global. And we have relationships, as you mentioned, throughout the United States. And in fact, throughout the world, we have contacts, we have, you know, affiliates, so that we can help people with their moves, wherever it may be, whether it's across town, across the country, or around the world.

Yeah, and it's kind of cool, because we've got some tools that we can use to help sort of streamline that process, right? I mean, one of them is Berkshire Hathaway Home Services, our sort of back end, our back office. We've got some apps and stuff that we use, right?

Absolutely. Berkshire Hathaway, they're always on the cutting edge of technology. And, you know, as we know, technology has come a long way over the last several years, and it's a great tool to help us do our job more efficiently and more effectively. So, we use a number of different tools. We use social media, for example. We use our website. We use MLS, multiple listing service, to help us market properties. And we also have a number of different tools, as you mentioned, that are available to us to help us do our job better.

Yeah, one of the big ones is the Home Services app, which is, you know, it's a cool tool because it's almost like having the MLS in your hand, you know, like when you're out with clients and stuff like that. And, you know, we can sort of just drive by a property, look it up on the app, and say, "Hey, you know, this one's a 3 bed, 2 bath, it's got a nice deck on the back," whatever it is. And it's just cool to be able to do that, you know, as we're driving around. It's like, it's like having the whole MLS in your pocket. It's pretty cool.

It's amazing. When I first got into business, we used to have big books that we had to carry around, and we had to look up listings. And then they came out with, you know, the computers and the Internet, and now it's gone to the next level, where you can do it on your cell phone. So, it's a great tool. It's a great time saver. It allows us to give our clients more information, more accurate information, and really do our job better.

Yeah, and a lot of times, you know, like people see a for sale sign in the yard, and they're like, "Oh, I wonder how much that one's listed for," or, "I wonder how many beds or baths it has," and, you know, we can pull it up on our phones, just like, you know, just like that. It's pretty cool.

It is, it's amazing. It's amazing the tools that we have available to us today that we didn't have just a few years ago.

Well, thanks for being on, Al. We appreciate you being here. And thank you guys for watching the first inaugural episode of Page Realty Live. We'll catch you next week.

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Chris Rao

A third-generation Realtor with a gift for technology and design. Chris creates the basis and interconnectivity for an outstanding Internet presence for our listed homes which includes virtual tours, ....

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