Curt Derksen is one of our original clients, and because of his success, we use him as an example of what we can do. Curt met Rebecca (Troelstra, one of our founders) while she was working at a RE/MAX brokerage, although the seeds of Realty Butler had already begun to form. Because of that, his success and ours are intertwined; we have grown together. Curt describes it as “the definition of a win-win situation.”
“I grow because of Realty Butler, but I also know they can grow with me.
Curt’s praise and Curt’s success are more than just a compliment to us. Helping Curt take his business to the next level was a proof of concept at an early stage of our company. We saw how we impacted not just Curt’s business but also his lifestyle, and we knew that we were offering a valuable service. We’ve helped a lot of other clients since then (and we hope to do the same for many more), but we’ll always have a special relationship with Curt.
“The people in your office are cool,” he says. “They are willing to go above and beyond to help.” In particular, he is full of praise for Kristi (whose friendly face welcomes you to our website). His advice to us? “Don’t ever let her go. If she does, she should come work for me.”
Like us, Curt sees it as an ongoing, developing relationship, saying: “I grow because of Realty Butler, but I also know they can grow with me.”
He didn’t directly inspire Realty Butler (We have another REALTOR® to thank for that), but Curt has been with us since the early days. They were his early days, too. He started working as a REALTOR® in 2012; Realty Butler was founded in 2013. Curt signed up immediately and was named Fraser Valley Rookie of the Year in that same year.
Recently, we had a coffee with Curt and talked about his success in real estate, as well as the part Realty Butler plays in that.
Starting Out In Real Estate: “The path that I was on was not going to get me where I wanted to be.”
As a student, Curt was already investing in real estate and saw that it held a lot of possibilities. When he graduated, having studied kinesiology, Curt and his wife had a child on the way. Curt is a family man, first and foremost. That is what has driven his real estate career and is integral to the value he sees in our services.
“The path that I was on was not going to get me where I wanted to be,” said Curt, referring to kinesiology. He is definitely a man who wants success, but while money is a part of that, his family life comes much higher up the list. To give his wife and child (now children) the life he believes they deserve, Curt turned again to real estate.
Strictly, he turned to the oil fields first. Although he could earn plenty of money there, it took him away from his family. To Curt, that isn’t success. So, he came back to the Lower Mainland and put his energy into a career as a REALTOR®.
“There are things about this business that don’t match my skill set.
From the beginning, it was a job that he liked because, in his words, he could “connect with and serve people.” That’s where Curt’s strengths lie; he is a people person. He dislikes busywork, the administrative hassles that make up a large part of a REALTOR’S® life (unless they have Realty Butler helping them out, of course) – essentially, anything that keeps him at a desk and away from people.
He is open about that, saying: “There are things about this business that don’t match my skill set. Things that suck the life out of me.” As a result, he would put them off and put them off. It got to the point where he had to set aside an entire day for these ‘soul-sucking’ tasks. It wasn’t just the time spent directly on these tasks, either. They also drained away the energy he wanted to put into helping his clients.
“I get excited about life and about moving forward with life. Those things took time away from what was actually moving my business forward.”
Getting Help from Realty Butler: “It helped me be better at life.”
With website admin, social media, newsletters and more off his plate, Curt estimates that Realty Butler’s help allowed him to do an extra 10 deals the year after signing up. More importantly, he focuses on an even bigger benefit of our service: “My lifestyle was the biggest thing for me. I was happy.”
“I wasn’t working all night. There was this load off my shoulders – it helped me be better at life.”
Another big thing for Curt is that we take care of a range of services under one roof, telling us: “As REALTORS®, we get nickel-and-dimed. The fact that you guys can do it all and you do it well is fantastic.”
Since Curt first met Rebecca, his business has continued to grow (He did 36 deals last year and has already hit 56 this year), and he is happy to find that Realty Butler has grown with him. He estimates that we are still saving him 20 hours a week.
“At each stage of my growth, it’s really been that Realty Butler are the kind of people I want to do business with. As I was growing, they have worked with me and helped me grow.” With our help, Curt has achieved the kind of success he always wanted. He earns good money without it taking him away from his family. He has time to spend with his wife and three children.
Advice for Other REALTORS®: “Just do what Rebecca says.”
Curt may not have always found it easy, but he has built on that strong beginning as Rookie of the Year – making him an ideal person to offer advice to anyone starting out in real estate. We asked what he would say to them.
He didn’t need to search for an answer: “Think about what is actually a good use of your time. Get the things that don’t make you money off your plate.”
This isn’t just a hypothetical, though. Other REALTORS® have come to Curt for advice, and he has told them to “just do what Rebecca says.”