Justin Pollard,owner of Rome Homes Realty Group answers questions for today’s Small Business Snapshot.
What is the primary purpose of your business? To help buyers in Rome and the surrounding area to find and purchase their dream home. I want to make finding a home enjoyable and then educate and help home buyers through the entire purchasing process from inspection to closing.
What is the business back ground of the owners? I am Rome native, and have had a lifetime of experience with the Rome business and real estate community. I began investing in Rome real estate 11 years ago. While investing, I practiced law in Rome as an attorney, including frequently handling real estate closings. I added a real estate agent license to my legal background in early 2017, and have been completely focused on helping buyers and sellers to achieve their real estate goals ever since.
Why did you start this particular business? I was born and raised in Rome, attended Coosa High School, Shorter College and then practiced law in Rome as an attorney. While working in real estate law, I worked with real estate agents as a buyer and a seller, and relied heavily on my own legal background to help me invest in Rome property. The agents I worked with as a buyer were excellent and professional. As an investor, I know how important it was to have them communicate with me throughout the complex process of buying or selling a home, even with my legal background. While helping individuals close on their home loans as an attorney, I realized that I enjoyed meeting and working with the buyers at the closing table. Their excitement at purchasing a home, a new beginning, was a true joy. I wanted to be more directly involved with helping those buyers. So I added a real estate agent license to my law license, and turned my focus from the transactional elements of real estate closings into helping buyers find and purchase their dream homes.
What makes your business unique? One of the major differences in Rome Homes Realty Group is our Buyer’s Rebate Program. When we work with a buyer to find a home, we are able to offer them up to 1 percent of their purchase price back in cash at the closing table. So, for example, if we help them find a home that costs $200,000, often times we are able to provide them a rebate check of $2,000 at the closing table, and our buyer’s agency services almost never cost the buyer a penny.
What do you enjoy most about your chosen profession? There are two days that bring me absolute joy when working with a home buyer. The day I take a home buyer into “the home.” The one they decide is “it.” Their excitement is palpable. The second day is closing day on that home. The day it truly becomes their home. Getting to help people find the place they want to live, their piece of this Earth and taking them from finding the home to owning it is an honor and privilege.
What has been the biggest or most interesting challenge to overcome as a small business owner? As a new realty group, getting our name out into the community has been our earliest challenge, and working to explain our buyer’s rebate program. I think some have a hard time believing that we provide a free service to buyers, and then turn around and give them money back at the closing table. It sounds too good to be true, or that there must be a catch.We are able to do that because of the way homes are sold in real estate. Most real estate agents, whether a seller’s agent or a buyer’s agent are paid on a commission from the sellers side that the two sides share. We are simply giving part of our share back as a rebate to the buyers.
Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers? Yes, there is some real misinformation you may hear from others regarding agent paid rebates. Others may tell you that a buyer’s rebate isn’t legal, is just a gimmick, or isn’t provided by a full service real estate agent. None of those things are true, however. While there are terms and conditions that need to be met for the rebate program, such as including the rebate on all forms provided to your lender, buyer’s rebates are fully legal in Georgia and have been endorsed by the U.S. Justice Department. My broker and I provide full buyer’s agent services. I am able to combine my experience as a former attorney with my experience as a real estate agent to provide you with full assistance in walking you through every stop of the home buying process.
Business name: Rome Homes Realty Group of Maximum One Community Realtors
Business Age: 6 months
Owner name and official title: Justin Pollard–Realtor
Business location: 9 W. 5th Ave.
How long here? Rome office opened June 19th, 2018
Previous location if moved in past year: While I have always served the Rome, Georgia housing market, our broker office was previously located in Emerson.
Telephone: Direct at 706-802-7458, or office at 770-334-8286 ext. 149
Hours: Mon.-Sun. 9 a.m.-8 p.m. by phone or appointment.