On Building a Real Estate Empire with The Agency Oakville
Christina Clavero is a national sensation, successful realtor and business woman who has made her mark in the industry with over $150 million in sales, awards, and recognition for her expertise all whilst growing her family and expanding her business with her husband by her side. They have built a real estate empire through The Agency Oakville branch and joined forces with David Bakowsky to form the CB Group to expand their horizons for the future.
In her very own words, “I wanted a career where I could help people—and real estate allows me to guide individuals through one of life’s most important milestones,” says Christina. “Helping someone buy or sell a home gives me a huge sense of fulfillment. I love working with my clients, getting to know them and their families. There is truly no greater privilege.” Here is her success journey as a woman who thrives doing it all.
Tell our readers about the path that led you into real estate?
I was a flight attendant for Air Canada for many years and that’s also where I met my husband, Carlos. Together we started a business selling medical products to airline employees. We really wanted to move out of the airline industry because we had a young family and wanted to be able to spend more time with our kids. We didn’t want to be traveling all the time and wanted something that kept us closer to home.
We started our real estate careers in 2014 and focus mainly on residential but we touch on the commercial side as well. My husband and I are a team but last year we also joined forces with another luxury realtor, David Bakowsky and we are officially the CB Group with the main focus being the luxury market in Oakville and Burlington.
Where should people focus their investments when thinking of Ontario?
Right now, across Canada, the real estate market has been on fire for most of 2021and 2022, but I would say focus on those outlier cities just outside of Toronto. These cities have seen the most growth and increase in price over the past year. For example, Durham Region went up 29% last year year, Halton region where I focus my business on, has gone up 23% in one year and cities like Hamilton and London Ontario are up 30%.
These outlier cities of the GTA are where you should focus on if you’re looking to invest in residential detached homes. Because of the pandemic, we’re seeing a lot of people leaving Toronto looking for more space, because they are working from home, and it seems like the consensus is going to be that most people are going to have a hybrid model. So, they’re going to work from home most of the time, and then maybe go to into the office once a week or so. For that reason, people need more space and are looking for a home office, a finished basement, and a backyard. If you’re going to invest, I would look at those outlier cities from thirty minutes to an hour out of the city.
People are looking for affordability as well because Toronto has gotten so expensive, and when you see the growth that’s happening outside of the GTA, you can’t go wrong investing in those areas.
What is your vision of the CB Group growth in the next 5 to 10 years?
Personally, I would like to grow our team, I would like to eventually have a team of 10 to 15 agents, and I want us to be the go-to luxury team in the Oakville and Burlington market. On a personal level with my husband, I would like to build our real estate portfolio and buy some investment properties. I feel like that’s a very good place to put your money in the long run. It also creates passive income that gives you security and value at the same time.
How do you manage your personal and professional life?
That’s a tricky one and I think it’s the same for a lot of people. Obviously, I work with my husband, so we talk about work at the dinner table naturally. I find that you really must make your relationship and family a priority and you must schedule it in like you would with a meeting or home showing. In my calendar, I schedule in my son’s soccer games, my daughter’s dance recitals, dinner with friends and date night with my husband. Those moments are so important. I find that if it’s not in your calendar then you forget and end up scheduling a client instead. I think being organized and keeping everything in a schedule helps create that balance.
Another thing that I implement is delegating. As women, we tend to want to do everything ourselves and take on all the tasks, but when you learn to delegate some of the tasks at hand, you free up more time for the things that matter the most to you whether it be family or anything that lights your soul on fire.
I have a great office manager, Sierra Fonseca, who helps me with all my administrative tasks. I also have an amazing marketing director, Rachel Williams who is a talented, graphic designer and she designs all my brochures, my marketing material and creates social media posts for me which really helps to free up my time.
When I get up in the morning, I’ll do a quick workout before getting my kids off to school and it it’s very important for me to get my mindset ready for the day before I turn on my phone and start with social media and emails and phone calls.
When it comes to growing your brand and your business, what are some of the measures that you put in place to see your goals through?
We usually set our next year’s goals at the end of the current year. We did our goal planning back in November and set monthly goals alongside our yearly goals. Every month we’re keeping track and checking in on those goals. I think it is imperative to set your goals in advance especially in real estate. I find if you sell something in November, December, it’s probably going to close in the new year so you can start forecasting for the year ahead. If you don’t create a plan for yourself, it becomes hard to know where you are headed and more importantly how to adjust your course to where you want to be. Goal setting is a big one for us personally and as a team.
What does success represent to you?
When I get to help someone accomplish their goal or a dream, it means everything to me. When my client buys his or her dream home or investment property, that is the definition of success, and it makes the whole job worthwhile. Success evolves alongside us and changes as time goes by. I love when clients refer me to their friends, it shows me that I am on the right path, and they loved my service. To me it’s success when I’m getting those referrals coming in from past clients. Referral base clients account for most of my business.
My team and I don’t just put a “For Sale” sign up and disappear. For us luxury is not about a price point but rather an experience and we strive to provide exceptional service throughout the entire transaction. We also partner with the best service providers, like the best photography team, stagers, home inspectors and lawyers, so the client as a seamless transaction from start to finish.
Carlos, David, and I worked for many years on a luxury team in Oakville. It was one of the biggest teams in Oakville and we received a lot of training and experience through that. With the CB Group, and The Agency we want to elevate that bar even higher, and the sky is the limit from here.
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