Realtor Sold a Record-Setting 3,556 Homes in One Year
By Judy Dutton | Source realtor.com
The Guinness World Records recognizes all kinds of superlatives, from the largest pizza (13,580.28 square feet) to the fastest hovercraft (85.38 mph). But no real estate agent has ever entered Guinness’ international pantheon, until now.
Meet Ben Caballero, a Realtor® and broker in Addison, TX, who was just recognized as achieving “the most annual home sales transactions through MLS by an individual sell-side real estate agent.”
And we’re not kidding—the number of sales he’s racked up in a single year will blow your mind.
Ready for it? For 2016, Caballero was verified as selling 3,556 homes—that’s close to 10 homes per day—amounting to $1.44 billion in sales.
Just … wow. How did he do it?
No, Caballero does not chug coffee nonstop to sell, sell, sell around the clock. His secret is that, unlike a traditional agent who takes buyers on tours of homes and then negotiates a deal, Caballero works almost exclusively with developers.
“A builder can submit a request in a few minutes, and we can process it in 10 minutes,” Caballero told realtor.com.
From there, Caballero’s work is largely done: Home buyers and their agents who see and click on these listings get put in touch with the builder’s agent (who represents the developer) so they can all meet and hammer out a deal. Meanwhile, Caballero has moved on, having charged the building companies a flat fee for essentially streamlining the process of getting these new homes up on the MLS with minimal fuss.
So, although Caballero’s home-selling “record” is more of a technical feat than one of an agent wheeling and dealing at 100 mph, it’s impressive nonetheless. Plus, his experiences since becoming a licensed broker in 1960 have taught him a ton about how the industry has changed, and the best way to buy and sell homes in a jiffy. Here’s what he had to say.
Q: Being the first real estate professional in the Guinness World Records is quite a feat! How did you decide to do it?
A: The company Real Trends has ranked the performance of top agents for over 30 years. Given my numbers were always high, I decided to check into the Guinness process and see if I qualified for a record there. They have a very rigorous process, where they had to independently research and certify that it was all true. It took a year of back and forth.
Q: How do agents and others react when they hear how many homes you’ve sold?
A: The universal reaction is, their eyes widen and they say, “Really? What?” It’s hard to comprehend.
Q: How has real estate industry changed in the 50-plus years you’ve been in it?
A: Even just 20 years ago, every week, the “listings” would arrive in a physical book with a few tiny, black-and-white photos of homes. Now, with the MLS, we can see 50-some beautiful photos of homes, and set all kinds of parameters, and be notified of price changes—it’s heaven.
Q: What advice do you have for sellers on selling their home fast?
A: Here’s the most important thing for sellers to understand: Whenever you put your home on the market, you’ll get your best traffic in the first two weeks. When a listing first comes up, buyers and agents descend on it. Price your home too high, however, and you’re going to miss that opportunity since people won’t be interested, or they might not see it at all because it’s above their price range or what it’s really worth.
Q: So what’s the best way to keep your home from sitting on the market?
A: The market will speak to you. If you’re not getting any traffic to speak of, the market is telling you the home is priced too high. If you’re getting a lot of traffic but no serious inquiries, that means your home is priced properly but something is wrong with your home—like the paint colors or odors from pets or cooking.