How You Made 2013 a Successful Year in Real Estate

We spend a lot of time at the end of the year thinking about how we can make the next year so much better than this one. A lot of us gloss over what did make this year a success, focusing more on what fell short and what we need to improve on in the next 12 months. Why don’t we spend more time congratulating ourselves for what we did well this year and what made it a success? That’s exactly what we’d like to do.

We turned to our Facebook page recently and asked our loyal readers what their greatest accomplishments were in 2013. It turns out that there are a lot of things real estate professionals did this year that deserve congratulations! Below are some of the biggest accomplishments this year that our readers told us about. Take a moment to pat yourselves on the back for a job well done in 2013, and if you have an accomplishment you’d like to gloat about, tell us in the comments section of this post.

Suzette Peoples, GRI, ABR, e-PRO®
Peoples Properties
Sugar Land, Texas

“Becoming an independent broker and still charging a retainer fee with every client, and having a record year. This means changing real estate, that being independent and staying professional does pay off. Quality versus quantity. Best decision I have ever made was to give up the team concept and go back to one person, full service, and full commission. You get what you pay for, so make yourself worth it and you will get it. Love selling real estate the professional way.”

Lauren Hruby
Keller Williams Key Partners
Prairie Village, Kan.

“Closing four transactions in one week! What a crazy week! It took a good amount of ‘out of the box’ problem solving and working beautifully with co-op agents, clients, and title companies! Great teamwork here in Kansas City!”

Craig Foley, GREEN, e-PRO®
RE/MAX Leading Edge
Somerville, Mass.

“2013 EverGreen Award from NAR’s Green REsource Council, and being asked to serve on their advisory board.”

Frank Failla
Select A Home Island South Realty Corp.
Merrick, N.Y.

“I doubled my business from last year and met my income goal. It’s my second year in the business. I went from five transactions to eight, but I doubled my income. And with the incoming contracts that haven’t closed yet, I tripled it.”

Ashley Howie-Petroske
Real Estate Design LLC
Falcon Heights, Minn.

“REALTOR® Magazine’s 30 Under 30 Honor!” See Petroske’s 30 Under 30 bio.

Lindsay Listanski
Coldwell Banker
Livingston, N.J.

“Professionally, I published my first white paper on social media for the real estate industry, ‘A Real Estate Professional’s Guide to Using Social Media.’ It took me about three months to complete. Personally, I bought my first home. My life this year was clearly centered around real estate.”

Stanley Barsch, GRI
Realty Executives Premier
Burtonsville, Md.

“More than 60 closed transactions didn’t compare to the birth of my baby boy in March.”

Susan Vick, ABR, CRS
Vick Realty
Denham Springs, La.

“Earned my ABR, CRS; five-year anniversary of my very own brokerage; and my single largest month of closings in my nine-year career!”

Matt Walmer
Prudential Gacono Real Estate
Annville, Pa.

“Three years in the biz, and I met three of my four sales goals and have multiple deals in the works for 2014. Most exciting part was getting a new listing, then representing not only one but TWO buyers — and both put in offers on it. To make it fair, I coached the buyers the same, then had them submit sealed offers so that I couldn’t be biased. Worked great, and the losing party is using me to sell their current house and help them buy another property!”

Derrick Johnson
EXIT Realty Florida Keys
Marathon, Fla.

“I was a director of my local board this year, and next year, I will be an officer. That was pretty cool. Individually, I am progressing in my sales ability, which has increased over last year.”

Tana Wood
East Wenatchee, Wash.

“Listing a tennis girlfriend’s home, and selling it to the local General Manager/Head Coach of the Wenatchee Wild Hockey Team! Also changed offices in April. This was my second-best year in 10 years of full-bore real estate sales! Great year — bring on 2014! Helped many great folks with their real estate needs; numerous repeat customers, which is the goal…referrals and repeats…the best!”

Fabian Alejandro Claudio Serrano
Reality Realty P.R.
Caguas, Puerto Rico

“Getting my real estate license and signing with a firm!”

Graham Wood

Graham Wood is a senior editor for REALTOR® Magazine. He can be reached at

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  1. Focus on a phenomena that we called “sustainable real estate” we have had good financial numbers this year. Also the use of Facebook as a marketing channel was totally successful. Every year real estate is more and more difficult.

    Thanks for share this value information.

  2. mhw

    I passed my real estate agent exam on the first try, thus beginning a new career after a five-year illness had ended my successful corporate career.

  3. 2013 was my 26th year in the business and a record breaking year on many fronts. I celebrated 6yrs out after being diagnosed with stage 4 cancer which puts a different spin on success. I had my best year in sales ever. It was great just to have the energy to help people again. I made the transition from owner to agent in a luxury market firm with incredible marketing and haven’t looked back. It is amazing how fast the industry is changing and I’m embracing all the new technology. Looking forward to a robust market in 2014 and I’m excite to see what new tools will be available.

  4. The only way to be successful in during 2013 it was to use opportunities of advertising in digital media and the internet, it was a difficult year for the real estate, but thanks to advertising campaigns, the numbers appear in green

  5. After 19 years as a Realtor and turning 50 this year, I opened my own real estate business. It took 19 years and a sluggish market to say what the hell, what do I have to loose! Now wondering why it took me so long!

  6. I signed over 400 leases which was a record year for me! Real Property Management Midwest

  7. this is a very inspirational site for comments – especially 400 leases! That is incredible!