Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Pierre! I graduated from T.F. Riggs High School and attended elementary school at Jefferson, Buchanan, and Lincoln elementary schools. I spent my summers either on the river with my family or in the Timber Lake area on the family farm. I was the city slicker to my cousins, and the girl who could ride a horse and knew about farm and ranching to my friends in Pierre. Our family has attended church at the First United Methodist Church for as long as I can remember. The church is one of the most beautiful and iconic buildings in Pierre, and I love to look over Pierre and Fort Pierre from the Verendrye monument hill and see our glowing cross on top of the bell tower. I also say that I grew up in The Hollywood Shop. Everyone seems to think that this is a glamorous job, but I am here to tell you it is not all sequins and rhinestones. When you grow up in a family that is in business or has a farm, you learn early how to work! I wouldn’t have it any other way, as this has allowed me to be so diverse in my real estate business — ag land, housing lots, residential homes and commercial property!
What area do you live in now? What do you like most about it?
I live on the West side of Pierre, near Jefferson Elementary School right before you enter Neltom. There are so many things to like about where I live! After striking out on my own after college, I found myself returning to Pierre often to see my parents and longing for the river. I came home to stay in 2011, just after the flood, and I can tell you for certain that, “there is no place like home!” Life is so much better along the shores of the Missouri River in Pierre and Fort Pierre. We have so very much to be thankful for in our communities: Our fishing and hunting are world class, our sports and recreation are great, we have community theatre, excellent schools, shopping and rodeos. Not to mention, we are centrally located and are close to larger communities if we desire.
What do you enjoy doing when you’re not working?
I like to work hard and play hard! I spend a lot of time with my parents, Dean and Jill Bartlett. They have owned The Hollywood Shop for more than 45 years. This means that I can often be found in their store working. I also spend a huge amount of time with my son, Jack and our miniature poodle Lucky. Lucky and Jack often hang out at the office with me. Jack and I like to go to movies, garden, participate in theatre and read books together. I am also a bit of a craft person, I enjoy beading Christmas ornaments for close friends and family. I take silk ornaments and add pictures to them. Of course, I would be remiss if I didn’t tell you I also spend time with my brother Charles. He and I own Pierre/Fort Pierre Real Estate together, so we work together, but we also ride motorcycles and spend time out on the river in our boat. You should join us some time!
How long have you worked in Real Estate?
I have been a licensed realtor for about five years. I obtained my Broker’s license in July 2015 and opened the Pierre/Fort Pierre Real Estate office in downtown Pierre, just across the street from The Hollywood Shop. My brother Charles joined me in November of 2016 and has proceeded to list more than $7 million dollars in property to date. I was exposed to real estate before I got licensed working in Spearfish with Marysia McDowell who is the Broker/Owner of Re/Max In The Hills. I was her assistant for three years, and I could not have asked for a better mentor. Marysia taught me things about real estate no one else could.
What did you do before that?
Well, as crazy as this sounds…I was going to school to become a teacher! I love history and literature, and the two topics go so well together. My plan was to teach high school since I enjoy working with teens. I don’t do this full time, but I do substitute teach as time allows. This works well with real estate since most of my showings are after 5 p.m. Needless to say, I’ve learned a lot about social media from my students.
What is your specialty?
I do not specialize in selling one type of property, I specialize in selling real estate and satisfying my customer’s needs, wants, and dreams of real estate ownership. In short, my specialty is ‘right property buying guidance’. What that means is that I have an intuitive way of helping my clients find just the right property. I have experience with ag land, commercial and residential property, but I excel at finding what fits the client best. I listed and sold agriculture land worth more than $4 million dollars, I listed and sold commercial property and now Charles and I have recently acquired a planned unit development that will consist of ranchettes. Watch for our upcoming advertisements!
I want my clients and customers to ‘love where they live’ and feel like they bought the best property that fits their needs. When I work with a commercial property customer we discuss traffic patterns and business needs, then I find the property that best suits the customer and their business. When I work with families, couples, or individuals, we talk about current needs, as well as future.
What designations do you have and what does that mean for the people you work with?
Designations are a nice way of reflecting specific education. I am constantly working to increase my knowledge and as I continue in my career I will eventually seek out each different designation. Continuing education is required to keep your license, but our goal at Pierre/Fort Pierre Real Estate is to go above the requirements. We seek out sales classes, marketing seminars, management training, technology and social media updates and so much more! Recently we obtained education in Florida and are pursuing more seminars and education in Chicago that cannot be found locally. We also brought in a social media marketing expert to give us insight and education that would be new and different. We seek out the best education so we can have up to date information, knowledge and experience for our clients. Meeting industry standards is simply not enough. We strive to achieve more. We have a sign in the office that says, “We expect perfection, excellence will be tolerated!”
What is the most challenging/gratifying aspect of what you do?
Every real estate transaction is different. There is no such thing as a ‘typical’ transaction. I tell my new associates that the first 10,000 transactions are the hardest, and this is so true. Real estate changes and evolves all the time, and as a Realtor, we must change and evolve too. If we become comfortable, then we are no longer growing and this industry grows all the time. Property, or more specifically, land is not manufactured anywhere. There is only so much available to all of us. This makes real estate a crucial part of the economy and the community. My challenge is keeping up with changes, and I find gratitude in meeting these daily challenges.
What is the most unique property you’ve listed or sold?
I love this question. I always tell clients that each home has what I call a ‘fatal flaw,’ you know, that one thing that just isn’t quite right. Each home also has a ‘redeeming quality,’ or that special feature that makes it stand out among all the other homes. No two properties are exactly alike, which brings me to my most unique property. I am buying the first home I ever sold. How cool is that? My first client was my sister Jaci, and she bought the house as a rental. I am now buying it from her and it will be my primary residence. I am very excited! It is a darling home that is just right for Jack, Lucky and I. We will be getting a new roof soon and plan to put stone on the outside to make it look like a cottage. You are wondering about the ‘fatal flaw’ of my house? The stairs to the basement, where the second bathroom is located, are outside. I cannot access my basement from inside the house. The ‘redeeming quality?’ I have a HUGE upstairs bathroom, main floor laundry and large kitchen with a dining room.
What are the top 3 things that separate you from your competition?
- My focus is my client! I work hard for my clients, and usually by the time we are finished with the transaction, my clients are now my friends. I work weekends, evenings, nights, and days. I work when my client is available, and so my schedule is formed by my client’s needs. My office associates are available to my clients, as well, and we all work together to get the job done. I take calls at 2 a.m. if necessary. If the only time you have available to look at houses is on Friday evening during the supper hour then we will get some take out and go look at houses.
- You have heard that two heads are better than one, and this is something that we take seriously at Pierre/Fort Pierre Real Estate. My brother, Charles excels at creating business plans and strategic financing for new commercial ventures. Our newest Broker Associate Bonnie London is bringing creative marketing and real estate relationships from around the world to our portfolio. Yes, I could service my customers and clients alone, but with our associates, everyone gets more! If you have read to this point, call me for a free prize!Talking about business plans, statistics show that more than 90 percent of property buyers and sellers search the Internet first. One of the benefits of the Pierre/Fort Pierre Real Estate name is that not only does it reflect our commitment to the community we serve, but it also benefits our clients. When a potential buyer or seller uses any search engine to find property in the Pierre/Fort Pierre area our business name propels our website and Facebook page to the top of the search results.
- We have maintained positive relationships with businesses banks, and other financial institutions which allow to call upon resources at these institutions when needed. Our vast and varied business background, along with a multitude of available assets to call upon to function efficiently and effectively for an assortment of real estate needs is a unique quality of Pierre/Fort Pierre Real Estate.
What is one tip you have for someone looking to buy or sell a home?
Always, always, ALWAYS use a realtor! When you are buying property, your realtor will help you avoid pitfalls, and save you money. Realtors help buy and sell houses every day! When you are selling property, a Realtor will help you to price your property to sell the way you want it to sell. If you want to sell fast, a Realtor knows how to get that done, if you want top dollar, then a Realtor knows how to market your home and negotiate for the most money. Sometimes people choose to buy or sell property on their own, and if they had chosen a Realtor to represent them instead, they would have saved time, and money, and avoided heartache and liability.
Why should someone choose you as their real estate agent?
I can give you lots of reasons: experience, education, background, connections, integrity, resources, innovation, work ethic, personality, intuition, negotiating ability, understanding of contracts, responsibility, honesty, reliability, professionalism and so much more, but it all boils down to one thing: I get it. You want me to be your Realtor because not only am I really good at what I do, I really care about you. Who would you like to choose to be the next Realtor Spot light for this section (cannot be someone from the same agency):