When I began working at Pelletier Properties, focusing on creating and maintaining the Social Media side of the Pelletier Properties Real estate business, I could sense that my new boss was a genuine and humble guy. After sitting down with him today and asking him a whole bunch of questions about himself, however, I can now confirm that Nick is the type of guy who would rather talk about his clients, or his family, or his passion for helping others. But getting him to say things about himself was challenging, and I will admit that I rather enjoyed watching his discomfort level increase whenever my question focused solely on him as a person. Here is my “Getting to Know You” conversation with Nick Pelletier:
So tell me how long you have been working in the Real Estate world?
Well, it was sort of gradual and in many steps. But in 2010, I bought 2 properties. My goal at the time was to make a financial investment long-term, and I had no idea that buying properties would grow into something more for me. I was working at the time as a bio-medical engineer, so the real estate thing was more of a hobby. Around 2013, I realized I had a passion for doing this, and decided to turn it into a part-time job, working on just one transaction at a time. In 2015, I came to the realization that I was holding down two full-time jobs, essentially, and that wasnt going to work for me, so I started focusing more on the real estate.
Wow, so Im talking to a real-life incredibly smart person here. A bio-medical engineer. I dont even know what that is, honestly, but it’s big words and it sounds important. What made you want to be a Real Estate Agent?
(laughs) That’s just it, really. One of the big reasons I wanted to be a bio-medical engineer, was so I could help people, and make a difference on a daily basis. But what I found, over time, was that making a difference day to day in that field was really challenging, and wasn’t really happening regularly enough. So with real estate, I saw this huge opportunity to help people on a daily basis, to help them with something that ends up being such a huge part of their lives. Where they live. And it was just something that I naturally felt myself gravitating towards. It was the perfect combination of helping others to accomplish something, and feeling accomplished myself by doing it. Very fulfilling.
That is awesome. What is your favorite part of being a Real Estate Agent?
I would have to say the best part is becoming a part of people’s families and lives. When you help someone find their home, that connection often remains. Over the years, Ive been to client’s weddings, (picture below) birthday parties, retirement parties, on and on. I love developing a relationship with my clients, and helping them navigate through one of the biggest and most important changes in their life. You end up staying within their circle because people are always buying homes. So if its not them, it might be their best friend or their cousin or brother. Or one day, their children, who need help finding a home.
Tell me a bit about your family, and Pelletier Properties.
Okay, so there’s mom, dad, me, and Teddy the dog. Teddy was actually our 2nd employee.
What is Teddy’s official title?
Teddy is Director in Chief of First Impressions. Yeah. That’s what we’ll call her. She’s very good at it, too. (laughs) In all reality though, a big part of Pelletier Properties is the investment side of it, which is what my dad and I focus on, while me and my team focus on the real estate/sales side of the business. Teddy focuses on Teddy. Because of my dad, I sort of came with a built-in background in construction. Then I just had the desire to do real estate investment, so post-college, we were able to dabble in it a bit. Eventually, the dabbling turned into an actual business.
How would you describe your approach to working with your clients?
I love learning about them. What makes them tick, what they are looking for, what they want. A lot of it is figuring out things they might be looking for that they might not even know they are looking for.
I know, right? I think of it like a puzzle, and I love puzzles. Trying to solve the mystery of figuring out what multiple people (families, couples) want, and combining those to match within a single property. So my approach is about getting to know them, their needs, figuring out a plan of action, and having the goal being for their home-buying process to be as simple and stress-free as possible. It will never be completely stress-free, because things happen, but I want to minimize the bumps. I want for their process to be a great learning experience, instead of a bad memory.
Okay. Random, fun question. Favorite late-night snack.
Ill have to go with popcorn. All kinds. For convenience sake, microwave popcorn will do the trick. But there is nothing like the homemade, on the stove, hot oil in a pot, old fashioned way of popping popcorn, like my grandma used to make.
Yum. And what are you drinking with this popcorn?
Hmmm. I dont know. Maybe a gin and tonic?
Woah, now we’re getting serious. That sounds like something a bio-medical engineer might drink.
(laughs) I guess it does!
So let’s talk TV for a minute. Whats your opinion on TV shows that deal with home buying or renovation? Do you find them unrealistic for home-buyers? Helpful? Do they have any effect on your business negative or positive?
It’s a tricky question, and the answer is a little bit of all of the above. Truthfully, before I got into this business, I used to watch every single one of those kinds of shows. I was addicted to them. So, they are obviously very entertaining.
Now, I struggle with watching them, because they don’t tell the whole story. They only tell small pieces. And for me, knowing the whole story, it can be frustrating to watch. However, they do show many pieces that people need to see, things you should look for, issues that come up, good things about comparison shopping – these shows all touch on those things very well. But then in other areas, such as a realistic budget for home renovation, they may be leaving some things out. One thing I do like about these shows is, it demonstrates that the process can be fun, and that is a positive thing for our business. So while it doesnt always show the many bumps in the road, the shows do provide a lot of ideas and inspiration for what someone could do with their own property, and for those looking for a home.
Tell me about the non-profit you are involved with, and how it relates to your real estate business.
Sure. It’s called “Rise Above”. A non-profit that deals with DCF and Foster Care kids in Massachusetts. Our mission is to provide funding to enable a sense of normalcy in the lives of children in foster care, by helping out their foster parents. We help fund and run activities such as dance, sports, trips, educational camps. We realize these types of community and team-building events are important to long-term development of these kids as they continue to grow up.
Pelletier Properties connected with Rise Above by starting an initiative known as “Start Above.” This is a grant program funded by Pelletier Properties, which focuses on providing these same individuals with a fresh start in real estate related things. So we may aide with a new apartment, renovating a bedroom, or any number of things that would help make a family feel more at home. You can find out more about the organization and how to apply for funding at our website: https://www.weriseabove.org/
I love that. So to switch gears for a minute here, how has social media changed the world of real estate? Does it make your job harder, or easier?
Well, social media and the internet as a whole, has definitely increased access to information and to properties – but it has done so in a way that often makes real estate searches take longer. The reason is that access to so much information is overwhelming and very confusing for most people. So, this changes our job, because now instead of us acting as information providers, we are acting as information translators. So, it can make the work more time-consuming in that way. But, on the upside, the internet provides clients with instant information in a portal that is convenient and where many people spend lots of time on a daily basis. Social media is the same thing. There is so much of everything, that you have to find ways to stand out.
You mean like doing a Question and Answer Interview for your website – instead of the standard paragraph biography format that you normally see?
What would your best piece of advice be for someone looking to buy their first home?
Know your budget. Know what you want and can afford to spend on a monthly basis. From there, derive and define what the budget is. Once you’ve figured that out, it is so much easier to begin your search. It’s also important to know your boundaries and your deal-breakers. Locations, price points, what things are non-negotiable for you. Your team who is working with you then needs to be aware of those boundaries, and this knowledge should make for a pretty seamless experience.
What is the biggest myth about Real Estate Agents that drives you nuts?
There are many, but the one that makes me the most nuts is the idea that we will do anything or say anything to sell a house. That it’s all about money. For me, that couldn’t be further from the truth. That’s not who I am. It’s very important to me that my clients are getting what they want, and that what Im presenting to them accurate, to the best of my ability. We get this rap of being driven by money. I am driven by the client and their needs. Driven by seeing their joy at a successful experience. I feel Ive done a really good job at building my business, and a huge part of that is my reputation. Integrity is what’s important to me.
What is your definition of the word “home?”
Home is a place where you are excited to go. A place that is both comfortable and comforting. A place where you want to be at the end of the day, and where you want other people to come visit.
Favorite guilty pleasure TV shows.
“America’s Got Talent.” Love that show. Also “Survivor.” Yeah. That’s more guilty pleasure I think. But I will say, lots of people watch it, because it often makes a great conversation starter with clients.
What is your favorite thing to do when you have time off from work?
In this business, its pretty tough to get away from work, so when I do have some down time, I really like to disconnect from everything. I live on a lake, so anything on the water, taking the boat out for a ride is probably my favorite way to relax. I like being outdoors. Teddy and I like to hike up Mount Wachusett sometimes. Getting out in nature and away from the world for awhile helps to re-set the clock.
Good answer. Okay. Last question. If a potential client asked why they should choose you to help them find a home, what would you say to them?
Well, I would let them know that my team and I focus 100% on what is best for our clients. Now that includes financial, personal, whatever it might be. We want to do what is best for their situation and their happiness. We are here to help them, and we really do enjoy going above and beyond what might be considered the basic “definition” of a realtor. On a personal note, I truly care about my clients, and want to make each next step for them as easy as it can be. I work very hard, so that they can have as easy of a process as possible. Thats my job, and I love what I do.