To be a successful real estate agent, it’s important to really care about people, understanding their needs not just for real estate, but for the lives they want to build around their homes. Of course, it’s also essential to be a market expert, which takes years of hands-on and personal experience. This is what Linda Stamker, a Realtor® for Prominent Properties Sotheby’s International Realty has to offer. Since 2008 she has consistently received the NJ Realtors® Circle of Excellence Award®.
For many years, Linda worked out of the Prominent Properties Sotheby’s International Realty Fort Lee office, becoming an expert in the local condo and coop market. Today she works in the Tenafly office, closer to home and the towns she largely serves—Teaneck, Bergenfield, Englewood, Paramus and, of course, still Fort Lee. Linda grew up in Tenafly, lived in Fort Lee for many years and now calls Bergenfield home, so she knows the neighborhoods she’s representing well.
Linda wasn’t always in real estate. In fact, she earned an MBA from NYU and spent 15 years in consumer packaged goods marketing and branding before making the move to real estate. “I was planning on having a child and wanted a more flexible work schedule,” she told The Jewish Link. “I was travelling a lot and working long hours five days a week. Ironically, I now work six days a week, including evenings, and answer client texts at all hours of the night! But at least I’m closer to home!”
One of the things that makes Linda stand out is her approach to the home-buying and home-selling processes. She views herself as a guide and mentor to people as they transition through new chapters of their lives. “When my clients come to me, it’s often because they’re experiencing an important change in their lives,” she shared. “I work with newly married couples buying their first homes, growing families who need more space, empty-nesters who want to downsize, divorcing couples who need to move and often families who need to divest of estates. Whatever the situation, it’s usually a transition that spurs a real estate transaction and I help people through the whole process. I get to know my clients and I’m there for them no matter what they need, even beyond their real estate needs.”
Buying real estate is a complex endeavor. “I navigate clients through the real estate/sales buying process, which is a very detailed and complicated transaction,” she explained. “I recommend the best lawyers, mortgage bankers, inspectors etc, and manage the entire process from negotiations through closing, as well as coordinating between lawyers, mortgage bankers and other parties involved.”
Linda’s prior career experience made her a natural for real estate. “Marketing is about meeting people’s wants and needs, often before they know they have them. I’m attuned to sensing what will suit people, even if they can’t express it. Helping people buy real estate is a very intuitive process that requires sensitivity.” It also requires a knowledge of the market, making a perfect marriage between the client, the neighborhood and the property.
Linda’s marketing background also comes in handy when it comes to selling homes. “I create a unique marketing strategy for each property, employing a mix of traditional advertising (print ads, brochures and direct mail) with social media, open houses and strategic pricing to create the greatest impact and broadest exposure. I also often have to help clients coordinate the sale of one home and purchase of another simultaneously, which can be a daunting task without professional guidance.”
Having lived in and sold properties in Fort Lee for many years, Linda knows the ins and outs of every building—their layouts, amenities, admissions policies, financials and more. She often helps people selling large homes to simplify their lives by moving into luxury buildings in Fort Lee that put them near their children and grandchildren, yet not right next door. She is proficient at pre-qualifying buyers to meet board requirements and prepares flawless purchase applications so buyers will be approved.
There are many websites like Zillow.com that provide home buyers and sellers with a lot of information—what’s on the market, sales history and home values. But that can’t compare to the value you get when working with a professional real estate agent. “It’s not just about collecting data, it’s about market expertise. People can see what a property sold for, but they don’t know what drove its price or the sale,” she said. That’s where local market experts come in. Linda has her own website that will automatically assess your home’s value through algorithms. The link is www.bergenprominenthomes.com. “I encourage people to check out their home values if they want to sell their home, refinance or if they’re just curious. But a computer doesn’t know renovations you made to your home or the subtleties of its location that affect its price. I strongly encourage everyone to call me after they’ve gone online so I can give them a professional in-home analysis that they can rely upon.”
When people hear the Sotheby’s name, many think it’s a brokerage that sells only million dollar homes. Linda told The Jewish Link that while Prominent Properties is number one in sales over $1 million on the NJMLS, 80 percent of the homes they sell are below $1 million. No matter the home value, each property is sold with the highest level of marketing and personal attention.
Prominent Properties has offices in Northern and Central New Jersey, including Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Middlesex, Morris, Passaic, Sussex and Union Counties. To learn more about the home buying and selling process, reach out to Linda Stamker directly, at 646-234-9900 or [email protected]
By Sara Kosowsky Gross