Gonzalez realized it might be a long time before high-end clients would trust him with million-dollar properties, so he went for volume in the underserved affordable condo market (average price, $200,000) in Miami and the Beaches. His company of eight focuses on about 700 buildings within a six-square-mile area, and closed almost $36 million in transactions during 2004. Gonzalez markets the company, not individual salespeople, and prospects are divided equally. He provides each practitioner with an office, equipment, and free parking. His salespeople also receive extensive training on target buildings and state condo regulations before they hit the street.
The spirit’s the thing: Gonzalez left Cuba with his family at 13. He dreams of helping to rebuild a democratic Cuba and cultivating an ethical real estate industry in that country. A sense of mission also permeates his company. His clients are generally young people who are just starting out. “We’re not selling cookies. It’s people’s dreams,” he tells his sales force.
Branching out: Within seven years, Gonzalez wants his company to be a recognizable brand in the affordable condo markets of several major cities.