30 Under 30 Readers’ Choice Winner Announced

April 18, 2012

With a record-setting 257,719 votes, Timothy Ho, a buyer specialist with Energized Realty Group in Whitestone, N.Y., is the winner of this year’s 30 Under 30 – 50 Finalists Readers’ Choice Award.

So how exactly did Ho garner more than half of the 461,955 total votes cast? Three words: He went viral.

When the week-long voting period opened March 26, Ho posted a link to his online finalist profile on his Facebook wall and on several friends and colleagues’ pages. From there, it was as if a leaky dam burst into a flood as people started sharing and reposting on his behalf. The message reached certainly hundreds, but more likely thousands, of friends and friends of friends.

Among his biggest supporters were his broker Judy Markowitz, coworkers, friends, family, clients, business affiliates (including Wells Fargo), his college fraternity at Binghamton University, church groups, the high school next to his office, and his broker’s volunteer soup kitchen, to name a few.

“It’s really amazing to me. I just can’t believe the support I received. One person would post it on their wall, and the next thing I knew, their friends were sharing it,” says Ho. “It’s amazing how far it reached and it’s a testament to how much more social media has become an aspect of people lives.”

Born and raised in North Queens, the 26-year-old comes from a large family. His mother was one of six children, and he has dozens of cousins, many of whom became his biggest cheerleaders when they found out he was in the final 50. “I think my mom voted about 500 times per day,” he says.

Ho’s quarter-million votes more than doubles the 95,358 votes received by 2011 Readers’ Choice winner Michael Jensen with RE/MAX Spirit Lake & The Okobojis in Spirit Lake, Iowa. “I thought I’d give last year’s winner a run for their money, but I didn’t think I’d double it,” Ho explains.

The Readers’ Choice Web voting, which took place between March 26 and April 2, does not play a role in the selection of the final 30. All 50 finalists are still eligible to receive the 30 Under 30 honor. The final honorees will be announced May 16 at magazine.realtor/30-under-30.

Ho entered the real estate business nearly four years ago, leaving an accounting position to pursue a path he believed to be more rewarding. It was the best decision of his life. “Not once have I regretted my decision or thought about doing anything else,” he says.

His office works as a team, which includes Markowitz, eight agents, a business manager, a marketing manager, and three administrative assistants. As the buyer sales manager, Markowitz says, Ho had a hand in almost every of their team’s sales transactions in 2011. In addition, Ho coaches team members in time management, strategic thinking, and productivity – and he develops new buyer systems for the group. “He handles people and situations with poise and integrity,” writes Markowitz. “He is humble and understated, a trait that makes him even more endearing to his colleagues and customers.”

By Erica Christoffer, REALTOR® Magazine

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Meet the 2012 30 Under 30 Finalists