Real Estate Agents of the Month Tim and Kym Polanco

Lives in Progress

By Susan Cushing

Everyone enjoys the story of how a couple first met or the beginnings of a successful business. Anecdotes for both typically involve passion, new beginnings, excitement, discovery and the start of a new future. For REALTORS ® Kym and Tim Polanco, the genesis of their relationship and their growing enterprise can be traced back to when they met at an industry boot camp. It may not have been love at first sight, but they both recognized something worth exploring.

Fourteen years later, it looks like they may have been right.

A Crossroads

“We both were at the beginning stages of launching our real estate careers,” says Tim. “It was obvious that we worked well together, the inspiration and chemistry we have is more than just business. We’ve been able to intertwine the two ever since.”

Although each had traveled slightly different paths to arrive at the boot camp that would change their lives, their lives did share many parallels.

Kym, employed by the same, nationally recognized retailer since she was 17, had demonstrated unusual maturity, perseverance and business savvy, steadily climbing the corporate ladder. At a relatively young age, she was securely ensconced with a lucrative position, yet realized it did not bring the satisfaction she’d expected.

“I was in middle-management, which was in many ways an enviable position with good pay and benefits, but there were a lot of tradeoffs,” she says. “My daughter was very young at the time and the job required a lot of travel, in fact, I had just recently relocated to Phoenix. There was also a lot of job-related stress, so much was out of my control. I guess I just reached the point where I wanted to take control of my own destiny.”

Tim had similar feelings. For years, iconic industry leaders, General Electric and American Express benefitted from his facile customer service skills and business savvy. In addition to his Bachelor of Science in business management, Tim had always been actively interested in real estate. In fact, he’d purchased his first home by the time he was 21, and later built a home, all without benefit of assistance from a professional REALTOR®.

“I was none the wiser at that time what a REALTOR® could do for me,” Tim says. “Of course, now I cannot imagine why anyone would ever attempt to buy or sell a home without professional representation. Bringing value to our clients by achieving results better than what they could on their own, is something we must deliver. Our higher goal, and the one we strive for, is achieving results for our clients better than what anyone else can.

“From a very early age I remember being drawn to the business of real estate,” he continues. “I couldn’t help thinking that we all need housing, so it’s not a career that would ever become obsolete. Also, there’s this entrepreneurial aspect to my personality, that seemed to fit perfectly with real estate.”

One thing that Kym and Tim definitely share is their commitment. Unlike many new agents, who tentatively test the waters, oft en beginning as only part-time agents, these two jumped in with both feet. The auspicious boot camp is just one example. Committing 100 percent, just as they do with every undertaking, finding one another, discovering shared interests were just further indications they had chosen wisely.

Perfect Pair

Successful teams, married or otherwise, seem to have discovered the secret of playing off one another’s assets. Kym and Tim find that they have the right combination of personalities, strengths, and ideas to keep one another passionate and inspired – both in and out of the office.

“I think we complement one another,” says Tim. “Some of it certainly is the female/ male combination, but it’s more than that. We each have strengths in different areas; although, we’re equally trained and both very in tune with the market. Either one of us can provide everything our clients need. It’s just a lot more fun and more interesting working together.”

“We really work well together,” Kym says. “We try to meet every new client together. It’s important to us that right from the start, clients feel equally comfortable with both of us. We can’t always be at the same place at the same time, but they know that at least one of us is always available. It’s a great way to work, we fully enjoy each day and look forward to making new friends.”

That’s what clients of Arizona eHomes are, friends. Because Kym and Tim take such a personal interest in each client, the friendships seem to evolve quite naturally.

“I can’t imagine not working together,” says Tim. “Our work is just a natural extension of our personal lives and vice versa, which allows us to build real relationships with our buyers and sellers.”

Kym and Tim agree that they would be hard pressed to identify actual work hours. “Our work and our clients are our lives,” Tim says.“We don’t really think of this as a job in the traditional sense. We love what we’re doing and love the people we work with, so it’s hard to call it work.”

So interwoven are their personal lives with that of their professional, it’s virtually impossible to separate the two.

“Maybe this is something that’s unique to couples in the business, but talking about our buyers, sellers, market projections, and so on, is as natural between us, as talking about our children,” says Kym. “It’s not like real estate is ever a nine to five job anyway, but with Tim and I it’s first thing in the morning, late at night, even when we’re having a night out.”

“Anyway, many of those dinners or nights out include clients,” Tim interjects with a smile. “Because our lives are seamlessly intertwined personal with business, it just feels natural.”

They also acknowledge that they’ve found the male/female combination is very effective in relating to clients on many different levels.

“I really believe there’s a definite advantage to having both a woman’s viewpoint as well as a man’s,” says Kym, “especially when you’re both equally trained and knowledgeable about the business.”

“Sometimes Kym has a soft er touch, other times she’s more serious or aggressive. I enjoy joking around, being jovial with our clients and keeping things light,” he says, “and sometimes she’ll feel the need to bring us all back to the business at hand. I just think we’re a great balance, our personalities play well together.”

Their system doesn’t just work for them. With 90 percent of their business coming from referrals or repeat customers, it appears their clients agree. In fact, over the last four years, their company has continued to grow and flourish.

Arizona eHomes

“It’s a work in progress,” says Tim. “In the timeline of our business model, we’re still in the formative stages,” he continues. “Our vision will be considerably different from what it looks like now. The next step will be adding the technological aspects – the eHome – to our business model. I think it will definitely take us to the next level.”

Becoming a force on the Web is not only the future of Arizona eHomes, it was the basis for its creation. While other real estate professionals were struggling through the Great Recession, Kym and Tim found their niche.

“We knew we had to do something different,” says Tim, “and realized that there were plenty of interested buyers living in states to the North. To them, Arizona property was a great deal and they had the means to take advantage of the reduced prices. Naturally, utilizing the Internet was pivotal in reaching those buyers.”

“Our platform helps us build relationships with people from throughout the country, even the world,” adds Kym.

Home Sweet Home

Today, as the Polancos dive further into entrepreneurial plans, their children are preparing to go off to college.

When the couple met, Kym’s daughter, Amanda, and Tim’s son, Brandon were both 4 years old. Today, they’re on the brink of adulthood, leaving behind two empty-nesters.

The family is still close, though, enjoying quality time and the great outdoors. “We’ve always loved hiking,” Kym says. “It’s one of our favorite pastimes. Our goal is to complete the 800 mile Arizona Trail. We’ve been doing it in segments. We’ve only got a short 300 miles to go!”

Looking back at what they’ve accomplished in such a short period of time, the Polancos are excited to see what the future holds. Fourteen years ago, their story began. Today, on the brink of a new life, facing a new crossroads, their plans to continue growing professionally and personally haven’t changed.

Whatever the job, this pair will get it done, together.