All New Westminster residents are proud of their community, but Darcy Schlechtleitner could persuade even the most hardened Vancouverite to up sticks and move here – that’s how passionate an advocate the Rethink Real Estate Group founder is. “It’s got everything – the heritage, downtown, the waterfront,” says the mum of one. “It’s a wonderful community – everywhere I go I see people I know and everyone knows everyone. It’s safe and walkable – a great place to raise children,” she explains.
Schlechtleitner says she’s especially appreciative of New West’s unique advantages because she didn’t grow up here. “My childhood environment was not like this at all. I lived near Edmonds Station. We were surrounded by social housing, drugs and alcohol, and I know I’m lucky I got out.”
While luck perhaps played a part, Schlechtleitner’s determination and hard work is also a big factor in her success: After a friend told her she’d make a good realtor, she studied the subject at BCIT, graduated in 2002 and moved to New West, where she started her real-estate career. “After a two-year intensive programme, I hit the ground running. I have loved real estate since day one – I walked in, and it was my calling.”
Now she owns a boutique brokerage, which has a staff of seven (five realtors and two admin), all with different skill sets so they can provide a complete service for any client. “I have three divisions: Rethink Land, which focuses on assembling homes or winding up condos to build higher density; Rethink Home, where we sell homes, condos, investments and dreams; and Rethink Stage, our in-house staging company that is included with our listings if needed,” she says.
Her clients love her – 95 per cent of her residential custom is through referrals. Why? Her combination of people skills and business smarts. “I love putting pieces of the puzzle together – I move people all over the city, often without a sign up. I know where people want to go and connect the dots. New West is a small town and anything can happen here when you have a network of fabulous people.”
As a business owner and proud member of the community, she’s always looking for ways to give back, whether that’s financially (at least 10 per cent of her income each year goes to non-profits), or with her time. “I am the girl you call when you need something. My interests for giving are youth at risk, homelessness, social issues, access for kids to sports and addiction. It’s all grass roots and true to my heart,” she says.
To find out more about Rethink Real Estate Group, visit Teamrethink.com, call 604-783-1250, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or drop into the office at 631 Columbia Street.