Drive by one of Jim Arbeed’s listings just before a showing, and he’ll likely be outside, decked out in his suit, blowing leaves. It’s not something you would expect to see from one of the top real estate agents in the world, but then Arbeed has built his storied career on that surprising level of service.
“If I am representing a seller, I have to make sure the property looks its best before showings,” says Arbeed, a leading member affiliated with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage’s Burlingame office since 2001. “It is important to live a philosophy you believe in and carry it out with your actions. It also pays dividends because people notice. Your reputation is key, but living from a standpoint of integrity and honesty — that’s what is most important.”
That outlook has helped Arbeed build a career most agents would love to emulate, earning prestigious accolades, including International President’s Premier, representing the top 1% of Coldwell Banker’s 88,000 agents internationally and in the Top 250 Agents in the country from REAL Trends. It has also made him the go-to resource for buyers first moving to the mid-Peninsula, not to mention his hundreds of repeat and referral clients.
“We are 18 miles south of San Francisco with big lots, great weather and fantastic schools. These are all the main reasons a young couple living in the city in a small condo might consider a town like Hillsborough. Being able to provide a thorough understanding of the local market, its different homes, streets and neighborhoods, and a deep understanding of schools based on personal experience — that comes across,” says Arbeed, who has been living in the area with his family since 1976. “Buyers want to know you are connected to the area, you really know what you are talking about and you care about finding them the right property.”
Sometimes that means negotiating beyond when most agents would have given up. “There was a deal I was working on that had eight or nine counteroffers back and forth. We couldn’t come to an agreement, and eventually, it just died,” he says. “This was around 12 years ago, but it sticks with me. I have always said, ‘Don’t let your pride or ego get in the way of a deal.’ It’s not always easy to live by, but ultimately, we’re here to advise and facilitate. So I called the seller’s agent and said, ‘We’re so close, let’s make this happen.’ There were a few more counteroffers and we eventually put it together. It stands out because there were some challenging circumstances; in the end, I put my ego and pride aside and did what was best for my client.”
Jim Arbeed (CalRE# 01060476) is affiliated with the Burlingame office and can be reached at 650.430.7653 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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