Thursday, July 11, 2013

Business or vendor appreciation -- Donovan Home Team and Pierson Real Estate

This is long overdue, but I wanted to publicly thank the Donovan Home Team for helping us find our house and get us into it. Ryan Donovan made the process conspicuously easy. I still wake up in this strange new place and wonder that we actually did it. Ryan and his team made it happen.

As business owners with three kids five-years-old and under, our schedule and expectations are chaotic in the best of circumstances. Ryan lived fairly far away from us (we're in Manassas, he's in Sterling), but he always made the trip out to our area to show us the homes we were interested in. Some of the houses we put on our "to check out" list were probably either in too bad of shape to be realistic, or too far out of our reach. Finding the happy middle ground wasn't easy. But if Ryan was ever miffed at our insane choices and having to drive all the way out to Manassas to show us, he never showed it. In fact, as we dragged our high-energy little Vikings through one house or another, he was always more than patient -- he was helpful and friendly the whole time.

While all of the "face time" was with Ryan, he really does have an awesome team. His transactions administrator, Nicole, always sent us documentation in a timely manner, and kept on us when we didn't get it back in a timely manner. When it came time to find a loan officer, he sent us a couple of names, and we ended up working with Alex Gabriel at First Home Mortgage, who also turned what seemed like an impossible situation into reality.

And when it finally came time to sit down at the closing table to buy some very expensive keys, everyone -- the listing agent, the closing maestro (can't remember his name or title, unfortunately), Alex, Ryan and the sellers, were as helpful and friendly as can be. It turned out that we had a number of connections -- churches, schools, religious orders -- so that undoubtedly made things even easier. The point is: it really was a well-run, professional, knowledgable TEAM. Let's face it -- customer service is on life support these days, and finding an entire group of people dedicated to it is fantastic.

So, check them out if you're in the market for a home. It's well worth it.

I also want to give a big shout-out to my friend TJ at Pierson Real Estate. TJ and I go back several years, back to when we slogged it out in the journalism field. (He was a far better journalist than I could ever hope to be.) He'd gotten into real estate with Tim Pierson, and is doing very well. They're also a first class organization, doing record business largely by word-of-mouth.

Naturally, TJ was the first person I called when we finally decided to go home shopping again, and he was ready to get to work. Unfortunately, my schedule and my wife's schedule rarely syncs, and while things had gotten started with TJ, I was rarely home to give my wife an update about where things were. She took that to mean nothing was moving forward, which led her to contact Ryan and his team. Honestly, I was thankful that she was taking the lead on that front because this business pretty much consumes ALL of my time, but I was pretty bummed and embarrassed that I didn't get it together to work with my buddy.

At any rate, we had an excellent experience with the Donovan Home Team, but I'm sure we would have been equally cared for with Pierson Real Estate. Honesty and integrity are bedrock principles with both. They should totally hang out together.

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