Why? Because the old rules no longer apply.

Whether you’re selling a condo or a multi-million dollar estate, at First Team® Real Estate, no transaction is "business as usual." That's why we've created a new set of rules and standards to serve you successfully in this challenging environment. Together, with a unique set of sophisticated tools like our proprietary Market Trends℠, SNEAKPREVIEW℠, and the Buyer Pipeline℠ system, we will ensure your success regardless of market conditions. We keep our finger on the pulse of real estate because it's not just our job - it's our passion. With 40 years of business under our belt, we know what works. 

Stay relevant in an ever-changing real estate landscape when you use a real estate professional who knows The NEW Rules of Real Estate®.


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Rule one.

Be where the buyers are. 

92% of buyers use the internet in their home search process.*

Our job is to quickly find qualified buyers to secure the top price for your home. To do so, we prominently place your property on our award-winning website, FirstTeam.com, along with over 2,000 other real estate websites and leading publications across the country. But we don't stop there. Our exclusive partnerships with Christie's International Real Estate, Luxury Portfolio International™, and Leading Real Estate Companies of the World™ allow us to extend your exposure to qualified buyers all over the world.

We then collect and match potential buyers to your listing through our proprietary Buyer Pipeline℠ system, which aggregates and identifies buyers that may already be interested in your home.

Exposure to MILLIONS of buyers – that's what you get when you use a real estate professional who knows The NEW Rules of Real Estate®.

* NAR 2015 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers




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Rule two.

Use enhanced visual representation.

Minimize days on market and maximize sale price by using professional photography and videography.

Many brokers think you only need minimal photography, especially in a fast-moving market, to sell a house — and even that a single photo doesn't have to be spectacular. But at First Team®, we know that professional photography sells listings 50% faster, 39% closer to the list price, and generates 118% more online views.* That's why we take the time to capture your home from all the best angles, using the best technology, and showcase it everywhere from top real estate websites to our own social media networks.

Innovative visual representation – that's what you get when you use a real estate professional who knows The NEW Rules of Real Estate®.

* IMOTO 2015 Impact of Professional Real Estate Photography




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Rule three.

PUT YOUR HOME ON STAGE.

Increase your home's value by up to 15%.*

When selling a home, attention to detail makes all the difference. Almost 100% of REALTORS® report their buyers are positively influenced by home staging. So why is it that only 34% of listing agents take the time to stage their homes?* 

First Team® Real Estate professionals are trained to assess your property both inside and out for ways it can be showcased in the best possible light, and ultimately sell for a higher price. We make expert staging suggestions by applying the techniques used in model homes. In fact, a recent $500 staging investment on a First Team® property valued at $650,000 secured a sale price for the seller of $720,000!

Create a positive first impression with staging – a proven strategy used by real estate professionals who know The NEW Rules of Real Estate®.

* NAR 2015 Profile of Home Staging




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Rule four.

Get the pricing edge.

Price your home right the first time, using local area market knowledge.

Don't settle for basic pricing comparisons used by most real estate agents. First Team® agents have access to Market Trends℠ – our sophisticated, proprietary pricing tool that reveals statistics and trends based on up-to-the-minute supply and demand information, neighborhood by neighborhood.

With this exclusive market insight, we can confidently make such advantageous recommendations as increasing your original list price, or finding a more suitable asking price to prevent you from being one of the 43% of sellers who reduce their original asking price at least once, and ultimately sell for less.*

Be confident that your home will be priced accurately when you use a real estate professional who knows The NEW Rules of Real Estate®.

* NAR 2015 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers




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Rule five.

Be the first to respond.

First Team® Real Estate dedicated professionals respond to all buyer inquiries within 5 minutes.

The time it takes to respond to an inquiry from an interested buyer can make the difference between selling your home and a missed opportunity. In fact, contacting a buyer within 5 minutes versus 30 minutes increases the odds of actually getting in touch with that person by 100x, and the odds of qualifying them increase by 21x.*

Yet, the average agent still takes about 15 hours to respond to their listing inquiries, and 48% of leads are never responded to at all.** Not on our watch. We know that time is money, so we respond to every inquiry within minutes. As a result, we're able to bring more qualified buyers who, in turn, make more offers.

No buyer inquiry goes unanswered when you use a real estate professional who knows The NEW Rules of Real Estate®.

* The Lead Response Management Study
** WAV Group Agent Responsiveness Study




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Rule six.

Identify motivated buyers at all stages.

First Team® represents more home buyers than all of our closest competitors.*

While other agents start looking for buyers only after a property is listed, we're able to tap into our Buyer Pipeline℠ to check for matching buyers for your home even before you list. Through our sizable network of agents, we track and keep in touch with thousands of buyers from their very first call or email, and we're ready to introduce you to ALL who may be interested in your home. 

We'll also add your home to our internal SNEAKPREVIEW℠ and First Look programs, which allow us to share your home before it goes on the market** with our network of agents who have highly motivated buyers who are often willing to pay a premium to secure the sale.

Get privileged access to eager buyers when you use a real estate professional who knows The NEW Rules of Real Estate®.

* All reports are published September 2016 based on data available from last 12 months, Orange County, all brokers. © Trendgraphix Inc.
** Subject to MLS rules




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Rule seven.

Receive Constructive Feedback.

Don't let seller blindness be your downfall.

Sometimes, we become blind to the things that we see every day. And in some cases, what's normal to us is not normal to a potential buyer evaluating your house. For example, in one situation, we identified that buyers coming through a particular home were easily distracted and altogether deterred because they were being followed around the house by the seller's mother-in-law. An easy fix if only you are aware.

With anonymous, buyer-agent feedback systems provided, it becomes easy and efficient to receive the type of honest feedback that could end up being critical to your home sale. Electronically, after scheduling an appoint, we request feedback from the agents and buyers who have previewed your home, and use that information to identify actionable areas for correction that may end up being critical to your home sale.

Receive actionable advice when you use a real estate professional who knows The NEW Rules of Real Estate®.




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Rule eight.

Understand the power of negotiation.

When it comes to negotiating, it pays to have an expert.

Because there are numerous negotiation points in a home sale contract, expert negotiating skill is not something to compromise. At First Team®, our agents are trained to utilize the latest and most successful negotiating practices to give you every possible advantage in securing top dollar for your home.

Our agents work with our dedicated risk management experts to identify risk and negotiate compliance and contingencies including but not limited to home inspection, repair requests, termite inspection and appraisals. No offer is accepted until it is vetted and has met the goals and expectations set forward by all parties.

Money won't be left on the table when you use a real estate professional who knows The NEW Rules of Real Estate®.




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Rule nine.

Lending is the caveat to closing.

What you don't know about home financing can be costly.

1 in 3 buyer home loans don't get approved, usually because buyers are not aware of current standards and get rejected in the mortgage approval process.* Lenders have tightened their standards, and although restrictions have loosened, they're still scrutinizing a borrower's ability to repay.

A real estate agent must be able to understand and navigate through the complexities of financing. First Team® agents will work with expert lenders to prevent your time from being wasted on a non-performing buyer, and to make sure significant deposits are not lost due to performance delays or forfeiture. 

Experience a smooth transaction when you use a real estate professional who knows The NEW Rules of Real Estate®.

* 2016 Ellie Mae, Inc. Origination Insight Report




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Rule ten.

Assure your expectations are met.

Expect your agent to provide value far exceeding your expectations.

First Team® will create demand for your home, present it effectively to a maximum number of qualified buyers, get feedback on any adjustments that need to be made, negotiate offers and terms, and provide direction on financing issues. Most importantly, we will support our clients with any need that might arise in order to sell their home for the highest and best price possible in the current market with tools and a solid skill set that will maximize results. This is what you should expect and demand from your real estate agent. Before you list your home with any agent, be sure to ask the all important questions.

When you ask a First Team agent who knows The NEW Rules of Real Estate®, you will get direct and honest specifics about how best to market and sell your home. You will receive all the information you must have to make the best decision going forward to meet your financial goals.



Download your free copy of the booklet here:


Asking the right questions is critical.

Contact us for the complete list of questions to ask of any real estate agent who may list your home. 





A message from Cameron Merage, CEO and Founder of First Team® Real Estate:

"The real estate industry continues to change at a rapid pace. The myriad of new tools and technologies created to make search and sale easier for consumers often makes the process even more challenging and more daunting. In response, First Team® Real Estate developed The NEW Rules of Real Estate® ‒ your guide to achieving success in today's tougher market.

For 40 years, First Team® has kept its clients ahead of the market by incorporating innovative buyer tools and strategies in conjunction with seller advantages of international distribution channels and industry partnerships, from worldwide exposure to hyper–local expertise. First Team® is an independent, family–owned company that is small enough to care and large enough to support customer needs on a global scale. When you hire a First Team® agent, you are hiring over 1,600 caring professionals to meet your goals."