Mother-daughter team open Chandler brokerage - SanTan Sun News SanTan Sun News

Mother-daughter team open Chandler brokerage

December 9th, 2021 development
Mother-daughter team open Chandler brokerage
Business
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Mother-daughter team open Chandler brokerage

By Ken Sain, Staff Writer

Few considered starting their own business in October 2020 as the nation reeled from a third wave of COVID-19 infections, businesses were going bankrupt and 7.4 million Americans were unemployed – way above the pre-pandemic rate.

Seems like a strange time to set up your own shop, but that’s exactly what the mother and daughter team of Laurie and Chelsea McDonnell did. The women opened their own real estate brokerage in Chandler called Locality Real Estate.

“There are some hurdles with it, right, but the real estate market was very strong, and continues to be strong,” Laurie said. “A little hiccup when COVID first happened, where people, you know, a little craziness, with cancellations and a little uncertainty with what the market was going to do. But we were in the real estate market for a long time and we were very confident in our abilities.”

Not only did they survive the pandemic, they thrived during it. A year after they opened, they have hired 33 agents with another hire expected soon.

“We’re not recruiting, we are organically growing based on attracting people to what we’re doing,” Laurie said. “They’re calling us, which is awesome.”

Laurie and Chelsea said they look for agents who share their vision for a real estate company.

“We wanted to build a brokerage of agents that were community focused,” Laurie said. “That are in the trenches, full-time real estate agents. Like minded, and have a sense of paying it forward in the community. And having fun while we’re doing it.”

Chelsea said their agents support giving back to the communities where they work. For example, Locality supports other local businesses, the schools and nonprofits.

“Whatever we can do on a local level, that’s where are hearts are,” Laurie said.

“It’s been neat to see that come together,” Chelsea said.

They encourage their agents to donate a portion of every escrow they do to the Arizona Housing Fund, which is working to end homelessness in the state. Laurie and Chelsea say they are matching those donations through the end of this year.

This is not the first time the mother-daughter team has worked together – which motivated them to do it again.

“I think it was inevitable that it was going to happen,” Chelsea said. “It’s just kind of our thing.”

In addition to working together a few years ago at another brokerage, they had also worked together a family-own restaurant.

“We’re very much alike, but … she has her strengths and I have mine,” Laurie said. “She’s the operations, marketing side of things, and I’m more the compliance, out in the field [person].”

A major reason the McDonnells have built a successful business during a pandemic is because the real estate market has been red hot in Arizona. They said they expect the market to slow a bit, but still remain hot.

“I think the market is going to stabilize here soon, and I think we’re going to see appreciations, just not at the level we’ve been seeing,” Laurie said. “We’re not going to see 40 percent appreciation or some crazy numbers like we’ve seen, but 10 to 15 percent is all right too.”

Information: 133 W. Frye Road, Chandler, 602-758-6007

Mother-daughter team open Chandler brokerage

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