Arlene McCoy & Associates on Dallas Highway in Marietta sold more than $13.8 million in real estate last year and has been one of Re/Max’s top producing sales team for seven years including 2006, where they were also Cobb County’s top real estate sales team.
Asked about her secret to success, McCoy credits it to her work ethic.
“My work is not a job, it is an adventure,” she said. “I can’t think of many other occupations which allow me to not only meet a lot of people, but meet them in a relatively short amount of time.”
Fogard has much the same business philosophy, saying the team’s success comes from maintaining contact with clients long after the real estate has been sold.
“In any business where you are serving the public and satisfying a need, there is no time limit or end of that business relationship,” she said. “It is ongoing and continuous.
“Even after the sale, we do not automatically move on to the next buyer or seller but we remain in contact with our clients because we view them now as friends,” she said, adding it is keeping in touch with clients and getting referrals, which accounts for much of their sales success.
Another element of the team’s success comes from the support of their families.
McCoy, who has been married for 21 years and calls her husband “the wind beneath my wings,” is not only a mother with three daughters but is now a grandmother.
“My girls are not only amazing, they are driven,” she said. “They understand what is required of them and have incorporated that into their own lives through watching the work ethic of their parents.”
Fogard, who has been married for 24 years, said she could have done very little in real estate without the support of her husband and two daughters.
“It is through this support from my family, and the joy I receive from being able to help others, which has been the greatest help to me in this business,” she said.
Although real estate is tops on their list of primary interests, McCoy also enjoys reading, cooking and baking in her spare time, while Fogard enjoys reading and exercising.
Although both love the business of buying and selling real estate, they also see themselves as consumer educators.
“Our job is as much to educate our clients on the status of the market as it is actual selling properties,” McCoy said.
“An educated consumer is an astute and knowledgeable consumer,” she said.
“Julie and I enjoy working with people like that, who have taken it upon themselves to put time and effort into learning about the real estate market and trends with regard to their real estate interests, whether commercial or residential,” she said.
McCoy and Fogard also enjoy keeping themselves up to date with trends in the real estate market, which each feels adds to their own knowledge and makes them better real estate agents.
They also agree that Cobb County is now the best place to purchase real estate in the entire metro Atlanta area.
McCoy said when she started selling real estate in 2003, the market “took off” but just four years later in 2007, “real estate went down the tubes.”
However, in 2012, the real estate market started to rise again, she said, and that boost in the market was especially true for Cobb County, she said.
“If people are serious about purchasing real estate, they should find their way back to Cobb County,” McCoy said.
As far as the price range of homes showing the most increase in current sales, McCoy said any residential properties up through $100,000 are going fast while those up to the $150,000 to $200,000 range are also being snapped up.
“Even those in the $250,000 range, if they are in good condition, are also selling well,” she said.
However, in real estate sales, like many others business ventures which involve the general public, the keyword is location.
“By location, we mean how the community surrounding the residential property in question shapes up with regard to the school system which serves that community, the convenience of commercial and retail businesses nearby plus the important element of ease of transportation in the area,” McCoy said.
“Buyers are picky, but if you are in the right area and the house is in good shape, it will sell,” McCoy said.
For those wanting to sell their homes, Fogard said, they should get started on some of the improvement projects and other things the sellers had always wanted to do to that home.
As to the real estate success of their partnership, McCoy and Fogard said it stems from the mutual respect they have for each other.
“It starts with us building our business partnership on the foundation of friendship and respect we have for one another,” McCoy said.
Fogard said the duo has worked together through the bad and good times, both of which have fostered and solidified their partnership.
“Of course, we would all like for it to all be happy times in real estate, like in any other business, but that is not reality,” she said.