Q&A: ROGER PETTINGELL
Sarasota Herald-Tribune USA TODAY NETWORK
Coldwell Banker Realty Roger Pettingell has topped his previous sales volume by close to $25 million, achieving what may be the first $200 million dollar year in the Sarasota residential real estate market. The waterfront luxury specialist has had the largest closed volume of any real estate agent in the Sarasota market for 11 years in a row and is on pace to close out 2021 at the top again.
He recently sat discussed with the Herald-Tribune the Sarasota market.
Question: What are you seeing now in the luxury residential market and what do you expect to happen in the near future?
I now consider the Sarasota luxury market to be at $5 million-plus. This is substantially higher in price than it was pre-pandemic when we spoke of $3 million as luxury. The volume of sales in this market is astounding. We have always had buyers who have had the wherewithal to purchase such homes; however, they typically didn’t appreciate Sarasota as a market worthy of such value. Today’s luxury buyer has already determined that Sarasota is where they want to be. The inventory is in such short supply that new luxury homes which come to the market are typically not there for very long. I think the near future will see more of the same. The stock market and the pandemic are wild cards for the overall real estate market, though unlike in the past, the new luxury buyer is less likely to be purchasing a second or third home (the purchase of which can be put off.) Today’s luxury buyers are likely looking to make Sarasota their main home base due to the visible mass migration from the Northeast, California, and Midwest.
Q: What are you seeing in our market that may not be readily apparent from just looking at sales figures and pending sales?
Big homes are back in vogue. Buyers want separate offices, home gyms, and space, both inside and out. New or renovated is the most desired, but not required. Many buyers, due to lack of inventory, are not buying their first choice; it will be interesting to see how that plays out. Luckily, the market has continued to go up in value, allowing a buyer who got their second, third or fifth choice to keep looking and trade out of what may not be their dream home.
Q: You’ve been one of the top agents in our region for more than a decade. How have you been able to do that and what advice would you have for people to be successful in a real estate profession?
The more I read about successful people (I recently read biographies of Will Smith and Phil Knight of Nike) I see that the common thread is very hard work. Real estate allows professionals to participate at many levels, but the top people are those who devote themselves passionately to the profession. I am a career Realtor; real estate, marketing, and then sales, is the only job I’ve ever had.
I run a real estate business, and I employ real estate professionals to support me. When I mentor new Realtors, I discuss the importance of eating, breathing, and sleeping real estate. Product knowledge takes years to learn, and it is the most important skill we offer. I also encourage far more listening than talking!
Q: With the market being as hot as it has been, is there any worry that it could be overheated? If not, why?
What goes up, goes down eventually. Real estate is a market, and I expect prices will come down at some point. Then they will go back up again. It all really depends on your time horizon. If you are looking to flip properties, getting in and out quickly, this would certainly be a time to be cautious. If you have a long-term horizon, which most people do with their homes, don’t worry and enjoy living a lifestyle in Sarasota which few are lucky enough to have. After 2008, when the mortgage crises rocked the real estate market, homes went down as much as 50%. Since then, we have far surpassed the highs set in the bull real estate market of 2004/5. Another way to look at this question: If you are looking to sell your home in the next year or so, we are in a market with very high pricing. I think you are taking a risk of not capturing the maximum gains on your property if you wait. You never know where you are in the cycle until you are looking in the rearview mirror.