Jan. 22, 2006 – RE/MAX-Island Paradise Realty owner Diana Beam runs one busy agency.
"I need real estate agents so bad, but I'd like to get somebody already licensed," she said.
She currently has two agents, Jared Warren and David Patrie, working out of her office above JJ's Texas Coast Café at Cruz Bay Park.
Beam said that even if an agent has a stateside license, it's not valid here. And, she said that new arrivals just don't have the background that comes from living for years on St. John, which makes them better able to serve their customers.
She also said it's important for agents to know the history of the houses they're selling.
"A lot of them are sold over and over," she said.
Beam got her real estate start on St. John because she needed a part-time job when her children, Ian, 21, and Haley, 20, were small. After working for two other St. John real estate agencies, she opened her own agency two years ago.
She aims to provide multiple services needed by people buying houses.
"They don't have to go running around town to put a package together," she said.
First Bank has its mortgage department adjacent to her office and the Bornn Firm's lawyers provide real estate and other legal assistance in the same building.
And the St. Thomas-based McLaughlin Anderson Luxury Homes rents vacation villas at her office.
"All I'm missing," she said, "is an architect and a contractor."
She said one of the best parts of her job comes with helping people buy their dream home on St. John. She said that while many people share this dream, only a few make it happen.
Beam said that sometimes it takes years for a client to move from looking to buying.
"I've been working with this one guy for five years," she said.
She added that many of the people who bought houses through her are now friends.
Beam said she also likes the independence that comes with owning her own business.
She's also pleased that on March 1, she'll receive the RE/MAX International Platinum Club Award for her high level of sales. In 2004 she received the RE/MAX International Executive Club Award.
Born in Long Island, N.Y., Beam and her family moved to Florida when she was a baby. She grew up in Jensen Beach.
After working in the banking industry, she sailed to St. John in 1982, soon settling in.
A single mother with her children off at school – Haley attends Savannah College of Art and Design and Ian is at Tuft's University in Boston – she said she has lots of energy and time to make RE/MAX-Island Paradise Realty grow.
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