16 Sep Partners in Innovation – An Interview with Jane Hoffman and Alex Lambert
When Alex Lambert, CEO of The Garage Sale Luxury Auction House set his sights on auctioning luxury real estate in the Okanagan, he knew he needed a strong, forward thinking partner and Jane Hoffman, President of Kelowna’s leading luxury real estate agency, the Jane Hoffman Group, was a perfect fit. Jane’s stellar reputation, proven track record, and innovative approach to sales combined with Alex’s vision and hustle have resulted in the successful sale of multiple luxury properties. We sat down with Jane and Alex to talk about their partnership, Okanagan real estate, and the upcoming unreserved auction sale of Harvest Ridge Luxury Orchard Estate.
On The Okanagan Luxury Real Estate Market
Jane: The real estate market in Kelowna right now has a tremendous amount of energy in it, more than I’ve ever seen in 35 years of living here. Everything has come together – our downtown, our amenities, our health centres, our universities. Kelowna ticks all the boxes and it’s more noticeable this year than it has ever been in the past. We are a medium sized city, but we have all the offerings of a world-class, larger city. Combine that with our weather (the best in Canada) and it creates an environment that most people would want to live in. People who have dreamt of living here for years are starting to make their move.
Alex: In the past year and a half it’s been a much more inspiring marketplace. The energy, the environment, the education centres, businesses like Accelerate Okanagan, the innovative investments this city has been making – it is making a difference and all eyes are on us! We are the fastest growing city in British Columbia and you can see that through our municipal growth and economic development.
On Picking The Right Spot
J: There is such a variety of price range and aesthetically pleasing neighbourhoods here. From the lake views to mountain views to sprawling hills of orchard—there is such a large selection. There really isn’t just one area that I suggest. Every area offers a multitude of features so I always suggest clients explore the city because it really has it all.
A: Although our seasons are extended, we still truly have all four of them. Our waters are also non-tidal so they make for easy boating. We have a lot of the same beautiful weather and vineyard land as places like the Napa Valley but with the added benefit of waterfront. The lake lifestyle in the Okanagan is unbeatable.
On Harvest Ridge Luxury Orchard Estate
J: The maturity of our vineyards and orchards is another big draw for people. It’s a dream to live in this region of soft fruits and vineyards. I still wake up in the morning and say, “This is such an amazing place.” You feel like you’re vacationing, as if it’s the first time you’ve seen these mountain and lake views. Every time I drive up the driveway to Harvest Ridge I feel like I’m in some sort of dream world.
A: The property at Harvest Ridge Estate is unlike any other in the area. I knew that whoever explored these orchards would be amazed by the sheer volume of the estate, and with the orchard views, how could you not be blown away? This opportunity is truly one-of-a-kind. To be a homeowner of a centrally located orchard property like this will be someone’s dream come true.
On Working with Alex and The Garage Sale
J: I met Alex at the first auction home. Although the auction concept was foreign to me, I quickly began to see that there were many advantages to doing an auction-style sale. The amount of focus and marketing effort put into one property within a specific period of time makes it easy for buyers to understand the nature of the asset.
A. When we started on this road, I knew that Jane was the top realtor in the area so I thought she might not be open to change. What I quickly came to realize is that her open-minded nature and willingness to innovate had been her formula for success all along. She also has a genuine interest in her clients’ happiness and it shows up in the kind of work she does.
J. The auction process is great for the seller because they then know when their home will sell (this is not common place with traditional real estate transactions). When people ask me why someone would auction, I explain that people are able to plan their life because they know when their house is going to sell. There is always that hesitation from inquiries about this process, but now that I have experienced it I know how it works and it is very consistent. The honest approach creates trust with the client, and that’s what I like about working with Alex because he is clear about the whole system and he has proven that over time.
A: Jane did not put up any walls and in fact, was very open to working together. Our working relationship has been a strong one and we continue to learn from each other with every sale ultimately creating a better service for the customer.
Choosing an Auction Property
J: We are always looking for a good fit for this process. I thought Harvest Ridge would be a good fit because the setting and property is extraordinary and the sellers themselves are innovative.
A: It’s just as much about the people as it is about the property. It is about finding the right owners and the right asset. We have had the privilege of working with some incredible homeowners and have built valuable relationships through the process.
The countdown is on! Only 7 days until the live auction sale of Harvest Ridge Luxury Orchard Estate. Join us September 22, 2016 for this one-of-a kind event.