Larry Desmond's secret to top home sales: Stay low key and work really hard

Story Image

One would think the most successful real estate agent is a slick, fast-paced, super-charged person under a lot of pressure to prove himself, sale after sale. This is not the case with Larry Desmond, the No. 1 agent at Waukegan’s Century 21 Maki United.

He is low key, laidback and never uses high-pressure sales tactics.

“I like to work close with people. I try to listen to what people are looking for and I never go over their bounds,” said Desmond, whose voice is so soft that one is at ease knowing he will never try to sell you anything you don’t really want or is beyond your means.

“I don’t think you can be successful that way,” he said.

He closed 66 transactions last year.

His record is not just local, but of national proportions. For instance, he:

• Received the National Centurion award, the highest honor from Century 21, the International Real Estate Firm, for 28 consecutive years.

• Earned the Grand Centurion Award for 14 years. This is the highest award in the Century 21 system an agent can receive.

• Was the top agent in Illinois for 18 years.

• Was inducted into the Century 21 International Hall of Fame in 1992. He’s one of only 57 agents to ever receive this honor to date.

• Won the Association of Realtors award for 21 consecutive years.

• Was a top Century 21 agent in the United States in 1989 and one of the top 40 agents in 1990-2007.

• Closed more than 5,000 Real Estate sales over the last 37 years with his expertise and advise.

While Desmond, a teacher-turned salesman is low-pressure, he said once he learns what a buyer is looking for; he will pursue and find the right property. In selling, he would be aggressive enough to give the property the most possible exposure through advertising, referrals and listings. “However, the final decision is the client’s,” he said.

“As in any business, only 15 percent of people are doing 80 percent of the business,” he said. “I enjoy what I’m doing and get great satisfaction in helping clients find and sell properties.”

What’s the future for real estate agents in the area? “Great, but a successful agent has to work hard,” Desmond said.