Kevin Hoover, a 12-year experienced Myrtle Beach luxury agent talks about his successful shift to EXP Realty, what good does he see with additional passive income generation with EXP and how does he compare the EXP model with the conventional business models.
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Mike: This is the agent revolution podcast; the next evolution of the real estate industry.
Let’s get started!
What’s up it’s Mike Wall, eXp agent and team leader, your host for The Agent revolution podcast. Today I’m excited to chat with Myrtle Beach South Carolina’s old rock star real estate agent Kevin Hoover. Kevin and I dive deep into his personal journey – leading seemingly a perfect life at a local brokerage for this incredible opportunity he saw at eXp realty. Let’s get this thing started!
All right all right, man! We are live, ready to rock n roll with Mr. Kevin Hoover, how are you?
Kevin: I’m great, thanks for having me, this is awesome!
Mike: Yeah, Super excited, not only to have, you know, everybody that hopefully will follow the podcast and the Facebook live get to know you, but to get to know you myself, you know obviously, we were part of this great company here at the eXp and you know we feel like we’re doing some really cool things. And certainly we would invite not only eXp agents but other agents across United States and abroad to be a part of that. So, really, the purpose of this platform is just to provide a kind of an informational session for agents who maybe seeking a better way to do business or just to learn a little bit more about the eXp and then also our eXp coworkers to learn more about each other. And so without further ado, Mr. Kevin Hoover welcome to the show! Why don’t we do this real quick? I don’t want to get a lot into how long have you been into real estate and how you got into real estate, but so want to just touch briefly on that. So, why don’t you just tell in a brief synopsis, how did you get in to real estate, how long you’ve been doing it and then we’ll go straight into our eXp stuff.
Kevin: Excellent, excellent! I started real estate in New York City in 2006 about 12 years ago. 2008 came and I got out of real estate abruptly. There’s a lot of people there and they get back in about three years ago, full time. So, it’s been a process of 12 years.
Mike: Wow! Ok. Twelve years goes by in the blink of an eye.
Mike: So, you were there for tough times.
Kevin: Oh, yeah!
Mike: Tell me a little bit about that.
Kevin: It was a trying time for everybody, I mean, business changed literally overnight for a lot of people, myself included. I was much younger and much more naive at the time and it blindsided me.
Kevin: But, on the back side of that, I learned the biggest lessons about business and about real estate, that I probably wouldn’t have learned otherwise. So, definitely it really helped.
Mike: It seems like, you know, it’s in the toughest of times is when we learn the most and when it makes the people, who are really dedicated to their craft, those are the ones that ultimately improve because they learn from those lessons. I would absolutely agree with you. So tell me this then, how is your business currently structured? Are you a solo agent?
Kevin: Yeah, I’m a lone ranger. I’m a little different than, maybe, a lot of people especially with the eXp. But I know I have no interest in building, you know, a traditional team or anything like that. And so I operate out of my house and on the Cloud, 100 percent solo.
Mike: That’s awesome. And that’s a great thing about real estate, it’s the fact that you it’s not the same for everybody. In other words like what I think of as someone to be successful in real estate may not be in alignment with what you think is successful. And what I want to real estate may not be what you want and certainly you know that is the really cool thing. You can do real estate at a high level and be celebrated. You can do real estate at a high level and be, you know, a team. You can be an investing. So there’s so many different things you can do to get from a production standpoint. What was your goal this year?
Kevin: To do between 5 and 6 million is my goal for this year. That’s pretty consistent. I got it to the point of doing 10 or 12 but I have a 3 year old son and a wife. I like to spend time with them. So that’s been a priority. So, I kind of reverse engineered to scaling back a little bit. And that’s what I really like about, and not to say we need to be, but that’s what I really like about the model, I can turn it up or down as I need or as I want. So, right now five or six million is my sweet spot is going to wear on me and gives me a lot of time and gives me enough money and I can afford it myself.
Mike: Yeah! That’s also me and I would imagine there are a lot of people that are listening to this or watching this and they are right there in that you know, 4, 5, or 6 million dollar range. And that certainly can provide a comfortable lifestyle. You know it you can balance over the life of a career. I mean there’s once went into the spectrum and then there’s other in that kind of falls right into that sweet spot I would especially think so in that South Carolina market where the cost of living isn’t super high, not cheap here in Ohio either. Ok! So, you get that five to six million dollar mark. And so, it’s just you. I wouldn’t say that Myrtle Beach is a luxury market but it is certainly I guess a large portion of it would be vacation homes or second homes and stuff like that, correct?
Kevin: Yeah! Very much for a second home market. And really we run the gamut. You know we have you know 50000 dollar condos and then we have you know 10 million dollar homes. Not a lot of them, but that’s kind of the challenge with this market is that the buyers that live here and most of the sellers don’t live here. So, it is so fun to work in and you get to see a big variety from client to client which I really love. It’s not same thing every day.
Mike: Absolutely! So, where were you at before you moved to eXp?
Kevin: I was working for a small luxury brokerage out here in Myrtle Beach. We were doing a small team of seven people. What I’m doing about project to do about 69 million in sales among those seven people. Do a lot of new development and you know homes and things of that nature. And that really shifted my focus of leveraging my time and how do I do that and what is this cloud based broker saying. Well, you know, how this model works steering away from traditional models where you have an office and you sit on site, you take your turn in the rotation and you go to training and you have meetings, and everything like that. And so the subway from that to eXp was something that I had actually sought out and I said hey I want to be by myself. I don’t really want to go to meetings, unless they’re vital or important or you know I don’t want to sacrifice time for a meeting if I don’t have to. And I don’t want to do the layers of income. And that was what drew me here.
Mike: So, I asked this question to everybody and I feel like you know everybody reacts differently when they hear about something. You know, they are early adaptors, there are certainly people that do more research than others. Where you fall into that kind of that gamut. Are you one like when you heard about it, like you knew this was it, and you need to make the change that you heard about it. I mean I’ve talked to some people you know heard about it and they didn’t change for a couple years and I talked to people who heard about it and they immediately moved. So where do you fall in that spectrum?
Kevin: I’m kind of middle. I think it took me two months to really go from the first time I heard about it to really entertaining it as my thing. But, I’m reminded, I knew a guy in New York, when I lived there and he was an administrator or something for Google. And in fact for ten years, and he was able to retire with seven figures in the bank because of stock options. And so I was reminded of that story and I thought well you know I don’t want to drag my feet too much on this because I believe and it was just checking a lot of boxes as far as what I was looking for as a company. And so it didn’t take me really very long. I really convinced my wife when we do that I convince myself. So I was telling her all about and everything like that. I think it was very quick after that. I see a lot of people and I see the same thing you do. I’ve seen people take years, people who maybe have a big team, and moving the whole team over. Or they want to understand more about how it works and it takes a little time for that. But I’m very much go at my guy and like a lot of really good things.
Mike: So talk about that moment when you first heard about it and in kind of the emotions or the reactions you had and kind of what you went through from that moment when you heard about it and in doing your due diligence and then to moving.
Kevin: I got really excited when I first heard about it and I didn’t know enough to know why I was excited. I just knew that I was excited, because it sounded like a really cool thing for me. You know I’m a video guy and I like tech, and I like new things and I’m very much like anything that’s against traditional business. And so this was very interesting to me. And then as I got in and I started to learn about the applications and eXp world and everything that goes along with it. I got even more excited. And that’s not even talking about the income opportunities but you know just the technology and the grouping and how you meet people of your state all over the country. So as I dug deeper, I was like wow! I thought this is really pretty cool stuff that I like to be a part of. And that’s really where it came for me because I was building another business, a coaching business and everything like that. This just fits right into what I’m doing as well as writing and stuff like that. So, it’s just a natural match for me.
Mike: Yeah! I didn’t want to touch on that because I did think that was really cool and I didn’t even know this until I started to do a little research myself. But you’re a contributor at Edmunds. How did that work.
Kevin: You know it’s funny but I’m a big believer that you know when you meet people you just never know where they’re from. So, I was at a conference in Miami, a coaching conference, a connect with a few people and one of the ladies that I connected with the editors using real estate and I helped her out a little bit I guess. She said she’s connected with the editor over in and if you’re interested, and I was like, surely going to go. And then you have to submit. They don’t just say ok, published. You’ve to submit. So I submitted a piece and she really liked it and published it and then we just kept a really good relationship. It probably lasted 12 to 18 months. And now we’re getting to the point of them actually asking me to do pieces for them. So it’s been really cool. I mean they are such great people at Edmund and my connection there was just like I was looking for. It’s just kind of found me and I ran with it.
Mike: Yeah that’s huge. Man! I think that’s great, not only for the articles that you’re producing but also for your own credibility. I mean I think that overflows into you, actually the consumers that you’re working with you. And certainly giving you that authority and that credibility. So, kudos you man, for putting that together, that’s something awesome.
Kevin: Thank you! And others point about I was surprised a little bit. But you’re right. I use it to just give me a little bit of leg up when I start chewing an opinion about real estate.
Mike: Good for you man. Ok! So, when did you actually move over to eXp?
Kevin: It is almost a year to the day it was September 1st last year that I officially pulled the plug over to eXp. And I’ve spent the last year figuring it out, figuring out how it works for my business. This year will be a big initiative as you start building people around me for eXp. So it’s been a great year.
Mike: That’s awesome. I’m glad, I love the fact that you have been here for almost a year because I think, I’ve been here since February and I think now you have a year under your belt. You’re able to kind of look back over those last 12 months and say you know here’s kind of what I figured out and obviously so there was that day that you know you decided to move to the moment that you actually move. Now you’re 12 months in. So, talk about like talk about your experience over the last 12 months and what problems or challenges has eXp solved directly for your business if any at all. And then, well first I’ll just let you comment on that.
Kevin: When I got in there were 4000 agents. And that’s not a long time ago. I think now there are17000 somewhere around there. So, that that kind of growth that quickly, I knew there were going to be bumps in the road, challenges for us as a company to overcome. And my experience with that is as soon as something comes up, they are right on top. My broker or people that work in that front, all the people that corporate with this company you know all the people that are trying to make this a seamless process have been right on it and they are also seeing opportunities. And I don’t see from the ground level that they present my way and I’m just a while that does make things easier. A lot of things happen with the CRM that is provided. The process of actually the online transactions that guys love, a lot of updates on that have just made things really seamless, going forward to communicate with people. The real challenges that comes since last year. In the end, it is just it’s a matter of understanding that companies that are young, they grow very quickly. Have to have cheerleaders and have that people that are out there, you know, just driving away and going after it. And that’s kind of where I saw my role as you know this is going to work out there. And it’s not going to go downhill and it’s is only going up. I believe that it is for me, I’m just going to do what it takes to help them anyway.
Mike: That’s also made. So, the question I like to ask you is that, you know, there comes that day when you say OK, I’m doing it. You say I’m making the change. But then there’s that one little issue, right? You got to tell your broker. And so, I’m always curious because you know for us, we’ve made the change, we’re on the other side of that and we move down the road or that individual who maybe, hasn’t made the change yet, maybe, has a great relationship with their broker. They maybe, even developed a friendship. And so how do we like? What do you say to that person? What advice can you give them? Approach their broker or their manager to tell them? What they’re thinking about doing or what they have already decided to do?
Kevin: It’s tough, it is tough and it was tough when I did it and I suspect it will always be tough. It’s a business decision, it just is. And when you make a business choice there are two things that can be involved and when asked to benefit you or your family or your people or your direction, and to be sensitive to someone else’s needs. So, when I decided my business, I wanted to look a certain way. I looked at my broker what he was expecting of me and it wasn’t matching. And so my decision was, it’s not fair for me not to live up to their expectations of what they need out of an agent. And it’s not fair to me or my family for me to try to mold into something that just doesn’t match my life. So I went and I had a very heartfelt discussions, very honest and very open. And I find that to be the best policy that you are moving for a reason and you can explain that reason. And sometimes that explanation is just, I’m sorry!
You know, I said, it’s time for me to go. And that’s a valid excuse. For me it was, I could be the agent they needed me to be I could sit on site on weekends, you know, two weeks or months because I had a son play soccer and I had to be there for those. So it just really became out to be where you are going to be fair to me and this is the choice I made. Handshake no hard feelings. I know a lot of people with the eXp, that’s not been that way been. I made a choice because I believe this to be best for me and my business. And that’s that. And then it goes a lot of different ways. I think if you address it from an empathetic standpoint and from a place of, I’m trying to look out for both of us in this equation. But I have made a decision and I am affirming that decision. And there’s nothing but respect and come across the table. It’s all in how you approach it.
Mike: Yeah! I find that you know it and it doesn’t happen this way all the time. You’re right! Like I was with Keller Williams and you know we were actually getting ready to open our own market center when we found out about the eXp. And so the only reason I tell you that is because when we went to the group that we were working with, and told them that we decided to move. It was like, well, we’re sending you a license back to the state. And so, we had to hustle like really quickly. They didn’t give us any time to do. I think they handled it poorly. I think they could have handled it better. I don’t think that that’s Keller Williams’ culture so to speak. But culture only goes as far as the people at the brokerage locally. You know what I mean. So clearly I don’t think that they necessarily reflected Keller William’s culture. So, our move was a little more challenging. And so, I think probably somewhere, you know, it sounds like your move was like, if I can necessarily say, that they were in complete support of you leaving. But it sounds like they were like, OK, yeah we get it! And what I found is that if you’ve truly built a relationship with somebody or a friendship and, you know, you’ve decided that this is what’s best for you and your family and your business moving forward. That if it is a true friendship or a relationship that they will support you in whatever decision you make whether it includes staying at their brokerage or moving on to the eXp or any other brokerage for that matter.
Kevin: Right? I agree with you 100 percent and I think that was just, you know, don’t get me wrong, I left behind a billion dollars of listening but that was client’s choice. I am working LeDrew market, I wanted to serve in first and I was prepared to take that as giving him a choice of staying with the brand or that company, coming at me and I want to be at eXp. And so there were loans, but I prepared myself to take those loans because that’s just the right thing to do. Not to fight that and not to combat but to quickly regroup and move on. Just of like you did. You know, when you left that’s all we can do right now though.
Mike: I want to rewind back a little bit because, you know you mentioned the opportunity to build long term wealth. And I know what you’re talking about there but talk a little bit about what the long term wealth means to you and how that relates to being at eXp?
Kevin: It’s really easy for someone of real estate to build a real estate job. And it’s really more challenging to build a real estate business and the way to differentiate those two is if you have to show up every day and nothing happens without you there then you got a real estate job. And if you are able to leverage your time and maybe you have some verticals in your business that create passive income or investment opportunities, then you’ve really geared yourself more towards a business. So with the eXp, we can say that word the revenue share part and the stock options and certainly you know everything that goes into that. It looks like something I was interested in. There was a long play that wasn’t hinging on anyone else other than me doing my job and trying to build a business a brand for myself with eXp in my market. And it just made perfect sense and I got really excited about the opportunity to invest in the company that I work for. First and foremost, because I think that’s important. And then, I also got the opportunity to invest in people and I intentionally waited a year to see how the inner workings worked so that if anyone wants to come into that world then I know a little more and I can help them better. And as far as the culture of the eXp, because there is a very unique culture, and creating my avatar was the coolest thing that I did. But it was a shift you know most people go in and decorate their desk. And I had to go in and pick out a shirt. It was just a little bit. So that’s really how I look at it. It is that three verticals that I use for. Creating long term wealth is obviously selling houses, selling real estate property, the revenue share for bringing people into our company that will succeed and produce, and then also investing back into the company through stock option program.
Mike: Yeah! And what’s so great about it and I think why I’m so passionate about it, when I talk to people, is the fact that we’re still doing exactly what we did at Keller Williams. But, now we just added in these two other layers of producing passive income. And I just like profit share was one thing I’ll be completely candid. The biggest profit share cheque I ever got was like three hundred thirty six dollars. And you know being at the eXp, I think the fourth month we were here, I had a check that was ten times of that, I mean, literally in fourth month! So I don’t say that to boast or to brag. I’m just trying to provide some context for that. What we’re talking about what you, and I are talking about the type of opportunity that’s at play here. And so, like you can literally in your own business, move your business over, do exactly what you were doing at your other brokerage and make more income. And that’s not even talking about commission splits or fees or anything like that, right? We’re not even there. And so I think that you know, obviously, hopefully there is that agent out there that is starting to understand what we’re talking about and they don’t want to be a real estate agent for the rest of their life. They don’t want a job they do, they want to create some passive income. And in those are the type of people, I think both you and I are talking to right now. Let me ask you this then, what do you think? So you’re here and now you’ve got 12 months under your belt or almost. What does your future look like at eXp thing, now that the dust is starting to settle for you?
Kevin: Right now, that’s funny, you say that because some of that with my wife last night, and I love the way it looks, you know. I think, obviously doing sales has to be the lead of all that for me. So that’s going to be the lead of everything at eXp, selling property, but also helping people build their business with eXp, bringing people into my world and kind of sharing ideas that I have, the experience that I have. It, kind of just becomes this, really great you know, secondary health center, I lack a better phrase. For real life interaction, and since I’m just real, you know from ground zero experience. You know, I think, then you look at the long term you know the option to help clients and other agents and also to communicate and have a community with other likeminded agents. That’s vital and I think that’s where I was drawn the most as I get to talk to people like you, we just agree on the principles of business where we want to go. We saw an opportunity, we saw a vision, and we saw something that was deeper than just going out, knocking on doors or sending postcards or selling you know, 100 properties a year. We saw an opportunity that was deeper than that and it also had exit strategies that had a lot of layers that national businesses have. I just couldn’t find anywhere else, in real estate at least.
Mike: It’s awesome man! And so, that agent whose are that broker who is listening to us or watching us right now, who is thinking about you know, making a change or has decided to make a change to the eXp or well, I guess not decided but that agent who knows there’s a better way to do business, let’s just say what is a piece of advice that you could give to that agent about eXp.
Kevin: I’ve got a ton of advice about this. I talk to agents and brokers, and I talk to a lot of them daily. I think they over think it. That you know, it’s not a new business it’s just a new version of the model. It’s not a new concept. You know the core principles of real estate are the same no matter where you go, but if you get the feeling in your gut, and normally people know within the first five or 10 minutes whether they want to do it or not. And then they spend a week, to days, a year, or two years even, talking themselves into it or out of it. And my advice is that the sooner you can get to it and convert over and start going forward in your new way, the better. And that’s really where I got to a point. And literally it happened in a couple days where I was like I knew. And then I was like I’m just wasting time at this point. Now I’m really just wasting time. Everything adds up. Everything looks good. Everything is verifiable, everything that I see on paper, I can also see in real life by connecting with other agents across the country. And so it didn’t get to a point. It was kind of like what are you waiting for like you know, it’s like asking to go to dance at the middle school dance. What is she going to say? Yes or no? And you know that right from the start. So it’s probably very bad analogy.
Mike: What it’s like? It’s no different than running a real estate business. If you get into real estate you don’t know what you don’t know. But once you start to learn things like lead generation you know, time blocking all those are integral pieces to running a successful real estate business. If you know the men don’t apply them then you know it’s shame on you. It’s like you know when you are going to take action. It sounds like that’s what you did, it’s like once you decided or once you knew that eXp was fit for you then you just knew that at this point you were wasting time unless you took action and moved in. So, ultimately that’s what you did.
Kevin: Yeah! My wife and I decided one day, the next day I would talk to my broker, and you know whatever, however much time it the state to get things together, that’s when I was there.
But I think that still a lot of agents are looking for something that either says this is different or this is the same. You know, that’s kind of the overthinking part. And you know what it really is, it’s a real estate company. It’s just not your traditional mom. The sooner you can get in the sooner you can explore what it is and continue working and continue building in. A lot of the options that we have with eXp are actually better than most of the other companies.
Mike: So it can be on top right?
Kevin: Yeah, yeah!
Mike: The funny thing is too it’s like, for me, when I when I told you we’re still doing the same thing we did at Keller Williams, it’s just we’ve added these additional layers of passive income opportunity. It’s like you know that is a big piece of it. But man think about it this way. I mean, I know this has to resonate with you because it’s a part of you excited about the opportunity to get in on the ground floor. And we’re still on the ground floor. I mean, you’re 14, 15, 16, 17 thousand agents. When you talk about a company like Keller Williams 170000 agents, right? So, you know the people that I looked up to at Keller Williams who was making over a million dollars a year profit share they all got in early. They got into early like were getting in early so we all see this opportunity right? And we want to be those people at you know in 10 15 20 years, we’re seeing those same type of residuals. And so that that gets me really excited is to be a part of something so special and getting on the ground floor.
Kevin: Absolutely, I think that’s the difference in people being a part of the story and reading about the story you know, and it’s all you get. And when you have confidence and when you have faith in it, when you have confidence in yourself to jump over and just work in that thing. I think, every big company that has come across the stock market in the last 20 years has made it big as the early adapters have been the ones who also created the legacy, financially and for the company in long term. You know, it’s remarkable. I’m reminded why my grandfather got the option to buy stock in a region that has a grocery store chain called Food Line. And the guy knocked on his door he lived in North Carolina, not those dorms were selling stock from the small grocery stores 50 cents. And my grandpa said, no no no! And my dad and I did the math you know, paid the guy some money he could have been like. And so I always wanted that it’s like you know, I can’t, he wanted 100 bucks you get that guy a hundred bucks. Fast forward 34 years and that’s also 22 million or something.
Mike: Like that wasn’t selling Microsoft’s year.
Kevin: So for me this is kind of like that. It’s like OK, I can do the things I’ve been doing already and still make a living. Not worry about it’s not all my livelihood, is not tied to revenue, are tied to the stock options, are tied to anything else. I can still just do business as usual. On top of that I’m adding a couple other things that if I utilize them correctly they can really make a difference in my family’s life.
Mike: Absolutely, brother! Thank you so much Kevin for letting me steal some minutes out of your day. How can people connect with you if they have questions about you know how you run a business or eXp?
Kevin: Facebook is good, or e-mailing is good, firstname.lastname@example.org or either one of those would be the best way to get in touch.
Mike: Awesome man! Well thanks again brother and I look forward to hopefully listening to you speak on May and Kevin is just a great dude. I just love his honesty and willingness to share. Please, do me a big big favor! If you know someone, you think might enjoy this podcast.
Please share share share if you like the podcast please go to wherever you listen to podcast and subscribe and if you’re curious about what the eXp can do for you and your business. Head on over to explodingwealth.com and watch my short video. If you have more questions and want to schedule 30 minutes with me one on one, go to meetmikewall.com.
That’s it for this episode of The Agent Revolution and I will see you again next week.