Sitting Down With Agent Yelena Brezhneva – Synergy Sotheby’s International Realty

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Tell us a little about yourself. What brought you to real estate as a career?

I’m originally from Russia. I moved from Moscow to Las Vegas to be with my husband who was already living here. In the beginning it was a strange transition, but I’ve loved it ever since. I’ve now been here in Las Vegas for 22 years. In Moscow I was a published author, speaker and lecturer as I was, at the time, writing philosophical books and articles and often traveling around Europe doing book signings. Fifteen years ago I started my real estate career here in Las Vegas. Back then there was no internet, no websites, we had to use snail mail and the telephone to reach out to our potential clients. I love real estate because I love working with people. The flexibility of my career also offers me the time to spend with my children. It’s very important to be involved in their lives and the flexibility gives me the opportunity to be there for them when they need it and be very involved while they’re growing up.

Why Las Vegas?

My husband is from Las Vegas. I moved from Russia to Las Vegas so I could be with him. It’s also interesting because when you first move here you don’t like it, but then you just start liking it more and more. It has a tendency to grow on you and it gets in your DNA. I love Las Vegas for the beautiful weather and for all kinds of outdoor sports. You can have a water lifestyle on Lake Las Vegas, with jet skis, boating, and just taking some time to go to the lake and sit on the beach. The weather is great. If you love winter sports, ski resorts are within an hour’s drive whether it’s driving to Utah or the surrounding mountains, it always makes me feel like I’m in the Swiss Alps. Being near the water allows you to cool off from the heat, and also have romantic sunset dinners on the lake. It’s beautiful weather where you can play tennis and golf all year round.

Tell us what a typical day in the life of a Las Vegas realtor is like?

The funny thing is we never really have days off. On the weekends, buyers from California are looking, so the demand is there for seeing properties or doing an open house. Normally in the morning I’ll drop the kids off at school, then I go to the gym. Afterwards, I’ll usually be at my desk preparing for open houses, reviewing my goals, the marketing ideas I’ve been working on, connecting with my clients, and following up with networking and my latest marketing pieces. Afternoons, I usually spend at lunch with clients or potential clients making connections with like-minded colleagues. Depending on how long I have I will sometimes visit lenders, or clients coming to town, sometimes I’ll be meeting with them in the afternoon. Then I pick up the boys from school and then there are after school drop offs, if they need to go to tennis or they need to go to karate. Sometimes at dinnertime I have a showing or a couple of showings and I will often attend a networking event. It might be a charity event for the Nevada Ballet Theater and I never want to miss the opportunity to meet amazing people. It could be an event in an art gallery, or a magazine bringing in high-end influential people. After that I’d be headed home, to make sure my kids have done their homework, be sure they have eaten their dinner, had a shower … and then I get them ready for bed. That’s the beauty of my career, I can do my parenting and always have the extra time if I need it.

Oftentimes, people don’t know what to ask when they’re interviewing agents for the first time when selling or purchase a home. Any recommendations?

I think it’s very important to know what they did before real estate. It kind of gives an idea of the background of the people, their academics, a preview of their level, many different things, that you may discover about them. You’ll be working with that person for a while, and having frequent interactions, so you do want to be sure that it is a good match. It is literally a partnership. The most successful part of your business is having a great partnership and people who trust you. You want to get people on that level of trust. Do you trust me? What can I do to help you trust me? Here’s a little about me. This is what I do, this is what my day looks like. I’m a family-oriented person. I always take care of my clients. Connecting with people is something I’ve done all my life and I know how to make it happen.

Speaking of choosing an agent, there are so many real estate agencies out there to be a part of. What made you team up with Synergy Sotheby’s International Realty?

Well, first of all I am originally from Europe so when I came here the Sotheby’s brand was already well known to me. Sotheby’s has a sterling reputation here and abroad as an agency that has deep roots in luxury and quality. My expectations have been more than met working with Don Kuhl, our Broker, and Kyle Northup, our Manager, who have helped me have an absolutely amazing experience as an agent of the firm. They’ve never let me down, never disappointed me and there is still much more room to grow with people like that by your side. And I’ll be honest, I’ve interviewed agencies. Their expectations are a bit low and I can see it’s not a good match because of my personal expectations. Synergy Sotheby’s International Realty was the perfect match for me as they encourage me to keep doing better and help me achieve my goals. While I have had a number of offers from other agencies, I haven’t found anything close to what I have with Synergy.

Leave us with one thing about you that sets you apart as a realtor. And, also one thing you’ve accomplished outside of real estate that you’re proud of, or a hobby or activity you enjoy.

You know, there are many things I’m proud of. One is my children’s success, because I know I put a lot of effort in order to make sure to support my kids. Right now my daughter is in college at Vassar on the tennis team and she is absolutely legendary. My most recent achievement was creating the Russian-American Chamber of Commerce where I’m able to help people with their relocation needs. People from Russia and Eastern Europe come into town and they don’t know anyone. I help them through the all the changes. I’m a published author in Russia (as well as here in the US), and stay connected to what’s happening at home through family and friends, and establishing the Russian-American Chamber has helped people to feel comfortable in their new community right away. With all of the networking events that we do, it helps people to transition, it helps people to make friends, meet qualified professionals that they may need, and get good referrals. Las Vegas is a growing community and there is so much growth yet to happen and I am excited to be a part of it.



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