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Hottest Brokers Round 1, Heat 2: Corey Nelson vs. Eli Schneider

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Welcome to Hottest Week 2012, that magical time in August when we pit local brokers against each other to determine once and for all (for this year) who's the hottest of the hot. Stay tuned this week and next as the tournament unfolds. And let the games begin!

Now on to our first man heat: today we have former model/long-time broker Corey Nelson of Sotheby's and former actor/cater-waiter/New Yorker Eli Schneider of Coldwell Banker Hancock Park North. As we mentioned, this year we made a New Year's resolution to be a little less shallow, so we asked all the contestants a few questions about their lives before real estate, their advice for buyers and sellers, and more.

Corey Nelson

What did you do before you became a real estate agent? How did you get into the real estate game?
Real Estate is really my first and only real “career”. I jumped into the business at the age of 23. After school and prior to becoming an agent, I traveled overseas and throughout the nation doing some print modeling and commercials, which is ultimately how I ended up in Los Angeles. I knew a local agent and spent my first year working on his team, which ultimately became the top-producing team for our office. I always knew real estate was a natural fit as it was in my blood?my mother has been a loan officer for 30 years and my father has been in commercial construction for the same amount of time.

What's the most memorable property you ever helped buy or sell?
The most memorable property I have ever sold was hands down a beautiful yet modest home in Valley Village to a single father of a 4-year adopted child with Leukemia. This long-time client of mine had experienced a recent divorce and was therefore forced to sell his large home in Nichols Canyon and downsize to a smaller more manageable home. The listing of the old home and searching for the perfect replacement home both had their challenges, but ultimately I was able to make it all happen. We successfully closed escrow on both properties, and at the end of it all my client looked at me with sincerity and said “you have changed our lives”. It was the most gratifying moment of my entire 9-year career.

What's the biggest mistake made by either buyers or sellers?
When sellers over-price their homes. Properties that are listed significantly over fair market value tend to sit on the market the longest and in many cases ultimately sell for less. Listing your property at a realistic number will get it the most attention, get more buyers excited about it, and will make it look the most attractive amongst similar properties.

Why do you think real estate agents are, on the whole, so damn attractive?
I think an agent’s appearance is definitely an important part of our overall business. It’s not necessarily about being “attractive”, but rather about carrying yourself properly and to a certain standard, especially in the field of luxury real estate that I primarily deal in. A polished appearance tends to appeal to more consumers, and agents know that, and therefore make an effort to look and dress appropriately.


Eli Schneider

What did you do before you became a real estate agent? How did you get into the real estate game?
I was an actor in NY, and the cater-waiter business wasn't doing it for me as a supplemental income. (To be totally honest, I wasn't great at it. Some people have a knack for that sort of thing, I have a knack for dropping plates.) I wanted something that would present me with exciting challenges, and that wouldn't tie me to a desk all day. Real estate was the perfect fit.

What's the most memorable property you ever helped buy or sell?
I would have to say the first house I sold in LA, where I was the buyer's agent for a wonderful family. In New York, I dealt exclusively in rentals and the feeling you get from helping someone find a long-term home as opposed to a temporary residence is very rewarding.

What's the biggest mistake made by either buyers or sellers?
Waiting too long to grab a great opportunity. I've seen plenty of clients lose out because they get cold feet in the last stages of a deal. If you feel in your gut that you've found your new home, don't hesitate because it has 4 bathrooms instead of the 5 you were hoping for. When you find the right thing, you'll know it. Go with your instincts.

Why do you think real estate agents are, on the whole, so damn attractive?
Who doesn't look nice in a tie?

Vote below--poll closes at 3 pm PDT on Tuesday, Aug. 14, 2012.
Poll results


· Hottest Week 2012 [Curbed LA]