Dynamic Boston Team Hones in on Bilingual Service

Above, Peggy Pratt

Born and raised in Boston, the bilingual daughter of Colombian immigrants, Peggy Pratt was managing a bar by the time she was 18, adding food service to bolster profits and giving customers what they wanted.

Unbeatable service is still the life-long goal for Pratt, who leads by example, vaulting her five-person Boston team into the No. 10 spot in the Century 21 franchise nationwide with nearly $26 million in sales in 2023.

A national coach for the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP), she was named one of 21 powerful Latina champions breaking the glass ceiling by She Rises Latina.

Affiliated with Century 21 North East, her team is fully proficient in English, Spanish, French and Portuguese. They handle residential and commercial properties as well as new developments, and are equipped to manage relocations across the country.

Barbara Pronin: How did you go from managing a bar to selling real estate?

Peggy Pratt:  I got my associate’s degree in business, helped open another restaurant and managed a clothing boutique for a while, and then I got into rental management, which I really liked. In 1999, divorced with a young baby, I went into real estate full time. It wasn’t easy, There were times when I would be out showing houses with the baby on my hip.

BP: But it worked for you? 

PP: Yes. I was able to buy my first home, and being fluent in Spanish gave me a natural client base. I was able to help my customers understand all the paper work, get their bank accounts in order – whatever it took to get them pre-approved for a loan.

BP: When did you decide to create a team?

PP: In 2016. By then, I had more work than I could handle and I knew I needed to work smarter, not harder. Plus, I believed there was opportunity for other bilingual agents to do what I was doing and build their own futures while helping others build theirs. I started with an assistant, who then became a buyer’s agent, and went on from there.

BP: Did you take on experienced agents?

PP: Not really. I pretty much recruited friends and referrals. They were brand new in the business, but very eager to learn – and I knew their bilingual backgrounds would give them a place to begin.

BP: How are you organized as a team – and how do you best communicate?

PP: We have developed a remarkable team culture over the years. We meet formally as needed, but we have all become personal friends, so we talk all the time. Sometimes, we even invest together – and we know there is always someone to have your back when you need it.  But I want my team to feel empowered to act independently. All I ask of them is to act with integrity and provide better customer service than our competitors. That’s the secret to referrals and repeat business.

BP: Are you open to expanding your team?

PP: Oh, yes. I am talking with someone now. We typically serve greater Boston and Boston North, but we have an opportunity to reach out more in Boston South, and I want to do that. There is always room for a go-getter who shares our values.

BP: You put in lots of hours, Peggy. What do you do in your spare time?

PP: When I’m not training or helping to solve issues, I go the gym, and I love to travel. But I am also very involved in NAHREP, Rotary Club, our local Board of Realtors, and the Massachusetts Housing Coalition, so I have to be mindful about my time.

BP: Are your team members as community-minded as you are?

PP: Definitely. For one thing, we are happy to be part of the Massachusetts Build a Bed Initiative. Their mission is to see that every poor child has a comfortable bed to sleep in. They bring together small groups of people– mostly people like us with no prior carpentry skills, to build them. They provide pre-drilled wood and instructors so that we can build, sand, and paint twin bed frames. Then, they provide a new mattress and deliver them to needy kids. It’s such a worthwhile project.

BP: What’s your advice for team leaders just getting started?

PP: Culture is important. Start with people whose ethics and goals are like yours – who want to work hard and build a successful career by helping others to achieve their home-buying goals. Be ready to listen as well as teach, and empower them to trust their inner voices. It isn.t enough to help them buy or sell real estate. You can make a difference in their lives.

Visit PrattPropertiesTeam.com to learn more. 

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