San Francisco Compass agent Butch Haze said he can remember when he first thought of the concept he calls the “super team.”
It was 2018 and inventory was so tight for his high-end clientele that buyers often had one agent looking for homes for them in San Francisco, another in Marin and another on the Peninsula.
It didn’t help the brokerage was buying up agencies around the Bay Area and Haze suddenly found himself competing against five other Compass agents for the same listing.
“All our marketing is going to look identical,” he recalled thinking at the time.
His answer: a regional approach to real estate with a team of agents focused on collaboration and long-term relationships with buyers.
In a company as large as Compass, Haze posed the model as a way for agents to differentiate themselves from the rest of the pack, as well as keep up with clients even if they change markets.
This is not the kind of “super team” where one or two star agents provide the face and brand to lead a battalion of underlings into different markets. It’s a communal arrangement, where agents on similar levels in different but interconnected markets are invited to become part of a collective.
Membership involves regular meetings, an initial buy-in and kick backs from a percentage of each sale made through a network connection to the referring agent as well as the team’s budget for events and marketing. Group contracts can also help cut costs for brokers on photography, videography and stagers.
The idea has worked well for Haze, who’s now a self-proclaimed evangelist of the concept, and his Network Group, whose agents cover the entire Bay Area from Carmel to Napa, San Francisco to Lake Tahoe. The team claimed 13th in RealTrends’ nationwide ranking of “mega teams” by volume in 2022. With over $1 billion in sales, was the fifth-highest-ranking team in the state and first in the Bay Area last year.
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