For Santa Clarita real estate agent Margie Shaffer, change has been a constant.
Shafer spent her early years living and working in Mar Vista, Culver City and Venice Beach, before slowly gaining her foothold in the Southern California real estate market.
“It was kind of a fluke,” she said. “I was hired as a receptionist at a real estate company and just kept working and learning until I could get to the top.”
This foray into real estate would prove to be anything but inconsequential – and over the next 11 years Shaffer would continue to build a name for herself.
In 1997, the lifelong Westsider made the move with her three small children to the Santa Clarita Valley. “I had my children in private school in West LA because the public schools weren’t very good,” she said. “Then I discovered Santa Clarita and it was safe and the schools were great and so I decided to move here.”
After making the move Shaffer started her own company, Sky Blue Realty, which offered both home loans and real estate services.
For the next decade, Shaffer’s business thrived. Being able to control the loan aspect of her clientele’s home searches proved enticing to many customers.
Business was strong until the Great Recession, America’s worst period of economic decline since the Great Depression of the 1930s, hit the Santa Clarita Valley.
“The last crash was devastating for me,” she said. “Especially since I owned a small business.”
Sky Blue’s home loan service, once a strength of Sky Blue’s business model, soon became its Achilles’ heel. Like many smaller lending firms, Sky Blue went under; and Shaffer once again found herself staring down impending change.
A decade later, the recession has now become merely a blip on Shaffer’s radar. After a brief stint at Realty Executives, she now works for RE/MAX of Santa Clarita where she has “decided to get out of loans altogether and just focus on real estate.”
This approach has worked well for Shaffer, who currently has seven homes on the market.
Her approach is simple yet altruistic: community outreach. “I’ve always attended charity events, usually four to five a year, and I think that giving back is huge,” she said.
In addition to community events, Shaffer makes a concerted effort to maintain positive relationships with her clients after making a sale.
Shaffer stays in touch with former clients. “I’ll call them or have lunch with them. I try to write thank you cards as often as I can. Anytime I’m here and have nothing to do I’ll be writing out cards and trying to keep in touch,” she said.
In addition to her charitable outreach she served as the president of the Women’s’ Council of Realtors in 2016, an organization of which she is very proud to be a part.
It’s an exciting time to be a real estate agent in the Santa Clarita Valley. With residents staying put, demand for housing here has increased.
“Housing is limited. People used to move every few years and they’re not doing that anymore. Interest rates are so low and they probably financed for so low and you just can’t beat that” Shaffer said.
She sees new developments such as those in Pico and Sand Canyons, as well as the increasing likely Newhall Ranch project, to be positives for the Valley’s housing situation.
Much of Santa Clarita’s current demand for housing is predicated on proximity and access to LA, where many residents still work.
“There’s a really high demand for housing along the 5 freeway,” says Shaffer.
But as Santa Clarita attracts more agency headquarters and moves towards self-sufficiency, the demand for housing throughout the Valley, and not just in corridors along the freeway, is poised increase.
Why Signal Digital Solutions?
With high demand for housing imminent, Shaffer believes she needs a way to better promote her services.
In an attempt to target a younger client base and to catch the attention of as many potential clients as possible, Shaffer has decided to pursue advertising strategies on social media.
“So many people are on Facebook,” she said. “Even beyond Facebook there’s Instagram and so much else. I’m not that familiar with that so I’m hoping Signal Digital Solutions can help me pursue these new avenues.”
Shaffer hopes that this new pursuit will allow her to attract clients and leave a lasting influence on the Santa Clarita Valley. “I love it out here. I love the people. Newhall, that’s where my heart is.”
Margie Shaffer of RE/MAX of Santa Clarita can be reached by phone at 661-755-4001 or by email at [email protected]