This week’s HW+ member spotlight features Chris Heller, chief real estate officer at OJO Labs, who has over 30 years of experience in the real estate industry. From Rookie of the Year in 1989, to serving as CEO for Keller Williams and mellohome, Heller has dedicated his career to delighting homebuyers and supporting agents. As chief real estate officer, Heller oversees all industry partnerships, creating a direct line between real estate professionals and OJO, and accelerating adoption in the industry.
Below, Heller answers questions about the housing industry:
HousingWire: To start off, what is your current favorite HW+ article?
Chris Heller: “Have you clearly defined your brokerage’s value proposition?” by Tracey Velt. The piece is full of really great, evergreen advice from Steve Murray, one of the brightest minds in the real estate industry. It’s a topic I always talk about at length with people in the brokerage space, and it’s never been more important than in 2022.
HousingWire: When do you feel like a success at your job?
Chris Heller: [I feel like a success when] I’m contributing at a high level to the metrics that matter most. And also when I’m able to help my team members and teammates and contribute to them at a similarly high level.
HousingWire: What has been one of your biggest learning opportunities?
Chris Heller: Getting to work for and report to two self-made billionaires taught me a lot of lessons on accountability, responsibility and plenty more. I also learned many things to do to be successful — and just as many things not to do.
HousingWire: What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Chris Heller: Show up, pay attention, tell the truth and don’t be attached to the outcome.
HousingWire: What keeps you up at night and why?
Chris Heller: One thing that’s troublesome is the widening of the gap between the haves and the have nots. There used to be a low, middle and upper class and now that middle class is disappearing. It’s more evident than ever when you look at housing, and the individuals being locked out of homeownership.
HousingWire: What do you think will be the big themes for the housing market in 2022?
Chris Heller: The obvious things are a rise in interest rates, low inventory and high demand in the first half of the year. But In the back half of the year, I think we’ll actually start to see demand wane, inventory rise and prices soften.
HousingWire: What’s one thing that people aren’t paying attention to that you think they should be paying attention to?
Chris Heller: People often don’t pay enough attention to their savings — really looking at what they spend, what they consume and can they be fulfilled with less. We should also be looking at how to make sure we are better positioned for the future.
Agents should be thinking about additional ways to create new relationships and deepen the ones they already have, especially with all the options consumers are being presented with today.
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