Ashley Farrell was ranked the first-place producer in the Westhampton Beach office for 2018 — and out of more than 50,000 agents, Farrell ranks in the top 1000 agents nationwide within the NRT enterprise. Since joining Corcoran in 2015, she has been a repeated Multimillion-Dollar Club Member every year. She has sold over $50 million worth of luxury property. We caught up with Farrell to learn how she accrued as much success as agents with decades more experience.
What do you attribute your success to?
I don’t believe there is any one thing that makes me successful, rather a combination of things. My parents instilled in me, from the youngest age, the importance of hard work. I credit my drive and ambition to them.
Beyond that inherent trait, I strive to provide excellent customer service. I am almost always reachable and if I’m missed, I try to get back to my clients at the very first opportunity. I’ve learned if you delay, a client will find someone else to work with.
Lastly, my age, which in the beginning many thought worked to my detriment, is a great advantage. Being newer in the business, I am not so set in my ways. I am much more open to change, to trying new strategies, and to pushing the envelope.
As I do continue in this business, hopefully for many, many years, I intend to remind myself not to get too comfortable. No company has ever been successful by refusing to evolve.
You’ve also produced over $1 million in rentals. How does your approach for a rental differ from a sale?
Probably the biggest difference between myself and other agents would be that I am happy to participate in rental deals. Many agents, as their careers progress, decide that rentals will no longer be a part of their business models.
Obviously, sale commissions are larger than those on the rental side, but sales can take months (or more) to cross the finish line. If focusing on sales alone, there are times when weeks or months can go by without a pay check.
Not only do rental deals help bring a little more regularity to an agent’s income, the time spent on a rental deal versus an agent’s earnings is usually a very good return on investment, especially if you look at it on a cost per hour basis. I love rentals. Bring ‘em on!
How does holding a degree in business management help you as a salesperson?
My education at Fairfield University prepared me seamlessly for the “real” world. The skills my professors taught me in the classroom translate to almost any business I could’ve chosen. I learned how to run a business, the importance of organization, dedication, customer service, ambition, and so much more.
Not only did my time at Fairfield assist me in jumpstarting a successful career, but the connections I made continue to aid me today. I keep in touch with multiple professors, and the Fairfield alumni network has also been a fantastic tool.
Where did you grow up?
I grew up in Westhampton Beach. My dad grew up here as well, and my grandfather was the chief of surgery at Peconic Bay Medical Center, Central Suffolk back then. My parents still own the same house my dad and I grew up in.
Are there any homes you’ve sold that you’re particularly proud of?
Just recently, I was a part of an off-market deal and it is hands-down one of my proudest moments. In 2017, I met my new clients for the first time. At the meeting, my buyers pulled up Google maps and pointed to what they referred to as their “dream property.” The house wasn’t on the market and had never been on the market, the owners had built it in the ‘80s.
Long story short, after sending a hand-written letter, the owner called me. He was very leery but allowed my clients and I to view the home. Fast forward to 2019, my buyers are now the proud owners of what was once only a dream.
Do you have a favorite building on the East End?
When I was a child, my mom and I used to put together a porcelain village every Christmas. We created this idyllic town. Westhampton Beach’s Main Street has always reminded me of that utopia, specifically St. Mark’s Church and the Westhampton Beach Post Office.
St. Mark’s is not only gorgeous on the outside, but it’s beautiful inside, and probably much smaller than most would realize. Stepping into the post office brings you back to another time. Much of the early-1900s feel has been preserved and it’s not something we see often anymore. These two buildings, in my opinion, are the perfect bookends to Main Street.
Do you have advice for sellers and buyers?
As a seller, if you do nothing else, PLEASE declutter. No one wants to see your entire morning beauty regime proudly displayed on the bathroom counter. Put that stuff away!
To have the best shot at the highest price, sellers need to make their home feel like a hotel — remove all but one or two items off the counter tops, eliminate personal photos, allow buyers to really see the house and imagine their belongings in it. Don’t get me started on the sellers who leave beds unmade and dishes in the sink . . .
For buyers, it is important to narrow down what you want in a house, but try to be flexible. In your home search, determine what is truly a non-starter and what you might be able to work with. If you have more than five-to-seven non-starters, you are pigeonholing yourself. Narrow it down.
Best advice? If a home checks most of your boxes, go look at it. You might be surprised.
Any favorite trends our readers should know about?
I particularly enjoy homeowners choosing to install or convert to salt water pools. More often my buyers and renters are asking if the homes we are viewing have salt water pools. It’s becoming quite a popular feature.
In comparison to chlorine, the salt is less harsh on the hair, skin, and eyes. Have you ever seen those young blond kids running around during the summer with green hair? Salt water can prevent that!
Are there any up-and-coming neighborhoods west of the canal we should know about?
I really believe Remsenburg is the most underrated neighborhood west of the canal (and not just because I live there). It’s mere minutes from the hustle of Westhampton Beach, so close I often run to Main Street, yet far enough away that you’re not in the middle of all the summertime chaos.
In Remsenburg, buyers will find more property and more house for their money. The taxes are also quite low. The town has its own adorable elementary school which feeds into the WHB middle school and high school. Residents of Remsenburg are still eligible for beach passes to Rogers Beach and Jetty 4 (formally known as Lashley Beach).
Probably one of the biggest benefits of Remsenburg is the fact that it’s the closest “Hampton” to the city and has a decent train schedule to and from Penn Station. Remsenburg has a lot going for it.
How did you become a volunteer for the Bide-A-Wee animal shelter?
I’m an only child, so as a kid every time I would ask my parents for a sibling we got a dog — okay, not every time, but a few times. My mom is one of nine children, so there was no way she was willingly signing up for that pandemonium again.
Over my childhood, we had a total of five Labs and for a few years, we had three at once. My house was a place where dogs were always welcome. I kept our dogs as busy as they kept me.
That bond sparked my love of animals.
To reach Farrell or inquire about her properties, call 631-896-1592 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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