Top Producers for March 2018


March was such a robust turnout for home sales that we have three offices each tying for third, fifth and sixth places, making it impossible to have just a normal “top ten” for last month. This month, we’re bringing you the “Top 12” in Total Sales. Congratulations once again to Richard Cricchio at Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties for making it to the top of our list. Mario Ferrante at Help-U-Sell Metropolitan also finished strong in March with 15 total sales.


Broker Office Buyer Seller Total Sales
Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties 4 13 17
Help-U-Sell Metropolitan 8 7 15
Help-U-Sell Detwiler Realty 5 5 10
Help-U-Sell Heritage Real Estate of Steele County Inc. 3 7 10
Help-U-Sell Prestige Properties 1 9 10
Help-U-Sell Greensboro 3 6 9
Help-U-Sell Direct Savings Real Estate 4 3 7
Help-U-Sell Federal City Realty 4 3 7
Help-U-Sell Full Service Realty 3 4 7
Help-U-Sell Beachside 6 6
Help-U-Sell Folsom 3 3 6
Help-U-Sell Options Unlimited 3 3 6

Additionally, we are introducing a new type of Top Ten list based on gross sales volume, and thus putting a spotlight on a completely different take on other top performers in the Help-U-Sell family. While Richard Cricchio tops this list as well (!), we’re also seeing impressive results from Patrick Wood at Help-U-Sell Prestige Properties, Marc Dosik at Help-U-Sell Federal City Realty, and Dave Bartels at Help-U-Sell Full Service Realty.

Broker Office March Gross Sales Volume
Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties 10,359,400
Help-U-Sell Prestige Properties 6,265,800
Help-U-Sell Federal City Realty 4,091,000
Help-U-Sell Full Service Realty 3,532,900
Help-U-Sell Beachside 3,478,000
Help-U-Sell South Santa Clara County 3,160,000
Folsom 2,367,000
Help-U-Sell  Marquis Properties 2,140,000
Help-U-Sell  Tri-Valley Homes 2,095,000
Help-U-Sell  Smart Realty Pasadena 1,922,000

Congratulations to everyone for their success.

Gene Manners: Building Success With Time, Trust & Gratitude

Gene Manners spent the first part of his career teaching music at the university level and performing as a tenor when he decided to branch out into real estate for the first time. He acquired his real estate agent license in 1985, and then just a few years later went for a broker’s license in 1988.

After having met a representative of the Help-U-Sell Real Estate organization in 2001, Gene shared, “I told him that I had two problems. One, I have very little experience. Two, I don’t have any money.” Gene then heard: “You’re just the kind of person we’re looking for.”

Gene bought a franchise office in West Covina, California, on the outskirts of Los Angeles. He made the kind of sacrifices that are well known to anyone who has tried to rally an entrepreneurial effort into a profitable business. He put in long hours and worked out of a spare bedroom in his mother’s house for the first year.

“I always believed that if you worked hard, were unassuming, and approached everything from the standpoint of genuinely wanting to help people, you would do well,” Gene explained. “My goals, my company’s goals, and my clients’ goals must always be in harmony with each other. I never want to be in a situation where people were being taken advantage of. I’ve told people when a deal was wrong for them or not in their favor, and walked away from it rather than participate in it.”

Being a trustworthy Broker has not just earned Gene Manners a great reputation, it has earned him a lot of repeat business as well, and a nice stream of referrals from friends of those repeat clients over time. “The real estate market in Los Angeles has always been a bit of an anomaly because housing prices stay inflated, and people have a tendency to stay in their homes a lot longer. So marketing requires a much more personal effort here, and I would say the bulk of our new contacts and leads come from open houses,” Gene said.

Gene also appreciates the coaching groups that are a hallmark of the Help-U-Sell business model. “The main benefit of attending the coaching groups for me is the chance to listen to what other owners are doing in their respective markets, and find out more about what efforts are working for them and what isn’t. It also helps me to keep abreast of changes in the industry and how those changes are affecting us individually and as a company.”

When the economic crash in 2008 started unraveling and affecting commerce and people everywhere, Gene and his wife Ruby managed to hold on to the business. “Of course activity was very slow, but we continued to work hard and pray hard until the market turned around,” Gene said. “When things eventually improved, we knew we did the right thing were joyful and thankful. A big part of that thankfulness was to the Help-U-Sell management which was always there for us like a champ.”

Although Gene has never owned another business besides Help-U-Sell, he still did due diligence and researched his choice. “There are a lot of companies that always have their hands out or are not reputable. From where I stand, there can’t possibly be anything as good as Help-U-Sell Real Estate. The startup costs are reasonable, the support and tools provided to the new offices are outstanding, and the dedication of both the parent company and fellow franchise owners is beyond compare. I’ve always been very pleased with the support and dedication I have received.”

Which is, of course, music to our ears.

Top Producers February 2018

Taking a look at our results in February, love must have surely been in the air seeing how our offices soared to new heights!

1) Riding the wave way up high is Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties completing the month with a total of 19 closings, five on the buyer and fourteen on the seller sides.

Richard Cricchio
Owner & Broker of Help-U-Sell Honolulu Properties, Richard Cricchio wraps up with 19 closings in February 2018

2) A very strong second place goes to  Help-U-Sell Triad Realty  with 16 closings, seven on the buyer and nine on the seller sides.

3) In third place was  Help-U-Sell Direct Savings with a total of 12 closings, three on the buyer and nine on the seller sides.

Owner & Broker of Help-U-Sell Direct Savings, Leigh-Anne Losh and her team finished with a total of 12 closings in February 2018

4) Rounding up at fourth place is  Help-U- Sell Full Service Realty with a total of 9 closings, three on the buyer and six on the seller                                                    sides.

Well done to all our offices on these terrific results and let’s keep up the great work!

Coaching Boosts Success for Help-U-Sell Columbia Basin Team

In May of 2016, Marianne Kirwan and her husband, Brent, decided to branch out. They had been jointly running a property management business, and as a natural by-product of their business, they were selling about eight to ten properties a year; Sometimes for businesses associated with their business, and sometimes just for close friends and family members.

“In 2015, we were not focused on selling real estate, and our commissions on real estate sales were reflecting that,” Marianne shared. But when Marianne and Brent decided to buy a Help-U-Sell Real Estate franchise, they knew their focus would change heavily to sales. By the end of the first year they increased sales commission by 185 percent. Again in 2017 they continued to grow their business another 88 percent and have set a goal for 2018 to grow another 73 percent.   How will they do that? Through a potent mix of marketing, visibility, and coaching.

Many Help-U-Sell franchisees find increased success through one of the several coaching groups available weekly. Marianne told us that she participates in one group that consists of about eight people from around the country. “You get different ideas from people around the country – some in big cities and some in rural America, and while some of those ideas don’t play out in a smaller community like ours, there are still a ton of ideas and concepts that turn out to be universal. We take chances by trying new things that make us stand out. That new thing ends up bringing in a lead. It is an invaluable resource.”

Standing out has been a part of the Help-U-Sell Real Estate legacy from the beginning. “The other agencies in our area, they don’t have an Arounds postcard program. They have agents who are always fighting for leads and we don’t have that,” Brent Kirwan said. “I was involved with another agency for a while, and they were not bringing anything new to the table for owners. There was no marketing, some online training, but nothing that helped you drill down into your local market to help you build your business. They always had their hand out for additional money for these classes, in addition to a desk fee, and the percentage of your commissions they were already receiving. It just didn’t add up to keep doing it.”

Marianne explained, “As soon as we got involved with Help-U-Sell, we jumped right into coaching. They helped us develop goals by asking questions like “What do you want to do? Where do you see yourself in a few years?” They also helped us focus on the marketing side of selling houses. They have a lot in place that helps create awareness and word of mouth advertising: EDDMs, print ads on the homes page of the newspaper, drip emails, Arounds postcards; those things are a pillar of the Help-U-Sell model and have contributed directly to our increased success.”

Starting a new business venture is going to be overwhelming at times for anyone, so being able to stay organized is a good way to keep yourself on track when you’ve feel like there is a lot to do and keep your eye on. “When you are your own boss,” Marianne said about being in business with her husband, “there is no one to be accountable to except one another. Also through coaching, we got into the habit of updating a lead log, rather than trying to keep track via sticky notes. We don’t lose track of people. We know where leads come from, what advertising is working or not, and where we need to focus more of our energy or not.”

Keeping visible helps keep the Kirwans at top-of-mind in their community. Brent spends time out on the street planting signs and moving signs to new locations as they gain new clients. He ensures they have 75 to 85 signs out at any given time. They always have a booth whenever there is a fair or an expo. Brent neatly summarized the impact of Help-U-Sell where they live: “We share the message that there is another option that includes full service and better representation at a direct savings to the home seller. We get a lot of repeat clients and investors who have used us to sell multiple properties. We are out performing our competition, because people trust what we have to offer.”

Reach Marianne and Brent at or 509-855-9839.

Saying Mahalo to Long Term Success

Richard Cricchio wasn’t planning on a life in Hawaii or a career in real estate but the two things ended up being pivotal to where he is today, which is consistently at the top of our list of top performing broker offices.

After his parents made a retirement move there in 1989, Richard soon followed to check it out. Attracted by the natural beauty of the island and outdoor lifestyle the temperate weather has to offer, he decided to make a life for himself there, also.

He spent some time working for other real estate companies before making the leap to Help-U-Sell in 2000. Like many good start-up stories, he was initially operating on a shoe string budget and credit cards until all the pieces fell into place. Once his marketing efforts were in full force and his presence was made known on the island, business started picking up, and fast. Which is music to any entrepreneurial ear.

The downside was picking up criticism from other realtors in the community, who were not happy with the competition of a different, successful business model. “When I first started with the set fee model from Help-U-Sell, I got a lot of pushback. I was even told that what I was doing was illegal, which was, of course, completely untrue. The good news is, Honolulu is a small town. When people got to know me, I was eventually invited to join the Professional Standards committee by the Hawaii Association of Realtors and was accepted,” Richard shared.

Regardless of whether the market is good or bad, the name recognition, extensive knowledge and great service makes it easy for the Help-U-Sell name to rise to the top. In Richard’s experience, “Other set-fee real estate companies love opening up when the market is booming. The difference between Help-U-Sell and would-be competitors is that when the market goes bad, we truly excel, whereas others fold up shop. Help-U-Sell remains a resource for home sellers because we can say we’ve been through these downturns before, and we’re especially equipped to help people navigate through it.”

While bringing home sellers savings is a big draw, there a joy in being able to help people through exceptionally trying circumstances as well. “I knew a couple that had gotten themselves into trouble by buying a $700,000 house. They were balancing it against running a struggling business and the stress of the situation was driving them both towards divorce. The market was in a tough spot, but I asked them to not get divorced and let me help them sell their house, which I did. I’m happy to say they are still married,” Richard added proudly. “It’s great helping people in general, but a chance to make a difference to someone on a very personal level is a better happy in my book.”

Success is a happy ending most people can appreciate.

Richard Cricchio