Interview by Sarah Shumick
If you ask Brandon Prewitt how he keeps his sanity as a real estate broker/owner in the “hottest market in the country” according to Realtor.com, he’ll tell you it has everything to do with “work-life harmony” and the support system around him. Prewitt grew up in Westerville and his own mother spent 25 years in real estate, paving a natural path for him to follow as a young professional. When he’s not completely immersed in the throes of such a fast-paced career, Prewitt enjoys summer dinners on the patio at Lindey’s and some other Columbus gems. As for his hometown, Prewitt remarks, “Columbus is where progress, diversity and community converge to create something pretty special.”
Are you originally from Columbus? What is it about this city that endears you to it the most? I was born in Lexington, KY but my family moved to Columbus shortly after I was born. I consider myself a true Buckeye. I spent my childhood and adolescent years in Westerville and graduated from Westerville South High School. Upon graduation, I moved to Winston-Salem, NC to attend Wake Forest University. It was time away from Columbus that really made me appreciate the vibrant, small town/big city feel that Columbus so awesomely embraces. After graduating College in 2008, I moved back to Columbus and spent a short time in Grandview and then moved to Italian Village. In my opinion, Columbus is the Best Kept Secret in the US and I so thankful that I get to call Columbus home.
Give us a snapshot of your career path: Unlike many of my colleagues, most of whom landed a career in real estate after one or two previous careers, I started my career in residential real estate sales right after graduation! I started as a full time Agent with RE/MAX Capital Centre in Clintonville and then opened my own brokerage firm – RE/MAX Metro Plus – in 2010.
Tell us about your role as a broker/owner: I wear so many hats, it is hard to describe what I do on a daily basis. That is the beauty of this business – no one day is ever the same. I would break my current job into a few key roles.
-Managing/Coaching: My firm has grown from 4 to 24 agents. In that process I have focused on how to lead an office of top producing real estate agents. Identifying their needs and helping them build a business that supports their life goals. Our mission at RE/MAX Metro Plus is to positively impact the lives of real estate professionals and the clients they serve. I wake up every day with that mission in mind.
-Real Estate Sales: The biggest reward I get in my business is knowing I have helped someone or a family find a place to call HOME! On a daily basis I am helping Central Ohio families buy/sell and invest in real estate.
-Advocacy/Industry Advancement: I am passionate about the real estate industry and the impact we have on buyers/sellers/investors and the overall economy. I strive to raise the bar in the profession and help consumers understand what it means to be represented by a REALTOR.
What’s your take on the housing market in Columbus? And what advice would you give to a first-time home buyer? The real estate market in Central Ohio is fantastic but complex! As many may have read, Central Ohio was rated the #1 Hottest Housing Market by realtor.com in the first quarter of 2019. This is wonderful news for home sellers, but frustrating news for home buyers. Now, more than ever, it is critically important to enlist the services of a REALTOR to help accomplish your real estate needs. My best advice to a first-time home buyer, schedule a consultation with a REALTOR ASAP! It is impossible to navigate this market without professional assistance, especially given the limited inventory and how FAST the market is moving.
What gets you up in the morning? And what gets you through the workweek? I LOVE what I get to do every day. I get excited about the opportunity to help a new family achieve their real estate goals. I also love helping my associates achieve their career goals.
What advice or mentors have helped guide you along the way? My biggest Mentor has been my Mom. She was a licensed realtor for 25 years. Much of what I learned about the business has come from her. She taught me how to connect with people across all walks of life and appreciate where they are in their journey.
Explain some of your work-life balance challenges. How do you achieve success in spite of the hustle and bustle? Work life balance is really challenging for me. I actually don’t like to use the words “work-life balance” but rather “work life harmony.” In my business, it’s hard to “turn-off” so I try to focus on creating harmony between my work and personal life. I surround myself with great team members and people that support my business and they hold me accountable for taking time for myself. Without them, I would not be where I am today. It takes a village!
What do you do to unwind? In Columbus, I unwind at the gym or through physical activity. Anything that takes me away from a screen – phone, computer or TV. Outside of Columbus, I love to travel to Siesta Key, FL and Park City, UT.
When you were a kid, what did you say you wanted to be when you grew up? I thought I would be a doctor or teacher. The doctor path was ruled out when I realized I couldn’t walk into a hospital without fainting – I’ve gotten better about that.
What might someone be surprised to know about you? I am terrified of birds. ALL birds. I know, it’s weird.
What books/podcasts are you reading/listening to right now? I listen to a lot of real estate and business-related podcasts. My favorites right now are Tom Ferry and Gary V. I haven’t been a big reader in the past but I challenged myself to read a book a month in 2019 – yes, I am a month behind but it’s been so busy – the book I am reading now is simple and short – it’s called Who Moved My Cheese? It’s a business book about dealing with change. The real estate industry is experiencing rapid change and we have to be nimble, adjust and try new things. This book speaks to those principles.
What would your autobiography be called? What Are You Doing? Ask anyone who knows me, this is my universal greeting to everyone. Rather than saying, “Hi, how are you?” — I throw out the, “What are you doing” – and people who know me just laugh. I think the phrase can break down walls. It starts conversations, makes people think “what am I doing?” and it shows that I take genuine interest in other. “What are you doing?”
What are among the top places you’d recommend to someone who is new to or visiting Columbus? My “must-do’s” in Columbus typically revolve around food! Lindey’s patio in the Spring/Summer is unbeatable. Dinner around the fireplace at Third and Hollywood in the Winter is so cozy! The Scioto Mile is an awesome way to capture the essence of Columbus. Easton for those needing retail therapy. And the charming communities in and around downtown – German Village, Short North, Clintonville and others – each with their unique vibe.
Which organization(s) are you involved with around the community? BESA Community is an organization that I have been involved with for several years. It allows me to work volunteer projects into my already busy schedule. I am also very active with Columbus REALTORS and Children’s Miracle Network.
What’s the most exciting thing about Columbus right now? I think the most exciting thing about Columbus is to see its rapid transformation/development. Since moving back in 2008 to now, it feels like Columbus is a different city. It’s exciting to a part of the growth.
What are three things you think Columbus needs? Public Transit, Public Transit, Public Transit – I think this is the biggest challenge Columbus faces. With the pace of growth we are experiencing, we need a more efficient way to connect people and communities.
If someone were to ask you what the “pulse” of Columbus is, what would you tell them? We’re the heartbeat of Ohio. Columbus is where progress, diversity and community converge to create something pretty special.