Broker Spotlight: Ian S. Hoover, Deacon Hoover Real Estate

Name: Ian S. Hoover

Title: Broker/owner

Experience: Investing 15 years, licensed 11 years, broker 5 years

Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Brokerage name: Deacon Hoover Real Estate

Rankings: 19th of 289 brokerages, No. 1 local independent.

Team size: 45+ Agents

Transaction sides: 426 in 2021

Sales volume: $73,000,000 in 2021

Awards: Keller Williams: Top 30 under 30; Top Agent: social media awards

What’s something you know now that you wish you knew when you started? 

You must spend money to make money, so don’t be cheap. Buy good software, hire good employees, market and advertise. Treat your business like a business and it will grow faster.

Tell us about a high point in your brokerage career. How did you get there?

It just happened this year. We opened in 2017 and one thing I had my eye on from day one was to become the top local independent in Pittsburgh. As of June 2022, we took that spot! It is a big win but now we must look at what our next goals will be moving forward. Now to go after the big dogs in our market. 

Tell us about an epic fail you’ve experienced since you’ve been a broker. What did you learn? 

In 2019 we were growing very fast, as we still are today. We decided to expand and open a second office. We found a small brokerage in the area of town we would be interested in expanding to, and we acquired them. We thought the old owners would stay onboard and help us grow. They did not, nor did they have to because we never signed them to a non-compete. 

Since they left pretty quickly, we did not have a person to run that office. It was too far for myself or my partner to run effectively. The office slowly died; by late 2020 the writing was on the wall that we made a mistake and in 2021 we closed the office. 

I do think we want to expand, but it will be with the right leadership in place next time, contractually.

What’s your top tip for freshly licensed brokers? 

Implement systems right away. It is so much easier to implement when you are small; even if you don’t plan to be a large company, sometimes it just happens. Back office software, CRM, website, lead gen, accounting, really any task you can think of should have a system in place to handle it.

Name 3 people you admire.

Mark Cuban: He is funny, a great businessman, and from Pittsburgh.

Eminem: My favorite artist, he has grown as I have, He has a song for every mood I am in. 

Taylor Swift: My daughter and I listen to her catchy tunes. I love how she took ownership of her music — a pure power move.  I am trying to learn more about influential women so I can raise one.

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