Expectations high for RE/MAX real estate conference and expo

EXPECTATIONS and excitement are high among potential homeowners, investors, suppliers, developers and other stakeholders anticipating the inaugural staging of the RE/MAX Premier Real Estate Conference and Expo next month.

The event, which is free to the public, is scheduled for April 14 to 16 at Jamaica Pegasus hotel, New Kingston, and will run from 9:00 am to 8:00 pm daily. It will feature more than 80 exhibitors, local and international speakers, and daily entertainment.

“We’ve been getting a lot of buzz; we’re getting a lot of positive feedback [since the official launch of the event in January],” said Roger Williams, interim CEO, Spectrum Capital Holdings (St Lucia), RE/MAX Elite Realty’s parent company.

“People are excited about it, and it’s an opportunity for persons to come to one place and really be able to check several boxes that will get them on their journey to their real estate goals,” he added.

“If you are somebody just trying to get into the market for your own home, we are going to have displayers there who will be able to provide you with the information. If you are someone who is looking for investment property or if you’re just curious about what the journey is going to be like… RE/MAX will be there [to take you through the steps],” Williams told this week’s Jamaica Observer Monday Exchange.

Pointing to the the conference and expo tagline: ‘Invest in Real Estate, Accelerate your Wealth’, Williams said the event will provide an opportunity for many Jamaicans to start building generational wealth.

“So whatever we can do — whether it’s through the expo directly or through RE/MAX [in a] broader [sense] to help in that goal — that’s what we intend to do,” he said.

Williams explained that the company embarked on staging this “first of its kind” event in Jamaica to help people tap into opportunities that abound in Jamaica’s growing real estate industry, post-COVID-19.

“In the year or so before COVID there was a fairly steep acceleration of growth [of the real estate market in Jamaica], and there are a number of things that would have contributed to that — the economy started to do better; interest rates were maintained at a very, very low level for a while so therefore mortgage rates were very favourable; and there was legislation passed to allow multi-storey buildings above three storeys — so all these things combined to accelerate the real estate market.”

The COVID-19 pandemic put a temporary halt to that growth. However, after the country emerged from the worst spread of the virus the pace picked up again.

“So the interest in real estate from various stakeholders in the sector, including abroad, has been probably the highest it has been in recent history. And so what we wanted to do was to try and help all the persons who have an interest or who have real estate goals, in the near term to medium term, to come to one place to help to get those goals realised,” he said.

Conference participants, he said, will include financial companies, conveyance lawyers, and speakers from overseas.

“So it’s going to be a place that, for three days, we’re going to have access and knowledge that ultimately help people who are on this journey — which can be a little complicated sometimes — to their real estate goals, to get help, and for us to help them to meet those goals. So we think the conference and expo is a good vehicle for that,” he said.

Williams said the list is still being finalised but among the presenters from overseas who have been confirmed is regional director of RE/MAX Caribbean and Central America Ricardo Cárdenas.

“So you know he’s going to be speaking to RE/MAX and why RE/MAX is as strong in the sector as it has been over the years and in Jamaica, and maybe even talking about opportunities for business people to become subfranchises for RE/MAX here,” he said.

Williams also said that with high interest from the diaspora Jamaica’s consul general to Miami Oliver Mair will be a speaker.

The event will be streamed live specifically for this cohort.

Among the highlights of the conference and expo will be a home makeover being offered by EdgeChem Paints, one of the event’s sponsors.

“We are partnering with RE/MAX, of course. There is going to be a competition component to it where two lucky guests or participants at the expo will win themselves a home makeover. We are excited about that, we’re looking forward to that, and I am hoping that is something that we can integrate in our promotional efforts going forward,” said EdgeChem Paints’ Marketing Coordinator Annella Edwards, who was a guest at the Monday Exchange.

Regional sales and relationship manager RE/MAX Donalda Daley-Martin disclosed that a bank in St Kitts has expressed an interest in participating.

“They saw our launch and got excited and decided that they wanted to come onboard, and so we are in dialogue with them for them to come,” she said.

Also expected, she said, are representatives from the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, National Land Agency, Housing Agency of Jamaica, and “we are hoping to get NHT (National Housing Trust) on too”.

Courtesy of Jamaica Observer