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What Does $1 Billion Look Like?

Kevin Hawkins, March 10, 2017

Last year HomesUSA.com’s Ben Caballero, who has been atop of the REAL Trends/WSJ “The Thousand” list of real estate agent rankings for both total dollar volume and number of transactions since 2013, became the “World’s First Billion Dollar Producer.” It’s a feat that’s hard to get our heads around because we toss around the term “billion” so frequently we forget how truly breathtaking this accomplishment is. From a PR point-of-view, it presented a significant challenge in finding a way to put what Ben had done in the proper perspective. That was the test we faced at WAV Group Communications when Ben became our client.

A picture is worth 1,000 words

One of my favorite quick reads as a young writer was Harper’s Index. It was really the first textual version of the Infographic, as it made numbers interesting and put a clever spin on numbers related to obscure and often startling facts and figures. It’s also what sparked the idea of a great way to tell Ben’s story: make it a visual one and bring those numbers to life. And that’s why we turned to creating an Infographic that could put in perspective exactly what Ben had accomplished. The goal was to show the awesomeness behind being the first to break the billion-dollar barrier. Think about it: One agent responsible for more than $1 billion in home sales during a single year!

We also didn’t know if Ben would ever hit that level of volume again. After all, Ben’s markets were all Texas-based (Dallas, Houston, Austin and San Antonio) and conventional wisdom at the beginning for 2016 said that most of the Texas markets that were exploding with new home construction would soften. Nearly 100% of Ben’s business is new home construction listings for builders.

But a funny thing happened in 2016. Ben shattered his first billion-dollar record, increasing his business in ONE YEAR by more than 40 percent. In 2015, Ben sold homes totaling $1.022 billion – some 2,491 units. In 2016, Ben’s new record totaled $1.45 billion in home sales volume – some 3,565 units.

The good news, this year, is we have an even better, bigger story to tell as Ben’s business growth continues to defy conventional wisdom. That means our Infographic this year is even more powerful because the numbers tell a truly remarkable story.

Here is his newest Infographic that shows what it means to be a two-time billion dollar producer when you look at what a billion dollars really looks like:

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More about Ben

One final note: Ben has a very unique business model and is quick to explain that he works with builders and does not do what the typical agent does, but he does a lot of things the typical agent doesn’t do. He invented a highly scalable property listing and market technology platform for home builders to help them market much more successfully to real estate agents. Ben has been a Realtor since he was 21 and, uniquely, he also was a home builder for 18 years. He knows from these experiences that there’s a golden opportunity here for agents who are capable of providing services tailored to a builder’s needs. You can learn more about Ben and his builder platform in this recent Builder magazine profile: “From Builder to Realtor”