Just before the Keller Williams office based in Wilmington moved to Sir Tyler Drive from Eastwood Road about two years ago
, the firm had 137 agents.
Since then, the number has climbed to 190, and the company is moving again, this time leasing more than 13,600 square feet on the first floor of the office building at 1001 Military Cutoff Road.
"We still love our current space, but we have grown tremendously," said Ladd Gasparovic, operating principal of the Wilmington-based Keller Williams office, currently located in Suite 200 of 1838 Sir Tyler Drive. "We have people who want to join us who need offices and we are almost out of them."
The firm and its divisions plan to move into 1001 Military Cutoff Road by January, Gasparovic said Tuesday.
"It gives us more space for our existing agents to grow teams if that's what they're looking for, and I think it also gives us space for other teams to come in and really look at and evaluate their businesses and grow with a top company," said CEO Debbie Lariviere.
The new location has several other advantages, Gasparovic and Lariviere said, including a chance to expand the firm's training area.
"In the new space, the focal point will be this world-class, state-of-the-art training facility," Gasparovic said, a facility that can expand using communal and collaborative space, what Gasparovic called a "cafe/town square area," and that can be used to broadcast training sessions to satellite offices.
The Military Cutoff location will also have designated space for KW Commercial and KW Luxury, "which are both growing very fast nationally and locally," Gasparovic said. KW Luxury will be launched as a division of the local firm this fall, he said. KW Commercial currently has five agents, said Adam Nicholas, director of KW Commercial Wilmington.
Nicholas represented Keller Williams Wilmington in the lease of the Military Cutoff office, while Keith Austin, a commercial broker with Maus, Warwick, Matthews & Co., represented the landlord, Palm Park Holdings LLC.
Another launch that the bigger office will enable for the overall Keller Williams Wilmington firm is a productivity coaching program. Company officials are interviewing candidates locally and nationally to choose a productivity coach who will lead the new program, Gasparovic said.
"We're a training and coaching company, so we are really focused on helping agents that want to be true businesspeople to build and run their businesses profitably while maintaining quality of life," he said.
While renovations and reconfiguring the space will modernize the new location for Keller Williams, the office will still maintain elements of traditional real estate spaces, including client presentation rooms, conference rooms and a reception area, said Gasparovic, who worked at 1001 Military Cutoff Road for about three years when he was part of Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage. Gasparovic and his wife, Stephanie, started the Wilmington-based Keller Williams office in 2013.
Earlier this year, Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage, one of the largest residential real estate companies in southeastern North Carolina, moved from 1001 Military Cutoff Road
into 18,000 square feet in Dungannon Village, a new two-story office building at 110 Dungannon Blvd. in Autumn Hall. Taking up half of the first floor and all of the second, the Dungannon Village location for Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage is a central hub for the company's network of 13 offices from southern Brunswick County to Jacksonville.
Tom O'Neill, vice president and director of sales for Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage, said Tuesday that the new office has been well-received among the company's agents, about 200 of which work out of Dungannon Village and more than 50 at the company's midtown Wilmington office, which also opened this year.
"They’re very happy with the new layout [at Dungannon Village]," O'Neill said. "The old building was more looked upon as a corporate setting whereas our new office is designed more in a residential fashion to coincide with the design of the Autumn Hall master plan. The agents absolutely love it and we’re very happy that we moved over here."
As the Wilmington area's real estate market has strengthened, so has the number of real estate offices for the region's growing companies.
The new Keller Williams office in Wilmington will act as a market center, Ladd Gasparovic said. Last year, the firm's closed sales volume was $280 million, and this year, as of the end of August, that number is expected to be at about $250 million, he said.
"We are looking at launching spaces in South Brunswick, Leland, Hampstead, Snead's Ferry," Ladd Gasparovic said. "We may even do another one in Wilmington at a different location."