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Home - Santa Fe Real Estate Guide - - FRONT PAGE - Re­al­tor of the Year

This in­ter­view se­ries fo­cuses on the peo­ple in Santa Fe’s real-es­tate in­dus­try. Mindy DeMott is a long­time as­so­ciate bro­ker with Cold­well Banker Trail­sWest Realty and was re­cently named by her peers in the Santa Fe As­so­ci­a­tion of Real­tors (SFAR).

You’ve done a lot of vol­un­teer work, in­clud­ing for Habi­tat for Hu­man­ity and the Santa Fe An­i­mal Shel­ter.

And I also vol­un­teer ev­ery year at the FolkArt Mar­ket one week out of the year. With the an­i­mal shel­ter, I started out vol­un­teer­ing in 2005, do­ing the dog-walk­ing. Is that just as straight­for­ward as it sounds? Not re­ally. When you have dogs at the shel­ter, it de­pends on where they’re com­ing fro­mand howthey’ve been treated, so we have to go through train­ing to rec­og­nize their needs. We even had some of the dogs from Hur­ri­cane Ka­t­rina. They had to eu­th­a­nize some of the an­i­mals. This is a kill shel­ter, if you will, but they do place about 98.6 per­cent of all the dogs. Then at one point I moved to the satel­lite shel­ter where they do the spay­ing and neu­ter­ing. Where’s that? Over next to the Out­back Steakhouse. I vol­un­teered there in what they call “On the Beach,” help­ing the pets come out of anaes­the­sia. One day they gave me a rab­bit and I said, What do I do when a rab­bit wakes up? And they said, “Just be re­ally fast get­ting it back in the cage be­cause they wake up re­ally fast.”

And they wake up jump­ing! Mindy, wherewere you born and raised?

San Diego. We used to go ski­ing be­causemy un­cle had a lodge in Mam­moth Lakes, so I went to the Univer­sity of Denver for a year, then I went to visit my aunt and cousins in­Aspen and that fall I got a job teach­ing ski­ing that lasted 16 years. Good­ness. And did you go back to col­lege? I did, at Ham­line Univer­sity in Min­neapo­lis. I went into stu­dio art and I ended up get­ting into metal sculp­ture. Af­ter I got my de­gree I moved back to Aspen for a time, then I went to San Fran­cisco and I lived in a boat.

Right there in the mid­dle of the har­bor, Fish­er­man’s Wharf or the Em­bar­cadero?

No. I started out in the har­bor in Sausal­ito, then I was in the brand new har­bor that was open­ing up in Rich­mond. Was it a house­boat? A sail­boat, a wooden sail­boat. And I was­work­ing in a restau­rant. We’d get stars, like McLean Steven­son, and the Amer­ica’s Cup sail­ing peo­ple would come in, and guards from San Quentin— it was a big mix of in­ter­est­ing peo­ple. And then, one Sun­day­morn­ing on the boat, a friend rode over to tell me they had got­ten a call that my fa­ther had passed away. You went back to SanDiego? Yes, and I went back to school to get my teach­ing de­gree. I ended up teach­ing el­e­men­tary school, with a sup­ple­men­tal art cer­ti­fi­ca­tion.

And next you be­came a rocket sci­en­tist or you ac­tu­ally vis­ited Mars.

Well, prac­ti­cally. Back in the day, you could end up do­ing a lot of things, but the com­mon thread was the teach­ing. I had also coached high-school soft­ball and soc­cer in Min­neapo­lis.

At some point, Santa Fe and real es­tate come into the pic­ture.

Yes. A very good friend in SanDiego de­cided to­move to Santa Fe be­cause her two girls were com­ing to the ju­nior-high level and she wanted them to be in a smaller com­mu­nity. She called me up and said she had room at her house if I wanted to move here. Within two weeks I was of­fice man­ager for Dr. Pol­lan, who was the only al­ler­gist in town in those days. On the week­ends I was ski­ing and work­ing in the skier ser­vices de­part­ment up at Santa Fe and that turned into more of a full-time job. Back in the ski world. Yes. Then only a cou­ple more tran­si­tions. I worked at Sun­rise Springs help­ing with wed­dings and sell­ing pack­ages. Then I met my hus­band, Chas DeMott, who works for La­batt Foods, Al­bu­querque. He had a very good friend whowas ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor at Ponce de Leon and they were look­ing for an ac­tiv­i­ties di­rec­tor. I said I can work for you, bult I’monly go­ing to do it for a year. By that time I had my real-es­tate li­cense. When was that? In 2005, and pretty soon the mar­ket tanked. I thought I’d take as­many classes as I could to learn as­much as I could about real es­tate. Our re­li­cens­ing is on a three-year cy­cle and we’re re­quired to take 30 credit-hours, but in my first three years I think I took 130 hours.

You have a slew of des­ig­na­tions, in­clud­ing the ABR (Ac­cred­ited Buyer Rep­re­sen­ta­tive), the RSPS (Re­sort and Sec­ond Home Prop­erty Spe­cial­ist), the CRS (Cer­ti­fied Res­i­den­tial Spe­cial­ist), the AHWD (At Home with Di­ver­sity), and the Na­tional As­so­ci­a­tion of Real­tors Green Des­ig­na­tion.

I also got the short sale and fore­clo­sure li­cens­ing and the se­nior rep­re­sen­ta­tive li­cens­ing.

How long have you been at Cold­well Banker Trails West?

Since 2005, since the be­gin­ning. Chuck McKin­ley hired me and I think the first year he was scratch­ing his head, won­der­ing why. Ha ha ha. Why, you weren’t hav­ing enough clos­ings? Yeah, it was a tough time. As a very new­bro­ker, it takes six months to get peo­ple aware that you’re out there. I found that even peo­ple you’ve known a long time aren’t pre­pared to hire you as a Re­al­tor un­til you have some­what of a track record. How many homes are you list­ing right now? My in­ven­tory is down a lit­tle bit now. It­was about 12 two months ago and I’m down to four — be­cause I’ve sold them all. And this time of year peo­ple tend to wait un­til af­ter the hol­i­days to list their homes. I have three more clos­ings for the year, so I’mstill work­ing on all the peo­ple in­volved in those. Truth­fully, as a one-man show— and I have no plans of ever hav­ing a tea­mand a staff, what­ever — 12 or 14 list­ings at a time is just about all you can han­dle, and do well for all of your clients. And make money to keep liv­ing in Santa Fe. Yes. My hus­band has al­ways said that we live here in a place peo­ple come to va­ca­tion. We have a great lifestyle. What do you like do­ing in your spare time? We like to golf. We do a lot of that. It’s a new chal­lenge for me. I try to go horse­back-rid­ing once a year. I used to have horses. You left out that part. Oh. Yeah, my first horse I shared with one ofmy friends when I was about 13. Horses are cheap to buy but they’re ex­pen­sive to keep feed­ing. But they’re a lot of fun. And we like nice wine. We’re plan­ning on go­ing with some friends to Spain next year. That should be fun.

PHOTO BY PAUL WEI­DE­MAN

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