Details, Details, Details

Darrell Done Dots the ‘I’s

Wednesday, October 22, 2014 | 10:40 pm

Like the buttons on a fine shirt, or the stitching around a silk collar, Pasadena Coldwell Banker Realtor Darrell Done understands the importance of detail.

Done worked for many years in the fashion business in a number of capacities—in design and product development for men’s apparel and another 11 years for the late Bullock’s Department store chain in store management and as a buyer.

He carried that same attention to detail with him when he began his real estate career.

“I tried to put a lot of thought into how I wanted to approach it,” he explained.

“I had been the managing director of the US office of a Japanese retail corporation, where I was responsible for budget, planning and store design as well as marketing and advertising, in addition to product. So when I came into real estate, I decided to figure out a way where I could introduce myself from a little bit different point of view.”

It was his goal to create an instantly recognizable format and look, and to assimilate into the Pasadena community where he has lived since 1977.

“Well before going into real estate I’ve been a part in this community and I knew a lot of people and the different neighborhoods. I felt that I had an advantage of having a sense of these different community areas within Pasadena, like Altadena or San Marino. That was helpful because I didn’t have to really become acclimated to the territory. I simply wanted to figure out how best to approach going into this business.”

As a realtor, Done approaches the home buying and selling process more from a “big picture” financial decision, as it is an emotional one.

“I basically interview the buyer or seller and try to find out what their goals and priorities are,” he said, “and then once I have those priorities and goals, I sit down and create a plans to help achieve those goals, much like a financial adviser would do. I am trying to determine what is important to the buyer or seller.”

Done continued, “I can provide an insight into different neighborhoods. There’s a lot of information that people can get online, but I actually think that you need somebody to put that into perspective relative to what that individual needs or what they are trying to achieve.”

The goal, says Done, is to help the client understand the market and to help them decide ultimately what direction that they want to go in.

As he explained, “A lot of times people think that they want that thing, but actually they want something else. It’s not that I’m trying to change their mind, but I’m trying to at least present options or things for them to consider and then once they make their decision then I want that to be something they feel comfortable with.”

But that’s only part of the complete transaction, as Done continued, saying, “My goal is to minimize the disruptions to their normal daily routine.”

“When you go through a major transaction like buying or selling a house it is a completely separate process. If you’re busy at work or have children, or other commitments your normal schedule has to be interrupted to deal with things related to that transaction, said Done.

This is where careful planning and preparation comes in to play.

“I try to make this part as effortless as possible and I try to anticipate what the transaction will require, whether you’re buying or selling. We know what is going to be needed in advance, and we make sure all of that is taken care of in a timely manner.”

In addition to his work handling everyday sales transactions, Done has also taken special training on architectural properties, and has a unique designation as an architectural properties specialist.

“We want to make sure that the buyers understand what they buying in advance,” reasons Done.

“There are a lot of wonderful, smaller houses in our area designed by noted architects, but to understand why an architect-designed house is more unique and special than another, you have to understand what you’re looking at,” he says, comparing his knowledge of architects to the knowledge of a classic car expert.

“You have to really understand the history of Mercedes, or Bugatti to know the history and understand what you’re looking at,” he continued, “and so the architectural properties division is one area where I’m a specialist,” thus making his work all the more valuable for his various clients. In fact, he is one of a select few architectural properties specialists in his office.

“A specialist for architectural properties can create a special advertising campaign using special vehicles that will give their home a more special and unique exposure when you’re selling the property,” Done explained.

Whether a craftsman jewel or a starter condo, every transaction is unique, Done emphasizes, and it’s the details that make all the difference.

Darrell Done, Previews Estates Director is at Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage, 388 S Lake Ave Pasadena. (626) 844-2255; (626) 354-3551



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