Amy Spear brings a fresh perspective to real estate. As a former land-use lobbyist and political strategist, Amy knows the value of listening, genuinely understanding her client’s needs, and providing exceptional service every single day.
An agent of Pacific Sotheby’s International Realty in the Downtown San Diego office, Amy has unique knowledge of the Downtown, Little Italy, and East Village markets. She also frequently works in the Point Loma, Ocean Beach, and La Mesa areas, although she represents both buyers and sellers throughout the San Diego region.
Amy has a Real Estate Finance, Investments, and Development Certification from the University of San Diego and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, Criminal Justice, and Business from Indiana University.
As a result of her vast educational background and extensive knowledge of the local markets, Amy has earned multiple awards and professional distinctions. She was awarded Rookie of the Year in 2019 by the San Diego Association of Realtor’s Circle of Excellence and the San Diego Association of Realtor’s Top 40 Realtors Under 40 Award.
We recently sat down with Amy to discuss her experience as a distinguished realtor in Southern California.
Why did you choose to align with Pacific Sotheby’s International Realty?
When I started my career in real estate, I wanted to be associated with the best brokerage available to me. My goal was to work for Pacific Sotheby’s International Realty, the most prominent global brokerage for luxury real estate. Sotheby’s International Realty provides its agents with education, innovative technology, international access and brand awareness, and an exceptional local network, ensuring my clients will be successful every time they work with me.
What is your favorite part of working in real estate?
My favorite part is seeing and learning about different parts of San Diego County daily. I’ve seen so many different neighborhoods and pockets that I otherwise would have never known about. I feel like every day is an exciting adventure. My second favorite part is negotiating with other agents. It’s fun trying to figure out how to get my clients the best deal possible.
What’s your process for building a strong client base?
I try to be very thoughtful. The majority of my clients base are people that I already have an existing relationship with, so I always provide individualized value – whether that’s a CMA on their home once a year, a market update on their specific neighborhood, or I’ll even show them a house they are curious about once in a while. If they refer me to a new client, I also always send them a fun thank you gift.
What has been your favorite selling experience?
I love historic homes and interesting architecture, so my favorite selling experience is when I sold my first historic home in Kensington. It was a 1929 classic Spanish home that qualifies for the Mills Act designation. It has these incredible barreled ceilings, a massive original wood door, and a special porte-cochere entrance to the front courtyard. A good friend bought it, so I’m thankful I still get to see it every so often!
There are multiple up-and-coming urban communities in San Diego, why do you think these communities are growing so rapidly?
These “up-and-coming” urban communities offer what people want – affordability, some outdoor space, and the feeling of being a part of a vibrant environment.
I give credit to some amazing, younger developers who got the ball rolling in areas like University Heights, Normal Heights, the north/east sections of North Park, City Heights, and even East Village. They were willing to take on more risk and subsequently have brought us all entertaining, mixed-use design with unique/local restaurant and bar concepts. It makes these communities feel like they have their own distinctive identity that draws people to them.
Has Covid-19 changed where people want to live in San Diego?
Yes, my buyer’s priorities have changed, especially those who have children. I’m always on the hunt for a large yard, a pool, an extra bedroom or two for an office and a gym. Buyers are more willing to move east to areas like La Mesa, Mt. Helix, Scripps Ranch, & San Marcos to get the space they want. Most currently anticipate having to go into the office only 2-4 days a week.
Do you use social media or other sites to sell houses?
Definitely, I think it’s most helpful that other agents who are working with buyers are seeing the home. I’ve learned that real estate in San Diego is a pretty small community, and it’s nice to be able to communicate with agents directly via our social channels.
Millennials make up the majority of up-and-coming home purchasers, what trends do you see among these buyers?
I’m seeing millennials skipping the starter, 2-bedroom condo home. They are going straight into the 3-4 bedroom, $1m+ home as their first purchase. I think many millennials recognize home prices will continue to increase in San Diego due to low supply, and they want to get into a single-family home now. Thankfully, they’ve able to save 10-20% for their downpayment or they have family members who are willing to give them a gift to get them started. I’m also seeing my millennial clients financially helping out-of-town parents move closer so they have help with long-term childcare.