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Hileman almost doubles size of company with new venture

(Nov. 8, 2013) A week ago today, Hileman Real Estate owner Debbie Hileman signed a deal that nearly doubled her company’s size.

Owner of Hileman Real Estate Debbie Hileman stands with new Rental Agent Pat Terrill at their 82nd Street office. (Clara Vaughn | Ocean City Today)

The business now boasts almost 500 rental properties, with a slew of new weekly rentals in the mix after making the trade with Prudential PenFed Realty.

“I’d been looking to expand the rental offers,” Hileman said. “It was like the perfect scenario.”

The deal came about through former PenFed rental agent Pat Terrill, who noticed that Hileman’s business had few weekly rentals, Hileman said. She set out to try to recruit Terrill to help with that.

“Instead of recruiting her, I ended up buying one whole rental division,” Hileman said.

In addition to bringing on approximately 186 new properties for rent, the deal with PenFed brought several new employees to Hileman’s office, including three full-time sales representatives.

“It’s just good to be here because we have local support,” Terrill said from Hileman’s 82nd Street office. “We can think outside the box and offer a more personal service. I think that’s our strong suit.”

Hileman said that, even with the expansion, the group will continue to focus on customer service, with rental agents personally inspecting units after they’ve been rented, for example.

“We’re large enough now to draw good rentals, but we’re small enough now that we can offer good service,” she said. “That’s the important part.”

The growth necessitates some changes, she said, but “we’re not reinventing the wheel.”

The office will streamline its operations by having agents specialize in a particular division, rather than cover all of them, for example.

Hileman Real Estate now has 10 employees and 18 licensed realtors under subcontract. All have experience in the real estate business, Hileman said.

“We’ll have a busy rental office here,” she said.

Hileman formed Hileman Real Estate in 1997, after more than a decade of working for now-defunct English Realty. Last week’s expansion was the largest in her company’s history, she said.

Visit www.hilemanrealestate.com to learn more.

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