Graduate, REALTOR Institute Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE)
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Spring Park is an anomaly of a city. With a population of only 2000, Spring Park borders 3 different lakes—Lake Minnetonka, West Arm and Black Lake. This scenic city is located only 30 minutes outside of Minneapolis, and the City of Minnetonka is nearby for everyday commercial needs. Therefore, Spring Park hosts over 60 commercial businesses within the city.
Spring Park currently has over 250 households, 10 apartment complexes, and a senior living/nursing home. Its small town atmosphere has convenient lake access that can get busy during summer months as visitors go to Lake Minnetonka to boat and relax. Two city parks are available for local recreation.
Meet Dale Wilson
An Interview with Broker Agent Magazine!
What do fetal monitors, custom fishing rods, and the nuances of preparing a gourmet Italian meal have in common? They represent just a few of the subjects REALTOR Dale Wilson can speak about both knowledgably and from personal experience.
Actually, he used to sell medical supplies such as fetal monitors; he designs, crafts and sometimes sells custom fishing rods; and is equally gifted brewing authentic New Orleans Cajun dish as he is whipping up a mouthwatering Italian feast using his own recipes.
A true renaissance man, Dale also happens to have finely honed sales skills. Unfortunately this enviable talent ultimately priced him right out of the market so far as his previous employer was concerned. Between stock options, bonuses, a new company car every year and his burgeoning paycheck, the medical supplies conglomerate figured it would be much more economical to let go of their top salesman and replace him with a hungry, (cheaper) youngster just starting out.
Looking around at his options Dale decided that real estate seemed a logical move. “At least,” he concluded, “there wouldn’t be anyone to slow me down or infer that I’m selling too much!”
After getting his license, Dale spent his first four-and-a-half years with Edina Realty where he predictably shot straight to the top making the prestigious, President’s Circle in his very first year. No small feat for a newcomer; to access this particular sphere of recognition a REALTOR must sell enough property to earn at least $100,000 in commissions.
Being his own boss and enjoying the freedom to perform to his own high standards were only part of the pleasures Dale soon discovered he derived from real estate.
“It’s very rewarding on a much more personal level,” he explains. “Where before I was primarily working with doctors and their office personnel, in real estate I enjoy working with all types of people. It’s a whole new experience. Just the homebuyers alone represent a wide range of personality types and of course they vary in the product their looking for; everything from the first-time starter home to the very elaborate estate properties or luxury vacation homes.”
“It doesn’t matter to me though what price range or size home, I find all or my clients fascinating a really enjoy getting to know each one. And, they all receive the same level of service. I’m very protective of my clients.”
Dale says he is particularly watchful over first-time buyers. “I tend to take them under my wind,” he says with a smile. “When I’m working with them I’ll even say, ‘I’m going to be like a father figure.’ I usually get to meet the parents too. And, I tell them the same thing.”
“I won’t sell a house just to get a commission,” he adds. “In fact if I don’t like a house, or I see something potentially wrong with it and the client still insists on buying it, I tell them they’ll have to work with another agent because I won’t be a party to it.”
For Dale being in sales means one thing-service. “I’ve been in sales for about thirty-two years now,” he says, “and I realize you really have nothing to sell but service. So I go out of my way to provide that extra care and level of concern for all of my clients whether they have never bought a home before or it’s their 10th time.”
Unlike many REALTORS Dale points out that he feels comfortable working with clients at any price point.
“Some agents would rather not put in a lot of work if the property is at the lower end of the price spectrum,” he explains. “Still others shy away from the higher price points because they feel intimidated by people who buy or sell homes above say, $500,000. I don’t have that problem. Selling medical equipment to physicians I got used to working with people who made more money that I did. But I was the expert at that time and I feel being in real estate sales, now I’m the expert in real estate.”
He pauses momentarily and then laughs, “Plus, they put their pants on the same way we do!”
Dale admits that real estate is demanding and time-consuming profession particularly for REALTORS such as him who consistently go the extra mile for their clients. And yet, despite the long hours he claims that it’s quite preferable to his nomadic life in medical supply sales.
“At least I’m home every night,” he quips.
Home is important to Dale who shares his life with his lovely wife Dar (short for Darlene) who also happens to share his passion for the real estate business.
“Dar is a mortgage banker,” he explains. “She’s a very sharp lady and has been a tremendous support to me in my efforts.”
Dar’s vast experience in the industry was a definite asset as Dale began his real estate career. Consequently, the pair enjoys working together on many of Dale’s transactions. Whenever possible, they also like to travel to Phoenix, Arizona to visit her daughters and three grandchildren.
“Before, I was on the road about 98 percent of the time,” he adds. “I covered a five-state area” North and South Dakota, Wisconsin, Minnesota, the northern two-thirds of Iowa and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. With real estate I can enjoy my evenings and participate in local organizations to help give back to my community.”
Some of these memberships include the Waconia Chamber, were he serves on the board; the Lake Minnetonka Chamber; Waconia Lions Club (past vice president); Waconia Rotary.
“It gives me an opportunity to get to know an entirely separate group of people which I really enjoy,” says Dale. “Plus, I really appreciate the chance to give back a little.”
One of Dale’s favorite events is the annual Lions Club “Take a Kid Fishing Day” that comes around every July. “These are underprivileged children who might not otherwise have the opportunity to enjoy something as simple as spending a day out on a boat fishing,” he explains. “It’s basically a full day event; first we all have breakfast then furnish them with rods that they actually get to keep, and take them out fishing. Then we bring them back for lunch and while they’re eating, we’re cleaning their fish so they can take home a beautiful filet. It’s a great day for all of us/ What really sticks with you is the look on their faces when they realize the fishing rod is theirs to take home.”
An avid fisherman himself, particularly partial to bass and ice fishing, Dale knows precisely how important the right equipment can be. He finds designing and building exquisite custom rods just as enjoyable and a great deal more rewarding. With an artists’ eye and the skilled hands of a master craftsman, Dale creates every thing from rods used in fly-fishing to the sturdier construction ideal for snagging Walleye.
“Mine are quite unique,” he explains. “The wrapping on them, from the cork handle up to the first guide, is where I create custom patterns such as diamond or hearts; by using various colored threads I can create virtually any pattern or design that someone might like. It really makes the rod special and very personal.”
For a quick peek at a sample of his work just head to your nearest video store and rent “Grumpy Old Men.” Walter Mattheu’s character treasures his infamous ice fishing rod “The Green Hornet” that was designed and built by Dale!
“Actually, I made four of them,” Dale says with a laugh, “They wanted to have backups ups just in case.” After watching the antics of Mattheu and Jack Lemmon it’s understandable that extra rods would be requested.
Dale is just full of surprises! If you were fortunate enough to be invited to his home following a fishing expedition you’d no doubt sample first-hand another of his hidden talents which is gourmet cooking.
It’s something I really enjoy,” he admits modestly. “I’ve created several of my own Italian recipes and not too long ago had the opportunity to take a course on Cajun cuisine in New Orleans. For me cooking is enjoyable on several levels; the whole preparation process from selecting just the right ingredients to the final presentation is not only a creative outlet, but very relaxing. Besides I love entertaining so it works out perfectly!”
Skills such as these required not only talent but considerable patience and dedication. These are the same character traits that make Dale a superior agent and why it makes it easy to believe he really lives by his pledge. “When it comes to service, I strive to exceed my clients’ expectations.”
He even shares this philosophy with new licensees. “I always try to emphasize just how significant good service is,” he says. “I tell them that above al it’s service, service, service that make the difference. Don’t be afraid to go the extra mile; not every client will know or show appreciation, but YOU”LL know you’ve given your all.”
A member of RE/MAX’s 100 percent Club and Presidents Circle for the past two years; EDINA REALTY’S Presidents Circle for four years; and the Presidents Circle in his very first year are all pretty good indications that his philosophy works.
Dale’s knowledge of the area he serves as well as his expertise in relocation has also proven a real advantage to his many clients.
Despite the fact that he feels he’s old enough to assume the protective “father figure” role with most of his clients, Dale has no thoughts of retirement. He plans on continuing to work with local builders and developers and expand his knowledge on the intricacies of relocation.
“I truly can’t imagine doing anything else,” he says with energetic conviction. “I absolutely love real estate! I love the people I’ve met and I enjoy knowing that I’m doing something that really helps people.”
Article from: Broker Agent Magazine
Written by:Susan Cushing
Photography by: Spooner Graphics
Courses Taken & Certifications Held:
Graying of Minnesota
Waconia Chamber of Commerce
Real Estate Awards & Achievements:
Edina Realty's Presidents Circle (4 Years)
Re/Max Realty 100% Club (3 Years)
Re/Max Realty Platinum Club
Minnetonka Realty's Admirals Club (3 Years)
Top Ten Sales award 2001,2002,2003
Top producer 2001,2003
Sales Person of the year 2001 & 2003
El Camino College
Xerox Sales Training
"I Strongly believe that I have nothing to sell but service."