Richard Kallabat is a luxury home specialist and the chief executive officer of Miami Living Homes at Keller Williams, a premier, full-service real estate agency with more than fifty years of experience in listing, showing, and selling the most prestigious and well-appointed properties within the most desirable communities of Miami.
Richard launched Miami Living Homes in 2016, with a laser-focused strategy to carve out a very precise niche in the luxury home market. After meticulously crafting a distinctive list of service amenities, he hand-selected a team comprised of only the most prominent agents to culminate his vision of delivering the best service in the industry.
In just under two years, Richard’s innovative business acumen has already resulted in a noteworthy client network that includes celebrities, business tycoons, artists, and athletes. It has also significantly elevated his status within the industry to that of a real estate icon. Richard has been featured in several preeminent publications such as 9fi5th Luxury Real Estate, The Real Deal, Miami Today, and various other magazines. While he is no stranger to recognition, his status is not predicated on only the recent success of Miami Living Homes.
Richard, who was born in Detroit, Michigan, recognized his proclivity for entrepreneurship at an early age. By his 21st birthday, he started a valet parking company, which catered to the clientele of the most prestigious restaurants in the affluent Downtown Birmingham corridor. Richard continued to be industrious throughout his college years, while studying finance and investment strategies, and gradually refining his efforts to become a Series 7 licensed financial advisor. In 2003, he received his real estate license and dedicated himself to further developing his skill set in order to excel in the industry. Through dedication and perseverance, Richard achieved his first of many successes, when he sold his first premier luxury listing in 2004. That rewarding feeling is what has driven his passion in becoming the best of the best in working with a high net worth clientele.
In 2008, after fantastic success in residential property sales and becoming the #1 Realtor in his office of more than 100 agents, Richard decided to further expand his reach and capitalize on the thriving market of Dubai, in the United Arab Emirates. Once he accepted the managing director position with a leading agency, he made the move and immersed himself in, as he calls it, “the lifestyles of the rich and richer.” Dubai turned out to be a key element of Richard’s career advancement, as he learned to transact business with different cultures and enjoyed the process of hiring and training others to emulate his keen strategies and marketing techniques.
Returning to the States in 2011, after mastering the international markets and the psychology of foreign investors, Richard decided to expand his knowledge to the multi-cultural epicenter of Miami. He then attended the Realtor Institute, attaining a coveted GRI designation, which provides in-depth knowledge of legal and regulatory matters, technology, professional standards, and the sales process. Richard followed this achievement with a designation as a Certified Luxury Home Marketing Specialist, issued by The Institute for Luxury Home Marketing. The CLHMS is recognized as the mark of accomplishment in luxury markets around the world and is only awarded to the top 5% of agents.
Over the course of his career, Richard has overseen more than two billion dollars in home sales and worked with clients from around the globe. As a result of his well-documented success, he recently added ‘author’ to his already robust profile, and will release his first book, Luxury Home Selling Mastery II, at the close of 2018. The book is anticipated to be a #1 Bestseller!
Q & A
Q: What is the highlight of your career:
A: I’ve had many memorable experiences but moving to Dubai was what catapulted my career into a whole new arena. I lived in Dubai for two years and during that time, I discovered so many interesting things. I was a little surprised to learn that so many people and cultures are represented there. Most of the people speak English, so I was able to communicate and interact effectively, and I was just completely enamored by the diversity.
Q: What inspired you to choose your career?
A: I found my entrepreneurial proclivities at a young age and with real estate, I get to help people solve their housing challenges. It’s rewarding to see the outcomes and when you really immerse yourself in it, you can basically grow without bounds. I have also had the good fortune of being around talented people, who showed me that you can achieve success by helping other people be successful.
Q: What aspects of your career do you find most rewarding?
A: Definitely being able to help other people and making an impact in their lives. It could be a client or a team member; if I can make someone happy and accomplished, it satisfies a deep passion of mine and that is to “touch people’s lives in a positive way.”
Q: What makes your business different from other agencies?
A: Throughout our development as a company, I have always focused on quality, not quantity. I don’t overload my schedule or try to work with too many people at one time, and my agents are trained to perform in the same manner. We like to give our undivided attention to every client, because each client has unique needs. This philosophy may result in fewer transactions, but it also leads to a very high client retention rate and an outstanding level of client satisfaction. In fact, sometimes we are unable to take on new clients, which is frustrating because we like to help everyone, but not at the risk of diminishing our standards of service.
Q: What does the future of your business look like?
A: I definitely plan to maintain the highest standards through continued training and support of my staff. I’d like to think that as a team, we are creating a legacy, if you will. I hope that we set an example for future generations of real estate professionals, maybe even become the “gold bar standard” in the industry.
Q: What projects are you currently working on? What is the next level of success for you personally?
A: I am just putting the finishing touches on my first book, Luxury Home Selling Mastery II, which will hit the shelves later this year. I’m also honored to have been chosen as a guest author for 3 short stories about my amazing selling experiences, starting in Michigan, then in Dubai, and finally, Miami. Along with my wife, Claudia Restrepo, we’re investing in real estate brokerages around the world. My strength has become coaching and mentoring people in leadership positions, who can effectively manage tried and true systems to maximize results. I’m always in motion so it’s hard to predict what’s next on the agenda, but it will certainly be related to my experiences, in some form or fashion.