Sarasota Herald Tribune Article
Partners work together for winning formula
By STEPHEN FRATER
SARASOTA — At a time when realty brokerages are under pressure across the board and many have merged or been bought out, it is increasingly unusual for a partnership of individual Realtors to survive and thrive for nearly a quarter-century, as have Marcia Salkin and Paulene Soublis of Premier Properties of Southwest Florida.
The pair worked together in three separate brokerages and along the way racked up close to a quarter of a billion dollars’ worth of closed Southwest Florida real estate.
Salkin grew up in the real estate business, the fourth generation in her family of Realtors. Born and raised in Louisville, Ky., she used to help her father set up for open houses when she was 4 years old. She moved to Sarasota in 1979.
Trained in journalism with a minor in business marketing from the Ohio State University, she has honed her interviewing, marketing and negotiating skills. She says the real estate business is her “passion and excitement.”
Salkin says she “doesn’t sweat the small stuff.” She raised her son alone while taking care of her parents, an experience she says taught her to keep her eyes “on the big picture.”
Her family’s real estate legacy continues with her son, David, a 2003 graduate of Pine View School in Osprey. He is in his final year at Tulane University’s School of Architecture in the master’s program.
Upon entering the local real estate market in 1981 at Merrill Lynch Boomhower Realty, she soon decided to partner with Soublis, whom she had met there.”
I listened to Paulene, who is the much more quantitatively oriented one of us,” Salkin said. “I admired her attention to detail, her persistence and follow-through on behalf of her clients. She would speak with everyone involved in the transaction: the termite inspector, the appraiser, the lender, the attorney, the title companies, etc.”
The partners joined Michael Saunders & Co. in 1986, where they became a top team by setting records and placing in the upper tier of powerhouse producers year after year.
They continued their successful collaboration after deciding to join Premier Properties of Southwest Florida in 2006.Real estate has also been Soublis’ passion from an early age. Every Sunday when her father brought home the newspaper, she said, she would go straight to the real estate section and read every ad, visualizing each home.”
While other girls were playing with dollhouses, I would send away for floor plans for real houses and study them,” Soublis said.Born and raised in Philadelphia, the daughter of Greek immigrants, Soublis speaks Greek fluently. She married and raised three daughters while working in her husband’s restaurant business. When they sold that business, Soublis pursued her longtime interest in real estate and earned her Pennsylvania real estate license.
Upon moving to Sarasota in 1984, Soublis joined Merrill Lynch Boomhower Realty and met Salkin. She says she realized that Salkin had great people skills and marketing savvy that complemented Soublis’ own self-described analytic approach.
As Soublis’ business grew, so did her family. Married for 41 years, Paulene and her husband, George, owner of Sarasota’s El Greco Café, enjoy spending time with their three daughters and their five grandchildren, all of whom live in the Sarasota area.
An interesting note is that their boss at Premier Properties, Steve Bailey, is not really a big fan of realty teams.
Bailey says he would prefer agents to manage their client portfolios solo but makes exceptions when he sees strength of teamwork, as he does in the Salkin-Soublis partnership. He calls the duo “one of the successful teams at Premier.”