This is a reprint of the real estate agent showcase interview published in the Durango Herald:

Where did you grow up?

I grew up in Berlin, Germany where I went to a German-American bilingual High School and ended up going to college in the US. I met my husband David at Cornell University. We moved back to Germany for 8 years and then to Durango after a short stint in the Bay Area. Durango is a wonderful place to raise a family!

What do you like most about living in this area?

I love the lifestyle, the great outdoors, the mountains, lakes and rivers. But the best thing about Durango is the weather, it's always sunny!

What do you enjoy doing when you're not working?

I love camping, hiking, rafting and playing outdoors with my family and friends. We are also big winter sports enthusiasts. I grew up skiing in the Alps and have been an avid snowboarder since college. 

What did you do before that?

I have a masters degree in hotel management and worked for a hotel consulting company in Europe. After that I joined a venture capital firm overseeing their investments in hospitality and a variety of service companies.

What is your specialty?

I am Durango's first certified EcoBroker and pride myself on my knowledge of green and sustainable homes. Secondly, I am in awe of the internet, social media and ever changing technology. I specialize in providing up to date information on our website and blog. I'm working on starting a real estate podcast and possibly video show.

What is the most challenging/gratifying aspect of what you do?

The best aspect of my job is that I get to help people make their dreams come true. I've been challenged over the past couple of years by the tough market and economy just like everyone else. I've never been afraid of a good challenge and truly feel that it has me a better agent and my company stronger.

What is the most unusual thing you've encountered while working in Real Estate?

Well, possibly not the most unusual thing, but certainly unusual, I've shown properties to buyers by bicycle. We toured Durango intown homes riding our bikes from home to home. It's a great way to experience the neighborhoods and give you a slower and different view of the place. Imagine riding up to your new home on a bike. 

What is the most unique property you've listed or sold?

A few years back I listed and sold a beautiful sustainable, off the grid, custom energy efficient solar home with a waterfall inside and beautiful Southern views. This home was unique in every way, a small home on large acreage, high quality and high price. All you need is the one right buyer!

What are the top 3 things that separate you from your competition?

I'm the owner and broker of a local, professional, small and independent brokerage meaning personal service and no office politics.

I've got strong negotiation skills and local knowledge coupled with a background in hospitality management and financial consulting.

I'm tech savvy and personable, which helps me get the best deal for my clients in the least stressful manner possible.

What is one tip you have for someone looking to buy or sell a home?

Find an agent that you feel comfortable with and that you can trust. Don't be afraid to interview several different people, even if that means you'll have to disappoint the one you don't pick. Buying a house may very well be the biggest investment you ever make. You want to be sure to have professional, competent and personal representation. 

Why should someone choose you as their real estate agent?

Finding the best real estate agent in Durango for you can be tough and choosing an agent is a big decision. I would be sure to interview several agents and find a good match. See who feels right for the job. I've got over 15 years of experience in the Durango real estate market and lots of happy past clients. I'm easy going, a good listener, no drama and a tough negotiator. I get great reviews and have a good work ethic to make your house hunting or selling experience as easy and fun as possible. 

Thank you and I look forward to hearing from you.

Claudia