Proverbially, Realtor Karen Tillman-Gosselin wears a lot of hats, including serving as the current chair of the North Tampa Bay Chamber of Commerce, the membership director of the Rotary Club of New Tampa, and on the board of several other local organizations.
And, she and her husband and real estate partner Renynold Gosselin also have been sponsors of the Taste of New Tampa & Wesley Chapel since their Rotary Club took over hosting the event in 2017.
But Karen, who joined Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Florida Properties Group in 2018, is still not too busy to help her real estate clients with the tiniest of details, even if it’s picking out paint colors and furniture for their new homes.
“She’s absolutely remarkable,” says Karen’s client Ken Merrill, who says that’s exactly what she helped him do, as the single dad set up his home in Wesley Chapel. “She set a new standard for me.”
Ken says he relocated to the area when he bought a local Allstate insurance agency about a year and a half ago, then says he was referred to Karen and Renynold Gosselin, through their mutual Rotary Club.
He describes Karen and Renynold as “tireless,” as they took him and his kids, ages 16 and 13, out to see houses. Ken changed his mind a few times about exactly what he was looking for, and each time Karen and Renynold would simply find more homes for them to visit.
“Renynold is a virtual encyclopedia of information about the Tampa Bay area,” says Ken. “He knew every corner, every drug store, every market, and knew all the school districts.”
Ken says it was 55 homes later before he finally found the perfect one.
“Now, I absolutely love my house,” he says. “When I walk in, a feeling of warmth comes over me because of how much I love it.”
But, he also says visiting those 55 houses was just the tip of the iceberg of what the Gosselins did for him.
“They negotiated an exceptionally favorable deal for me,” says Ken, who raves about the low price-per-square-foot he paid, and then lists the ways the Gosselins have shown outstanding kindness to his family —from helping him hire a top-notch roofer at a lowest-bid cost, to giving him and his son tickets to a USF football game.
And yes, they also helped him pick paint colors and furniture.
Karen says she first got into real estate when she was working as an interior designer, often staging homes for sale for real estate agents. She’s happy to help her clients make their homes look their best, whether it’s a home they just purchased, or one they want to stage to sell.
As real estate agents, Karen and Renynold represent buyers and sellers who want to purchase or sell a home. While Karen sells many luxury homes all over the Tampa Bay area, the New Tampa and Wesley Chapel area is her long-time home, and she works with people whose budgets are at any price point, even first-time home buyers and sellers.
The pair joined Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices in July of 2018, which Otis Bass, who is the president and managing Broker of the Florida Properties Group, says recently became the largest real estate company in the United States.
“Thanks to (chairman and CEO) Warren Buffett, there’s a lot of name recognition with Berkshire Hathaway, and it has prestige,” explains Renynold.
However, Karen says there’s much more to why they chose to join the agency.
“Berkshire Hathaway is a great company with a lot of tools for agents, including a network for referrals from agents around the world,” she says.
More referrals to the Gosselins means more buyers looking at the homes they currently have listed for sale, which is helpful to local sellers.
“Berkshire Hathaway has more resources than other brokers,” says Karen, “and they’re always looking out for the best for their agents. They have created a very positive culture here.”
Recently, the Gosselins were awarded membership to the distinguished Chairman’s Gold Circle, representing that they are in the top 2 percent of the nearly 50,000 Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices real estate sales executives worldwide.
Prior to joining Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Florida Properties Group, Karen worked for many years for local offices of Florida Executive Realty, Keller Williams, Casa Fina Realty and most recently, Smith & Associates.
Karen and Renynold both got their real estate licenses in 2000. Reynold worked “behind the scenes” for many years, until he recently retired from a 30-year career with Verizon and became Karen’s full-time partner in real estate.
During her decades-long career in the business, Karen has sold more than $200 million of real estate.
She says she continues to be successful because she is a trusted advisor to clients who refer their friends and family to her and Renynold.
“Having a real estate agent who will listen to your wants and needs and help you find that one house you will make your home is crucial,” Karen says. “That agent needs to put you first, then properly coordinate all aspects — from negotiations and inspections to ensuring that the transaction becomes a reality.”
Marketing Your Home
Karen and Renynold say that marketing also is a big part of their success, and that having great photographs online is key to marketing a home for sale these days.
“Most buyers start on the internet,” says Renynold, “that’s why photography is so important.”
So, Karen and Renynold provide a 3D tour of each home they list. The tour is so comprehensive, it can even be viewed in virtual reality to feel like you’re actually walking through the home.
The 3D tour often is accompanied by a separate video walk-through of the home, plus drone photography, and photos and video of the community, too.
“We’re selling a lifestyle,” Karen says. “If you live in a community with a pool with slides, we’ll have photos of that or incorporate that into the video, to show people who want to move here the kind of lifestyle they can have.”
Karen says she and Renynold are by their clients’ side throughout the entire process, paying attention to every detail.
“It can be very overwhelming to sell a house,” she says. “We try to take some of the load off, because we know you’re not only selling, you’re also moving.”
Karen and Renynold’s expertise can make the entire process much easier on buyers and sellers.
Ken Merrill seconds that. “I would refer (them) to anybody,” he says. “It goes way beyond the transaction of real estate. It’s been an incredible experience, and they’re now family, as far as I’m concerned.”