Paull Associates opens Ohio real estate agency

T-L Photo/SHELLEY HANSON
PAULL ASSOCIATES Real Estate Ohio staff celebrate the opening of their new office in St. Clairsville. From left are Lee Paull III and his wife, June; Ohio office manager and agent Sonya Olaka; and Jennifer Paull and her husband, Lee Paull IV, the broker for the new office.

T-L Photo/SHELLEY HANSON PAULL ASSOCIATES Real Estate Ohio staff celebrate the opening of their new office in St. Clairsville. From left are Lee Paull III and his wife, June; Ohio office manager and agent Sonya Olaka; and Jennifer Paull and her husband, Lee Paull IV, the broker for the new office.

ST. CLAIRSVILLE — A longtime West Virginia real estate agency is taking on a new market — Ohio.

Paull Associates Real Estate Ohio held a ribbon-cutting ceremony and open house Friday at its new office, located at 118 W. Main St., St. Clairsville. The office front is easy to find — it is situated across the street from WesBanco bank, DiCarlo’s Pizza and the Belmont County Courthouse.

Lee Paull IV, the broker for the new office, said for many years the company’s Wheeling-based real estate agency — Paul Associates Insurance/Real Estate — referred clients who were looking for property in Ohio to other agents in the Buckeye State.

“We get calls monthly from clients and friends of ours who say, ‘Show us this property in St. Clairsville,’ and we weren’t licensed in Ohio,” Paull said. “Over the years we’ve been thinking of opening this up … and we decided it was natural to open this office. We’ll be able to serve our clients better. It’s 10 minutes from Wheeling.”

The Paull Associates Insurance/Real Estate office in Wheeling opened September 1981. The new Ohio office started operations in January, and the staff is now looking for new real estate agents to join their team.

In addition to Paull, Sonya Olaka is the office manager and an agent. She noted they already have interviewed a few agents for positions at the St. Clairsville office, but more people are encouraged to apply. Olaka said she can help guide people who do not yet have their Ohio realtors license to the right school to get one.

The agency already has conducted several sale closings since opening at the beginning of the year.

“We’re very familiar with the area. We’re in the insurance business, too, so we have a lot of clients over here, too,” Paull added. “We feel there is a market here for us. We know the market. We understand what sellers want and we understand what buyers want. We feel we know how to price property pretty well and sell property. We understand the market conditions. Too many properties are on the market for months because they are improperly priced.”

Paull said it is important for agents to get to know their buyers’ and sellers’ wants and needs. Doing so helps expedite the process.

“We know how to stage a property and get it sold. When we’re representing buyers, we sit each buyer down and find out what their needs are. I think that’s the biggest thing that people miss is getting to know what the buyer wants and what they’re looking for in a property. Too many times agents aren’t showing the buyer what they want to see. We can help service people that way as well.”

For more information about the new office or to apply for an agent position, call 740-296-5387. The website is www.paullassociates.com.

The St. Clairsville Area Chamber of Commerce participated in the ribbon-cutting ceremony. It was new chamber Director Wendy Anderson’s first day on the job. Anderson said she is excited about her new position, adding that she served on the chamber’s board of directors in the past.

“I was born to do this,” Anderson said. “I’m a people person, and I love retail.”

Chamber President Meagan Cook and chamber board members Steve Fortunato and Jennifer Gerevics also participated in the ceremony, along with many members of the Paul Associates team.

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