Members of the Georgia 400 North Board of Realtors opened an annual trade show to the public for the first time this week.
Held Thursday at the Lanier Technical College Forsyth Conference Center, the fourth annual event featured about 40 vendors related to the real estate market, like mortgage lenders and insurance companies.
Also several food retailers provided free samples, and there were three educational presentations.
Luis Rocaford, chairman of the organizing committee, praised opening the event to the public.
“I think that was an excellent move,” Rocaford said. “We want to make sure that the public knows that we’re here to support them as much as they support us. We’re all community, we’ll all together, we live and work together in this same community.”
Terry Swanson, president of the 400 North Board of Realtors, which includes real estate agents from Forsyth, Dawson and Lumpkin counties, said the event proved to be successful.
“We’re very excited about the turnout, not only from Realtors here but also from the general public,” he said. “We’ve had quite a few people that were passing by, saw the sign and stopped in, and that’s been pretty awesome.”
In total, more than 250 people attended.
“It’s great because it’s been a constant flow through here,” said Swanson, who praised Rocaford for his leadership in planning the expo.
“It’s about raising the bar each and every year, and this year, under his leadership, we took a big step.”
The business vendors who participated in the event seemed pleased with the results.
Adam Heatley with Charles Schwab said he had a lot of interest at his booth.
“It’s been very busy and it’s been a lot of fun,” he said. “We have a very client-focused platform, and we just wanted to share that with everybody and see if we could help the Realtors because they’re small businesses and we’ve got unique lending capabilities that they can take advantage of.”
Rachel Mooney of First American Home Warranty also enjoyed the event.
“It’s been great,” she said. “It’s been really good networking to get our products out there.”
Swanson said the expo’s success shows how much the market has improved in recent years.
“I’m blown away from the response we’ve had from the public coming through,” he said. “I think that shows there’s a lot of interest in real estate right now.
“Probably if we had opened this up last year or the year before, we probably wouldn’t have had five people walk in the door. … That shows you a lot about the energy that’s in the market.”