CENTURY21 Real Estate Icon Phil Yeager, industry leader and visionary in the field ofReal Estate, passed away on January 12, surrounded by family, company executives, and friends, and still actively directing his real estate interests.
We got a chance to speak with Phil’s son, Stephen Yeager, this week to get more insight on Phil’s life and legacy. When speaking about his father and his fifty plus years of success in Real Estate innovation, Stephen pointed to Phil’s number one passion: elevating the real estate profession by training real estate agents and teams the right way.
Phil entered California’s Real Estate Industry at a time when the field needed organization and direction. As a natural leader, Phil focused on areas like ethics, regulations, finance, proper sales practices, and the MLS.
He was a friend of Tommy Hopkins and Mike Ferry, two major forces behind RealEstate sales training. Phil worked hand in hand with these trainers, putting together courses for both CAR and NAR. Phil was with NAR when in 1971, ArtBartlett & Marsh Fisher, the co-founders of CENTURY 21 Real Estate, visitedPhil’s real estate office in Covina, asking if he was open to joining their new franchise system: CENTURY 21 Real Estate International.
Phil had a decision to make — would he stick with CAR, NAR, or go with the upstart CENTURY21 Real Estate? With an initial $5,000 investment, Phil decided to purchase theSouthern California branch of CENTURY 21 Real Estate, and the rest is history.
Phil built his CENTURY 21 Real Estate empire in the image the San Gabriel ValleyBoard of Realtors. He focused on professional standards and broker representation, ensuring brokers were always part of the decision-making process. Phil built CENTURY 21 Real Estate into a well-oiled machine, operating by those guidelines, with ethics, fair practices, and unparalleled branding at the forefront.
Phil’s son Stephen joined CENTURY 21 Real Estate after his career as a Navy fighter pilot, and immediately saw that Phil had built the company with grit and utilizing the best practices of the California Association of Realtors.
With that success, Phil took his Southern California model into the Pacific Northwest, expanding into Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, before going international intoMexico, South America, and Europe, utilizing the organized real estate system to build the real estate industry into a better, more sustainable business throughout the world.
Phil’s broker counsels were novel. CENTURY 21 Real Estate’s brokers were always represented in a democratic process, following proper policies and procedures, while focusing on marketing of the CENTURY 21 Brand. Phil built CENTURY 21 RealEstate into a global phenomenon, which now boasts approximately 14,250 offices across 86 countries with 155,000 sales associates.