Steveston’s Award Winning Realtor
Many of us are familiar with Sean Lawson, Steveston’s award-winning realtor. If you haven’t conducted business with his company, Steveston Real Estate, you likely have seen his smiling face on bus stop benches, or met him through his active involvement coaching sports, or seen him running along the dike, or noticed him driving through the village in his handsome 1968 baby blue California Special Mustang.
Lawson was born in Regina where he spent the first few years of his life. At age four he and his family set sail for Australia where they spent one year during his father’s teaching sabbatical. They travelled back to Canada by boat and chose to make the West Coast their new home. All of his schooling took place in Richmond. He graduated from Richmond High School, and as a young man moved to Steveston.
Lawson’s early career aspiration was to become an architect, however he soon realized it wasn’t for him, and instead graduated from B.C.I.T.’s Building Technologies Program. At age 23, along with a business partner, he ventured into building houses on speculation as a general contractor.
In 1991 Lawson says the down turn in real estate affected their enterprise. He took some time off to travel, and upon returning attained his degree in Urban Land Economics from U.B.C.
Today, with over twenty years of experience in real estate sales, re-zoning applications, land assembly and other development projects, Lawson is a very busy and highly sought after realtor, however he indicates he is always happy to take on new clients. He is the only realtor at his office that handles both commercial and residential real estate.
Lawson personally recruits realtors for Steveston Real Estate. Based on their outstanding 2013 sales, he and his colleagues were honored to receive the title of top RE/MAX team in B.C. and they placed fourth in Western Canada.
In response to Richmond’s culturally diverse community, a number of Steveston Real Estate’s realtors are bilingual. Languages spoken include Cantonese and Mandarin, and licensed realtor/receptionist Mila Vagabova speaks Russian. Besides Lawson and the other realtors (Jess Baxter, Clayton Ho, Cher Lin, Lynn Sakai-Boden, Alisa Sakamoto, Dave Van Hoeke and Albert Wong), Grace Campbell is the office manager and Pat Guzzo (Lawson’s wife) is the company’s marketing manager.
In 2002 Lawson leased the upper floor of his current office building. After the green grocer below closed down he purchased the building and renovated it extensively to become a one-stop shop. It is a large and inviting space where the public is always welcome to drop by and meet with a realtor or inquire about listings. Open seven days a week, Lawson says there is always someone who will be happy to assist you. Currently on display is a model of The Pier at London Landing, the new development that he is excited to be involved with, along with Dana Westermark (Oris Consulting Ltd.) and Barry Cavanaugh (Penta Homes).
Lawson lives in the serene London Landing area. He finds the beautiful view of the Fraser River and Shady Island very appealing. Several times a week he enjoys running along the dike trail with his wife and they strive to run one half marathon each year. The couple have been together for twenty years. They have two daughters in elementary school who are actively involved in sports. Lawson thoroughly enjoys dedicating much of his free time to coaching their basketball and soccer teams.
He confesses to being an early bird by choice. Lawson commences his workday before 6:00 a.m. to ensure he does not have to work in the evenings, as he wants to play an active role in his children’s lives. Prior to having kids he worked non-stop, and while he admits he could be a workaholic he wants to be around during these precious years with his girls. When it is time to unwind and take a break the family enjoys skiing, boating in the Gulf Islands and setting off to one of their favourite vacation destinations, Noosa Heads, Australia.
Lawson is one of Steveston’s biggest fans. He says it is a great place to live and to raise a family. He notices how involved parents are in their children’s lives, and with this focus on family values it resonates an old-fashioned feeling.
He appreciates the variety of architectural styles in Steveston, and enjoys that it is not a cookie cutter district. He is eager to see Steveston continue to grow and evolve, and at the same time he admits that the slow changes are partially responsible for the village’s charm and retention of character. He attempts to support as many local businesses as possible. With his family’s busy lifestyle they tend to dine out frequently and pick up food to take home. Lawson says that he has survived eating Steveston Bakery’s soups.
Steveston Real Estate has been a proud member of the Steveston Merchants Association (SMA) since its inception in 2009. He applauds the SMA’s board of directors for their ongoing work and proving themselves as a professional organization. Lawson believes the next logical step is to form a Business Improvement Area (BIA), which would require all businesses to become members. Lawson says it is a proven fact that BIAs are good for property and business owners. BIAs bring more customers to communities. As well, more revenue is earned from lease rates as business owners seek to locate in these attractive, well-organized and energized districts. Lawson says, “A BIA is the next step but there are challenges and hurdles to educate about the long term benefits. Think of it as a marathon rather than a sprint.”
What is up next for Lawson? He is going to be involved in the redevelopment of East Richmond’s Hamilton neighbourhood, which will be transformed through the creation of a city core. He says he will be devoting the next ten years of his life to this project and will open a second office there.
But have no fear; Lawson will continue to devote himself to Steveston, the community that he loves to call home.
Steveston Real Estate RE/MAX
12235 No. 1 Rd
Richmond BC V7E 1T6