If you take a stroll through most walkable downtowns these days and come across a real estate office, it’s likely to be a familiar name — one of the many national and regional firms that are consolidating agencies under one management operation. A new office is opening soon on Farnsworth Avenue in downtown Bordentown City, however, that has a not-so-common name: Smires and Associates Real Estate is only the second office of the Robbinsville-based group that has operated as an independent agency since 2009.
Independent, but says founder Ed Smires, not “boutique.” The agency was the third most productive real estate concern in Mercer County last year in terms of units sold, Smires says, and has more than quadrupled its annual sales volume in dollars since 2010. “We did a billion dollars in sales in nine years. There’s not a lot of places that can say that,” he says. “We’re a small business, but we produce like a big agency.”
“It’s always been our goal to keep growing,” says Smires. The new office in Bordentown City, about 10 miles from the Robbinsville office, is a gateway to new business opportunities to the south and the east. “We feel like Northern Burlington — Bordentown, Florence, Chesterfield, North Hanover — is an emerging market.” Plus downtown Bordentown has become a destination of its own. “You see these developments that try to create ‘town centers’ out of something new. That’s already there in Bordentown,” he says.
Smires and Associates’ new office is located in the century-old and now renovated building that once housed App’s Hardware, a longtime local business that lost its battle with the big box competitors a few years ago. But Smires promises that the new real estate agency will continue the hometown feel. “Local real estate is done by local companies,” Smires says. “We’re real people. It’s not corporate, but we take the business very seriously. We’re excited to bring that energy to Bordentown.”
Smires is originally from Hamilton, where his father worked for American Standard and his mother for McGraw-Hill. After graduating from Steinert High School in the late 1980s he plunged into the world of work, at a restaurant and then in construction. A co-worker suggested he get a real estate license. After more than a dozen years working for other agencies, he and agency co-owner Justin Reed decided to strike out on their own in 2009. The Smires agency doubled the size of its Robbinsville office in 2016. At the new office James Traynam and Kevin Kerins, both Bordentown Township residents, are broker of record and office manager, respectively.
Now the agency has around 70 agents. Smires, who also has his own listings, says he tells the agents that “there is no pressure how much business they do, whether it’s three deals or 30 deals, so long as everyone is satisfied with the deal.”
The Smires agency is “not run by someone who’s living on the fourth floor, who’s never paid their dues on the street,” he says. He adds that, when you call the agency, you get a human being, not an automated attendant. “I’ll always insist on that, no matter what,” he says. “People still like face-to-face meetings.”
Smires and Associates, 375 Farnsworth Avenue, Bordentown. 609-298-9888. www.smiresandassociates.com.