After arriving in 1995, Marek soon found a room for rent on Long Island in a home occupied by a group of young Lindenhurst locals.
“I didn’t speak any English at all,” Marek said (in unfaltering English). “There was a bunch of American kids living in this house together. I practiced my English by living and working with them.”
From the time he arrived 19 years ago, Marek has worked in sales and marketing. He started small, selling paper pads and pens door to door. But after a few years, he began taking on bigger and bigger clients until he found himself traveling internationally in his work for a toy manufacturer.
“At one time I was managing about 500 people under me,” Marek said.
Rather than succumbing to the death of the traveling salesman, Marek decided to combine talents with his wife Marta, who has a background in fashion and design. Together, they formed a sales team at Exit Realty All Seasons in Maspeth a little over two years ago.
Marek quickly saw that real estate sales were much more delicate than the manufacturer-to-retail deals he spent much of his career brokering.
“In the beginning it was difficult because I didn’t have any experience, I was the new guy, so I had to build it up,” Marek said. “It’s all about building relationships. When you deliver on promises and you have very good communication with the seller – same thing with the buyer – they will work with you and they will send you more business.”
Despite his initial uncertainties, after only a short time working in real estate, Marek has established himself as an industry powerhouse, closing 17 deals for just under $9 million in sales last year.
This feat earned Marek a spot on the Top 100 Sales Volume Agents for Exit Realty International, a real estate firm with over 40,000 agents worldwide.
Marek credits some of his success to mentorship from real estate advisor Ed Escobar, who meets with him once a week to provide industry guidance. The other part, he credits to the same tenacity that drew him to New York in the first place.
“My wife and I work hard,” Marek said. “Some people are 15, 20 years in the business and they don’t do the volume we did in two years.”