Since taking home the honours of favourite realtor for the first time in Best of Pemberton 2010, Danielle Menzel has won the category every year but one (in 2015, when she had her son and took some time off)—but she's still not taking the community's appreciation for granted.
"I don't ever expect to actually win again ... There are so many great realtors," she says.
"I'm always surprised when I do."
While she can't say exactly why she's proven so dominant in the category since setting out on her own in 2008, it might be her decision to focus solely on Pemberton, or her deep roots in the community (her father Bob Menzel is a perennial winner of the Favourite Pembertonian category as well).
"It's where I grew up, and it's a place that I really believe in, so it's easy for me to focus on it and sell Pemberton," she says.
"My family has been here a while, so I can dig a lot of different people for information. There are a lot of people I can consult to get information that you can't just find looking up."
Her most valuable source might just be her father, who can fill in the historical gaps of the valley for Menzel in terms of things like flooding and land use.
"He's a wealth of information," she says. "I don't know what I'd do without him."
Selling real estate in Pemberton has been "a rollercoaster, like everywhere else" over the past decade, Menzel says.
"I started when it was really tough. It was 2008, so the market had just crashed," she recalls, adding that while the past few years have been "really crazy," the market is starting to even out again.
"It's more of a balanced market ... We're getting back to having more listings and a little less demand, so it's a nice little change from the pace that we had before," she says.
"I like to work with buyers, so it gives them a little bit more breathing room ... The last few years were really stressful for them, and so it's giving them a bit of a break."
While her advice for buyers right now is that they still have to jump on properties they want, "you do have the time to look around and get a feel for what's out there," Menzel says.
"You don't have to jump on the first thing you see, which is what's been happening the last couple of years."