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O.C. BUSINESS PLUS | HEARD ON THE BEAT / REAL ESTATE

Alliance Team Creates Unit Targeting Latino Home Buyers

March 15, 2000|DARYL STRICKLAND | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Real estate brokers are stepping up their efforts to sell homes to growing numbers of Latino buyers in Orange County.

But few have moved as aggressively as the Alliance Team, which has established a new division of 40 agents who primarily speak Spanish and court Latino home buyers.

"Your typical Realtor passes out literature in English" with only a phrase noting that agents also speak Spanish, said James Joseph, co-owner of the Alliance Team, which has eight offices and employs 300 agents. Alliance brochures, along with a Web site under development, will be written totally in Spanish, Joseph said.

"We think the Hispanic consumers who look at this will say, 'You're trying to reach me directly, not just secondhand through English,' " he said.

Joseph estimates the new division will account for about 600 sales this year, about 30% of last year's overall total. Those sales would represent a significant increase over the 15 to 20 homes sold to Latino buyers last year, he said.

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