A longtime agent with one of San Antonio’s largest brokerages has split off to form her own local brokerage in partnership with a California-based real estate tech company.

Tiffany Stevens worked for 15 years as an agent with Phyllis Browning Co. At the end of last year, she left to form Forward Real Estate with the goal of streamlining the home-buying process, and the new company has closed $2.5 million in deals since its launch.

Stevens is the first in San Antonio to partner with Side, headquartered in San Francisco, which works with agents to create independently owned brands using proprietary technology and the help of its own support staff.

“With the advantage of the Side platform, the Forward team can focus on clients first, by offering the innovation and elevated level of support that outcompetes against anything offered by the traditional brokerage models,” said Darren Johnson, chief revenue officer for Side, in a news release. “This results in more engaging and successful real estate experiences for everyone.”

Side’s large presence in California is a huge benefit for Stevens, as she is able to tap into the company’s network of agents with many clients looking to move to Texas. Additionally, Side’s technology enables agents to submit offers to other agents in 30 minutes, which is essential in the competitive seller’s market where homes go on and off the market extremely quickly.

“They’re a total silent partner,” Stevens said. “They allow me to grow so I can help other agents grow.”

Forward Real Estate has two locations in Southtown and on the North Side. The brokerage has four employees, and Stevens expects to bring on at least five to 10 more agents by the end of this year. However, she is not looking to be the biggest company in town.

“I don’t want to grow too fast. You do agents and clients a disservice,” Stevens said. “I want to take time with each person.”

– Mitchell Parton

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