Plano Profile — February 2010
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High Profile

Olin Jaye

He’s at home in real estate.

Every day, Olin Jaye adheres to a strict set of principles. He is bound to his fellow man on a personal level. He pushes for justice. When he talks about the local community, it is as if he is discussing his extended family. He watches out for the everyday Joe and the businessman alike. He looks for virtue, intelligence and ingenuity, and he fosters those qualities by bolstering new leaders who hold the community close to their hearts. Though he shares their ethical code, he is not a judge or a policeman. Jaye is a real estate broker.

“A Realtor is bound by a code of ethics that is absolute,” said Jaye. “You have to tell the truth, advertise fairly, and do what you say you’re going to do. The most important thing is your client. First, doctors had a code of ethics. Next, the real estate industry, and it is rigidly enforced. We’re in a very litigious business. We are all required to have professional standards training.”

Jaye is not a typical real estate broker. He is a commercial broker who is also the new president of the Collin County Association of Realtors (CCAR), which boasts a membership of approximately 4,500 realtors.

“I am an aberration. It is strange for me because I am a commercial broker, and only 10 percent of the board is commercial. This is a residential board.

I’ve switched to this board because of politics and the community. Most of my business is buyer-tenant politics and zoning. Local organizations are more attuned to that. I live here and work with all these people. I enjoy the real estate business. Real estate is close to entrepreneurship and flying by the seat of your pants,” he said, grinning.

A previous recipient of the CCAR Distinguished Service Award and the 2006 Collin County Realtor of the Year Award, Jaye is president of Olin Jaye & Associates, LLC. This man has had a varied business career, running and owning small businesses in construction and property management and working for Bristol Hotels and Resorts, serving simultaneously as the director of labor and employee services and the director of relocation.

In addition to his extensive real estate volunteer service, Jaye currently serves as the director and vice chair of advocacy for the Plano Chamber of Commerce, chair of the Transportation and Public Infrastructure task forces for the Texas Association of Realtors (TAR), and 2010 Chair of Public Policy (legislative) Issues for TAR.

A longtime public servant, Jaye has served on numerous local committees for many organizations including the Plano City Council, Regional Transportation Council, and the founders committee for Collin College.
He was the Plano Charter Review Commissioner and secretary of the Collin County Private Industry Council.

He was also chair of the Collin County Planning Board and the Collin County Central Appraisal District board. He has served as director of CITY House, South Collin County Infant Program, Heritage Farmstead Museum, Plano Rotary, and Plano and Collin County Crisis Center.

A Texan through and through

Jaye says his first passion in life is family. He moved to Plano in 1976 from North Dallas, and though he is a native Texan (fourth or fifth generation), both he and his wife, Mimi, grew up in Arizona. After serving in the Air Force as a captain, he moved to San Antonio and entered the U.S. management intern program. He relocated to Dallas and served as a bureaucrat helping people find jobs until the early 1980s.

Jaye and Mimi have a lot to be passionate about with four children and eight grandchildren. Lisa and her husband, Clay, and their children, Taylor and Gabriella, are on their way to Ecuador where Clay will be serving as a Navy attaché. Marine Corps graduate and Plano resident, Ryan Jaye owns Jaeger Solutions and has two children, Brooke and Jordan.
Residents of Seattle, Brent Jaye and Shanda have two children, Riley and Ansley. Brent is currently the director of customer service for Amazon.

Ashley married her high school sweetheart, Alfonso Pinto. They reside in Plano and are the proud parents of Greyson and Landry.

The current real estate market

With the lowest interest rates in 40 years, the residential market is relatively good, according to Jaye. However, commercial real estate in the U.S. is not faring well.

“DFW is the best in the U.S.; however, the commercial market has a lot of excess inventory. It is, at best, soft in the DFW area. Commercial transactions in Houston are off 84 percent. I think in Dallas it is 74 or 76 percent. That means nothing is going on. In the commercial market the interest rates will have to be high. If they’d give you the money, they want 40-50 percent down because of what is going on in all commercial finance. Everyone’s portfolios have shrunk.”

Commercial real estate loans are not set up the same way as residential loans. Jaye explains that instead of 30-year mortgages, there are fiveyear loans with 10-year amortization schedules.

“In the next two quarters, four times the amount of commercial real estate paper is coming due,” said Jaye. “It has a great deal of impact. What helps us in Texas is that we are still growing. In 2008, eight percent of all jobs created in the U.S. were created in Texas. At the same time Texas is losing jobs, jobs are being created. We have a huge amount of job creation with small companies moving in. With all the challenges, it is still the best market in the country. Having said that, probably the commercial real estate market is dead for the next four years.”

Challenges bring opportunities

“The Plano mayor has something to brag about, as do the Frisco and Allen mayors. Now, there are more Fortune 500 companies located in Texas than anywhere else in the U.S. Why is that? We have a good, young workforce, real estate is cheaper, and the tax burden is not too great. We are really lucky. The elected officials in our area created a business environment that encourages growth and hiring. The thing about Texas is that whatever you are big enough to do, you can do, as long as it is not illegal, immoral or fattening,” Jaye said, laughing. “We want you to be successful.”

A passion for politics

Jaye’s second passion in life is politics. He describes it as finding and helping good people to serve the community.

“I am a political junkie. The main reason I got involved in commercial real estate is because I got involved in local politics. We need more great people elected and less politicians. There are approximately 90,000 members in the TAR. It is the largest grass roots association in the state. There really is a realtor on every corner. We have three of the biggest political action committees. The realtors are not of the Republican or Democratic party; we are of the Realtor party.”

It’s big, but it is personal

According to Jaye, there are two intertwining elements of the residential real-estate business.

“Real estate is a huge industry and people don’t realize it. The single most important investment decision people make is a house. It is important to the economy, but it is also personal. Realtors almost all say the same thing—that there is not a better feeling in the world than helping that young couple buy their first home. I know that is right. Think of how it changes their lives.”

Reflecting on the Realtors’ role in the process, he adds, “I am president of 4,500 Type-A personalities. Do you know how fascinating that is? They are great at it, and I marvel at them.”