Born and raised all the way on the East Coast, Erik McLellan has had his fair share of seasonal climates, city views, and experiencing America in all of its glory. But, something about the 365 days of summer, dreamy tropical palms, and being able to help others find their dream Maui home stole his heart. Finding his calling with Island Sotheby’s International Realty helped him to make Maui feel like a home.
“As I started talking with ISIR agents, office staff, brokers, then the owners, and any clients who had worked with ISIR, it became very apparent that the culture of the company was something of utmost importance to everyone. The support and encouragement of the entire team stood out no matter who I talked with. Everyone is extremely supportive of each other and works together in nearly every aspect.”
Erik is a trusted realtor who values his clients and walks with them through the entire daunting and long journey. He is the saving grace for those becoming new homeowners and a passionate friend to all who cross his path!
Read more about Erik McLellan below:
What led you to where you are today?
EM: I was born and raised in Maine, went to school at Babson College in Boston, and graduated with a degree in Entrepreneurship and Information Systems. After spending five years working in the computer consulting industry, I was rescued from my cubicle on the East Coast by a friend from college who had started a zipline company on Maui and wanted help managing and growing the business. After a few details were sorted out, I threw the computer out the window and moved to Maui in 2005 with a one-way ticket and two cardboard boxes. I have been managing the company, Skyline Hawaii, ever since, and we have grown from 6 employees to nearly 120. Along the way, I have had personal experience with real estate, from owning a three-family rental unit in Boston to going through a CPR process, foreclosure purchase, and property auction on Maui. Being able to move 6000 miles away from home, meet my amazing wife, and settle down on Maui in our dream house, has led me to think about how I can help others with the process. Not only finding the perfect house, but also finding a way to have Maui feel like home, is something I am looking forward to working with others on.
What's your favorite part about living on Maui?
EM: My favorite part about living on Maui is the ability to be outside almost anytime throughout the year. Having grown up in Maine and then lived in Boston for eight years, this was not always the case for me. To be clear, I can handle a Northeast winter with the best of them...but I can't say that it is always something I find enjoyable. I love being outside, whether it is at the beach, going for a run, riding my mountain bike, or even just doing yard work. I am always happier when I can spend time getting some fresh air. Maui allows this to happen as often as I need it to.
What's one thing you've always wanted to do on Maui but haven't yet?
EM: Although I have been through the crater in Haleakala National Park a couple of times, I have not yet hiked through Kaupo gap. I would actually like to hike through twice - once from the summit down to Kaupo, and then again from Kaupo up to the summit. I have been as far as the Paliku cabins, but hiking all the way through the gap is something I have wanted to do since moving to Maui, but it just hasn't happened yet. It is completely rejuvenating to be in the crater, which is one of the quietest places on Earth. Kaupo is also a very special place for me, as I got married there in 2008, and it continues to be one of my favorite areas on the island.
What inspired you to work in Maui real estate and why ISIR?
EM: As I mentioned, in 2005, I moved to Maui with a one-way ticket and two cardboard boxes of personal belongings. I had given up a career in computer consulting in Boston to try a new life on Maui working with a friend in tourism. Over the past 15 years, I have had my own personal experiences with real estate and have been through a number of different processes that can often be stressful and daunting for a homeowner or a home buyer. The process of relocating thousands of miles from my comfort zone, my career, and my family and truly feeling like I have a new home and life on Maui also allows me to offer a unique perspective on the market and life on Maui. These experiences are something that I hope to be able to share with others and help them meet their goals.
After getting my real estate license, I chose to work with ISIR for a couple of primary reasons. First, as someone outside the real estate world, Sotheby's always had a noticeable presence in the industry and brand identity that felt like it represented quality and professionalism. This is what initially stood out when I thought of who I would want to work with. Second, and most importantly, as I started talking with ISIR agents, office staff, brokers, then the owners, and any clients who had worked with ISIR, it became very apparent that the culture of the company was something of utmost importance to everyone. The support and encouragement of the entire team stood out no matter who I talked with. Everyone is extremely supportive of each other and works together in nearly every aspect. In addition to a great culture, the company truly cares about and supports the local community, which is also something that is very important to me personally.
Where is one place on the island we can find you on the weekend or in your spare time?
EM: One place you can find me on the weekends is running somewhere around the island. I ran cross country in college and have attempted to maintain some semblance of my early abilities. There are so many amazing and beautiful runs on Maui, and it is something that keeps me settled. In addition, I have been the assistant cross-country coach at my kids' school for the past three years, which has been unexpectedly fulfilling for me. Both of my kids attend Carden Academy of Maui in Pukalani, and working with young students who are often not excited about the prospect of 'just running' is challenging, but a lot of fun. Watching their confidence build and their growth throughout the weeks we work together is something I have really enjoyed.
What should clients know about you?
EM: Clients should know that I love helping people and that I am honest. Buying and selling a property can often be stressful and challenging, but it can also be exciting and fun. I will work through the process with my clients to be sure it is as simple and enjoyable as possible and to help them meet their goals. Listening and understanding the intentions and motivations of my clients is extremely important to me. For those that choose to work with me, I can promise that I will put in the time to help in every way possible and communicate openly along the way.