Kamas broker honored by award from Park City Board of Realtors
Sam Aplanalp’s most meaningful recent real estate transaction wasn’t his largest — in fact, it didn’t even come close.
His client was a single mother who couldn’t afford any homes on the market around Kamas. But after scouring the area, Aplanalp found a land owner who would sell her his dilapidated farm house.
"It was rundown and in pretty rough shape, but she could afford it," he said.
The woman moved in, and with the help of her family and friends, gutted and remodeled the house. Aplanalp estimates that she now has more than $100,000 in equity on the home.
"That is pretty amazing for a single woman working multiple jobs." He said. "It was my smallest commission but meant the most to me. It was a really cool feeling."
It was for that sort of dedication to his trade, as well as for his service to the local real estate industry, that Aplanalp has become recognized as one of the most respected Realtors in the area. And April 21, that acclaim became official, as the Park City Board of Realtors named him its 2015 Realtor of the Year at its annual awards party.
Aplanalp, one of the owners of Discovery Properties in Kamas, wondered if he might be given some sort of honor when his mother, another owner of the firm, made sure he was going to be at the party. His suspicions intensified a few days before the event, when his wife said she was coming, too.
But that didn’t take away from the moment his name was called.
"I’m not really into awards and recognition and stuff like that, but it was neat to be recognized," he said. "The criteria have a lot to do with service and serving the Board of Realtors, and I try to help out as much as I can, so it was nice to be recognized for the time and some of the stuff that I have been doing."
Nancy Tallman, former president of the Board of Realtors and a member of the awards committee that chose Aplanalp, said he was selected for his contributions while serving on the legislative committees of both the Board and the Utah Association of Realtors.
"He is a Realtor who ‘flies under the radar’, assisting his community, his professional organization and providing excellent service to his loyal clients," Tallman said in an email to The Park Record. "We are truly lucky to have Sam as a member of the Park City Board of Realtors."
Over the past several years, Aplanalp has served as chairman or co-chair on the Board’s legislative committee, which aims to inform Realtors in the county about legislation that may affect the industry. He is also the chairman of the Utah Association of Realtors, which works with state legislators to ensure the right to own and sell property is not diminished.
He views his work with both organizations as service to a community that has given him so much.
"I just think you have to give back," he said. "I’ve been really blessed, and I do love my job — I love helping individuals buy and sell their property and realize their dreams. So I believe in our mission statement and in what we’re doing. I’ve always been taught to always try to give back within your community as much as possible.
"I’m not the most qualified person for the position by any means," he added, "but I was asked to serve and I’ve done it and I’ve loved it."
It is for a similar reason — helping others — that Aplanalp entered the industry in the first place, in 2005.
"I generally just really like working with people," he said. "It really is neat, once you’ve worked with someone for a long time, to see the excitement on their face when they’re moving into their new house."
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