Demetri Koutsokostas equates the word "incite" to personal touch. It's a word associated with action and being aggressive, as well forward thinking, the New Cumberland real estate broker said.
It was the perfect fit for his new business: Incite Realty.
Last month, Koutsokostas opened in a 1,200-square-foot first-floor space at 202 Third St. — the historic Iroquois Hotel building that was redeveloped for senior apartments by the Cumberland/Perry Housing and Community Partnership.
The mixed-use building opened in February 2011.
The biggest problem in the real estate industry is accessibility and lack of support, Koutsokostas said. His goal as a small independent brokerage is to grow slowly with a focus on building and maintaining community relationships, he said.
"It's more imperative to us to take care of each client and be a part of the community," the 39-year-old said, stressing transparency and strong customer service. "Relationship building is the key. People are people, not just a number or statistic."
That personalized touch extends to the agents.
"If you're not there to help with the tools (available), it means nothing," he said.
As he works to bring that small-town feeling back to an industry that constantly seems to be consolidating — many big firms continue to grow through acquisitions — Koutsokostas said he plans to be no bigger than 12 agents within the first year.
Incite will serve a broad range of residential and commercial clients, both on the buying and selling side, he said.
"I'm drawing from all of my past experience," said Koutsokostas, who was in the restaurant business in Adams County before making the jump to real estate.
Part of his specialty is in small business, including restaurant and taverns.
Incite predominantly will cover Cumberland County east of Carlisle, northern York County and parts of Dauphin County into Harrisburg and Swatara Township out to the Hershey area. The commercial side will expand a bit further, Koutsokostas said.
"Our goal is to grow small offices based where we work," he said.
Prior to starting this real estate business, Koutsokostas was the broker of record at Alpha State Realty in Carlisle.
The company will hold a grand opening celebration in conjunction with New Cumberland's Second Saturday this weekend. A ribbon-cutting ceremony will take place at 9:30 a.m., followed by an open house from 4 to 6 p.m.