by Tara Gilligan Reimer
BELLINGHAM, WA—August 15, 2022
There’s a new broker at RE/MAX Whatcom County. But he’s not new to real estate. His Washington business roots go deep, as in three generations.
Back when he was 14 years old, Tate White learned his family history. He discovered that his great-great-grandfather owned most of the buildings as well as several booming businesses in La Center, Washington. In the southwest corner of Washington state, La Center is a small town—and a lodestar for Tate—near iconic beach-and-boardwalk destination, Longview.
In the mid-1800s, Tate’s forerunner owned the livery stables (central for transportation of the time), hotel (accommodations needed for workers at the nexus of the Lewis River and the Pacific), saloon (respite for businesspeople, back then too), and the Pony Express (horses and riders being precursors to blue Amazon vans).
Roots of entrepreneurship
The success of his family’s entrepreneurship endures in Tate.
Just 150 miles north of La Center (eight days’ travel, back in in the day on horseback), Tate was born and raised in Bellevue. Inspired, in part, by his great-great-grandfather, Tate became an independent business owner at age 19.
He started his own automotive detail shop. Word of his work yielded stand-out clients. “I was happy to serve Sonics’ players and business owners as well as the prestigious Park Place Motor Group,” Tate recalls.
His second start-up was all about specialty, too. He ran an ice cream distribution company, catering to happy customers who needed product for schools, shops, and old-fashioned summertime frozen treat trucks.
Growth of Bellingham
A true family man, Tate married (pictured above with his wife and two children). He proudly describes how his wife began at Caliber at its get-go and now works for the same company in information technology. His father-in-law, realtor David Moody, sensed a like spirit. “David was the one who convinced me to come into the real estate business,” Tate says, appreciatively.
That was 20 years ago. “Bellingham was a sleepy town then, right?” he laughs. So, Tate has seen the colossal growth in the Bellingham market.
“And then in 2001, we began to be discovered. People wanted outdoor living,” Tate explains, describing the proliferation of mountain-bike singletrack and hiking trailheads, kayak inlets and snowboard powder.
Like a broker, he adds, “Not to mention, where else can you be 100 miles equidistant to international cities.” Hello, Emerald City and Raincouver!
Man of all seasons
In an interview, Tate’s affect is booming and warm. He’s an experienced broker—and surprisingly humble.
“I know the exact date I started in real estate,” he says. “September 6, 2001.” Five days before the terror of 9/11.
“During that time after 9/11, my first sale was an $8,000 manufactured home. And I think my family was on food stamps.” Not every self-starter out of Bellevue would reveal that kind of challenge. But that’s Tate: personable expansiveness and economic literacy.
Eight months later, once the nation was able to absorb the loss and shock, the market began to pick up.
Broker for all climates
After two decades in the local market, Tate talks easily about what grows success. “Find your niche. And capitalize on that.”
But most of all, for this broker and like so many others, the joy and the true work are in the service. “There is no bigger thrill than helping families with what will probably be the most significant purchase of their lives,” Tate says. “For me personally, it’s about being honest, faithful, loving. The livelihood will follow.”
Tate adds, “I would like to thank the mentors in my life. Without you, I wouldn’t be the Realtor I am today. I am a true believer to pay it forward to the younger generation of Realtors. I am looking forward to being part of such an amazing team at RE/MAX. Every day, I strive to better myself with knowledge, experience, and integrity.
And why REMAX? “I’ve always admired and been fortunate to work with Lori,” Tate says of RE/MAX Whatcom County founder and CEO Lori Reece. He adds that he loves the “collegiality and family atmosphere” at our brokerage.
In an agent’s work, sensing the next climate change in the market—and adapting—is fundamental. Fortunately for us, Tate, proven at development in all climes, is putting down roots at RE/MAX.
Thirty years ago, a local girl (Sehome High School, Washington State University, and Western Washington University grad) launched a small start-up with a big dream. Little did RE/MAX Whatcom County founder and CEO Lori Reece know that her company would become not only the most successful brokerage but also respected nationally and across industries. Her team, 90+ sought-after professionals, leads by serving thousands of clients and building market share. Learn, collaborate, be kind. When you’re doing all that—together—you know you’re in RE/MAX Whatcom County, the house that Lori built.
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