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By Norb Garrett
Moving to the beach to live and work was something West Covina-raised Caleb Gonzalez has always dreamed of, so two years ago, he made the decision to move to Dana Point and open a second branch of his real estate company, VonKeith Properties. The company’s original office is in Burbank.
“My sister moved down to Dana Point seven years ago,” said Gonzalez, who started his real estate venture in 2005 with then-business partner Kenneth Von Herring. The name VonKeith comes from the pairing of Gonzalez’s middle name Keith, and Herring’s middle name, Von. “I came down to visit her and fell in love with Dana Point. I made it a goal of mine to move down here as quickly as possible.”
Gonzalez’s path to a career in real estate started when, at the urging of his parents who had gifted him and his siblings some money to invest, he purchased his first home at the age of 23. After a 10-year stint working for The Walt Disney Company, he and Herring (who departed the business during the 2008 recession) started their business focusing on residential properties in the Toluca Lake/Burbank area. The business grew quickly and now has eight full-time real estate agents serving that region.
“My parents said to buy a home with [the investment money], so I found a house in Apple Valley,” he recalled. “That kicked off my interest in real estate and led to me purchasing houses in Los Angeles County, San Bernardino, as well as Orange County.”
Gonzalez credits his success in real estate to being driven by his team’s focus on personalized service and a true understanding of the community it serves—two hallmarks that Gonzalez hopes will help set his practice apart here in Dana Point.
“What is key for us is the fact that we are part of the community and who live here,” said Gonzalez, who said his business will focus on Dana Point and the nuances and unique aspects of the different neighborhoods of the community. “We don’t just hang a sign on the door saying that we’re here; we’re here and are active in our community.”
VonKeith’s Dana Point 600-square foot office has a full-time team of three: broker Gonzalez, realtor Gracie Missler and the company’s newest hire, realtor Kathleen Fox. “Caleb’s focus on community is a big reason why I joined the team,” said Fox. “The way VonKeith focuses on taking care of their clients’ needs, I think, sets them apart.”
Caleb and Fox are both active members of the Dana Point Chamber of Commerce.
34197 Pacific Coast Highway, #9, Dana Point