Victoria real estate agent and motorcycle enthusiast Ron Neal. Lia Crowe photography

Victoria real estate agent and motorcycle enthusiast Ron Neal. Lia Crowe photography

Secrets and Lives Interview with Ron Neal

Real estate agent has a passion for philanthropy, motorcycles and sports

  • Apr. 21, 2021 12:05 p.m.

– Story by Angela Cowan Photography by Lia Crowe

As a Vancouver Island-born and raised real estate agent, Ron Neal has spent 30 years helping people find their dream homes, but he’s also devoted his career to making a difference through philanthropy, both locally and provincially.

As the founder and owner of The Neal Estate Team and RE/MAX Alliance, Ron heads a team of real estate agents with the highest per capita sales in Victoria, and his personal sales team is number one for RE/MAX on Vancouver Island. And with that level of success is a team-wide belief in giving back.

“To work at our office, you have to agree that a portion of every sale will go to the BC Children’s Hospital and also to a local fund,” he explains.

The local recipients vary, but in 2020 alone he and his team donated $10,000 to Santa’s Anonymous and purchased a COVID-19-inspired three-month supply of to-go containers for Our Place and The Rainbow Kitchen. And they’re closing in on $400,000 donated to Children’s since the brokerage opened in 2005.

Ron, who is friendly and direct in conversation, started down the path to accountancy in high school, but got diverted into sales for a few years, working in finance, computer sales and even car sales. But it was in real estate that he found his calling.

“There’s a real personal satisfaction and fulfillment that comes from helping people in what’s a significant part of most people’s lives,” he says. “The level of trust that people have…I feel so much responsibility with that. I just really want to help people get what they want in the best way possible.”

Outside of work, Ron has always made a work-life balance his priority, and he “lives to give.”

“I’ve been very fortunate in that I’ve had some very good mentors and guidance to have a life outside of work. You have to plan it and respect it,” he says. “So when my kids were young and growing up, I coached them through all their sports. We included them in charitable efforts, including a family head shave for kids with cancer, and we travelled to Uganda to help fund and build an orphanage. We travelled all over the world. I’ve had the very good fortune of combining work and play in that regard.”

In particular, he’s part of a group of international real estate agents who call themselves “RE/MAX Team Canada,” and have come together to play hockey in more than 20 countries over the past 20 years.

“The cool thing with having these relationships with all these agents from other market places is we wind up helping each others’ relocating customers.”

These days, Ron says he spends a lot of his downtime golfing or on motorcycles with his amazing partner, Lorraine, and can’t wait for travel opportunities to open up again.

“We especially love motorcycle race track days and adventure tours. Our last trip before COVID-19 was a motorcycle tour of Northern Thailand to the Golden Triangle. I miss playing hockey, too, and can’t wait to get back on the ice!”

The 7 Sins

Envy:

Whose shoes would you like to walk in?

I’m pretty happy in my own shoes, but both Formula One race car driver Michael Schumacher’s shoes or Moto GP rider Marc Marquez’s shoes look appealing! But after thinking about it some, I’d pick Bill Gates for the massive difference I could make as a philanthropist.

Gluttony:

What is the food you could eat over andover again?

Sushi.

Greed:

You’re given $1 million that you have to spend selfishly. What would you spend it on?

That’s a tough one. I really have everything I need and would experience more joy giving it away and making a difference where it’s needed. If I have to choose something purely selfish, then what comes to mind is one of James Bond’s Aston Martin DB9s!

Wrath:

Pet peeves?

People who are perpetually late. To me it’s disrespectful of other people’s time.

Sloth:

Where would you spend a long time doing nothing?

In a hammock on any warm beach with a good book, or curled up in front of a warm fire.

Pride:

What is the one thing you’re secretly proud of?

It’s not really a secret, but my sons, of course. My integrity. And my efforts to give and support others; to help make people’s lives better.

Lust:

What makes your heart beat faster?

Whether downhill on snow skis, on my road bike or on my Ninja [dirt bike] at the race track, I love to go fast!

Story courtesy of Boulevard Magazine, a Black Press Media publication

Like Boulevard Magazine on Facebook and follow them on Instagram

BusinessLifestylemotorcycle

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Photo: RCMP
Rossland pedestrian dies after being pinned between 2 vehicles

RCMP Sgt. advises that victim services is available for anyone requiring help

Dani Evans with her brother Alex, 9, and George, her buddy dog (a guide dog for children). Photo: Bill Metcalfe
Visually impaired girl walks for Nelson Friends of the Family

Dani Evans is raising money through the month of May

Pharmacist Barbara Violo shows a vile of the Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine. Photo: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Castlegar pharmacies gets additional AstraZeneca vaccines

Several Castlegar pharmacies list appointment openings this week

FILE - In this April 19, 2021, file photo, Keidy Ventura, 17, receives her first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in West New York, N.J. States across the country are dramatically scaling back their COVID-19 vaccine orders as interest in the shots wanes, putting the goal of herd immunity further out of reach. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)
5 more deaths, 131 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health over the weekend

Those 18-years and older in high-transmission neighbourhoods can register for the vaccine

Castlegar City Hall. (Photo: Kristen Lawson)
City of Castlegar finance reports for 2020 show revenue losses

Some losses were offset by savings and grants

A bullet hole is seen in the windshield of an RCMP vehicle approximately 4 km from Vancouver International Airport after a one person was killed during a shooting outside the international departures terminal at the airport, in Richmond, B.C., Sunday, May 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Homicide team IDs man in fatal YVR shooting as police grapple with spate of gang violence

Man, 20, charged in separate fatal shooting Burnaby over the weekend

Kelowna resident Sally Wallick helped rescue a kayaker in distress a week and a half ago. (Sally Wallick/Contributed)
VIDEO: Kelowna woman rescues capsized kayaker in Okanagan Lake

Sally Wallick is asking people to be prepared for the cold water and unpredictable winds

Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about phase two in B.C.’s COVID-19 immunization plan. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
All of B.C. will eventually ease out of COVID-19 restrictions at same time: Henry

People who have received two doses of a vaccine can’t yet return to post-pandemic activities with each other, she says

Winnipeg Jets’ Andrew Copp (9) and Edmonton Oilers goaltender Mike Smith (41) watch an incoming shot during second period NHL action in Winnipeg, Monday, April 26, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Greenslade
‘Very jealous’: Canadian teams can’t take advantage of NHL’s relaxed COVID-19 rules

League eased some tight COVID-19 health and safety protocols over the weekend for fully vaccinated clubs

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A map of Huu-ay-aht-owned forestry cutblock. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
B.C. First Nations restrict access to territory in wake of forestry standoffs

Huu-ay-aht set up checkpoints after heated and dangerous incidents on southwest Vancouver Island

RCMP are searching for Philip Toner, who is a ‘person of interest’ in the investigation of a suspicious death in Kootenay National Park last week. Photo courtesy BC RCMP.
RCMP identify ‘person of interest’ in Kootenay National Park suspicious death

Police are looking for Philip Toner, who was known to a woman found dead near Radium last week

Vancouver Canucks goaltender Thatcher Demko (35) makes a save on Winnipeg Jets’ Nate Thompson (11) during second period NHL action in Winnipeg, Monday, May 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Greenslade
Vancouver Canucks see NHL playoff hopes dashed despite 3-1 win over Winnipeg

Montreal Canadiens earn final North Division post-season spot

The southern mountain caribou, an iconic species for the Splatsin First Nation, is threatened with extinction, much to the dismay of the First Nation. (Province of B.C. photo)
Okanagan First Nation band concerned over dwindling caribou herd

Southern mountain caribou at risk of extinction, much to dismay of Splatsin First Nation near Enderby

Most Read