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

John Pavelich’s 83rd birthday had an added surprise; members of Enderby City Council came by his residence to present him with a Lifetime Civic Merit award Saturday, May 8, 2021. (Contributed)
Enderby resident unwraps Lifetime Civic Merit award on 83rd birthday

John ‘JP’ Pavelich has been a pillar of volunteerism in Enderby since 1967

Spallumcheen councillors (from left) Todd York, Gerry Popoff, Christine LeMaire, John Bakker, Joe Van Tienhoven and Andrew Casson join Mayor Christine Fraser (fourth from left) in helping to proclaim the township open for business with new signage off Highway 97A. (Township of Spallumcheen photo)
Being open for business paying dividends for Spallumcheen

Township wins provincial award, new business and building starts increase

Nuns of Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity, carry some of her relics during a vigil of prayer in preparation for the canonization of Mother Teresa in the St. John in Latheran Basilica at the Vatican, Friday, Sept. 2, 2016. In which city did she do much of her charitable work? (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia)
QUIZ: How much do you know about these motherhood issues?

In honour of Mother’s Day, take this 10-question quiz

Five properties have been added to the Lake Country fire protection zone, after council moved to expand the local service area Tuesday, May 4, 2021. (Google Maps)
Lake Country expands fire protection zone, covering 5 exposed properties

The properties petitioned to join the local service area after being left out ‘for reasons unknown’

The Vernon Vipers defeated the Salmon Arm Silverbacks 3-1 to secure the top spot in the BC Hockey League Vernon pod Friday, May 7, 2021. (Lisa Mazurek Photography)
VIDEO: Vipers beat Salmon Arm, clinch top spot in BCHL Vernon pod

Goaltender James Porter Jr. was a wall for the Vipers, who outscored the Silverbacks 3-1 Friday

(The Canadian Press)
Trudeau won’t say whether Canada supports patent waiver for COVID-19 vaccines

‘Canada is at the table to help find a solution’

Pieces of nephrite jade are shown at a mine site in northwestern B.C. in July 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Tahltan Central Government MANDATORY CREDIT
Indigenous nation opposes jade mining in northwestern B.C.

B.C.’s Mines Act requires operators to prepare a plan to protect cultural heritage resources

Salmon Arm Silverbacks forward Mathieu Bourgault (13) tries unsuccessfully to deflect past West Kelowna goalie Johnny Derrick during the Warriors’ come-from-behind 7-6 BC Hockey Leaguje pod shootout victory Saturday, May 8, at Vernon’s Kal Tire Place. (Tami Quan Photography)
West Kelowna Warriors rally to edge Salmon Arm in shootout

Warriors overcome three significant deficits to post 7-6 BCHL pod win in Vernon; Silverbacks finish pod 9-7-2-2

The body of Brenda Ware, 35, was found along Highway 93 in Kootenay National Park on Thursday, May 6, 2021. (RCMP handout)
RCMP ask for tips after woman’s body found in Kootenay National Park

Brenda Ware was found along Highway 93 in the park, 54 kilometres north of the town of Radium

People pass the red hearts on the COVID-19 Memorial Wall mourning those who have died, opposite the Houses of Parliament on the Embankment in London, Wednesday, April 7, 2021. On May 3, the British government announced that only one person had died of COVID-19 in the previous 24 hours. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Kirsty Wigglesworth
For a view of a COVID-19 future, Canadians should look across the pond

Britain, like Canada, is one of the only countries in the world to delay second doses for several months

Edmonton Oilers’ Connor McDavid (97) celebrates his 100th point this season with Leon Draisaitl (29) against the Vancouver Canucks during second period NHL action in Edmonton on Saturday, May 8, 2021.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Edmonton superstar McDavid hits 100-point mark as Oilers edge Canucks 4-3

NHL scoring leader needs just 53 games to reach century mark

Peachland resident and cleanup volunteer Lloyd Stinson Sotas holds up a discarded TV riddled with bullet holes. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
PHOTOS: Peachland residents clean up community watershed

More than 70 people gave back to Mother Earth by assisting with the cleanup

Most Read