As the founder of the successful South Florida real estate firm Urban Key Realty, M. Paula Di Mauro is the powerhouse leader of her growing team. Her passion for the industry and dedication to her work is evident in her clients’ happiness and sales results.
Paula is a self-described “numbers” person at heart and was inspired by the American homeownership model as a means for building wealth. After moving to Miami in 2004 from Uruguay, she began looking into real estate opportunities — and her love for the industry was born.
Learn more about Paula’s story.
How did you get started in the real estate industry?
I began looking into investment opportunities here in Miami and couldn’t find an agent proficient in the return on investment (ROI) analysis who would know what to look for and who was willing to help me the way I needed. So, I became my own agent.
Before I knew it, I was helping friends from Miami and Uruguay invest in rental condos and had to start a company to do the property management. Investment properties became my specialty. Up until 2018, they represented 80% of my sales. In 2016, I became a real estate broker and founded Urban Key Realty and Urban Key Property Management to provide the full range of real estate services to our clients.
Where is your career now?
Today, we are a team of eight agents. We mostly help local families find their dream home but also assist local and foreign investors. I am even more passionate about homeownership now than when I first started. I firmly believe that where we live directly impacts our quality of life and that owning our homes sets ourselves and our children on a path towards a better future. It really is the best way to build wealth for our families.
What type of homes does Urban Key Realty specialize in?
We specialize in properties in the Pinecrest and Coral Gables neighborhoods; however, our reach goes all the way to Palm Beach! We also have successfully sold and rented all different types of properties — from waterfront condos to Brickell high-rises to townhomes in senior communities. We approach each client and home from a strategic and focused perspective in order to achieve the best results.
How has the pandemic affected your business?
This has been a roller-coaster year for everyone, but in real estate, it’s been wild. The market is very active, especially with those moving south from colder climates like New York City. We are receiving multiple offers on many of our listings, and those offers are often coming in above the asking price. It is a fast-moving market right now, so we are able to capitalize on it for our clients.
What do you think will happen with the market in the coming months?
We are in a strong seller’s market, meaning the demand for houses from buyers is much greater than the offer of properties from sellers. The dynamic is that buyers compete for the few available homes, raising prices.
Buyers are coming from within Miami, from out of state and from outside of the country. Miami is a magnet for a multitude of reasons (climate, taxes, multicultural environment, connectivity), so there is a constant influx of new residents. I don’t see that changing anytime soon.
What’s the most important factor to consider when buying a home?
The family’s lifestyle and the contemplation of their particular needs are central to the decision-making process for a buyer. It is not the same from one family to another, and we, as the real estate advisor, should be able to assist them in this discovery.
Where we live directly impacts our overall happiness. A short commute to school or work is a great example of this. So is having a pool and a yard. However, it is not uncommon for buyers to start their home-buying process with one set of ideas of how their home should be and where it should be and along the way re-evaluate, ending their journey at a completely different place than anticipated. I believe our role as real estate agents is to listen to our clients and guide them on this quest.
What’s the most important factor to consider when selling a home?
Selling a home is about maximizing proceeds. When homeowners decide they want to sell their home, the focus is on what’s motivating the decision: the family is growing, they are downsizing, relocating. Whatever the reason is, the most important factor is to sell the property at the highest possible price. In order to achieve this, sellers need to be ready to prepare the home to look its best. This includes making repairs, decluttering and staging the home.
What’s your favorite property that you’ve sold?
I can’t decide on just one … sorry!
M. Paula di Mauro / 305.967.8820 / urbankeyrealty.com