The culture of Monument Sotheby’s International Realty is defined by its PEOPLE; A collaboration of exceptional global real estate advisors who provide personalized service, local expertise, and unparalleled worldwide exposure. We are pleased to welcome Tom Craten.
A Baltimore boy through and through, Tom graduated from Polytechnic Institute, earned his Associate’s degree from the Community College of Baltimore, and his B.S. from Towson State College. After four years with the Army Corps of Engineers, Real Estate Division, he joined up with two partners in New York to revitalize the historic Saint George Theatre in Staten Island.
After returning to Baltimore, he started his career in residential real estate with Chase, Fitzgerald & Davis in Roland Park, and later affiliated with W.H.C. Wilson & Co, where he was made partner in 1991.
Early on, Tom was recruited by Northeast, Inc, a non-profit that was established to combat and correct the damage created by the unscrupulous practice of ‘block busting’ in northeast Baltimore in the 1960s. Tom and his fellow volunteers traveled throughout the Baltimore Metro area, conducting seminars to prospective homebuyers and renters, espousing affordable neighborhood options, and highlighting the advantages of homeownership and the economics and importance of wealth building.
Tom now has over 45 years of experience in the Baltimore Metro market, evolving with the times from couriers, pink message slips, phone booths, and two-page Contracts, to the internet, electronic signing, pocket ‘do everything’ gadgets, and forty-page Contracts. What has not changed is Tom’s steadfast belief that for now, Artificial Intelligence (AI) cannot replace the emotional IQ of a good Realtor, who coaches consumers through the buying and selling process – and that no robot has yet figured out how to interpret a smile, analyze a worried look, or offer empathy to a nervous buyer or seller. It’s why he came to be drawn to Monument Sotheby’s International Realty – a company in his view focused on building relationships and exercising a collaborative culture within its offices, rather than defaulting to everything transactional.
As an Associate Broker, Tom has earned several industry certifications and production awards, and because of his early focus on understanding real property valuation, he took the initiative to complete university coursework in appraising and later completed Gilbert D. Marsiglia’s revered appraising workshops. More than anyone, Tom credits Gil for his own proficiency in property valuation.
Free time activities include walks in state parks, travels with his partner, Jane, photojournalism, extensive reading and writing, and most importantly, maintaining close relationships with his daughter Sarah, in Colorado, and his son Adam, who along with his wife Holly, are raising grandsons Arlo and Elam, as future homesteading farmers in West Virginia.