2006-07-27 / News

Conanicut, Lila Delman firms merge

By Michaela Kennedy

island landmark for the past 17 years, joined together with a Narragansett realty company this past March. Where walkers used to see Conanicut Real Estate's shop sign on Narragansett Avenue, they can now peruse pictures of homes on the market under the new sign of Lila Delman Real Estate. Although Conanicut Real Estate has given up its name, it is now operating with a top performing landholdings company, which also happens to be a South County locally grown favorite.

Tina McIntyre and Melanie Delman Tina McIntyre and Melanie Delman With more than 20 years of brokering under her belt, Tina McIntyre, owner of Conanicut Real Estate, hooked up with Lila Delman Real Estate. McIntyre is still smiling four months later, and says she has "no regrets."

McIntyre started working in real estate in 1984 at DeFelice Realtors in North Kingstown. There she met her longtime friend and colleague Dale Ketchum. She left DeFelice to work for Jamestown Real Estate, and then eventually started her own company, Conanicut Real Estate, around 1987, according to McIntyre. McIntyre signed on with her friend in 1991, and eventually took over the company in 2002.

firms merge

McIntyre said that over the years she has seen a slow changein the island's real estate market. She moved to Newport Street with her husband in 1971. "When we first came here, people were surprised we commuted to Providence," McIntyre noted. She and her husband raised three children on the island, and now have three grandchildren, as well.

Construction has been going on for as long as she has lived here, McIntyre said, but the boom seen in the last five years has been significant. "I never saw anything like it before," she added.

More recently, when Ketchum left the business, McIntyre was feeling a squeeze at the office. "I took over the company in 2002. It's been so time consuming, with so much to do. I was looking for a little bit more freedom," she said. "We started talking a few months before it actually happened," McIntyre added, noting that the decision was not made lightly.

Since the commercial marriage in March, Melanie Delman has been smiling, too, and she agrees the joint venture was a smart move. "Real estate is a group effort, and we work off each other's specialties," said Delman, adding, "It's good for both sides." Delman is the daughter of the founder, Lila Delman, who began the realty business in 1964 out of their home. "I grew up with it," Delman said.

The home-grown feeling of Conanicut Real Estate carries on with Lila Delman Real Estate, making the company strong in local expertise. Both McIntyre and Delman remark on recent changes in the home market, and admit that what is available is limited. "We're trying to offer quality, not quantity," Delman said.

Having the extra support from Delman, especially in the office, has allowed her to change her focus, McIntyre pointed out. Delman teased her, noting, "McIntyre says that the pressure is off, but she's still working as hard." Delman and McIntyre both express gratitude toward each other, echoing the sentiment, "It's good for both sides."

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