Service-focused. Savvy. Strategic. Successful. All of these words describe La Tanya Keith, a highly accomplished real estate Broker with Keller Williams Realty Ann Arbor with almost four decades of experience in the industry. She has helped countless clients to buy and sell homes in the area. La Tanya is a dedicated professional who takes immense pride in her work and is passionate about helping her clients to achieve their real estate goals.
With over 39 years of experience, La Tanya has served clients and her agents with excellence. Her commitment to her clients and her passion for the business are what have made her a highly respected figure in the industry.
Early Life and Childhood
“I was born in Miami, Florida and moved to Titusville, Florida in the 3rd grade. My mother created a warm, happy and fun environment for me and my sisters. We didn’t want for much; however, we were raised to be appreciative and respectful. While our mother was always there for us, there was no ambiguity around who was in charge, we were all brought up to be very well-behaved. Mom taught us that we could do whatever we wanted in life if we applied ourselves to it. She was a guiding light.”
La Tanya played lots of sports at school and participated in leadership roles throughout junior and senior high school. She developed a passion for fashion and design, which eventually led her to a key position as a store opener and apparel manager across the United States for K-Mart. Visiting new locations across the country and bringing new sales staff together and creating a team to run the new stores was an integral part of the job. Once up and running, La Tanya’s job was done, and she was off to a new location. She loved decorating the new locations for their opening events, and this led her to staging and eventually to real estate.
Journey to Real Estate
La Tanya met her first husband when opening a store in Knoxville, Tennessee in 1984. They were married and moved to Michigan. “I became interested in real estate through the home buying process,” says La Tanya, “I had a lot of fun looking at houses, comparing the price differences and what did and did not add value.” “I remember thinking I could do this for 5 years.” However, the joy of working with that first-time home buyer, or the excitement of taking a family into their next bigger home or looking for the downsized home that has everything the larger home offers, has kept La Tanya in the game an extra 25 years of her expected term of 5 years!
“In late 1999, it was the next obvious thing to do, to open our own company, and my friend, Marian Benton and I launched the first Keller Williams Office in the area. We had just five agents, and our only real goal was to provide an environment where the agents came first.”
La Tanya smiles as she reflects over that time, “It was a lot of fun.” We were excited to be able to put into place systems that ensured our agents had the tools they needed to excel and that their fees would not change without their input.”
La Tanya never stops learning and now as an instructor and mentor to many, she advises agents to stay in learning mode, real estate changes a lot she says, and you have to stay on top of the changes. Putting her belief in education a high priority she has most of the real estate designations attached to her name, Certified Residential Broker (CRB), Certified Residential Specialist (CRS), Graduate Realtors Institute (GRI), and Leadership Training Graduate (LTG) through the Women’s Council of REALTORS®. Her most recent designations are the Keller Williams Luxury Professional Community and the new DEI (Diversity, Equity and Inclusion) certification, Agent of Distinction. She is also currently the Co-Ambassador for the Michigan/Northern Ohio region for Keller Williams’ Social Equity Task Force.
Her goal is to leave a legacy and help others be the best version of themselves. Making a difference for her clients and agents is what it’s about for La Tanya.
Heading up several committees, being a director for three terms, serving on the Professional Standards committee for over 25 years and opening your own company doesn’t allow you to escape challenging times and La Tanya has had her fair share. This is when her mother’s wise words carried her through, “Just put your mind to it." When this is the fabric of your being you pull back on this upbringing and see the light at the end of the tunnel, you focus on it and you run towards it. La Tanya reflects, “Thank you, Mom, your resolve and resilience have served me well in life”.
For La Tanya, success is all about doing what you love, having fun while doing it and making money for doing what you love, which makes you feel like you don’t have a job. La Tanya helps as many families as she can and she cares deeply about their needs. Sometimes it is while working with her own clients and sometimes it is guiding agents to serve their clients at the highest level, success through others.
La Tanya also points out that being in the real estate business for so long has taught her the importance of being a caring person who cares about her clients. "People need people to care about them," she says.
"It's about helping as many families as I can," she says. "It's also about helping as many agents as I can be successful by maintaining the integrity of the business."
The Impact of Family and Friends
La Tanya emphasizes the importance of family and friends in her life and how they have impacted her. Her husband, Kevin, is an investor and a real estate agent in the office. He is super supportive and understands her responsibilities and time commitments.
Her sisters, Myrna and Melinda and their families currently live in Atlanta, but they communicate daily! Her brother, RodGerick, lives in Austin, Texas (KW’s headquarters) and loves to visit him when there for training. She treasures her close circle of friends, some going back as early as third grade. “My ‘adult’ circle of friends offer love and support beyond measure, no one succeeds alone.”
Outside of work, La Tanya loves to travel extensively and has been to 35 of the 50 states. She's also been to Spain, Italy, France, Portugal, Croatia, Montenegro, Dubai, Singapore, and Bali several times. “I just want to fill up as many passport pages as I can,” she reflects.
She is also passionate about art and glassblowing and has created vases, paperweights, bowls, and lampworking. She makes beautiful hand-crafted creations that others can treasure for years to come. Her heart for the arts is evident in each piece that she makes.
Living Her Best Life
La Tanya Keith is a successful real estate Broker who has had an inspiring journey to get where she is today. Her commitment to her clients, passion for the business, and dedication are remarkable. She jokes, “I didn’t know I would be selling real estate 39 years later after I started.” However, she loves helping people achieve their dreams.
“It brings me a ton of joy when I can help someone, client or agent, achieve a dream that they didn’t think they could achieve,” she concludes. This Real Producer wouldn’t have it any other way. Celebrating with her agents and clients, and working with generations of families makes her heart happy and causes her to achieve a future beyond her wildest dreams.