Welcome to my second personal blog for ‘Going Places’! It’s been so awesome to see the amount of positivity and interest this project and ‘Let’s Talk!‘ are getting. When I first started it, I had the standard worry of ‘Will anyone even read this?’, but I’m blessed to have friends and family who believe in me, as well as some of the best colleagues a professional could ask for! This week, I want to talk about how I got my start in real estate!
It was because of this friend/family support that I got into real estate 7 years ago. Having worked extensively with builders and contractors in my previous career, I came in with a strong understanding of the real estate industry. But that wasn’t my strongest asset starting out.
What helped me early on was a genuine passion for the job. Anyone who knows me well would call me a ‘people person’ through and through. I love getting to know my clients, and building a strong relationship with them. Selfishly, I will admit that I actually get a thrill from helping my clients find their dream homes. There are few better feelings than knowing you helped make someone’s dream come true. That has been a foundational pillar of my approach every day since I began in real estate.
Getting Your Start in Real Estate Comes Down to Personality
Also an asset to me is my personality I’m told; I’m personable and friendly, but I’m a tough negotiator for my clients. My colleagues know me as fair and ethical, and my clients know me as knowledgeable and trustworthy.
But beyond this, I actually get asked a lot by new and aspiring real estate agents ‘We know what brought you to real estate. But what’s kept you here for 7 years?’ This is easily my favourite question to answer, and that’s why I wrote a blog about it.
The main thing – aside from the wonderful people – is flexibility. I’m a mom to three beautiful, smart, funny kids and being a single parent. I wanted to make sure I wasn’t missing them growing up while I was chained to a desk. Because of the nature of real estate work, it can be all over the place as far as scheduling. But what I love is the amount of professional courtesy I receive not only from fellow agents, but from clients as well. For the most part, I do work evenings and weekends, but showings are usually pretty straightforward.
Even if my clients want to take some time to chat after, they usually aren’t demanding about my time and are very understanding in scheduling showings. I’m proud to say I’ve never missed a soccer or hockey game for work. I don’t plan on starting now.
EV & Me
Where my career really started to hit a new level was 2 years ago when I started with Engel & Völlkers. While I had some amazing work experiences and mentors (We’ll talk about the importance of mentors soon!), the time I’ve spent with EV has been unparalleled. Here’s why.
First, EV isn’t necessarily a household name, but that doesn’t mean it’s not world renown. Often associated with multi-million dollar homes in some of the most beautiful locations around the world, the reality is that not only does EV service every type of residential property, they put as much effort into every client as they do the high-ticket ones. My listings get international exposure in major newspapers across the world, and my sellers benefit from that. But the EV reach goes beyond print and online ads. What really floored me is the level of collaboration between agents and brokerages.
Respect and Professionalism Matter
Next, while real estate is a competitive industry, often to some pretty worrisome extremes, the culture at EV is one of respect and professionalism. Everyone understands that a team win is more important than a personal win, and what’s most important is client satisfaction. The sheer emphasis on keeping our clients happy is unlike anything I’ve seen from other real estate companies, and totally agrees with why I got into the industry.
But that effort doesn’t stop at keeping clients happy. What I really enjoy with EV is that it has been a phenomenal place to grow as a professional. With a strong emphasis on not only professional development, but offering resources to facilitate my growth as an agent, I’m even more confident in myself and my abilities since I got my start in real estate. This is a great corporate culture for ANY real estate agent. Whether brand new to the industry, or a veteran agent with years of experience under their belt.
Thanks to EV, this constantly on-the-go real estate professional by day/supermom of three by night has found a much better way to find the hallowed ‘work-life balance’ we all crave. While working in real estate got me on the path to finding this balance, I’ll happily say that my time with EV has helped me get even better at it.
Always Be Searching For That Balance
Just remember: work-life balance isn’t an end destination, it’s a lifelong journey. Every day is a chance to find a better way to strike that balance, if you’re willing to step out of your comfort zone and experience something new! It was when I got my start in real estate that I first came to fully appreciate just how important finding that balance is.
Want to hear more about my time with EV? My broker (and friend) Ben Corbier did this interview with me last week and I discuss my time thus far. Have any questions? Don’t be afraid to reach out!