I got into the real estate business by accident. My father sold several properties in the fall of 1988 and early spring of 1989. The family real estate agent thought that I would be a natural and my father insisted that I get my license. I had the honour of receiving my real estate license in 1989 at 19 years old. I was young, bright-eyed and I’m not shy to admit that I weighed about 30 pounds lighter and barely had a reason to shave.
My experience in the industry started with a bang selling 3 houses in the first 2 months and then feeling like I will conquer the world, took off on a 2 month European holiday. When I returned, I discovered ballooning 14% interest rates and my career followed with a thunderous thud by selling only 5 homes in the next 3 years. Don’t get me wrong, I did a bunch of leases however nothing to truly be proud of. I floundered while blaming the market, my young age, my lack of experience and anything else that I can justify. My future in real estate seemed bleak.
One day in late August of 1993 my father had decided that enough is enough. After all it was his financial life line that kept me in the business. He started our conversation by explaining that I’m young and have a bright future in front of me. He went on the explain that I’m not a failure and now is the time to go back to school. In his words “How are you going to support a family on your income”. Aside from my first thought of “C’mon Dad….I’m only 23!”, my second emotion was anger. We know that there are some personalities that would accept defeat, agree and move on but I know today as I knew back then that its NOT ME!
More importantly, the truth is that deep down inside I knew I never really applied myself. Deep down inside I knew that I didn’t consistently do the things (the basics as we really know them) to achieve success. I was waiting for the phone to ring and expected things to just happen for me.
I looked at my father in the eyes and at that moment made a commitment. I declared to him that if things don’t turn around and if I can’t achieve success within the next 6 months, I will accept his advice and leave the business. I declared a minimum success goal, shook hands and finished our meeting.
Needless to say, it is now 24 years later and loving every moment of our business! Being accountable for our own actions is key and we can’t look externally. We need to be accountable to ourselves for our actions. Be honest with yourself. Every morning look in the mirror and ask yourself…”Today am I hired or fired?”
The lesson I also learned is that my father really knew my personality better than me. He waited then pushed me at the right time. These are the turning point moments in our lives we really remember forever!
RE/MAX Ultimate Realty Inc., Brokerage