Any day of the week I’m having these conversations with many people:
Women are driving the residential real estate market
Women buy and invest in real estate much differently than men.
Women aren’t in the investment spotlight as often as men.
My goal is to try to change that.
Women buy with more emotion in mind…
- Is the garden pretty?
- Are the closets big enough for all of my shoes?
- Does the kitchen have enough counter space?
I realized earlier this year that I have enough emotion and excitement in the rest of my life and I really need my real estate investments to be practical and profitable so that I can spend my emotions elsewhere….In other words, who cares what the property looks like! I want to know, will it become a profitable investment if I work to create that?
Here’s how I came to think that way…
A couple of years ago I was faced with a number of setbacks that forced me to re-evaluate my future and ponder my level of independence.
First, the apartment building where I was a renter, flooded and 6 families faced immediate eviction. With no offers of help from the property owners or managers, I was infuriated and went to the media. I was saddened and angry that a company could care so little about putting seniors, young couples and families out on the street with no regard at all.
A few days after the flood, my long-term job contract came to a sharp and sudden end. There was a change that impacted me immediately and I was without a contract right before the Christmas holidays.
Finally, and likely the catalyst for the life changes that would soon occur, my mom decided that she wanted to get back into the market and buy a property in White Rock. My mom is semi-retired and not exactly rich, so this set off a sense of urgency to make sure she got a great place where she could be happy and comfortable for years to come.
I went in the autumn season with a combination of worry, frustration and wonder. I convinced myself to realize that I had before me a huge opportunity. I had control over how things could unfold from this combination of events. I suddenly had time on my hands due to the job loss and I had to get my mom into a property before the spring market upswing. So at the end of October 2015 I promised my self that I would create solutions and I committed to major changes to ensure that I wouldn’t find myself in situations like these ever again.
I committed to this list:
- I signed up for the ACRE weekend and committed to play full out.
- I re-listened to a favourite audiobook – Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich.
- I promised myself that I would find my mom a great property
- I wanted at least one income property my next birthday (April 30).
- I would take as many of my friends on this new path and be an inspiration that out of struggle comes success.
Eleanor Roosevelt said ‘Do one thing every day that scares you.’ I’ve listened!
At the ACRE weekend, I stood ‘in the fire’ and declared to Richard Dolan and the entire ACRE audience, that I had a goal, a timeframe and a plan to get there. I’m pretty thrilled to say that over the next few months things started to fall into place. I created a ton of forward momentum and I generated enough energy with my new sense of freedom and enthusiasm that I was getting more done in a day than some people do in a month. I’ve affirmed that when we face massive changes and we combine laser-sharp focus, with a life’s purpose there is really nothing and no one who can stop us. In fact, everyone everywhere wants to get on board and ride the train together. I also benefited hugely from having more than one coach and mentor. Sara Wegwitz looked after my focus, and REIN coaches helped me with the real estate.
Where did it all lead? In the past two years, I launched WREN – the Women’s Real Estate Network, produced two Victoria real estate conferences, renovated a 6 bedroom half duplex that I own with 2 young women and I’m just getting started.
Am I in a better place than I was prior to taking action with real estate? 100% yes..I made the commitment to myself and I declared it to a number of people who would support and encourage me along the way.
Was it difficult? At times it felt like I had taken on the impossible, I’m a single woman with a contract job (not a salaried role) and my family have much different risk tolerance and comfort around money and debt. I had to figure most of it out on my own. I had lots of support from friends and colleagues who could see that I was really excited and enthusiastic about this new path. I signed up for as much free and cheap education from real estate entrepreneurs as I could squeeze into a month while building WREN.
Now as I look back on the challenges and setbacks, I can declare that those unfortunate occurrences were actually doors that were swinging wide open to tease me into stepping fully and completely into the new space I occupy. I’m not the woman I was a then. I’m clear on what I want in the future and I am determined to take as many people along the path as possible. I’ve got new partners, new opportunities and I look at every challenge as a lesson to be learned. I challenge you to look at real estate from a woman’s perspective and join us for fun, financial fitness and more freedom!
(originally appeared in REIN Life magazine)