A Leap of Faith: How Real Estate Rookies Make it Work

Wendy Wright of Washington, D.C., was ready to take her real estate license exam last March—just as the term “novel coronavirus” was becoming part of the national conversation. After a 20-year career in IT project management, she had recently lost her job at a nonprofit because of funding cuts. Real estate offered an enticing new career path.

But the onset of the pandemic one year ago forced real estate testing centers in her area to close temporarily, requiring Wright to wait two months before she could sit for the test. Instead of just biding her time, Wright joined Katie Wethman’s real estate team at Keller Williams in Washington and began shadowing agents on socially distanced appointments with buyers and sellers. When Wright passed the exam and received her real estate license in June, she was able to hit the ground running at a time when the pandemic was turning many business practices upside down. The result: She closed 10 sales in six months.

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A House of Giving

Grant House died at the age of 25, but his legacy lives on through a foundation in Lafayette, Ind., for children and young adults with special needs that would not exist without his mother, Tamara.

Losing Grant, who was born with mental and physical disabilities from a brain tumor in utero, motivated House to turn her son’s vision of helping children with special needs into a reality.

When Grant died in December 2015, his friends and family donated nearly $40,000 in his memory. The House family—Tamara, her husband Jay, and Grant’s four siblings gave the money to Wabash Center, a local nonprofit that provides supportive services for individuals with special needs.

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Spring Clean Your Real Estate Business

Unless you’ve been living under a rock—or a pile of clothes from the eighties—you’ve noticed decluttering gospel is everywhere. You can thank (or blame) home organizing superstar and best-selling author Marie Kondo, whose Netflix reality show, “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo,” preaches that people can improve their lives by getting rid of all the things they own that don’t “spark joy.”

Naturally, some folks find the decluttering craze annoying, but real estate practitioners know the value of reducing clutter, especially when selling a house. “A lot of home buyers simply can’t see through a cluttered home,” says Nancy Newquist-Nolan, SRES, with Coldwell Banker in Santa Barbara, Calif., who specializes in helping people downsize. “They just can’t visualize themselves living in a seller’s house if it’s a total mess.”

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