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Today, one of the branches of my mortgage practice is located approximately three miles from where I was born almost 6 decades ago! But.....it has been quite a journey to get from there to here.....Here's a portion of my story:
My journey to become one of the top VA loan officers in the nation started with when Hurricane Rita struck central Louisiana in September of 2005. It was at that time I was praying that God would deliver me from the mortgage business! But let me start at the beginning.....
My life began at an Army hospital at Camp Polk, Louisiana (now known as the Joint Readiness Training Center, Fort Polk Army Base, Fort Polk, Louisiana)
Because my parents divorced very shortly after my birth, I was not reared in the typical military family atmosphere. At the age of three years old, my mother and stepfaather moved to Sabine Parish, Louisiana, where I have lived since that time.
After working in this position in Downtown Many, Louisiana, for almost 18 years, the pull of entrepreneurship drew me first into restaurant ownership (I was NOT cut out for Food World), and then to a position with a local bank as Senior Vice President of their mortgage division.
When the bank shut down their mortgage department, I opening my own branch with Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation. Business was good for a few years because I refinanced everyone in the parish! After five years, though when interest rates took a hike, my business was down, and I just wanted OUT of the mortgage business! Refinances were gone and there just weren't very many purchases in this small rural parish.......
And then Hurricane Rita changed everything. She ripped through central Louisiana destroying one of my husband's businesses. It was at this time that he said the infamous words to me "Can YOUR business make money until mine can be rebuilt?" How long for his to be rebuilt - one year!
HUH??? I wanted OUT - O-U-T of the business - not IN! But after much prayer and soul searching, I realized that I need to discover my "why" - why was I working anyway? And the answer came to me - For my husband and my family, I would do whatever it took to help.
I am a firm believer that if you want to change your life, you have to change your mind! And that is what I did - I changed my mind - knowing that now more than ever before my family needed me to succeed. I wrote out some HUGE goals in a notebook and a detailed vision of what I wanted my mortgage practice to look like.
Knowing that I would need to leave the small town I was in to succeed, I traveled south to another parish, to the military town, Fort Polk, Louisiana. This was an unfamiliar town with an unfamiliar loan product - VA loans. I had never worked in this parish - and the only association I really had with this town was - IT WAS THE PLACE OF MY BIRTH!
I began to study VA loans and to form relationships with the top real estate agents in that town. I was energized and filled with passion to serve these soldiers. I wrote a business plan and began to pursue excellence in all aspects of my practice. I began to work with some of the top mortgage professionals in the nation and model their best practices. I attended conferences, listened to motivational tapes, and began the task of transforming my practice.
And what happened? In 2005, I had only closed 74 transactions. However, after "changing my mind", my production moved to 280 transactions in 2006- a 400% increase, and I was listed as one of the top 75 loan officers in the nation for FHA/VA loans. By this time, I had fallen in love with my business by serving those who serve in this military town where I was born!
It's hard to believe that at one time I wanted out of this business I now love so much. A business where I have the opportunity to work with military clients for whom I have so much respect and admiration.
Since that time, I have become a writer and national speaker for the mortgage industry on how to transform your business with purpose, possibility, passion, planning and perseverance. I was also blessed to be included as one of the women featured in the book "Reinventing the Heel" by Karen Deis, and I write regularly industry publications.
And that's how everything changed six years ago when a storm blew into town, causing me to examine my "why" and move me to transform my business and thereby changing my life .....forever.
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Louise G. Thaxton NMLS #69996, VA Home Loan Expert
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.