Go On, Take the Risk

Real Estate Sales Representative with RE/MAX ROYAL (JORDAN) INC. / Tanya Nouwens Inc. www.readysetsold.ca E8107

New Year's Eve 1990. I'm newly single. My best friend and I plan to travel from Ottawa (where we live) to Montreal for some guy's annual New Year's Eve bash.  But there's a snowstorm outside.  And she has a terrible cold.  But we go anyway.  And I meet my future husband there -- he's the "some guy" having the party.

December 2007.Out of the blue, I call JJ Jacobs, one of the biggest Montreal real estate brokers, and ask her if she would be willing to meet with me to brainstorm about my Montreal staging business, Ready, Set...Sold!.  She sounds busy...and a bit irritated.  Yikes.  But she agrees to meet with me.  Fast forward to today, and I'm now a Montreal real estate agent in her brokerage.

January 2008. I get a contact from my web-site from someone who would like me to stage her home in Montreal north...not the safest part of town. And so totally out of my territory.  But I want the work.  So I drive out there and meet the sweetest woman and her family.  I stage her home, which sells within a week with multiple offers.  Then her sister hires me to decorate her house, her agent hires me to stage his home, and this week I'll be staging her mom's home.

Climber on Rock

February 2010. "Tanya, are you interested in selling some land for someone I've known for a long time?"  Sure. I know nothing about selling land but I'll find out.  Two months later, we have a conditional offer (subject to rezoning of the land).

April 2010.Been showing soooooooo many homes to my buyers.  So many homes that don't work for so many reasons.  Here's one more.  Looks from the outside like all the others they've seen and dismissed. None of us really wants to see it because we can't handle the disappointment again.  But we go anyway.  And they buy it within 24 hours.

You just never know where things will lead.  Sometimes, we have to take what feels like a real risk...or puts us out of our comfort zone...and then watch how the magic happens as we get led somewhere we never thought we'd be.


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Professional home staging and professional photography: two critical factors to making sure your home looks its best, both in person and on the Internet, and neither of them cost you a penny when you list with me.


Put your best house forward. TM

Tanya Nouwens

Tanya Nouwens Inc., Montreal Real Estate Broker and Canadian Staging Professional (TM)  www.readysetsold.ca 

RE/MAX ROYAL (JORDAN) INC., www.remax-quebec.om

C. 514-919-8468    tanya@readysetsold.ca

This blog is written with my opinions. My opinions are presented with accuracy but not guarantees. Copyright Tanya Nouwens - 2015. If you want to reprint parts of this, just email me for my permission at tanya@readysetsold.ca.



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Jo-Anne Smith
Oakville, ON


What a beautiful and touching post.....and so very true. It's amazing how one thing leads to another and it all begins with an action we take.


Apr 24, 2010 03:12 AM #1
David Saks
Memphis, TN

When fate hands us a lemon, let's try to make lemonade.

-Dale Carnegie-

Apr 24, 2010 03:35 AM #2
Brian Madigan
RE/MAX West Realty Inc., Brokerage (Toronto) - Toronto, ON
LL.B., Broker



That's a very nice success story. You have to follow up every lead, they might turn into something. The ones you don't follow will never turn into anything, and that's absolutely guaranteed.



Apr 24, 2010 04:11 AM #3
Tanya Nouwens
RE/MAX ROYAL (JORDAN) INC. / Tanya Nouwens Inc. www.readysetsold.ca - Montreal West Island, QC
Montreal Real Estate Broker & Stager

Thanks very much, Jo.  We never know where life will lead us.

Words I try to live by, David.

"The ones you don't follow will never turn into anything, and that's absolutely guaranteed."  Brilliant, Brian.

Apr 24, 2010 05:17 AM #4
Jane Peters
Home Jane Realty - Los Angeles, CA
Connecting you to the L.A. real estate market

Great success story, Tanya.  You never know where your next deal, or husband is going to come from.

Apr 24, 2010 07:01 AM #5
Inna Hardison
ha media group - Orlando, FL
Wordpress for Real Estate & Design, Print HaMedia Group

Amen to that, Tanya.:-)

Apr 24, 2010 07:25 AM #6
John Thomas
E3 Green HOMES - Boulder, CO
EcoBroker, MSEE, MBA

Great insight Tanya...keep the faith, Anything can happen

Apr 24, 2010 09:04 AM #7
Janice Ankrett
Janice Ankrett Home Staging - Burlington, ON
Staging Professional

You have to take a chance that's for sure. If I hadn't decided to risk taking my Staging course I wouldn't be doing something I really enjoy.

Apr 24, 2010 12:17 PM #8
Michelle Francis
Tim Francis Realty LLC - Atlanta, GA
Realtor, Buckhead Atlanta Homes for Sale & Lease


You are so right, we never know what will happen around the next corner, but that shouldn't stop us from going.  We miss out on life and wonderful opportunities. 

All the best, Michelle

Apr 24, 2010 01:29 PM #9
Tim D. Wilson - The Horseman's Agent ™
HomeSalesLexington.com @ Rector-Hayden: Lexington, Kentucky - Lexington, KY

Hi Tanya,

  Great advice.... and so true!   Congratulations on all of those good things happening for you!


Apr 24, 2010 03:10 PM #10
Cherise Selley
Selley Group Real Estate, LLC - Colorado Springs, CO
Colorado Springs Realtor

Tanya - Appreciate your willingness to step out of your comfort zone to get your toes wet in the pool of spontaneity.  Sounds like good things for you are still coming.

Apr 25, 2010 12:57 AM #11
Tanya Nouwens
RE/MAX ROYAL (JORDAN) INC. / Tanya Nouwens Inc. www.readysetsold.ca - Montreal West Island, QC
Montreal Real Estate Broker & Stager

I'm a bit embarrassed folks.  This was not intended to be a "Look at all the good things that have  happened to me" post, but I fear it came off sounding that way.  Rather, it was meant to sound more like "Sometimes we have to jump into things even when we don't quite know where they will lead...if anywhere."  If I sounded braggish, I'm sorry.  That was so not my intention.

Tim!  Welcome to the fold.  Happy to have you here.  And thank you so much for the kind comment on Inna's post.

Apr 25, 2010 01:08 AM #12
Jon Hardison

So glad we met.  :)

You're right.  It's an easy lesson to learn, but a hard one to remember.

Apr 25, 2010 03:16 AM #13
Malcolm Johnston
Century 21 Lanthorn Real Estate LTD., Trenton, Ontario - Trenton, ON
Trenton Real Estate

Tanya, way to go. There's an expression that I always use "fortune favours the bold". It's best to dive right in rather than test the water with our toes. If I fail at least it will be spectacular.

Apr 25, 2010 04:20 AM #14
Tony Cordi
Tony Cordi, Broker (Beachtime Realty) - Hermosa Beach, CA


So true, so true.  After I read this I started reflecting on the last several years of my life and then realized that my whole life has been about going out on the limb and taking a risk.  It's fun to trace back, as you have, the journey that followed what may have seemed to be an uncomfortable risk at the time and then all of the sudden...results in a new reality.

I've only been a broker for a couple of years now, but real estate has always played a big part of my life.  My path into this profession may very well be traceable to a home purchase decision I made 14 years ago.  I was on the edge of being able to afford the home and needed the seller to initiate a second for me to get in.  I sold it 15 months later at a significant profit, but this had virtually nothing to do with the real impact that this decision had on my life.  I don't want to bore your readers, but needless to say, for so many reasons, my life looks different as a result of this risk I took...

Anyone that knows me knows that I'm a huge advocate for people getting outside of their comfort zones.  Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this...

Apr 25, 2010 07:36 AM #15
Julia Odom
Select Realty Professionals - Chattanooga, TN
Chattanooga Homes for Sale

You didn't sound braggish at all. But you really have come a long way, baby. I never thought I'd be in a commissioned sales job. Ever. And I'm still a little hazy on the details of how I got here. Sometimes you just gotta close your eyes & jump!

Apr 25, 2010 10:21 AM #16
Sally Dunbar
Lyon Real Estate, Fair Oaks CA (Sacramento Area) - Fair Oaks, CA
Fair Oaks Realtor - Fair Oaks Homes for Sale

Tanya - I love this post.  I have had so many time that taking that first step leads to things you couldn't have planned.  You just have to go for it, and see where things lead.

May 11, 2010 02:53 PM #17
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Tanya Nouwens

Montreal Real Estate Broker & Stager
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