Much like military brats, we grew up in a family that traveled the world to major construction sites with my Dad. My Dad worked for Chicago Bridge & Iron (CBI) traveling to job sites that built things like bridges, water towers, nuclear power plants and the like. We had many different experiences in our travels from different cultures and diverse traditions within our own borders of the USA as well as overseas.
As kids, we didn’t really have lots of “things” but we always went and did stuff. As an adult, I am still this way. I don’t have fancy “stuff” to decorate my home, but I do have pictures of myself, family and friends doing things – boating, camping, kayaking, hiking, concerts, theme parks, etc. Whenever we travel somewhere, we always make it a point to search out some local spot to explore.
I started my real estate career in a real estate appraisal office. I was fresh out of high school doing the typical clean the toilets and run the errands. I worked my way up through the office positions – all of them – till the owner told me she’d like to mentor me and put me through school to get my appraiser’s license. As it turns out, my future husband was on the same adventure and went through schooling and apprenticeship at the same time I did.
We love being appraisers. We love not having a boss over our shoulder; we love being outside and not stuck in a cubicle somewhere. We love seeing different houses and what people do to make it their home. I think one of my main things is that I love seeing how things are built; I guess it comes from watching my Dad’s jobsites grow from dirt to something huge!
Speaking of something huge, if you haven’t seen the Hoover Dam Bypass Bridge you should come see it! It is an awesome sight to see.
Next we signed up with a company that contracts with FEMA to inspect disaster hit homes. We were called up to go to Houston after Hurricane Ike in 2008. It is truly amazing the force of Mother Nature and what she can do in a matter of hours. FYI: a tree will go through a home (manufactured or stick built) like a hot knife through butter.
The next natural thing that came was to help homeowners with their property taxes as a Property Tax Agent. My husband Gary already did this, but as a tax agent I come across as many different types of properties as I do as an appraiser, but we also do commercial. Working with these commercial property owners, we would help them to put together deals. Big deals!
The next thing we did was to get our real estate sales license. I guess we would still be considered newbie agents since we’ve only been at it a couple years; but there is something about that feeling you get when you help a client go from Joe Schmoe renter to Homeowner – and the look on their face when you hand them the keys to their new home. That’s priceless.