Real Estate Agent with Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500 NRDS ID#641625055


A number of years ago, after a prolonged period of illness, I unintentionally found myself counted as one of the unemployed.

When I was ready to return to the workforce, I updated my work history, perused newspaper and online ads, wrote targeted, informative and well-articulated cover letters and sent out 150 or so resumes. Each time, I waited impatiently to hear back that my background, education and enumerated strengths were tailor-made for the opening.

Of the ridiculously few 4 or 5 interviews I was granted, I was offered no positions. It was a real eye-opener to discover that as I was rapidly approaching the age of 50, I was no longer in demand in the marketplace. Job Fair 2/6/2012

Fortunately, I discovered real estate as a career and it's been a perfect fit ever since. The flexibility of the workday suits my needs perfectly and the sky's the limit in terms of introducing creativity for getting the job done. Since science has supported that autonomy, mastery and making a contribution to society are people's main motivators at work, the real estate field certainly seems to fit the bill.

For anyone over "a certain age," finding employment, especially in this economy, can seem an awful lot like spinning your wheels. It can take a really long time and there's no guarantee of success at the end. The main problem seems to be prevalent biases against the older worker. Bosses may be afraid an older employee will be stuck in his ways and not quick to catch on to new ways of doing things, display little energy during the workday and have trouble taking orders from someone much younger. In a country, where youth and vitality are promoted as the ideal, an aging workforce sends the wrong message.

In fact, the very opposite of the stereotype portrayed above has emerged to be true. After the ago of 50, you're less likely to have distractions that can interfere with your career. If you're a woman, your pregnancy days are over and your children have likely reached adulthood. You won't miss any more work days because your child has a fever or a a talent show is being presented at school. Those are the years when you can really throw yourself into your job and give 110% to the development of your career. If anything, older workers have fewer sick days, and are more loyal to the company. Their enthusiasm, dedication and genuine desire to excel coupled with a real appreciation for the opportunity afforded them makes them the perfect candidates.

Innately introverted, during my unemployed tenure, I struggled with embarrassment and gravitated toward keeping my status under wraps. In hindsight, I was doing it all wrong."Do as I say and not as I do" would be the most obvious advice I could give you at this point in time.

You absolutely need to get the word out and, in this day and age, this means using social media to advertise your availability. Let everyone know on Linkedin, Facebook, Twitter, Google plus etc. that you're looking for a job. Maybe, someone will recognize your talents, your uniqueness and what you can bring to the table and your job application days will be far behind you.

Nassau County offers employment workshops for those older than 55.


Suffolk County One-Stop Employment Center   631.853.6600


Job Fair picture courtesy of Senator Mark Warner's photostream via's Creative Commons License




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Long Island Real Estate Needs? 

Reach me @516.395.8376


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Long Beach is a diverse community that is never short on entertainment. Interested in moving to Long Beach?

Don't hesitate to call me and we can begin our tour.



CHARLES RUTENBERG REALTY INC.  *****  516-575-7500  *****



Jill Sackler, NYS Real Estate Broker Associate based on Long Island's South Shore

Sunny Isles, Fl 

       Specializing in Lifecycle Real Estate 

"When your family doesn't fit your family home, I can help."


©Jill Sackler 2010


Comments (12)

Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

Jill, there IS life after 50, and especially in real estate!    I have friends and clients edging close to the magic age, and finding employment can be very tough!

Feb 05, 2012 04:47 AM
Li Read
Sea to Sky Premier Properties (Salt Spring) - Salt Spring Island, BC
Caring expertise...knowledge for you!

Very wise post!   I agree, too, that a career in real estate sales is "age-proof"'s about knowledge, negotiating skills, customer service smarts, etc...not about one's birth certificate!

Feb 05, 2012 05:11 AM
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Jill, I find it hard to believe you are over 42.  I am up there in age and I know going in real estate was the way to go.  I am my own boss.

Feb 05, 2012 02:09 PM
Ron Marshall
Marshall Enterprises - Saint Michael, MN
Birdhouse Builder Extraordinaire

Jill, you hit the nail on the head.  And, you made me feel better.  If someone as gorgeous as you had a hard time, what are my odds?

Feb 06, 2012 09:15 AM
Debb Janes EcoBroker and Bernie Stea JD
ViewHomes of Clark County - Nature As Neighbors - Camas, WA
REALTORS® in Clark County, WA

50 is the new ?? It's actually whatever you make it - and making it in Real Estate is accomplished by those folks with a good work ethic and sound principles. The reason you're a success shows the value you would have in "any" work environment. Their loss was Real Estate's gain...right?


Feb 06, 2012 09:44 AM
Jill Sackler
Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500 - Long Beach, NY
LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate

Joan - I remember reading somewhere that the average age in real estate is around 54. At least, I fit right in.

Sea to Sky - Yes, thanks. I've written about those timeless real estate skills before also.

Will - What a charmer! Your wife and business partner would be hard-pressed to find another one like you.

Ron - Who's to say how someone else will fare? Maybe your skills are more in demand than mine. BTW, thanks a bunch but, really, you're too kind. It's just a nice photo.

Debb - Thank you. I do enjoy hard work and have always put great effort into whatever I do.

Feb 06, 2012 10:14 AM
Ellen Caruso
Daniel Gale Sotheby's International Realty - Glen Head, NY

Jill, I'm only 47 and I find it very hard getting back into the graphic design and advertising field. I'm getting to the point like you say shout it out! I want to display my portfolio on line among other things. How about just giving me the interview, they'd see like you say, a very alert, creative individual whose kids are grown and now I can give them all of me.

BTW saw the commercial on Superbowl...very fun.

Feb 06, 2012 01:11 PM
Jon Zolsky, Daytona Beach, FL
Daytona Condo Realty, 386-405-4408 - Daytona Beach, FL
Buy Daytona condos for heavenly good prices

I came to this country a bit too late, I was 40, and with all our baggage from another country and another culture, Not that many opportunities for those who were in the same situation. In a sense, you are very right about real estate.

It is a perfect fit, as it allows to operate without a lot of inventory, initial operating expenses...

Feb 06, 2012 02:49 PM
Cindy Westfall
Premiere Property Group,LLC Portland Metro & Suburbs Oregon - Tualatin, OR
ABR,GRI Your Tualatin & Portland Metro Real Estate

Hi Jill, After years choosing to be home raising my kids..especially through several moves to different states, It was interesting to get back into the work force in my mid forties. Real estate has been a perfect fit for me as well. I do remember seeing a video..think it was on Alan May's blog a while back showing a young motivational speaker asking the older generation to please stay in the work force. He goes on to say that the younger generation needs us as we have that great work ethic that isn't really seen today. Great blog!

Feb 06, 2012 02:55 PM
Steve and Jan Bachman
RE/MAX Gateway, Reston, Herndon, Ashburn, Sterling, Fairfax - Herndon, VA
Realtors - Northern Virginia

Thank God for real estate! The charms of it never end for us 50 year old geniuses I say.

Now, if I just happened to be an electrical engineer with a masters in computer science as well...

forget it...that can't be as much fun as Realtordom eh Jill ?

Feb 07, 2012 09:21 AM
Sheila Newton Team Anderson & Greenville SC
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices - C. Dan Joyner - Anderson, SC
Selling the Upstate since 1989

I am getting very close to the 50 mark.. great post and it makes me feel better about my age!

Feb 07, 2012 02:53 PM
Jill Sackler
Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500 - Long Beach, NY
LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate

Ellen - Get your portfolio out there! You're sure to change their minds with the caliber of your work.

Jon - When I first started here on AR, Why Choose Real Estate? was the 2nd or 3rd blog I posted. I called it the Great Equalizer.

Cindy - Thanks. Never saw that video but I like the message. However, I can't help but think that part of the problem is that when there are not enough jobs for everyone, something has to give.

Hi Steve - I like the sound of that word - Realtordom. The fun never ends in real estate.

Sheila - Welcome. It isn't all that bad. The great part is feeling really comfortable in your own skin.


Feb 07, 2012 03:31 PM