Sometimes Niches Choose Us!

Real Estate Agent with GreatWest Realty DRE# 00827565

When I first saw the ActiveRain July contest titled, “Your Riches Are in the Niches,” I knew I would need to contribute my thoughts on the topic. So, here goes:

When I was first licensed in 1981, I planned to focus on my neighborhood as a “farm”. We didn’t use the term, “niche,” back then. However, I quickly learned folks in the many organizations I belonged to (PTA, my kid’s swim team, community council, etc.), were all approaching me to buy and sell real estate. Sometimes our niches, if other than a place to bury our ashes, escape to dwell in other realms! During early years of my career, I often wrote newsletters, which I printed, and sent out to those among my contacts. It easily helped made my first decade as a Realtor, a successful one.

In the early 1990s, Sacramento was hard hit by a recession. Three military bases which had contributed greatly to our economy, were shut down. The recession was not a short one, and recovery did not quickly follow. As a result of recovery delay, and the fact that I like eating and living indoors, I found a temporary job with a software development company. Out of that decision, birth was given to a whole new niche. While many were struggling financially because of recession, the software developers and engineers at my “temporary job” were employed, thriving, and able to buy and sell homes. They were my new generation of clientele – My new niche!

The “temporary” job originally forecast to last a mere 4 months, instead lasted over 8 years. I was exceptionally busy burning the candle at both ends and in the middle, while keeping two full time careers alive, but I managed.

It was 2005 when the company experienced a sizable lay-off. I was among those who were given a generous departure package. I began contemplating retirement. I soon found myself at the local senior center crocheting doilies with delightful older folk. While I enjoyed my time there, something inside me kept calling me back to some sibilance of the former life I had been living. After a few months of full retirement, I authored a real estate newsletter, and sent it out to past clients. I have learned I don’t have it in me to ever fully retire. In retirement, I felt I was dying on the vine.

In today’s world, I no longer beat bushes like I once did. However, my niche today is comprised of past clients, and folks I know. It’s a way for me to occasionally reconnect with folks I’ve known for years, and love interacting with.

If I were to advise new agents about selecting a niche, I’d say keep an open mind to possibilities other than the niche they have originally chose for themselves. Sometimes we don’t choose our niches . . . Sometimes niches choose us! And, if it is a realm we are comfortable and happy with, that’s not a bad thing!


Re-Blogged 1 time:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Roy Kelley 10/07/2018 01:00 AM
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Dean Gudlauski
RE/MAX Around Atlanta (Real Estate Professional; 404.488.4663) - Atlanta, GA

I liked the way you demonstrated how niches may also change depending on where you are in your career and/or life as our environment and opportunities evolve. Develop a niche that may find you through your daily connections if it works well for you. Keep in mind, you can influence what those day-to-day connections are by the type of activities in which you choose to participate. Be open-minded and aware enough to embrace new ones when the time is right.

Jul 23, 2018 09:28 PM #22
Lottie Kendall
Compass - San Francisco, CA
Helping make your real estate dreams a reality

Hi Myrl - what a great tale. Being open to new ideas, new possibilities is a great lesson you're sharing here.

Jul 23, 2018 10:23 PM #23
Gene Mock
Associate Broker ~ Premier Team, KW Realty - Leesburg, VA

Hi Myrl,

What a lovely blog.  I keep finding new niches myself.  I started with luxury and equestrain, from there to short sales and foreclosures. Now I'm back to luxury and equestrain all because of a changing market.

Jul 23, 2018 10:42 PM #24
Barbara Michaluk
Weichert Realtors | Silver Spring, MD Phone Direct 240-506-2434 - Silver Spring, MD
Top Producing / Full Service REALTOR in Marylan

Thanks for sharing your journey about how you remained open to explore alternative niches as your life situation changed..

Jul 24, 2018 04:14 AM #25
Dan Jasmer
Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate - Sarasota, FL
Changing the way you look at real estate

Myrl, thank you for posting and sharing your experiences!

Jul 24, 2018 04:34 AM #26
Brian DeYoung
Howard Hanna Real Estate Services - Ithaca, NY
Brian DeYoung

Past clients are usually a joy to work with.

I enjoy having a clientele of nearly all repeat clients and referrals. Thank you for sharing your experience, I can see that the way forward was as planned. A nice marker to reassure me, and people like us.

Jul 24, 2018 06:39 AM #27
Marte Cliff
Marte Cliff Copywriting - Priest River, ID
Your real estate writer

I enjoyed your story Myrl. I personally can't imagine retirement, although I sometimes wish I had more hours to make my yard and garden look a bit more presentable. Oh - and to clean the house now and then.

Somehow, when I don't have anything I "must" do, I can't get interested in doing anything at all.

Jul 24, 2018 11:00 AM #28
M.C. Dwyer
Century 21 Showcase REALTORs - Felton, CA
Santa Cruz Mountains Property Specialist

Great post Myrl....I was a retired Air Force brat in the foothills. Losing Mather and McLellelan was a huge loss for your area.

Jul 24, 2018 12:12 PM #29
John Wiley
Right Move Real Estate Group- EXP Realty - Fort Myers, FL
Lee County, FL, ECO Broker, GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA

Our lives are so varied and different from each other. Location, events, economy are big factors that go into giving us our direction in life.

I enjoyed reading your journey. The one thing that stood out to me was your tenacity. You would/will not be stopped by circumstances, but rather find a way to focus and make progress.

Thanks for sharing.

Jul 24, 2018 01:15 PM #30
Debbie Reynolds
Platinum Properties - Clarksville, TN
Your Dedicated Clarksville TN Real Estate Agent

I tell my new agents to try different segments to see what they are good at and what they like. Thanks for your post, Myrl.

Jul 24, 2018 08:34 PM #31
Jan Green
Value Added Service, 602-620-2699 - Scottsdale, AZ
HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN

Good for you!  That is definitely a way to survive in a recession!  So glad you were able to survive, but also thrive with 2 careers.  And it's good that you are still in the business and happy to know you in AR!

Jul 24, 2018 08:43 PM #32
Mary Hutchison, SRES, ABR
Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate-Kansas City Homes - Kansas City, MO
Experienced Agent in Kansas City Metro area

Great story!  You have thrived through a couple of recessions...and will surely last through the next one!  Being active in your community can bring business.

Jul 25, 2018 06:04 AM #33
Jill Sackler
Charles Rutenberg Realty Inc. 516-575-7500 - Long Beach, NY
LI South Shore Real Estate - Broker Associate

Nothing could be truer! Ideally, niches should find us. I found that out when I started focusing on a demographic that I thoroughly enjoyed working with, but which did not lead to success. Maybe, it should have been more organic like the experiences you share in your story.

Jul 25, 2018 07:32 AM #34
Jeff Dowler, CRS
Solutions Real Estate - Carlsbad, CA
The Southern California Relocation Dude

Hi Myrl

I really enjoyed reading more about your background and life, and how you got to where you are. I think many of us have had niches that found us ragher than being more planful.  Same for me.


Jul 25, 2018 08:37 AM #35
Pat Starnes-Front Gate Realty
Front Gate Real Estate - Brandon, MS
601-991-2900 Office; 601-278-4513 Cell

I can relate to every word. My story is similar to yours. When the recession comes along and we find ourselves not as busy as we once were, we have to make the necessary adjustments and learn to "shift" into something new yet equally productive.

Jul 25, 2018 03:52 PM #36
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

I want to thank everyone who left the wonderful comments.  I have read each and every one, and I am grateful for them!

Jul 26, 2018 04:19 PM #38
Will Hamm
Hamm Homes - Aurora, CO
"Where There's a Will, There's a Way!"

Myrl,  You did it again,  I learn so much from your blogs that I am looking for you all the time now.

Jul 29, 2018 04:43 PM #39
Diana Zaccaro
Tropical Beachside brokered by eXp - Cocoa Beach, FL
"The Accidental Blogger" Cocoa Beach, Florida

Myrl, I can't believe how similar our titles were and even more so, how we both fell into our niche rather than seeking it out. Your newsletters are proof that sometimes less is more in marketing.


Aug 01, 2018 12:14 PM #40
Lise Howe
Keller Williams Capital Properties - Washington, DC
Assoc. Broker and Attorney Licensed in DC, MD, VA,

What a wonderful post - I love my farm and my past clients as my niches! 

Oct 07, 2018 06:19 AM #41
Jane Chaulklin-Schott
TEAMCONNECT REALTY - (407) 394-9766 - Orlando, FL
TeamConnect Luxury Homes - Orlando, Florida, 32836

Really enjoyed this newsy post, Myrl Jeffcoat.  I missed the Sacramento Field of Daffodils this 2019, but so glad I did not miss this post, even though I am a year late. I cannot picture you ever going into an extreme retirement either...maybe semi...... some years into the future......

Jun 22, 2019 04:44 PM #42
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Myrl Jeffcoat

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