The Elevator Is Broken, Take The Stairs...

Real Estate Agent with HomeSmart Elite Group Tempe AZ Tel: 602.710.8161 SA585680000
Original content by Thomas J. Nelson, REALTOR ® e-Pro CRS RCS-D Vets CA BRE# 01261476

This will unpopular with the fast-track mind set.


Zig Ziglar said "There's No Elevator To Success, You Must Take The Stairs" if you want to develop the experience, skills and financial ability to succeed in homeownership or in any career, like Real Estate, you start out by going step by step. The development of competence and character comes from the time spent on the climb - but you must climb step by step. Eventually you may build up the strength to jog them, but build the muscles before you dash on up.


My sister and I run property management businesses for our own rental properties in The Bay Area, CA & Reno, NV. We chat all the time and were discussing today about how so many of our tenants and my buyers (especially of a certain generation) seek the express elevator to the trophy house and refuse to climb the stairs. To which I added, "I see many sales agents attempt the same shortcut through buying leads."

The stairs are the logical steps you take to adapt to the progressive responsibilities, experience and skills required for owning or managing the property and or your client. The elevator may be more fun, like winning the lottery or getting a sudden inheritance, but I still recommend the stairs, here's why...

Buyers benefit from taking the stairs because it allows you to gain experience with managing a home, maintaining a home, managing sub-contractors for repair & remodel projects; presumably starting out with a condo or smaller house on an average size lot. It's much easier to learn on 1,200 sq. ft. homes located on 5,000 sq. ft. lots than 4,000 sq. ft. homes with swimming pools and solar leases that are located on acreage. Especially if you've never rented or owned a house before. The upkeep, repairs and upgrades and be daunting when you are starting out (financially and experientially).

Houses are like spouses; they require consistent attention and care:

  • Utility Bills
  • House Payments
  • Insurance
  • Property Taxes
  • Repairs
  • Upkeep
  • Updating & Remodeling
  • Cleaning
  • etc.



REALTORS* benefit from taking the stairs for similar reasons, because if you've never owned a home, its harder to sell a home because you really do not know what the process is like to experience, therefore you can't empathize or understand your clients fears, needs or emotions.

Furthermore if you've never sold a few entry level properties, trying to jump in to luxury homes, investment properties or distressed residential real estate is doing a disservice to you and your clients.

I saw many inexperienced agents in my office go broke during The Great Recession crash of 2007 because they were personally speculating on real estate. They had little experience in real estate and investing, yet were buying up multiple properties in '05, '06 and early '07, telling me I was missing the boat. Well, glad I did, because it was the Titanic as it turns out.

I had a friend call me 2 years ago and request I call her new agent brother and give him a "pep-talk" on how to write an offer for this $3 Million Dollar Buyer he'd just schmoozed into letting him represent. I said I can tell you right now my advice, "refer the buyer and learn from that agent and earn from that agent. Because I could not possibly impart on him my 20 years experience in a 10 minute conversation and he had no business trying to learn his craft on this buyer's luxury deal.


A real estate business and career is one of constant learning from our experience, problem solving, prospecting, negotiating, industry leaders, legal updates, market conditions, training / coaching, to name a few.

There's always exceptions to the "rule" but my long-play advice to buyers and REALTORS* alike, is to climb the stairs: acquire the skills that pay the bills and grow into your home and your career and enjoy the learning and earning along the way; it builds longevity in and gratitude for what you have.



1. Image by Wendy CORNIQUET from Pixabay 

2. Image by kinkate from Pixabay 

3. Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay 

4. Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay 

5. Image by David Mark from Pixabay 

REALTOR®, CRS, RCS-D, CDPE, ePro, Certified:Military Home Specialist,

Certified: Luxury Home Specialist Podcast Host, Author & Keynote Speaker


Brokered by Big Block Realty

Do You Know The Market Says Your Home is Worth?

CA-BRE# 01261476, since 1999  (My Team)

 "Oh by the way, I'm never too busy to serve you and your referrals to good people like you."

 mobile: 858-232-8722 

 8895 Towne Centre Dr. Suite 105 - 436 San Diego, CA 92122

RCS-DivorceSouthern California Chapter of Certified Residential Specialists (CRS)

                               FaceBook    Twitter     LinkedIN     YouTube     Instagram
    Serving: La Jolla * Downtown * Coastal Properties * Metro SD * Seniors & Military-Rebates!
Disclaimer:  Nothing in this blog article is to be construed as legal advice, tax advice, medical advice or financial advice.  For legal advice see an attorney.   For tax advice, health or financial advice see a tax attorney, certified public accountant, or other qualified professional.
Posted by

Steffy Hristova, MBA, SFR, CNE, Realtor®

HomeSmart Elite Group
Tel:  (602) 710-8161

10601  N. Hayden Rd. I-100
Scottsdale AZ 85260


Follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin




Comments (8)

Bill Salvatore - East Valley
Arizona Elite Properties - Chandler, AZ
Realtor - 602-999-0952 / em:

The key is to keep moving forward.  Thanks for the post, enjoyed it.  Its Monday, make it a productive day, stay focused and driven.  Bill Salvatore


Oct 11, 2021 06:26 AM
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy


Thank you for sharing your insights and your advice.  Wishing you a great week.  A

Oct 11, 2021 06:58 AM
Jeffrey DiMuria 321.223.6253 Waves Realty
Waves Realty - Melbourne, FL
Florida Space Coast Homes

Steffy, we do not get to skip steps either. Some folks work harder at taking those steps more than others. 

Oct 11, 2021 08:53 AM
Rocky Dickerson
Realty One Group - Las Vegas, NV
Superior Service!

Step by step, it is a process. As Robert Schuller said, "Yard by yard, it's hard. Inch by inch, it's a cinch."

Oct 11, 2021 04:21 PM
Thomas J. Nelson, REALTOR ® e-Pro CRS RCS-D Vets
Big Block Realty 858.232.8722 - La Jolla, CA
& Host of Postcards From Success Podcast

How do you eat an elephant? Yep, you know the rest. 

Thank You for the re-blog!

Oct 11, 2021 06:59 PM
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

Steffy, great choice to reblog, and stairs is one way to look at our business.  

Oct 23, 2021 07:28 AM
Pat Starnes-Front Gate Realty
Front Gate Real Estate - Brandon, MS
601-991-2900 Office; 601-278-4513 Cell

Jeffrey DiMuria 321.223.6253 Waves Realty read my mind and stole my comment when he said we shouldn't skip the steps. This is spot on! If we insist on skipping steps, we won't have all the skills necessary to do our best in this business. Thanks for sharing, Steffy.

Dec 01, 2021 10:33 AM
John Juarez
The Medford Real Estate Team - Fremont, CA

Other agents “…telling me I was missing the boat. Well, glad I did, because it was the Titanic as it turns out.”

That is the best one-liner that I have encountered in a long time! And it was so true!

Jan 19, 2022 10:35 AM