Logging in to my AR account, I am shocked that my last blog entry was back in September!
I am saddened by my lack of commitment to blogging and then I realize that I am committed to so many things that it is dumb to beat myself up about it. I have been so busy trying to keep a company alive, selling real estate, being a single mom, and trying to get healthy, that something had to give. So last month I decided to sell my company. It was a gut wrenching decision that looking back on, I do not regret. At the end of the day, my family, my wallet, and my health was suffering. I lost myself in the last two years of developing a start up company. I turned into a lunatic who worked non stop and who didn't know which direction to head next. While doing so, I forgot about what was truly important to me. My husband has been relocated to North Carolina which left me to be the single mom to my two boys. That stress alone was reason enough to move on. What finally made me decide to sell my company was that I was sacrificing everything, my marriage, my credit, my kids, for what? I realized that at the end of the day no one cared if I could buy groceries or if I hadn't spent more then 3 hours that week with my kids. It is time I look out for myself and get back to what I do best. I am a great Realtor. I work hard for my clients. I listen to their needs and then put together a plan of action to get them what they need. Despite a tough year personally for me, I had record breaking sales and earned a lot of commissions. The problem is that with rising overhead costs and advertising expenses, all of my income went to expenses and Laura brought home nothing. So, for 2009, I am looking ahead to the future. A future that has me spending quality time with my sons, long trips with my husband, and a stress free life of just having a career sans financial pressures of keeping a company alive. I am very proud of what I have accomplished over the past 2 years. I built a name and a business from nothing. I do not have regrets for setting out to do something and accomplishing it.
I do have words of wisdom for any agents who think they might want to start their own company.
1) Get tough skin- When it is your baby, it is hard not to take criticisms personally and to listen to viewpoints other than your own.
2) Start with a lot of capital-If you don't have at least 50% of your yearly budget already in the bank, don't bother starting. Loans for small businesses are tough to get and without capital, you won't make it a day.
3) Do your homework-research all of your options (franchise vs independent), your competition, and your target customer and staff. Without it you might as well be trying to sell soup in Las Vegas in July.