Year of Housing Recovery Opens Door for Aspiring Realtors

Stay at home mom. Waitress. Car salesman. Interior designer. Marketing guru.
What do these people all have in common? A new career in real estate.

2013 brought a whirlwind of excitement and optimism surrounding the real estate market. We saw positive headlines in the news across the country and heard success stories from buyers, sellers and real estate professionals. The housing recovery not only brought many buyers and sellers to the table, but also opened up an opportunity for people of all different backgrounds to explore new career possibilities. With unlimited earning potential, flexibility and the ability to create your own business, real estate was a natural choice for many this past year. In fact, Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage reported a 58% increase in new agents to the business compared to 2012.

— Learn more about the new agents in the video—

Christine Groves – Multitasking mom
Christine-GrovesAfter 12 years in Human Resources, Christine Groves called it quits on her corporate career to take on life’s most important role – motherhood.  Fast forward six years, and Christine was ready to reenter the working world with a new outlook.  She wanted a job that would provide her with flexibility, earning potential and the ability to help people.   Now, she blends her strong communication skills with her savvy real estate knowledge to become a successful working mother who still finds time to wait in the carpool line. In 2013, Groves closed over $4,300,000 in home sales, and last year, she was named Coldwell Banker’s “Rookie of the Year” in the Western Region.

Jennifer DeVries- Social butterfly and waitress
Jennifer-DeVriesHaving grown up in an entrepreneurial family, Jennifer DeVries knew she wanted to be in business for herself, but hadn’t yet identified a good fit for her lifestyle. After college she took to waitressing where she used her outgoing personality to connect with customers. It was her social nature and charm that ultimately landed her in a new career.  She made quite an impression on a seasoned Realtor who she met on the job and was encouraged to visit a branch office to learn more about career opportunities.  She did just that the following morning, and hasn’t looked back since.  One year later she is VP of luxury home sales for the Straub Milito Group and was recently voted “Rookie of the Year” by her peers for Chicago Agent Magazine.

Conor Scanlon – Car Salesman
Conor ScanlonConor Scanlon graduated from DePaul University and quickly went to work for his family’s auto business, where he had worked in various roles since he was 13 years old and most recently selling cars.  Despite having four generation of the car business in his blood, he decided it was time for a change.  He attributes his interest in real estate to childhood experiences, moving around a lot to renovate and decorate new homes due to his mother’s love of flipping houses. As a lifelong Chicagoan, Conor’s passion for the unique offerings that Chicago provides its residents paired with his sales minded approach made for a smooth transition and successful first year on the job.

Trish Orndorff – Entreprenuer and interior designer
ATrish Orndorfflthough real estate was a natural progression for this talented interior designer, Trish Orndorff’s transition in to real estate was a gradual one.  Before starting her own redesign and staging business, Trish excelled as an advertising sales executive for Teen Magazine and Chicago Magazine.  After having children she decided to say farewell to her nine to five job to be a stay at home mom.  Thirteen years later she found the perfect outlet to channel her creativity and revisit her sales and marketing experience.  Her love of design married with the excitement of selling was the perfect equation for a successful Realtor.  She attributes her first year success to effective marketing and social media that allows her to stay connected to her network.

Brian Davis – Marketing and sales professional
Brian DavisPrevious to his position at Coldwell Banker, Brian Davis held a marketing position working with well established businesses such as Comcast, AT&T, Staples, and Verizon. It wasn’t until he personally went through the process as a first time homebuyer that he contemplated becoming a Realtor himself.  He was inspired by his real estate agent, referred to him by a friend, and amazed at how much she enjoyed what she did for a living.   Buying his first home is an experience that he will never forget, and now he feels lucky to have the privilege of being the person behind that and helping to find his clients the home of their dreams.