Life is one long, continuous story, broken up into a serious of events. Some of these events are long. Some are short. There are those with a clear beginning and end. Then there are those that have the audacity to overlap and overshadow several other events in our lives. This blog will be about our journey into and throughout real estate investing. One I like to call, the path less travelled. From humble beginnings to leaving my career to start a house buying company in Baltimore, MD.
Well, that’s when I mark the official beginning of the business. That will be a story for another time. However, this journey started long before then. It started with a girl, born and raised in Baltimore, MD and raised by a single mom. A girl with a dream and desire so strong it could no longer be ignored. Enjoy!
Starting any business has its challenges. Especially, when you have little to no knowledge on how to do so. Most people would never dream of abandoning a steady-paying career to jump head-first into the great unknown! Heck, I fantasized about what that would be like but I never in a million years thought I’d actually take the plunge and make that fantasy a reality! Then again, life does seem to ever so enjoy throwing curve balls our way doesn’t it? You learn to “bob and weave” through life. Though, sometimes after all of that bobbing and weaving year after year, you realize the “reward” is just no longer worth the trouble.
That being said, leaving a relatively sure thing to pursue near constant uncertainty is not for the faint of heart. In order to overcome the near paralyzing fear of pursuing something of this nature, both the push from and the pull towards have to be SUBSTANTIAL! That is the only way you will be able to jump off of the proverbial cliff and have your parachute carry you safely to your next destination.
You have to believe somewhere deep down, that the possibility of what you will reach at the end of your drop is worth the risk even if you wind up missing your desired landing entirely. Yikes! Well, they say, nothing in life is guaranteed, except death and taxes… so how does one gather up the “courage” to jump all-in?
Finding the Courage
LeBron James recently coined the concept of “no more humble beginnings.” The stories of humble beginnings are what our country loves and well, I came from humble beginnings. I attribute much of my grit and tenacity to persevere through life’s challenges because I was determined to break away from those humble beginnings.
College happened and I graduated with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and sociology. Absolutely fascinating subjects! College happened again and I graduated with a master’s degree in school psychology. I landed a job in the exact school district I had always wanted to work in, Baltimore, MD! That is until I spent a few years working in it…
I loved so much of what I did or the possibility of what I could do. However, I did not enjoy the workplace politics, among a few other things. I found that myself, my ambition, and my creativity were absolutely suffocated. I saw many colleagues experiencing the same. Those who were excelling and making leaps and bounds? Well, they were taking substantial amounts of work home, spending time away from their families.
Had I really busted my butt, for this? Attending graduate school, working nights full time, with a growing toddler/preschooler, then interning on top of all that? All of that to score the job and career of my dreams just to continue to take work home and take time away from myself and my family.
No! Thank! You!
It wasn’t long before I realized that without spending a substantial amount of my own time and my own resources, many of the things I disliked about my career would remain exactly the same. I wasn’t willing to put myself in a position to give up my “freedom” just to be a better employee. I had worked so incredibly hard to earn the “freedom” for myself and my family. I was done working so incredibly hard. Or so I thought…
My job slowly began to creep into my time outside of school hours, either by my having to bring work home or carrying with me the emotional baggage that comes with a career in the social service industry. At one point, I remember writing psychological reports, in the aftermath of a snow storm in which they had declared a state of emergency, with a NEWBORN!
Oh yes, my daughter decided to enter into this great big world during a time when it was illegal for us to drive due to the severe weather conditions. I’m partially thankful for that storm because it cancelled schools for an entire week and thus gave me more time to finish up reports in time for those legal deadlines (that are impractical and make no sense but that’s a rant for another day). Oh yes, after having just given birth to my second child I was busy writing confidential psychological reports because legal deadlines had to be met.
I don’t recall ever receiving as much as a “thank you” afterwards. I’m not saying it didn’t happen but if it did, it didn’t make any sort of impression on me compared to what I went through to make sure those reports were done. Just a “how many do you think you can get done and how quickly?” It’s not the fault of my supervisors or colleagues. I know this. It’s the system. The system is broken. There’s nothing much that could be done at my pay grade, or that of my supervisors for that matter, in order to improve the situation. However, that was just one of many many straws that eventually broke the camel’s back.
Well, I’m sure you’ve guessed by now, my dream career did not afford me the “freedom” I had promised myself and worked so incredibly hard for. Enough was enough and I just couldn’t do it anymore. Our family had plans to move out of the state and so I decided to start a house flipping company in Baltimore, MD.
Why would I start a house buying company in Baltimore, MD I was planning to move away from? Well I was thinking, if we moved, that it’d be ok as a lot of things in the real estate industry can be done virtually. If I started here and built up some relationships, I could move and still operate a business in Baltimore, MD. Well, life happened and we didn’t end up moving so I continued to grow the business locally.
I’ve had a few successes and probably just as many (if not more) “failures,” but with each experience I’ve grown and improved. We’re very much looking forward to expanding our business further in 2020. With our underlying mission of improving the educational outcomes of children in our local urban school districts because even though I left that career behind, the idea behind it still holds a very near and dear place in my heart. I can’t wait to make some moves in 2020 towards our mission!