Sorry, for those who follow or subscribe to this podcast, it was the neglected step-child, ironically because I was always too busy with my Real Estate Career. As of January 1st, 2017 I’ve left Real Estate to look for something else, and I’ll tell you why in a minute. First of all, if you’re listening to this, you’re a true friend, and I really appreciate you. The thing I will miss the most is the clients I have worked with at various times over the years, watching your kids grow up, or change from a small house to a bigger one. You have become friends, and that doesn’t go away, but the Calendar at Christmas time does, I’m afraid.
To give you a little context; my mom likes to describe the difference between my younger brother and I by watching us in Gymnastics class when we were kids. We got in line and ran down towards the springboard to jump over the pommel horse. Rob would Run to the spring board stop, and wait for the guy to lift him over the pommel horse. By contrast I would run as fast as I could, hit the spring board, try to jump over the pommel horse before the guy could help me over. It’s always been this way for me. I literally and figuratively dive head-first into the things I’m interested, and Real Estate was no different. So when my son Joey was born, Jennifer told me that as she was getting started in her therapy private practice it was my turn to get a job with health benefits. I put this off in part because the Affordable Health Care Act, or Obamacare gave us great insurance for the 3 of us for the first year, very cheap. Like $79 per month total. Unfortunately the next year it went up to $1400, and we had to quit, and have been without healthcare since. And on top of that, I frequently took other people’s problems on as my own, took their stress, answered phone calls or texts late at night, and spent a lot of my own money to smooth over negotiations by paying to fix things myself. These things were not conducive to family life, as I brought my stress into the house with us nightly. On top of that I volunteered every year with the Greater Fairbanks Board of Realtors, going to many of the committee meetings, even ones I was not a part of, served as Director, Treasurer, President, chairs of various committees, etc. By the time I made the decision to close the business down, I did it carefully and gradually, from October through the end of the year, making sure all my clients were taken care of by colleagues and that nothing was left hanging. Of course my last two transactions had repair money held in escrow until the Spring, and I will still help take care of those things. So it took me months to get out, to get my buyers and Sellers taken care of until there were none left, and in the mean time, some of the damage was done. Jennifer had moved out. She’s been taking time to decide what she needs to do, and I am here looking for another job with health benefits and regular, predictable hours. Please keep me in mind if you know of a position where a driven, possibly obsessive person like me might fit in. If you’ve made it to the end, thanks for listening to this final episode. I would like to have done more with this podcast, and I will miss Real Estate, but Family has to come first, finally.
New Years Day is a good time for reflection, and so please bare with me. I wanted to take some time to explain why I’m moving on from being an active REALTOR.
When my son Joey was born, my wife was beginning her private practice as a therapist, and we decided that it was my turn to get a job with health benefits. That was five years ago, and I put it off all this time because I love my job, but another aspect of the business is that we tend to get obsessed with work, taking calls at dinner, or text messages at 11:00 at night, taking on our clients’ stress as our own, and wanting to make things better for them. It starts to become an addiction, and we’re rewarded with positive reviews, or stars on Zillow for how responsive we are, even at the expense of our family. This is not to say that it can’t be done. I know a lot of Realtors with happy families as far as I can tell, but it was not something I was able to master.
In addition to work, I was also volunteering at the Greater Fairbanks Board of Realtors on committees, as a director, treasurer and President. I was even voted Realtor of the Year in 2015. The recognition felt really good until in 2016 when I was making the speech announcing the new Realtor of the Year at the annual installation banquet, my wife wasn’t there with me for the first time in 15 years.
So it was time for a change. For the same reason I don’t keep cookies in the house, I have to break myself away from this job I love and do something else; something with more fixed hours where I can really be home when I’m home. I took the past two months or so to work out my remaining transactions and refer my clients to trusted colleagues. I will also remain licensed, and stay involved with the last few transactions where there are still things to do. Now I’m working on taking care of my family, and myself. Thank you to everyone I’ve worked with over these years, I hope we can stay in contact. For clients and friends, if you want to help me out, then let me refer you to a colleague.
I’m looking forward to new challenges and a better 2017 for us all.
Keep watching this space for information about me, rental availability and Real Estate Referral service.