How do you navigate the complexities of the ever-changing housing market? First, you need a trustworthy, knowledgeable guide.
Even though real estate is something the vast majority of us must deal with at some point or another—as renters, landlords, buyers or sellers—most of us are never given the background we need to confidently navigate it. Like taxes, 401Ks and health insurance, it’s something we’re largely expected to figure out on our own. I’m determined to change that, which is why I started my own real estate business, Safa Real Estate, in the Los Angeles area.
My introduction to real estate began early; my parents were property managers in the San Gabriel Valley. During school breaks and sometimes on the weekends, I would help them around the office.
It didn’t take long for me to realize that every real estate transaction is a delicate balance. It takes a lot of hard work and consideration to ensure both parties—buyers and sellers, landlords and tenants—are happy, but it’s incredibly rewarding when you figure out how to do it.
To be sure, every deal is different—and the room for nuance is wide—but I’m committed to bringing the same approach to each: how can I empower my clients to make informed decisions they’ll be happy with?
That question was at the heart of my decision to strike out on my own and start a real estate business in the Pasadena area. But at the same time, I knew that if I really wanted to be a good realtor, I needed to do more than get a license and have a philosophy—I also needed expertise.
Few people realize it, but 90% of real estate is legal, so I ended up going to law school to specialize in real estate law. While there, I was inspired to help people at both ends of the spectrum and not simply focus on sellers or landlords.
When it comes down to it, buying or selling a home is a huge milestone, financially and mentally. So is deciding to lease your property or choosing a place to rent. I want to make sure that each of my clients feel empowered to make a decision that’s appropriate for them.
Recently, I worked with a first-time home buyer and whose first language was not English. Buying property is daunting no matter what, but in a relatively unfamiliar language, it’s downright intimidating, so I made sure to guide this new client through the entire process—maybe to the point some realtors would balk at, but I was happy to do it. That’s what comes with being my client.
Once the sale was finalized, the client decided to expand into yet another new realm: renting—and I was there the whole way. In an era where direct-to-consumer businesses are gaining more and more traction, the next frontier is affordable, concierge real estate—and I hope to be leading the pack.
This content is sponsored by Tom Safa.
Photo: Getty Images