“The largest challenge in pursuing a career in real estate is earning trust. The profession has a bad rep.”
Such are the words of Jennifer Patterson, owner of Jennifer Patterson Realty. But this sentiment is echoed by all who have either dealt with realtors or are themselves, real estate agents. The reputation of so many real estate agents has been tarnished by a series of bad experiences collected by average property purchasers. Much too often, agents have been found to possess insufficient experience that hardly qualifies them as legitimately proficient. Many who don’t know enough to provide adequate information that can help buyers make informed decisions have stepped into the role of a realtor.
And this is a problem.
For Jennifer Patterson, this perception is a major obstacle she has to overcome. She says that the first responsibility a realtor must take on is to provide their clients with a solid level of comfort as they go through the process of purchasing a property.
“My business is very much relationship-based,” Jennifer said. “And if the transactions follow, that’s great. But my goal is to become their realtor for life. I’m very passionate about helping them achieve their goals, whether that’s buying or selling.”
Collecting the Weapons for One’s Arsenal
So, what sets a legitimately competent realtor from someone who has little to no expertise in the field?
The answer is, of course: experience.
Currently known as one of the most reliable real estate agents in the Triangle Region of North Carolina, Patterson’s 16 years of experience has certainly played a part. She first entered the world of real estate in 2005 when she oversaw her family’s investment properties. Her parents had, at the time, purchased 40 properties in South Carolina. Her experience in aiding them through the process was what sparked that journey towards who she has become today. To date, she has brought her expertise to the table when aiding clients such as the first female Tennessee Supreme Court Justice, the Dean of Finance at the University of North Carolina, as well as the Head of the University of North Carolina’s MBA program, to name a few.
But what is experience without the right application of knowledge? Jennifer’s past education serves as a testament to the fact that real estate agents should be equipped with the right kind of knowledge before going into this field.
Being a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) for over two decades, Jennifer identifies this period of time as an asset for her. Her strong educational foundation at Virginia Tech’s Pamplin School of Business and her training with top-notch firms like Deloitte and KPMG have given her a huge advantage in the industry.
“Often, my CPA background really helps me differentiate myself from the pack,” Jennifer commented when asked about the assets which have boosted her credibility in the business. And indeed, a common concern among property buyers is that many realtors, upon whom they expect to be dependent, do not meet their expectations. Underquoting the prices of properties is a frequent mistake that inexperienced realtors make. Jennifer uses her advantage of accounting and financial knowledge to quash her client’s reservations on this matter.
Making Things Personal in Real Estate
To Patterson, experience and in-depth knowledge aren’t enough to mark her legacy in the industry. She and her team of experts in Jennifer Patterson Realty have decided to really get their hands dirty in order to get each job done successfully.
Before a home is listed, Jennifer Patterson Realty’s staging team works to provide free consultations to the company’s clients. The listings are professionally photographed, an appraiser is hired to design floor plans with measurements, and the team works to ensure everything looks perfect for each listing.
“I treat each listing as if it’s a live performance,” Jennifer said. “We really need to do our preparation in order to perform well during the listing period.”
The quality of her work is always double-checked before she goes back to triple-check it. Acute attention to detail is an important trait for any business owner to possess – one can never be too accomplished to continuously improve. In instances like this, it’s easy for any home purchaser to recognize that their future plans are being taken care of by a realtor. This is what Jennifer’s team strives towards: building that trust. Purchasing a new home, especially for first-time buyers, can be a daunting experience. In the face of such a major change in one’s life, conflicting opinions can easily arise.
“I seek to understand before being understood. I’m also skillful at deescalating worries during stressful situations. Possibly the most challenging part of my business is managing all the family members and their different styles of dealing with stressful situations. I find that most people just want to be heard and validated as to where they are in their thought process.”
When the Real Estate Business Has a Heart
Jennifer’s dreams of growing in the real estate industry aren’t just limited to her business. She has long been recognized as a philanthropist. Her heart lies in her aspirations to shelter the underprivileged. And she does this by donating to an international home-building organization with each transaction her business makes.
“For each transaction, whether it’s a sale or a purchase, I will donate money to Food for the Poor through a program I call ‘building a home while buying and selling a home’,” she explained. This means that each closing results in the contribution of $500 to a home-building fund. “Once a client has completed transactions totaling $1 million, I donate $3,800 that is matched by an anonymous donor. That $7,600 is used to build a home with full plumbing in another country for needy families. Having a homestead changes the future of the entire family that is helped.”
Perhaps the future of real estate can not only rake in economic advantages; it can bring about social changes, too. Plans like this make way for a world where a single home purchase reaps the benefits for as many parties as possible.
Jennifer’s current focus centers upon residential real estate while she trains in commercial real estate and land development. However, she plans to go further. Her next ambition is to develop a 100-acre community.
“One of the things I love most about my job is the gratifying aspect of being able to give back while helping folks achieve their dreams.”