As an eight year old growing up in Hamilton, Jess was addicted to the world of home improvement and would spend her Saturdays watching Bob Villa. An extreme go getter, she graduated from McMaster University, completing a 4 year honours degree in just 3 years. She was licensed in real estate in August 2013 and in 2016 achieved the RE/MAX Platinum Award.
I met Jess back in 2011 as she was a server at the Milestones near our Winterberry office. After going to Milestones a few times I got to know Jess and we would talk about her desire to get into real estate. She told me that she wanted to be able to test the waters so to speak and asked me if I knew anyone who needed a real estate assistant. So the next day I received a panicked call from one of our team leaders that their assistant gave her 2 week’s notice. So I called Milestones and left a message for Jessica to call me. It was an awkward call - they probably thought I was some creepy guy trying to ask her out. And the rest, as they say is history. Jess took the job and later became licensed and has fast tracked herself to a very successful career in real estate.
Jess suggested we go to a cool little place on Barton Street between Victoria and Wentworth Street, called The Heather. I hadn’t been to this area in years, and the last time I was there I got propositioned by a few friendly women. Having said that, this place was awesome and the block around Oak Street has completely transformed. Jess has had a definite contribution to this neighborhood becoming a go to REALTOR® in the area. I told the owner that I was meeting a REALTOR®, and he asked, “Are you meeting Jess?” We both had an amazing sun choke soup. I had the egg salad on fresh baked bread and Jess had the Kale salad.
What gets Jess up in the morning?
“Making new connections and being able to have an impact”. Jess remembers going with her mom to Barton Street shopping, and her parents talking about the ‘hay days’ on Barton Street where you could find anything you wanted. So Jess has become a real fabric in the Barton Retail community and is making a difference there.
What’s one word you want to own in the minds of your consumers and fellow REALTOR®s?
Without any hesitation Jess exclaimed, “Reliable! I’m all about creating great relationships with everyone, and I am all about not wasting a Seller’s time. I pride myself on working with qualified and knowledgeable buyers to ensure that.”
Why does Jess love Hamilton so much?
“In Toronto everyone is trying to be somebody. In Hamilton there is an opportunity for everyone! Hamilton is a grass roots community where you can be a part of something.”
What about the RE/MAX brand?
“It was easy to decide where to work. I just looked around to see which company was the most prevalent in our area…RE/MAX of course.”
What advice do you have for REALTOR®’s starting out today?
“You should start with a team. Do open houses, as they are a great way to meet people. Be willing and able to shadow someone and don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone. There are plenty of people at RE/MAX Escarpment who can help you through a unique situation.”
Things no one tells you about being a REALTOR®.
“I was under the impression that REALTOR®s were cut throat, I didn’t expect the positive good nature of REALTOR®s and how building strong relationships with REALTOR®s can help you make the deal happen.”
So Jess, what’s the biggest challenge that face REALTOR®s in the future?
“The Amazonization of real estate where the consumers can access anything they want when it comes to real estate. How do we overcome this challenge? Our role is an emotional one. Real estate has an emotional side to it, and it is important to be your client’s shield; help get them the most, and keep them level headed throughout the entire transaction.”
What about new technology in real estate?
“VR (Virtual Reality) where consumers can view homes in their own home. A bit of a game changer.”
What tips do you have for all REALTOR®s?
“One - I learnt it from one of your classes Conrad. Ask for the business and shake on it!!!!! And two, social media. The best thing I love to hear from potential clients is ‘I saw your post on Facebook’. You always want to be top of mind and what better way than social media. On Instagram, I’m all about cool spots in Hamilton. My Facebook is where I connect with my SOI and past clients where I feature Events and Hamilton attractions and information.”
Jess’ social media consists of 50% Hamilton content, 25% is her real estate biz, and 25% is personal.
So if you found $10 dollars in an old pair of jeans what would you do with it Jess?
“I would flip a coin tales I would pay it forward or heads I would buy myself a really cool craft beer.”