Local Realtor® Starts Her Own Brokerage During Global Pandemic
Posted October 4, 2020 in Special Features
by Kristin Dorsett, Special Features Writer, The Columbian
When everything shut down in the early days of the pandemic Lauren Aldous says many Realtors® were left wondering, “What are we supposed to do now?”
She describes the initial lockdown as a reflective and emotional time due to the uncertainty of what impact COVID-19 would have on the real estate market.
“So we’re all at home sanitizing everything and you have time to go through levels of emotions like depression, sadness, doom and gloom,” she said. “No one has ever lived through this and no one knows what to do. It’s all very scary.”
She says she spent the first week or two lying on the couch worrying for herself as well as those she knew who were sick. She also says she contemplated the world and life while asking herself serious questions like, “Will I ever be able to work again? Will anyone be able to afford a house?”
“It was a real ‘Come to Jesus’ moment for me,” Lauren said. “I started thinking, ‘what is it in my life that I wish I would have done?’”
What she realized is that she wished she could have helped more people. Like many other buyer’s agents Lauren Aldous loves helping people find their dream home. But another aspect of the business Lauren realized she also enjoys is helping other agents.
“I started thinking about what’s lacking in brokerages,” she said. “I assisted new agents out there who were left not knowing what to do.”
She thought back to when she first started out in bigger brokerages and remembered how difficult it was. “There’s no one there to help, no one there to tell you anything,” she said. “You’re told things like ‘work your sphere’ but what does that even mean? They expect you to already know what that means.”
This brought her to a big decision: Lauren decided to start her own real estate brokerage.
“I started studying what it means to actually teach others how to do well in sales, what to say, what not to say, there’s so much involved,” she said. “I did the research, pros and cons, why brokerages fail, thought out all those equations.”
Despite the challenges to opening a brokerage during a global pandemic with everyone working remotely, Lauren was able to complete the licensing requirements and open Urban Avenue Realty within just a few months.
She says she wants to keep her brokerage small. Right now she has just two agents following her with another potential two on the way. She says business for her new brokerage is going well.
“We’re so busy right now it’s astonishing,” she said. “It’s one of the busiest years I’ve ever had. In between helping buyers I’m also training and teaching new agents negotiating tactics and how to get clients what they want for the best possible price.”
She also believes that teaching agents to work well with other agents is important. “If we can’t work well with other agents then we’re not giving clients the proper service,” Lauren said. “The home buyers and sellers are the end result of who we’re helping but if we can produce caring and customer service-oriented agents that is my number one goal.”
Above all, Lauren says she wants to be the brokerage that helps people in a positive way with true genuine care for clients.
“They are not commissions walking around on two feet. They are people,” she said. “People need more help and I want to be the person to help.”