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Mining the Margins

Guest contributor Michelle Hofmann of REALTOR®Mag says:

margins realtormag

Three years. That’s how long it took Teresa Scott-TibbsTeresa Scott-Tibbs, a salesperson with Keller Williams Realty in Austin, Texas, to turn one renter into a home buyer. Still, she says there’s value in marketing to potential buyers waiting in the wings.

“I came into this business understanding that everybody deserves to own a home, no matter if they’re renters or not,” says Scott-Tibbs, who started selling real estate in 2003.

As she’s grown in her career and expanded her sphere, Scott-Tibbs has helped more and more renters enter the buyer market. She just had three begin looking for their first home in March alone.

“Our market is saturated with renters, but it’s important for those people to know that for the amount of money that they’re paying for rent, they could own their own house,” she says.

Whether their credit is bad, they’re living with the folks, renting, doing the “wait-and-see” jive, or just too damn scared to move, consumers have a variety of reasons for sitting on the sidelines. But studies show that Americans refuse to give up the dreamAmericans refuse to give up the dream of home ownership, and real estate practitioners are encouraging consumers to take a leap of faith.

Austin resident Tracy Burkhalter, 49, was a lifelong renter before turning to Scott-Tibbs. “I met her through my beautician. I always had a dream to own a home and finally decided not to procrastinate anymore and to make my dream come true,” Burkhalter says.