We're the Guelfis... That's pronounced Well-Fee! So, Guelcome to our blog! Get ready to laugh and smile with us as we share some fun stories from our blessed life!

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

BIG NEWS!!! (No, I'm not pregnant.)

In May 2009, I was seven-months pregnant with my oldest son and pretty much jobless. After working in the insurance industry for several years, I was certain that quoting auto insurance and calming down customers after their policies "collapsed" was definitely not for me. Knowing I had very little time to start another career before the new baby arrived, Fernando & I prayed like never before. I guess you could say we were completely winging it, trying not to be overwhelmed with worry as we counted down the days to my due date.

God opened all the right doors, and I was offered a job as a property manager at Seymour Homes Realty, Inc. in Goldsboro. Linda--the owner-- did not laugh in my face when I told her I was due in two months. She also offered to let me bring my new son with me to the office after he was born. "I love babies!" she said. It all seemed too good to be true. 

From my very first day on the job, I was fascinated by real estate. I learned how to process rent payments, communicate with property owners and tenants, coordinate repairs, look up tax cards, list properties for sale, and so many other things that made me realize I had found a career that might actually work for me. It was unpredictable, fast-paced, yet so rewarding to be a part of helping customers find the perfect home for their family. 

Two weeks after giving birth to Enzo, I was back in the office, but this time,  I had a little assistant. I realized it wasn't the most ideal situation to have a baby in the office (nothing says "look how professional I am!" like burping a baby while talking on the phone with a customer), but not a day went by that I wasn't thankful to be able to spend those hours with him. Talk about having the best of both worlds!

Things really got interesting when I threw not one but TWO babies in the mix. I'll never forget the look on Linda's face when I told her I was expecting Baby # 2. She reminded me that we were running a real estate office, not a DAYCARE. She immediately began to make arrangements for me to work from home- she bought me a laptop and had a server set up so I could access my office computer from home. I also finished the real estate class and received my real estate license just a few weeks before giving birth to my second son. 

Working from home had its challenges. Many nights I would stay up into the wee hours of the morning trying to get my work done. I learned how to work quickly (and quietly!) while my babies were asleep. What a privilege it was to be able to work from home and spend those priceless moments with my boys. 

As the boys got older, I was able to be in the office more. Each year, my sales steadily increased, as well as Seymour Homes' rental property portfolio. Although each day brought new challenges, I was beginning to see how rewarding a career in real estate could be. Although I wasn't the official owner of the company, I felt personally invested in it. 

At the end of last year, Linda approached me on a busy afternoon and offered me the opportunity of a lifetime. She asked me if I would be interested in being the new owner of Seymour Homes Realty. After I picked myself up off the floor and made sure she was serious, I told her "YES!" It took us a few months to work everything out, but as of April 23rd of this year, we closed on the sale of the business and made it official. As a rookie small biz owner, I am excited, terrified, cautiously optimistic- to name a few- but I'm also proud to be the owner of such a great, growing company! I know the road before me will be filled with many challenges, but my goal is to not only sell and rent houses, but to build a lasting relationship with each of our customers and to be a positive influence on my community. (I do realize how cheesy that sounds. No, I cannot figure out another way to say it other than: I will work hard & do my best.)

I will be FOREVER GRATEFUL, GRATEFUL FOREVER to Linda for taking a chance on me and saying, "you're hired!" She has always allowed me to be a mother to my boys first and foremost, and even if I sold a million houses, I could never repay her for that privilege. 

Now with all of that said….. who's going to help keep me in business? :)

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