It’s never too early to get started on your life path.
Just ask a trio of local teens … and their mentors.
“Wow, we just taught this 18-year-old how to become a professional,” area Realtor Jeff Green mused, reflecting on how the ‘Young Realtor’ program started.
Ricardo Jimenez and Green have since begun helping young adults in the region get their Realtor’s license. It’s an internship that they market to high schoolers in their senior year to get their careers started right away.
The latest success stories for Jimenez and Green are Estrella Castro, Alondra Castro, and Noah Harris. The group, with ages ranging from 19 to 21, heard about the internship through school and now all have their Realtor’s licenses and are hosting open houses.
“It’s kind of like a ride-along program,” Green explained. “They go to showings, open lockboxes, go into the house, listen to conversation ... they’re involved in all kinds of stuff.”
While this isn’t all the program does, the ride-alongs do make a difference. While a novice Realtor (like Green when he first started out) may fumble around with lockboxes and not fully understand the language and culture of being a Realtor, these young adults are way ahead of the game in both knowledge and practice.
Normally, the average real estate agent starts with coursework and no training. On top of that, the real estate exams take about eight attempts on average before someone passes them. Estrella, Alondra, and Noah all passed within the first two times thanks to their unique preparation.
“They’re on track to get $100,000 a year within their first few years,” Green relayed. “If you do it right, it’s a high paying career and our team is structured to be high income earners.”
This certainly isn’t typical, but Green and Jimenez believe that their program equips their students to thrive. Moreover, they explained that it isn’t just a few baby steps and suddenly someone makes six-figures; there’s a certain temperament and drive needed as it’s a competitive field.
“There’s a high level of accountability, they need to be committed to the process,” Jimenez summarized.
However, the internship program equips its students well regardless of their future plans.
“We don’t just kick them out of the door if this doesn’t work for them, we give them a lot of marketable skills,” Green explained.
Both founders of this unique program are happy to write future letters of recommendation, change students’ mindsets to “move beyond limiting beliefs,” and help develop professional skills.
While young Realtors like the Castro’s and Harris are now their own bosses and are working out in the field on their own, Green and Jimenez still offer a lifeline at all times. If they run into a difficult situation in the field, the pair is happy to mastermind how to solve it and provide backup when needed.
“I really just wanted to start my career,” Alondra said of why she joined the program. “I know a lot of young people want to get rich fast, but if they don’t have someone there to mentor them, it doesn’t always end up happening.”
Some applicants to the program are like Harris, who had always been interested in real estate and was just waiting for an opportunity to take the leap. Others may be like Estrella Castro, who had no idea she was going to end up in real estate; she knew college wasn’t something she wanted to do, and this instead helped her jumpstart a career.
“I believe these young Realtors should be appreciated, they’ve all proven they belong,” Jimenez said proudly. “They’re helping people make the biggest buying or selling decision of their life, they should be celebrated.”
Green and Jimenez are just getting started with this mentorship program. While they’ll make an appearance next school year at Oakdale High School to spread the news about the internship, they’re currently taking applications for their next round of students. To apply for the program, visit www.application.iMentorAgents.com.