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Erika Basurto

How Latina entrepreneur Erika Basurto found success in real estate

Real estate Latina entrepreneur Erika Basurto found her strengths around her “weaknesses” as a Spanish-speaking immigrant. Since she lived the struggle of overcoming language barriers and learning a profession that would eventually open doors for her, she decided to give back to her community by creating investment opportunities for other Hispanic families in Texas.

Erika Basurto

Erika Basurto, Bravo Investments, at Houston Hispanic ERA (Photo courtesy of Erika Basurto)

 

 

 

Real estate is a tough business to break into, and that’s probably an understatement. And once you’re in, you still have to deal with the long hours and working on commission, among other challenges, to achieve success in the world of real estate.

That’s what makes Erika Basurto’s accomplishments so impressive. She founded two Real Estate Investors Associations (REIA), one of which is the Houston Hispanic REIA. She has also been hosting the Invierte en Bienes Raíces con Erika Basurto (Invest in Real Estate with Erika Basurto) radio show since 2016, where she talks about real estate aimed at the Hispanic community.

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Erika Basurto teaches Hispanic families in Houston and surrounding areas to invest in real estate. (Photo courtesy of Erika Basurto)

But before her success in such a competitive real estate industry, the challenges were doubly hard for Basurto because of the language barrier. Before moving to Houston, she lived in Mexico where she worked in logistics and didn’t speak much English. In an interview with Voyage Houston, she said that a chance encounter sparked her dream of finding success in the real estate industry. While working as a logistics store clerk, one of her customers asked her help in translating a real estate contract from English to Spanish, resulting in months of work.

The single mother earning $10 an hour was introduced to the possibility of making a lot more in less time. For Basurto, the choice was clear, albeit not easy to achieve.

During a guest appearance on The Landlord Survival Show (video above), she recounted how she started with a $500 class on wholesaling. Then she took another class worth $6,000, for which she had to borrow the money, and a few other classes that would help her gain the knowledge and skills — the tools she needed to find success in real estate. She also read books on subjects like attracting investors, watched free YouTube tutorials, and attended many networking events to foster connections with others in her field.

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Erika Basurto, overcoming barriers to achieve success as a real estate investor (Photo courtesy of Erika Basurto)

One of the main challenges she experienced was that there were no classes taught in Spanish. She admits that she struggled a lot with jargon and often felt disconnected from fellow realtors and clients. It’s what prompted her to establish the first REIA in Houston that caters specifically for the Hispanic community. They regularly host bilingual events on a variety of topics in real estate.

Considering that the Hispanic population in Texas is almost as big as the white population, and there are a lot more Spanish-speakers in the state, she realized that these initiatives would help a lot of people who are interested in finding real estate success, whether as an investor or career person.

As relayed above, Basurto wasn’t handed her title and reputation on a silver platter. She had to rise through the ranks starting with translating contracts. She also needed to get familiar with the hierarchy in the industry, and what to do to get to the next level.

A featured post on Yoreevo details the differences between a real estate agent and a broker — essentially, you have to gain a few years of experience as a real estate agent and reach a minimum number of deals before you can become a broker. Basurto is now a business partner at Bravo Investors, which allows her to harness her brokerage and entrepreneurial skills.

 

You might be interested: Latina Career Coach Bonnie Negron gives advice for achieving career goals

In a competitive business such as real estate, ask yourself what it is that you can offer to the industry. Basurto knew that she wasn’t the only one who struggled with the language and she wanted to help others fill that gap. Her real estate success story tells us that even the toughest barriers can be broken with determination.

Rosa Stimmler, owner broker at Royal Lyon Realthy LLC.

Latina entrepreneur Rosa Stimmler, a life of struggle and accomplishment

Growing up in the Dominican Republic, Rosa Stimmler learned to never give up. At an early age, she discovered that when things go wrong, solutions need to be found because feeling a victim of your own circumstances is a worthless place to be in.

Rosa Stimmler, owner broker at Royal Lyon Realthy LLC.

Rosa Stimmler, owner broker at Royal Lyon Realthy LLC.

Her favorite quote, “It could be worst” and her optimism have inspired her every day to be a better person and to accomplish her life and professional goals.

“My tenacity comes from being a Latina raised in a broken family, no mother and plenty of financial scarcity. In the Dominican Republic, you either swim or sink. You have to struggle a lot to accomplish anything so that makes you strong,” Rosa shared with LatinasinBusiness.us.

A proud Latina with a strong character who is very determined and believes it is more productive to see the glass a half full rather than a half empty, Rosa Stimmler always strives to be the best she can be and give the best of herself.

A Latina immigrant with a lot of determination and big dreams

“I arrived to the United States in 1993 and spoke no English at all. I used to be in restaurant management but after 10 years of marriage I got divorced, and became a single mom of a 7 year old boy and no family in the country to help me out,” Rosa remembers.

As a single mom, she needed a career that would offer her the flexibility to take care of her child and support a home. She decided to switch careers and try to become a real estate agent.

“It was not an easy decision, most of my friends told me that I was crazy, my boss laughed at me when I quit my job but I was determined to do it. My ex-husband told me, ‘Don’t get impressed by those rich ladies doing real estate and driving Mercedes Benz; those ladies have rich husbands supporting them.’ Nevertheless, I was focused on my goals,” she said.

She struggled with the real estate terminology because of her language barrier, but she studied hard and took the NJ state exam a few times. She finally passed it and got her license to sell real estate in 2005.

However, Rosa had big dreams and five years later, she went back to school to get her Broker’s License, which she achieved in 2015. “I have always believed that I can do better, whatever it takes. When my son went to college I felt “the empty nest” so I decided it was the time for me to start a new venture,” she shared.

Rosa Stimmler, owner broker at Royal Lyon Realthy LLC.

Rosa Stimmler, owner broker at Royal Lyon Realthy LLC and her team.

On April 2016, Rosa Stimmler opened her own Real Estate brokerage Royal Lion Realty, LLC. With four real estate agents in her company, she believes they are still “green and growing”. “We help our community by offering the most professional, informative, loyal and dedicated service in the real estate industry. The best interests of our clients will always come first and we will place the clients’ concerns ahead of our own in each and every transaction. We are dedicated to the development of long-term client relationships!” Rosa said enthusiastically.

Not everything was “color de rosa” for Rosa Stimmler

Rosa Stimmler with her son.

Rosa Stimmler with her son.

“My biggest obstacle was to learn to speak English in order to move forward with my life but I did it. I do have an accent! Sometimes people underestimate you because of your accent, all you need to do is show them that you have the skills and the knowledge and they will respect you,” Rosa affirmed.

Another motto that Rosa follows is “Keeping your brain green and going is a must.” She believes in constantly educating herself, reading, attending seminars, and learning about her products.

“When people try to make fun of my accent, I would laugh with them and then ask, “How many languages are you able to speak?” Usually, they will not have an answer because a person who is bilingual will never laugh at your accent,” Rosa said.

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“As Latinos, we need to be strong and never take it personal. If you want something, you go and get it, obstacles only exist to make you stronger and help you determine how bad you really want to be successful,” the Latina entrepreneur affirmed.

And she added, “So many people tried to discourage me by saying that it was not easy! Having your own brokerage… My reply is always the same. Nobody said it was going to be easy and I did not expect it to be easy, in fact not being easy is the part I like the most about being independent because if it was easy everybody would be doing it.”

Rosa is an optimistic woman who believes in her potential to be successful. More than believing, she said she could feel it in her blood.

Rosa Stimmler, owner broker at Royal Lyon Realthy LLC.

Rosa Stimmler, owner broker at Royal Lyon Realthy LLC at her desk.

“I have big expectations of myself and I will not let myself down. Why run when I you can fly? I also believe that life is about values. I want my son and my family to be proud of me. And my message to my Latino community is to believe that it is possible to be whoever you want to be without having to settle for less just because people say you can’t.

As for other Latinas starting their own businesses, Rosa’s advice is to believe in yourself and your dreams and not to be worry or scared. “Being scared is a normal human being reaction and should be used as a path to help you get from point A to point B. Never let yourself be the victim because nobody cares about your world falling down. Only you can make it happen, be the best you can be, pursue your dreams and invest time educating yourself,” she concluded.

Royal Lion Realty is a full service real estate firm that prides itself on understanding the needs of sellers, buyers, property owners and tenants. The firm is committed to providing the highest level of service delivery in both Residential and Commercial real estate. Our team philosophy is simple: “Satisfaction is the highest compliment for a job well done.”

If you want to contact Rosa Stimmler, please visit Royal Lion Realty, LLC or leave a message below:

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