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Women in Real Estate Spotlight: Tracy Royce

Gavin Finch
Written by Gavin Finch 

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How did you get started in real estate?

I was recruited to be a loan officer during the heyday of “loose loans,” which was when banks were making it really easy to get a loan. My heart was never in that space, so when a previous landlord reached out to see if I would be interested in assisting him with property management and administration, I jumped at the opportunity. It led me to work with multiple investors over the years and gave me a massive amount of exposure to everything that is real estate investing and business.

Who are some of the women who have inspired your career?

Truthfully, when I transitioned out on my own, my focus was more on keeping up with a viable business model for whatever the market was doing. That said, Robyn Thompson was the only woman I really knew of in the rehabbing space that took the business to scale and had a very successful educational leg. The women that inspire me are typically just very business savvy, creative, expressive, and authentic.

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?

Probably to not overthink things all the time (I naturally do this!) You can only research, read about, dream about, think about, ask about, and stress about future things so much. Be as sure about your plans as possible, and then just do it, even if you’re afraid. 

For instance, don’t over-analyze a property and then decide not to make an offer on it because you don’t think the seller will accept it. Don’t skip a deal because you’re not 100% sure about it. Don’t miss taking a chance on a potential vertical or pivot in your business because the timing may not be absolutely “perfect”. 

Again, gather enough information and research to make an informed decision, but get out of your own way and just try. It’s easier to adjust or scrap a decision than to realize later that you should have gone for it.

What do you wish you would have known when you started your real estate career?

If you don’t have confidence, it’s easy to accept what you’re getting paid, stay in the same place too long, and believe that those raises you’re looking for are just around the corner if you work a little harder. You really have to cultivate a stronger version of yourself and know your terms or you’ll just be controlled by others.

What advice would you give to people who are looking to get started in real estate?

Try to tune into what resonates with you and your goals. Then tune out the other 999 avenues you’re bombarded with that seem like the next best source for revenue or riches. What one investor likes, is good at, or does well with could be quite different from your strategy, so just be clear on your intentions and stay open to adjustments. Truthfully, it can take 2-3 years just to lay a good foundation, so again, focus and put in the reps.

What’s your favorite part of being a real estate investor? What about being a business owner?

One of my favorite parts of being an investor is digging into a new project and creating equity and/or cash flow with a renovation. The process of knowing the numbers, raising money, doing the project management, doing a designer rehab, and getting it to market or refinancing is just very exciting for me. 

Every day is a little different and often times I’ll be at a supply house or on a podcast and think to myself, “Wait, this is my JOB?! I get to do this everyday? How did I get so lucky?” 

As far as the business, my favorite part is that you can create the lifestyle and business that fits your needs, and not conform your entire life to making someone else rich.

What are some business challenges that you feel are unique to you as a woman? What advice would you give to women who want to scale?

I had a really steep learning curve in construction and project management. My parents and family are not in the business. The investors I had worked for didn’t have me doing project management or anything, so I had to learn by hiring general contractors at first. Then I started to hire my own trades, ask questions, watch videos, be on-site, and make myself useful so I could learn as much as possible and be a good leader. 

I’m not saying a man with no background in construction would be different, but as a woman, I think I probably had to work a little harder to prove myself. But when the guys see me working as hard as they do, it flips a switch. They know we’re all there to do good work and get the job done. They also know that I know what I want, I get things done, and I pay on time. 

Another thing is for women who want to scale as an investor, you have to learn to raise private money, which funnels back to knowing how to underwrite deals. If you perform, bring good deals, and have a performance record, the world is your oyster.

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