THE GREATEST BUSINESS THERE IS
Jim McAdams, who has been in the real estate business for 37 years in Hot Springs, said it is “the greatest business there is,” and he absolutely loves it.
McAdams said he began working in real estate in 1977 when he and his mother owned McAdams Realty.
“She owned it from 1971 until 2007. Chris Polychron and I were business partners then — mother passed away — and we sold McAdams Realty to Phil and Bobbie Rushing and it’s now ERA Rushing McAdams Polychron Realtors,” he said.
While he has maintained some managerial role with the company, McAdams said he is an executive broker and not the principal broker now.
“I’m a full-time agent now, and I love what I do,” he said.
“I absolutely love dealing with customers every day and the clients. I have a business partner, Kent Dover, and he and I have an excellent business relationship because I have great contacts, former clients and people that I bring into the business,” McAdams said.
Even though the economy took a nose-dive a few years ago, McAdams said he and his partner have “done over $9 million in sales this year.”
“We’re just shy of $10 million, so we’ve had a great year in what I consider a challenging economy,” he said.
A fourth-generation resident of Hot Springs — his mother, grandmother and great-grandmother were all residents of the city — McAdams said he received an economics degree from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and then returned to Hot Springs and went into the family business with his mother.
“Hot Springs is a great place to live because we’re such a melting pot,” he said.
“We have so many people from diverse backgrounds who move here to retire or start second careers that it’s just fantastic,” he said, noting that dealing with the people he comes in contact with is one of the things he likes best about the real estate business.
“Absolutely. And getting to know the people, and having clients who become your friends. I have many repeat clients that call me when they need something, or their children need something. I have a great referral source from family friends and past clients, and new people,” he said.
And even though he’s been in the business for 37 years, McAdams said there is nothing he doesn’t like about the business.
“I’m so grateful that I’m in a non-managerial position now. When I owned the company, there were a lot of 12-hour days because I had to open and close, and everything in between. We’re not an 8-to-5 business because people want you to go when they can go. Now, I can stop in the middle of the day and do things, and I have the freedom to go and do what I want to do,” he said.
“Computers and mobile phones have changed everything because people can reach us, and we can reach them just about anywhere and at almost any time.”
While the nation is recovering from the recession, McAdams said the real estate market is “soft, but it’s coming back.”
“I’ve lived through three great recessions where property was devalued. This has been the longest period of stagnation, and even deflation, in real estate prices that I’ve witnessed, but prices are firming up and activity is high,” he said.
McAdams also said financing for home purchases is approaching the way it should have always been, and “it’s really a normal financing mode. The peg has to fit the hole. The person has to qualify for the loan and so does the property, or the loan won’t be made.”
McAdams said the housing inventory in Hot Springs is still plentiful and it is still a “buyer’s market.”
“With the low interest rates available, people can afford to buy a lot more than they could five years ago,” he said.
McAdams said he would advise young people looking for their first home not to wait and try to time the market.
“It is a good time to buy. Some people may like a new home where they have no maintenance for the first few years, and some like the charm of an older home, but it’s a good time to buy, which is a strong point for young people. Buy according to what your needs are, would be my advise,” he said.
With a long history in the real estate business, McAdams said he has served as state president of Arkansas Realtors and served in every local board position. He was also appointed to the Arkansas Real Estate Commission and served as its chairman. He is also a member of the Hot Springs National Park Rotary Club and includes cooking, and entertaining friends in his hobbies.