Leslie Ramsey, who has been a Realtor with Hot Springs 1st Choice Realty for six years, says the real estate business is a good job for people with high energy.
“I like working seven days a week, and I enjoy working in Hot Springs with its different seasons and unique neighborhoods. But, it's not just one neighborhood or one area. You know about the entire town and this is a darling, wonderful town and it's home for me,” she said.
A resident of the Quapaw-Prospect Historic District, Ramsey was raised in Hot Springs, then moved away for college but returned when her daughter went to college.
“The best part of Hot Springs is it has a little bit of something for everyone; it's not just a one-industry town. It is attractive to a lot of people, not just tourists, but also to those of us who choose to come back. I like downtown Hot Springs and the historic districts, which I think are the most telling part of the history of Hot Springs. All the new stuff is on the edges of the city and you work your way into the history, or kernel, of the town, which shows in the old neighborhoods. I love seeing that property owners are beginning to renovate property and people are buying, updating, and restoring,” she said.
As a Realtor, Ramsey said listening to the client is most important in helping them find their ideal property.
“You have to listen to your buyer. It's not going to be my house or my mortgage. We have these marvelous condos on the lake and out in the county; we have some wonderful sprawling areas and we have to know them well in order to make the client happy when they say what they need. If they want a place with a couple of acres, I'm not going to show them something downtown,” she said.
She also recommends that people looking to purchase a home first find a lender to see how much house they can afford.
“And, do your homework. If that means looking at 50 houses, go look. The inventory is high and this is beginning to be the slow time of year, so go look at the houses, go inside, look at the neighborhood, and don't buy just because it's a bargain. There is much more to it,” she said.
And, while most jobs have at least one component that may not be well liked, Ramsey said she would have to think “long and hard about what a bad part might be.”
“This suits me so well. It's nice to be in a business where you've found your little corner,” she said.
Having started in the real estate business at the tail end of the downturn of 2007-2008, Ramsey said every year has been better than the previous one for her.
“Compared to agents that have been in the business for 15 or 20 years, I don't know about the `good old days.' I only know my days, and every year has been better for me. But it takes work, advertising, getting your name out there, referrals, knowledge and things you don't get overnight,” she said.
In addition to being a full-time Realtor, Ramsey also serves on the Community Development Advisory Committee, which makes recommendations for the use of the Community Development Block Grant funds received from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.