Latinas Rise in Real Estate

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If you take a moment to notice, you’ll see we are at a place in our history where more women of color are stepping into leadership roles in the workforce, and it’s no surprise this growth is being felt in real estate. 

Historically, real estate has been an accessible career field for women for many reasons, including its flexibility when balancing the requirements of a thriving business with an equally demanding home life. The National Association of REALTORS (NAR) reports that women comprise 58 percent of their total membership, and, according to the Women’s Council of REALTORS (WCR), a women’s division was created in the California Real Estate Association as early as 1924. More female real estate practitioners are rising to the top and Latinas are the fastest growing contingent. 

Besides the fact that real estate has been traditionally inclusive, Latinas are drawn into the profession for a plethora of other reasons, particularly the flexible schedules that accommodate child rearing, as well as the ability to network in their communities. Latinas are leading the trend as entrepreneurs, with the U.S. Census Bureau Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 10.44.51 AMreporting that they are launching new businesses at a rate of six times the national average and eight times the rate of male-owned businesses. They have also emerged as a motivated group of connected decision makers, making 86 percent of the buying decisions in their households, according to a 2013 Nielsen study. 

Many Latinas, while discussing their participation in the workforce, have noted that male colleagues and supervisors have often inspired them to put their best foot forward. Male partners have also stepped up their domestic participation, encouragingLatinas to prosper in their careers. More women and men are making great strides to change the workforce for the better. 

While it’s important for Latinas to engage in equality, we must recognize that Latina entrepreneurs face stronger challenges than their male counterparts. For example, the Bureau of Labor Statistics affirms that Latinas earn less than 60 cents for every dollar a white male earns in the same occupation. The Shriver Report, a nonpartisan organization advocating for women’s equality, notes more than one-quarter of U.S. households with children under 18 are supported primarily, if not solely, by the income of a single mother. In addition, women take on the majority of child care duties, and often care for family members that are elderly, sick or disabled. The U.S. Census Bureau recorded women clocking in more than 110 million hours a year to unpaid child care, while men contribute less than 55 million hours. Having a good platform to discuss these issues is vital in order to keep the industry moving in a progressive and inclusive direction that improves the lives of both genders.Screen Shot 2016-06-10 at 10.45.00 AM

In 2013, NAHREP held a general session at its National Convention and Latin Food Festival, hosted by Nely Galán, media dynamo and founder of the Adelante Movement, which focused on inspiring Hispanic women to unite socially, economically, and politically. Galán’s session fostered a sense of empowerment for Latina businesswomen, focusing on the unique challenges they face within our industry. In 2014, NAWRB featured Nely Galán as their sheCenterfold after she appeared withShark Tank’s Barbara Corcoran at the second largest U.S. Senate hearing in history. Over 300 women entrepreneurs attended the hearing to support and give their commitment to the fight for gender equality. These kinds of events create an environment for meaningful conversations concerning young Latinas.

More Latinas are creating change and helping increase the number of women of color in positions of leadership. Organizations like NAHREP and NAWRB are eager to provide these women the unique and different resources they need to succeed in their professional and personal lives. Our industry has the power to grow and support all aspects of our professional community, especially the rise of Latinas.

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 Marisa Calderon is chief of staff and deputy executive director of the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP). She is an 18-year veteran of the financial services and housing industry.

To view the original article please see our magazine titled “Women-Owned Businesses Across the Housing Continuum” Vol 4, Issue 4 by Clicking Here 

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