Breakfast in bed is at the top of Jennifer Young’s wish list for May 10. Served by Kalen (9), Jackson (7), and Brayden (5), with the help of their dad, Danny, this is the first act of her dream Mother’s Day. Follow that up with some quality time with her mom and grandmother, who only live five minutes away from her in the house she grew up in, and her heart is full.
Mother’s Day is special, of course. But for the other 51 Sundays in 2020, Jennifer chooses much of the same: family time. It usually consists of hikes, a trip to the zoo, or dancing to music. “Nothing extravagant, just being present and having fun,” she said. Her top priority these days is not missing any of the boys’ events, like soccer, baseball, basketball or drumming.
Family time is what she cherishes the most. When Jennifer was in her 20s, she was reminded of how precious time really is when her father passed away unexpectedly. Fortunately, she had been able to spend Fridays with him regularly.
“My awesome team of assistants was able to hold the fort down and still provide great customer service so I could spend the afternoon with him each week, and it was really a beautiful thing… I was so appreciative and happy that I had that time with him. I would have regretted it so much if I hadn’t been able to leverage my time and spend quality time with him each week.”
With over $1.5 billion in volume in her 19-year career to show for it, leveraging her time has been a game-changer for Jennifer – but it requires practice and didn’t always come naturally. She recalls being on a listing appointment once and having to breastfeed her 1-week-old. “I thought I was leveraging then; I wasn’t. I thought I had to do it all myself.” This was a major a-ha moment for her in 2015 and resulted in a big shift for her.
“I love that in this business you can take some time off, with the proper team behind you, to do what is important to you to live your best, balanced life.”
Leverage benefits all members of the award-winning Jennifer Young Homes team at Keller Williams Realty. In fact, Jennifer’s bucket list is centered around two things: her family and her team. She prioritizes the team’s objectives, saying, “It’s really important to me that they fulfill their financial and professional goals and can fund the life that they dream of — and I don’t just mean making money.”
Fueling Her Passion!
Coming from a family of entrepreneurs, Jennifer knew she’d have her own business someday. While in college, she worked as a runner/admin and began learning real estate. Soon after, she got promoted as a buyer’s agent. “I got to learn the business the right way … I fell in love with real estate, helping buyers and sellers while mastering the game of conversion and sales.”
In her senior year, she took a real estate class from a strong woman who wore many hats — broker, investor, etc. “I just loved that you could do so many things. I started reading every investing book I could about buying and holding real estate,” she says, and then proceeded to get her license. One year out of college, Jennifer bought her first investment property.
Her work ethic had already been instilled in her even before college. Growing up on land in Manassas with “free-range” parents helped. “We had freedom, which allowed me to be strong, independent, and a hard-worker without anyone pushing me except myself,” she explained.
In high school, she was president of her youth group, and secretary of the Student Council Association, among other key roles, and learned at an early age how to organize a team. Her family was active in their community, volunteering at homeless shelters, doing fundraisers, and also encouraging people to vote.
It wasn’t all idyllic, though. After graduating from Osbourn Park High School, she didn’t get into James Madison University. She didn’t have enough advanced credits or the right SAT scores. Not taking no for an answer, she set up a private meeting with the dean of admissions to build her case. Once she did that, she got to work, taking advanced classes and improving her scores. One month before school started, there was an opening, and she got the call. Jennifer was the first in her family to graduate from college.
Making it Happen!
While in college, her parents lost their business. She quickly learned how to become self-sufficient. While some of her peers were out partying and living carefree, she was struggling to get by and came out of college broke. The silver lining? “It was a great life lesson that made me stronger and made me appreciate money.”
Jennifer learned a lot while relentlessly pursuing her passion, picking up a couple of mottos along the way: Make it happen, and work hard and be nice. She’s always smiling, and recently bought mirrors for the agents on the team to help them keep their smile on. Negativity and yelling are simply not tolerated.
Giving back is a top priority as well. Jennifer enjoys helping local organizations provide food and clothing for those less fortunate. “I want to make sure they know that they matter and are not forgotten.” She says she shares these moments with her children. “I bring my kids to show that it’s not just that easy to order a new piece of clothing off Amazon. We have to share.”
In addition, her team donates a portion of every home sale to Alex’s Army. This organization is committed to funding new research in fighting childhood cancer. They also deliver care packages and host other fundraisers and events. “Too many of my friends from high school or college have kids that have died or are fighting cancer, and it’s just not okay.”
One day, Jennifer hopes to start her own organization to help struggling single parents. She noted, “I would never be where I am at now without support at home and with my family. My kids come first … and I want to offer support to other strong parents who may not have that same support system.”