Experienced Real Estate Geek Leveraged Her Skills to Become a Successful, Multi-Unit JPAR Franchise Owner

Featured JPAR Franchise Owner: Trish Nicely

We spoke with self-proclaimed “real estate geek” and multi-unit franchise owner Trish Nicely about her journey to JPAR franchise ownership in 2022 and her formula for success as a JPAR franchise owner in Hughesville and Lexington Park, MD, overseeing 33 employees. 

Why did you purchase a JPAR franchise rather than opening an independent business?

I had been an employee for 12 years in the real estate industry and an independent contractor for 23 years. I had too many ideas on how to grow in this industry to stay an employee, but I still needed the strong support of a franchise to accomplish all of these plans. JPAR checked all the boxes! 

Did you have your mind set on a specific industry or brand from the start?

Yes, I wanted to open my own real estate brokerage and began researching my options. 

Of your prior skills and experiences, which were most helpful in launching and operating your JPAR franchise?

I had worked as an employee at a large brokerage, so I understood the back end of running a brokerage and the numbers needed to be successful. I’d been training and coaching agents for five years as well. I have also been a successful real estate agent on my own. I survived the toughest times in real estate, earned my bruises, and kept getting up. That is probably the most important thing I learned through experience. I am also constantly learning and call myself a geek.

When researching franchises to buy, what criteria or data points mattered to you most?

The franchise had to be interested in growth in the current market, understand what brokerages needed to be successful, have a plan for the future, and have resources for me to ask questions, bounce ideas off of, and get advice from anyone who had “been there, done that.” The collaborative spirit that permeates JPAR cannot be beaten.

Trish Nicely, JPAR Franchise OwnerDid you speak with other JPAR franchise owners? Which questions did you ask?

Yes. I spoke with a number of JPAR franchises. My main focus was, could they really be profitable with this business model? I asked them how long it takes to be profitable and what mistakes they made that they wish they could take back.

Which questions did you ask the JPAR franchise leadership team?

My main focus when speaking with the franchisor was why they didn’t advertise nationally, as this franchise is unknown in my area. Their answer: We’d rather return the money to the agents as real estate is a local venture. What were their plans for growth? Would they be able to grow their support team within JPAR with the company’s growth? Where did they see JPAR going?

What were your biggest challenges when you first started out, and how did you overcome them?

The bureaucracy I had to deal with with licensing. I’m in the DMV area (DC, Maryland, and Virginia), so I’m getting my broker and company licenses in all three regions. Also, learning to step away from what was “known” into the “that’s how it used to be done” way of thinking when changing brands was almost a physical challenge. We all bring our old way of doing things into new ventures, but you have to step outside of the box of Known. Lastly, I knew the accounting end of how real estate brokerages work. Setting them up was a different story.

How does the JPAR franchise support and encourage your success?

They provide many services, support, and tech to the agents that make sense in running their businesses and helping our brokerage succeed. You have to help the agents run a successful brokerage—JPAR also believes that.

What are you most proud of as a JPAR franchise owner, and why?

This industry should be professional. Too many agents that are here now are not. My legacy is to have a brokerage known for its professionalism. When speaking to a future partner about a joint venture, they responded that we (JPAR Professionals) are already known as being great to work with, even though we’ve been in business just a little over a year. Building this culture is a huge point of pride for me.

What advice would you give to new or potential franchise buyers?

Don’t be afraid to ask a lot of questions. If you don’t get answers, ask more people. Be sure about the culture you want to build and ensure that you only hire individuals who will add to and support that culture, not poison it.

To learn more about the JPAR Franchise Opportunity, visit grow.JPAR.com, email [email protected], or call 630-278-3975.