PHOTOS BY: Albert Jones
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background that led you into the real estate field.
I was born and raised in the City of Rochester where I identified myself as an entrepreneur at a very young age. I started various businesses with the ultimate support of my parents. I joke with them now on how they kept sane during all my stages of business, but they supported my drive and hunger towards success no matter how silly my ideas could be. The idea of expanding and relocating my pet boutique around the age of 20 sparked my passion for real estate. I was able to move from 55 railroad st location in a small indoor market atmosphere to my own brick and mortar before the age of 21. It started with a real estate guru giving me an opportunity. At the time of closing on my first building I was juggling filming of American Idol and working a second job. Hard work is in my dna and it really showed me I could accomplish anything.
When did you decide to go out on your own and open R Realty?
In the fall of 2019, I made the decision to start R Realty Rochester. My main goal was to elevate my personal real estate business without limitations. I wanted to start small and provide a positive environment for agents to grow their businesses as well. I learned from my own experience what agents would benefit from and I made a commitment to teaching them everything I learned throughout my years.
What makes you hustle both personally and in the real estate market?
My hustle comes from within. It’s hard to explain but I will always be working towards bettering myself. That could be seen as a blessing and a curse. I know I would not have made it this far without the support of my family and friends. I have had many highs and lows throughout my life but it’s how I keep progressing that I’m proud of. In every aspect of life I try to learn something out of the experiences. I don’t stay in any negative thought or experience long and I focus on the positive. In the real estate industry specifically, the hustle is necessary to provide the best service for my clients. I think that is why this role suits me so well.
Who were mentors that encouraged you or inspired you?
I’ve been extremely blessed with many positive influences in my life that have molding me into the woman I am today. My mother Catherine Rivera and father Richard Rivera have instilled great values into my life like faith, hard work, dedication, respect, honor and living a genuine life. Seeing my parents work hard and supporting my sister and I in all our dreams really has driven me to keep aspiring for more.
Where do you see your business in the next three years? five years?
In three years I envision a second office location and in five years a third location. I want to continue to expand in the Rochester area and also explore expanding to cities nearby within New York State.
What kind of person do you feel makes a successful female entrepreneur especially in the real estate market?
The most important part of being a successful entrepreneur is the ability to work hard in silence. The real estate business itself is not for the faint hearted. It takes a driven, hard working, ethical, transparent and highly self motivated individual to be a success in any business.
What is the number one misconception in real estate right now?
That it’s easy and you do it by showing beautiful homes like the tv shows portray. While it’s quite the contrary. We do have the opportunity to showcase some amazing properties but it also requires a lot of hard work. The last statistic I saw was 85% of real estate salespeople quit after the first year.
What sets you and your team apart from other real estate teams?
Our focus is building the community. We provide consulting services to help clients work towards their real estate goals, whether they buy a home in a few months or years. We help build the foundation and educate as we go along. We also open our doors to the community to also promote financial literacy and entrepreneurship.
What is your favorite part of the business?
My favorite part of the business is being a part of home ownership. I find such great joy in seeing someone build generational wealth and have pride in owning a home.
If you could live anywhere, where would it be and why?
I would choose to stay in the Rochester area because of my foundation, family and connection to the community. I might be in a bigger home with more land for my dogs to run but I would definitely want to stay here where my roots run very deep.
What would you say is your greatest professional accomplishment to date?
My greatest achievement would be completing my first real estate development project that I completed in June 2022. I learned so much throughout the 13 month project and look forward to many more in the future.
A second great achievement in my professional career is being recently awarded 40 under 40 by the Rochester Business Journal. I’m so honored to be awarded alongside many amazing business professionals in Rochester and will be receiving my award in November.
What’s the best advice you have received in business that you wish to pass on to our readers?
“Failure to plan, is a plan for failure” my uncle Luis Burgos shared this quote with me at a young age and it has stuck with me. I would also share with the readers to never give up. Sometimes a reset is necessary and also taking a deeper look at your failures but keep going.
What did you do before becoming a real estate agent?
I owned a pet boutique called “Pinky’s Pet Connection”.
How do you stay motivated, especially in such a crazy time in the industry?
I stay motivated by surrounding myself with other like minded people. My team is a great source of inspiration in the day to day activities of the business. We feed off of eachothers energy and support each others growth. Positive influences are part of the process to keep going. I’m pretty blessed with the team or what we describe as “R family of agents”.
What’s your favorite thing to do in your free time?
I love to cook, spend time with my dogs and entertain in my free time. I just enjoy hosting my family and friends and catering to them.
How do you find new clients? What has been your biggest success?
I’ve been fortunate enough to build a great sphere of influence. My business has grown by organic referrals and the support of the community. My biggest success has been growing a brand that I’m proud of.
What’s one of the toughest decisions you’ve had to make and how did it impact your life?
Selling my first commercial building was a tough decision but it was ultimately the reason I began real estate sales. At the time it did not seem like as big of a decision but without that experience I’m not sure I would have pursued real estate further. The sale of my first building was the beginning of my journey in real estate. I’m so glad I made that decision.
Where will we see RRealty next?
R Realty Rochester will continue to serve the community with all their real estate needs.
Also check out our latest project “The Hollywood Suite Rochester”. The first of many to come. The penthouse suite is a great luxury stay with amenities you’d find in a hotel. This unique short term rental space located in the City of Rochester is great for travelers or a small group.