In many ways Nicole is your typical investor – college educated professional with desires of earning more than her day job can pay for. She sees the returns that are made in real estate, isn’t afraid of hard work, and spends her nights and weekends learning the business. With Nicole though, the story is anything but typical.
“I grew up on the west side of Chicago, Garfield Park. It was a rough area.”.
Rough is an understatement. Unfortunately Chicago has made national news for the violence, murders, and troublesome neighborhoods – Garfield Park being one of the worst. “I only know of three other people who actually made it out…everyone else is either still there, in a similar neighborhood, or dead.” For Nicole, that cycle of violence and poverty was one she had to break her family out of, and from a young age she took it upon herself to be the leader her family needed. “I’m constantly trying to make things better for my entire family – trying to position us better economically – and real estate is what has enabled me to do that.”
Grit isn’t something that can be taught, or given – you either have it or you don’t. And Nicole has it in abundance. Her early forays in to real estate were “flops” as she calls them – failing in 2004, again in 2007 and not recovering until 2010. Her recollections of those events though have a surprisingly upbeat tone. “I learned a ton! I learned how passionate I was for real estate. Learned how to deal with contractors, how to finish projects. It was great.”
Today Nicole is supporting not only her family – but extended family as well. “We just sent my goddaughter away to college … and the more we’re able to do in real estate the more we’ll be able to do for others.” She’s on her way to that goal, too. “When I started, the cash I had access to only allowed me to do 2 projects a year … right now I have 7 projects and am expanding to 20. I don’t know how I could get it done without Renovo.” Truth be told, it was all Nicole … Her passion. Her determination. Her will to succeed.