Better Real Estate: Balancing Business & Social Good

Man holding house key

How can real estate agents, investors and CEOs balance businesses with their personal life and the social good of a community?

While the main draw to real estate for the majority of investors may be the profit potential, along with the fabulous freedom and lifestyle, most individuals figure out there is more on the line. Some plan on using their freedom and new found financial surplus to wield great social good. Fewer might do it specifically to advance their charitable goals. Many more wake up and realize that there is more to life, and that their incredible fortune allows them to be one of the most influential forces in their community. Real estate and charitable contributions go hand-in-hand.

Having the desire and passion to follow through doesn’t mean things will come easy. In fact, many might find it harder to stick to their social and philanthropic goals than to make another million dollars from real estate deals. Of course, if it was easy everyone would be doing it.

Renovating the Real Estate Industry

There are many ways in which the U.S. real estate industry can be renovated and improved upon. The following illustrates a few examples of what can be done:

  • Improving real estate licensing training
  • Providing more affordable housing
  • Decreasing and eliminating discrimination
  • Developing a culture of real ethics
  • Reducing the costs for consumers
  • Improving living standards
  • Simplifying the home buying, selling, and investment process
  • Increasing transparency
  • Increasing accountability

Yes, there are agencies and organizations that practice these things. However, many do a horrific job at it. Some inadvertently do more damage than good, either due to ineffective and inefficient structures or a lack of real estate education. Internal regulation, self-regulation, and more personal leadership could really make a difference.

Limitless Ways for Real Estate Professionals to Wield Social Good

Beyond finding ways to directly improve the real estate industry, there are many ways in which both companies and individuals can do a lot of social good. Some of these ideas may include:

  • Providing more affordable housing
  • Recycling distressed property to help communities and low income earners
  • Helping solve global social issues like clean water, poverty, and access to healthcare
  • Providing homes for orphans
  • Delivering food and better food for those in need
  • Contributing to solving health issues like cancer
  • Supporting sustainable local businesses
  • Creating healthier living and working spaces
  • Protecting the environment
  • Opening up access to education

The Many Challenges in Trying

Whether real estate professionals strive to accomplish all of the above via donations and monetary giving, there can be many challenges that appear to get in the way. Perhaps you experienced some of these already:

  • Financial emergencies
  • Medical emergencies
  • Lack of time
  • Needing to pay the bills
  • Trying to keep up with the real estate ‘Joneses’
  • Spouses and family members which appear to sabotage your efforts

Redefining Success in Social Good

Success is all about how you perceive it. What are you prioritizing? Do you have to see the same wild results, metrics and money coming in from social projects as your regular real estate business? Or; are they worth doing for the sake of doing the right thing, having a good impact, planting small seeds that will flourish over time? Consider the internet, mobile marketing, cell phones, and green building: few believed these ideas would ever catch on. Sometimes it took a decade or more, but most are glad they did.

Strategies and Tactics for Achieving More

In spite of the challenges, there are many strategies and tactics to use:

  • Block out the time to do it daily
  • Make it your first priority
  • Create a plan and automate it
  • Get accountability partners
  • Form a Google+ community group of like-minded individuals
  • Nominate someone to oversee these initiatives and come up with new ones
  • Turn off the phone until you’ve made progress
  • Get out of your normal space and get free of distractions and negativity
  • Blog on it daily