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Denise Supplee, is a Realtor with Long & Foster in Pennsylvania, Investor/Landlord Expert, co-founder and operations director of SparkRental.com, and Real Estate Educator at Snaplandlord.com. She owns investment properties, has managed apartment communities with over 200 units, and was the project lead for a large real estate website in researching landlord tenant laws, creating property management forms and leases for the US and Canada.
1) How did you get started working from home?
Over ten years ago, I became ill. I had owned a tavern or restaurant at the time. I sold it and then happened upon a work-at-home position with a real estate website.
2) How did you choose the work-at-home career you do?
I have been involved in real estate in many facets for over 30 years. So, it seemed natural to look in that field.
3) How did you get started (basic initial steps)?
I already had a love of computers. I had a home office already where I handled my personal business. So I combined all of this and my love of real estate and found the perfect position online.
4) How did you get your first client or customer or job?
Searching job postings was how I found my first position. I actually found it on Craigslist.
5) How do you market your business?
Connecting to people by providing useful information through blogs, social media and the good old fashioned way at time, the telephone.
6) What does your usual day look like?
I get up every morning at 5:30, have coffee, pray (meditate) and journal. I then shower and get to my office/desk by 6:30 AM. I work with a partner, and we generally connect through Skype and check-in. I then begin my various tasks. I also sell Real Estate and each day, I spend a few hours on that as well. Some days, I have appointments outside of my office to show properties. I use my scanner to scan all paperwork into my external drive. I also keep hard copies of everything. That is the “old-school” that lives inside still.
7) What do you know now that you wish you knew when you started?
I wish I would have known how important a regular routine is. And that I needed to have time boundaries. What this was for me was, that I would work all the time. For instance, if an issue came up, I would run to my office, and take care of it. Unless it is an emergency, I now say the words “no, it can wait!” By doing this, I greatly reduced the burn-out I was feeling.
8) What advice would you give someone who wants to work from home?
You must have focus. In order to do this, the idea that you are “home” during work hours must be eradicated from your thought pattern. Get up, shower and get dressed, just like you would if you worked outside the home. Many believe how great it is working in PJ’s. I believe that by doing that, you lessen the importance of what you are doing. My partner takes regular work-out breaks each day. I make sure that I have a regular routine. I take off Fridays and Sundays on most weeks.