Like many who have found the field of property management, Debbie Gomes of Keyrenter Washington, D.C. did not start out with career aspirations in the industry.
“I spent 11 years with a transportation and logistics company in Canada and Washington, D.C,” Gomes said. “During this time, I had three dogs that I was putting in doggie daycare. I decided that I could do a better job, and opened a dog daycare business that I owned for 13 years. I got to a point where the business was operating effectively, and it was time for a new opportunity.”
A New Challenge
While working with a third-party entrepreneurial company to find her next venture, Gomes was presented with several options before eventually deciding to pursue a Keyrenter franchise.
“One of the opportunities was actually with a transportation company,” she said. “With my background and previous work experience, it would have been a very easy learning curve for a next step in my career. However, the idea of property management just stuck with me.”
“It was a chance to take on a new challenge and learn a new business sector,” she continued. “Part of what drew me to Keyrenter was the company’s core values.”
However, what convinced Gomes on opening a Keyrenter franchise of her own was a conversation she had with another potential Keyrenter franchisee at her “Discovery Day.” The other franchisee was already working in property management.
“He was already working in property management and managing something like 40 doors. I found that interesting,” she recalled. “I asked him why he’d buy a franchise if he was already working as a property manager. He told me the software and systems that Keyrenter offered would help him manage his properties more efficiently. He was managing off of an ‘archaic system and sticky notes,’ he told me. And with Keyrenter, he could take his property management business to the ‘next level’.”
Choosing to be deeply involved with the operations of her franchise, Gomes is grateful for the support that Keyrenter provides.
“I outsource a lot of my resources, which allows me to focus on the day-to-day operations of the franchise,” she said. “The support from the Keyrenter home office is great. KeyAssist is always there, you can always call the corporate office, and they’re always happy to help. And if they can’t help, they’re happy to find someone who can. They help a lot with the administrative tasks, the applications, accounting, and bookkeeping.”
When asked for a piece of advice that she’d recommend giving a potential Keyrenter franchisee, Gomes recommends learning the software systems while you’re growing door-by-door, rather than waiting until you need the systems to manage your portfolio.
“Don’t wait until you hit 50 doors to learn the ins-and-outs of the software,” she advised. “Be as involved in the day-to-day business as you can be so that you know what’s going on with your managed properties. If you don’t learn the systems while you have the time, it’ll be very frustrating when someone calls you needing a quick answer and you need to rely on others to get you that answer would be easy to find if you understood the software.”
One of Gomes’ favorite things about having a Keyrenter franchise in Washington, D.C., is the strength of the real estate market in the area.
“Even when going through a recession, the D.C. housing market doesn’t seem to drop pricewise,” she said. “It might slow down, or even come to a halt, but pricing seems to hold steady. When the market comes back, it comes back in a big way.”
With the rental market remaining steady in her area, Gomes is optimistic for future growth for Keyrenter Washington, D.C.
“I’m looking forward to continued growth, and moving at an even and steady pace,” she said. “I’m very excited for the future.”
Are you looking for a new career with high potential of steady growth? Click here to learn more about becoming a Keyrenter franchisee!