National Association of Gay & Lesbian Real Estate Professionals

January 10, 2017

Julie Nelson: A chicken farming and real estate star!

How did this Austin KW leader use her LGBT sphere to build her business?

Julie Nelson is a self-professed ”Midwest gal” who once had a really nice job in the tech industry.  A  liberal arts major surrounded by engineers, she moved from Minneapolis to Austin, Tex., for a project and then suffered one of the all-too-common pitfalls of corporate America --  a layoff. 

Calling it a “great day,” armed with a severance package and  income from the sale of her home to support her financially, Julie set off on a new career and never looked back as she became a leading agent with the largest Keller Williams office in the world.

Julie built her business within her “sphere of influence,” the Austin LGBT community.  But it was not just her passion -- her love of real estate -- that fueled her early success.  She brought value to her clients.

Julie created an annual free LGBT legal seminar, bringing together potential clients to meet with LGBT and LGBT-friendly lawyers, accountants, title and mortgage firms and even therapists, to explain the real estate process  and financial benefits, while also helping couples become comfortable with emotional and lifestyle impacts of homeownership.

“Everyone who was on the panel volunteered to help the community be smarter both legally and financially,” Julie said.  “One of the biggest challenges of getting couples to the table is that legally it was a big personal and relationship step.  We wanted to help couples move forward with that.”

While the Obergefell case has allowed for marriage equality, Julie believes these types of seminars still have great value today, especially because unmarried LGBT couples continue to face the same challenges as before.

Julie also grew her business through early membership and leadership in NAGLREP and the Keller Williams Rainbow Network.

“Buyers and sellers want to work with professionals who are involved and informed.  There are two big things NAGLREP brings to the table -- advocacy at the national level, and the referral network.”

Julie also started her own coaching business at thenelsonproject.org.

“One of the big challenges is not how to work with clients or how to bring the best service,” she said.  “Among the biggest challenges for new and emerging agents are how to build and run a good business, build the pipeline, build consistency, build momentum and build cash flow.

Julie firmly believes a real estate career is a way to “make a life” for yourself.  And she has proven it.  She and her partner Kay built their dream home in Austin where they have plenty of room to build gardens, let their dogs run and even manage a thriving chicken coop in their “slightly urban farm.”

“The eggs are amazing,” she said.  “Once you have them, you get spoiled.  You don’t want store bought eggs again.  When we visit friends our friends are disappointed if we bring wine.  They want eggs.”

Julie just might be your favorite egg farmer, inspiring coach, top real estate agent and LGBT advocate.

Tags: NAGLREP Success, LGBT Real Estate, Gay Real Estate, Julie Nelson, The Nelson Project, KW Rainbow Network

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