We had the good fortune of connecting with Jon Yacovetta and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jon, we’d love for you to start things off by telling us something about your industry that we and others not in the industry might be unaware of?
I don’t think the general public is aware of how brutally difficult this career choice is. The bar of entry into the real estate industry is embarrassingly low; we need to be competent and fluent in contracts, negotiating, architecture, structure, finance, economics, geography, local market data, marketing, advertising, psychology, on and on…and the education we’re required to complete can be knocked out in as little as 4-6 weeks. Real estate agents are not adequately prepared for the demands of their job, nor are they adequately prepared for the art of entrepreneurship. It’s impossible to understand what it takes to create your own business, your own brand, and set it up properly to flourish, until you really dive in. The general public sees us as typical run-of-the-mill sales people. We’re not, or, we shouldn’t be. Those considering this as a career don’t understand what it takes to truly attain success, and most do a very quick 180-degree turn when they start to understand the degree of difficulty here.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
I’ve been lucky to have the opportunity to tell the story of how I got into this business several times, so I’ll spare boring any readers with those details again. I was a teacher for a long time, and then, suddenly, I wasn’t. Real estate was waiting with open arms. That’s the Cliff’s Notes version. I think I’m still new enough in real estate to not be able to answer the “What sets your business apart” question very well. I’m not really sure what, if anything, sets me apart in this industry, yet. I didn’t choose real estate because it was something I was passionate about; I wasn’t pursuing a life-long dream. I started selling real estate out of necessity. I had to dive in, and am very much just figuring it out as I go. Fittingly, this is the ultimate trial-by-fire career, and it rewards those who dive in the way I did. The pre-licensing coursework is a formality at best. There’s no practical application piece to getting a license, so you have to really be willing to fail, ask for help, fail some more, and find others who will allow you to lean on them while you figure this industry out. I was very fortunate to have those resources. I’m still fortunate to have those resources. My business is built around people who know me, like me, and trust me. That hardly sets me apart. But it’s what I have, and I do not take it for granted. What I’m most proud of now though, is that I’ve become one of those resources for new agents, and am helping build and run a mentorship program at BSW Real Estate. At present, our program has 21 newly licensed agents, 14 of whom I mentor directly, and has closed almost $8M in volume since we started the program in the summer of 2020. I think that’s a pretty great achievement, and I can’t describe the sense of fulfillment it brings to me on a daily basis. When I started teaching, I was certain I’d found my calling. I loved it, and was devastated to leave it. Now, everything I did as a classroom teacher manifests in ways I never imagined. I really couldn’t be more grateful for what I’m doing. Maybe that’s what sets me apart. I don’t know.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I’m terrible at answering this question! I’m such an introverted home-body, I’d make whomever came to visit sit on my deck and drink wine with me. I’m convinced that my deck and the steaks I cook are the ultimate definitions of “have a good time!” Obviously though, there are some boxes that need to be checked: anyone visiting Colorado has to see Red Rocks. Even if there are no shows happening, it’s a great spot to hike, and just absorb. If they’re visiting me, chances are good they play golf. So, after Red Rocks, we’d head down C-470 and play golf at Arrowhead in Roxborough Park. Summer visits demand an evening at Coors Field, (although I’d be furious to give the Rockies my money right now…). It’s the quintessential Colorado evening spot. Leave the game a little early, and head up across I-25 to explore the Highlands and see how old Denver has transformed. A year ago, I would have walked up the street to Chapultapec, but those days are gone. Devastating. Restaurant-wise, Quality Italian in Cherry Creek is a real treat, and Crown Burger on Colorado and Evans continue to char-broil the best burgers on the planet. No In-N-Out for me.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My family, friends, and girlfriend Katy have displayed astonishing levels of support and patience since the day I chose this career path. Of course, I wouldn’t have the opportunity to be able to do these types of interviews without the support and encouragement of my friend, boss, and business partner Bret Weinstein. Any success I stumble across is a direct result of each of these people, for whom I’m grateful. Most of the time.
Benjamin Woodley-Rifen Merne Judson III