Valentina Tjan, broker of record of Win-Win Realty in Toronto, has been a Realtor since 1993 after working for several years as a nurse. She recently wrote a book about her experiences and the process she uses to get through troubled times. The Best is Yet to Come: Real Life Journey to Riches to Inspire You to Wisdom and Wealth was launched in September.
There are three key takeaways from Tjan’s book. First, she stresses the importance of not obsessing too much about failures but learning from them and taking away the most positive thing you can. Second, Tjan feels that always being positive is a key. “Serve your clients cheerfully,” she says. The third principle comes from her own experience – 10 years ago she achieved her own personal financial freedom through buying income properties.
“You can attract abundance/money in your life: let money chase you instead of you chasing money,” she says. “Your clients will trust you explicitly when you are genuine in your dealings with them.”
Tjan’s book talks about making real estate (and life) into a win-win proposition. She embraces the power of positivity and seeing life as full of abundance.
“My glass is always half full, never half empty. Whenever the going gets tough, I reflect and pause, and then I get busy racking my brain about how to find the meaning or even the potential abundance at the end of the trial,” she writes. “The attitude of gratitude has definitely played a large part in my life journey. This win-win philosophy was the inspiration for my real estate brokerage, which I started in 2003. I have always applied this knowledge for all my transactions and it is the BEST way. I do not have to make one side lose, in order to benefit the other side. Both sides should experience the benefit, if and when the transaction can be called successful.”
Tjan starts her book with her life story, living in Indonesia and taking a leap of faith to go to England and work as a nurse. Her story continues through meeting her husband and coming to Canada to live and work as a nurse. Even early on she was interested in buying income properties and as she and her husband moved to bigger housing to accommodate their growing family, the Tjans for a time used their old properties as rental investments. A cutback in hours at the hospital prompted her to follow her dream of becoming a Realtor.
In her book she describes the process: “I started loving my real estate work better than my nursing job. I specialized in the financing aspect of difficult deals, and at that time, I registered myself as a mortgage agent, only for one year. I would pre-approve all my would-be buyers, and I ensured that they would be able to get the key to the property they chose. When there were some glitches a week or two prior to closing, such as their car loan having to be paid off, I had some private lenders I could go to, so that my clients were protected.”
Tjan says, “My book can help my fellow Realtors realize that being in this profession is indeed a privilege to be taken gratefully. It’s gratifying to serve clients with the most expensive investment in their lives. It’s (a) people business…you get to know them well during the process, then they reward you with their repeats and referrals if you genuinely helped them. The clients may become your good friends, too.”
Tjan’s book is available from Amazon.ca – in paperback or Kindle format. She also offers a talk at any brokerage in the Greater Toronto Area with book signings when 10 books are pre-ordered.
Yvonne Dick is a contributing writer for REM with two decades of experience in journalism.