Compassion is the key to Amy Bayer’s business success.
The co-founder of Porchlight Real Estate has been running the company since 2005 with her wife, Carol.
The two worked for other real estate companies previously, but felt that both the customers and the agents were being underserved.
That was an issue, given that buying a house is one of the most important investments a person will make, Bayer said.
“I think there are a lot of well-intentioned people in the industry without any guidance,” she said.
That’s where compassion comes in.
Giving their agents all of the tools and coaching they need to succeed ensures success for both them and their clients, she said.
Before Porchlight, Bayer said the daily pendulum was swinging constantly between time for herself and time for her customers.
“It’s impossible to live that way,” she said.
Her greater sense of compassion, Bayer said, comes from being part of a marginalized population.
Being a part of the LGBTQ community has also influenced Porchlight’s environment – by emphasizing inclusivity.
“We haven’t built the company differently,” she said of the influence. “We have the same values.”
That compassion and inclusivity goes a long way in understanding where people are coming from when they’re buying a house. Bayer said it allows Porchlight to really listen to what the clients want, and hear what they need in terms of lifestyle.
Understanding what they’re going for is crucial in ensuring their happiness in buying a home, she said.
In turn, Bayer said the most exciting part about running a thriving real estate business is the amount of lives it has affected. Helping people make smart investments with their money — changing their lives — is what she loves.
“Humans should be kind, and lift people up,” she said.
For her, it’s all about people, clients or not.
Drives are a big part of Porchlight — coat drives, toy drives, food drives.
It helps build relationships between agents and clients, too, when they can ask a client to donate something to Porchlight’s drive and make them feel a part of the environment of giving back.
“It really allows agents to engage with their people,” she said. “It’s really cool to help people build their business in that way.”
Some of the charities and organizations are geared towards the LGBTQ community, but not exclusively.
“I think it’s important to invest in things you’re passionate about,” Bayer said. “People think equality is out there, but it’s not.”
Bayer went on to say that she and her wife have “stayed in their lane” and know what that is.
“Staying in our lane has meant a lot of things to us,” she said. “Being authentic, being ourselves.”
Part of that has been giving back to LGBTQ charities, continuing to build a successful business and be role models at the same time.
Some of Bayer’s friends have brought their own kids that are part of the LGBTQ community around to show them happy, normal adults.
She called it an honor — but said she and Carol are “just people.”
“We’re just regular people,” she said. “We figure out the same daily challenges, like getting the kids to school.”
Title: CEO and co-founder
Company: PorchLight Real Estate Group