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NLR Stories

A Real Estate Journey: From Grassroots Beginnings to Industry Leadership

June 20, 2024

My real estate journey began in 2003, shortly after I graduated college. I joined my father’s firm, Tommy Bowes & Associates Realty, in Roxboro, North Carolina. We were a full-service brokerage with five agents. Back then, we had to do everything ourselves: marketing, managing our website, scraping leads, submitting to publications, and maintaining all our files on paper. Managing a small office during this time, coupled with the administrative work and trying to get local exposure, was extremely time-consuming and expensive.

Simultaneously, I became a mortgage originator to offer our clients a one-stop shop for everything real estate. However, I quickly learned that trying to be a jack of all trades often means becoming a master of none, spreading oneself thin, and losing focus. After experiencing four years in a bullish market, the Great Recession hit my town, forcing me to seek an alternative career.

Fast forward 15 years, and I found my way back to real estate. In 2017 I joined National Land Realty as a part-time broker in the Raleigh-Durham market. At the time, I was working for a large software company in Cary, NC, but my goal was to transition back into real estate and work for myself. Determined to stand out among the thousands of real estate brokers in the Triangle region, I decided to specialize in land transactions. Being project-based and having a natural instinct for fact-finding, the land business suited me perfectly.

I quickly found my niche in assembling development projects across the Triangle region, primarily focusing on residential developments and home building. After a few years of hard work, my pipeline was robust enough for me to venture out on my own. I started the Raleigh office for National Land Realty and began building a team of seasoned professionals. My personal pipeline grew to $20 million consistently year after year. I attribute this success to two factors: the strong growth market in Central North Carolina and a company that provides the tools to find suitable properties for my buyers.

National Land Realty is more than just a brokerage firm; it’s also a technology company. We have a robust information technology and operations team that builds proprietary software, giving us an edge as land brokers. Marketing vacant land requires a targeted approach that highlights its potential for development. At National Land, we use advanced marketing techniques, including interactive brochures with maps, 3D scenes, and demographic data, to showcase properties’ attributes and attract serious buyers.

Our in-house technology allows us to find off-market properties best suited for our clients’ needs, a service unlike any other firm. This company’s flexibility and adaptability to the ever-changing market, combined with leadership that listens to brokers in the field, analyzes suggestions, and provides necessary resources, ensure our team members remain successful.

In 2023, I was honored to take on the role of Director for our Commercial Division. It has been a privilege both to serve and lead our company in commercial brokerage across the country. We continue to hire highly seasoned professionals who value our nationally recognized brand and appreciate the technology and tools we offer, which make it easier for brokers to get started, establish themselves, and build a pipeline anywhere in the country.

As of 2024, we are on track to close nearly $190 million in commercial real estate transactions. Both my division and our company are growing exponentially, even in a market with high inflation and interest rates. This growth is a testament to our people, systems, products, and services, which provide immense value to both our sellers and buyers alike.

If you want to talk more about land real estate, get in touch with me here! 

About the Author
In my role as the Director of Commercial Real Estate at National Land Realty, I excel in orchestrating success by strategically directing and implementing national sales strategies. Simultaneously, I spearhead the cultivation of a high-performing sales team through robust training and development initiatives. Furthermore, as the Managing Broker for the Raleigh, NC Market, my specialization lies in representing landowners and facilitating the land acquisition process for a diverse clientele, encompassing commercial, farm, timber, and residential developments. My unwavering commitment to excellence extends to both buyers and sellers, evident in a proven track record of adeptly navigating intricate negotiations. As the Founder of Inquest Development Group, I bring invaluable insights as a seasoned consulting land developer. My North Carolina roots have cultivated a comprehensive portfolio, characterized by the successful acquisition of hundreds of acres for residential development projects spanning the Triangle and Piedmont regions. Fueled by an unwavering commitment to optimal outcomes, I seamlessly blend local expertise with a national perspective, consistently delivering unparalleled results in the ever-evolving and dynamic real estate landscape. Beyond my professional endeavors, I proudly serve as the Regional Director for Truth In Nature, a Christian Youth Ministry. In this impactful role, I act as a regional ambassador, dedicated to supporting our existing chapters in North Carolina and fostering growth and participation throughout the state. This commitment reflects my passion for community engagement and making a positive impact beyond the realm of my professional career.