TOP REAL ESTATE AGENT IN TEXAS GINGER TOWNLEY
A power player in the Central Texas commercial real estate market, top real estate agent in Texas Ginger Townley brings new meaning to the term “lofty ambitions.”
Born and raised in Waco, Ginger originally got into Real Estate in 1987, working for Campus Realtors located on the campus of Baylor University. She had a great mentor, Stewart Kelly, who helped her break into commercial real estate and property management, and as a result, a career as a multi-family housing expert was born.“I love working with people and contracts, and multi-family housing presents a lot of both,” she said. “There’s always a daily challenge.”Ginger was making strides in the market, and when Baylor began creating more residential lifestyle dorms, Ginger segued into downtown renovations.“Competing with Baylor was not something I wanted to do,” she said. “Because I already was specializing in apartment complexes, it was a natural transition.”
In 1997, Ginger came across an opportunity to co-broker the Clifton Building which was a shell of a building. This building became Behrens Lofts, home to 57 loft apartments, which Ginger has managed since it was first occupied in 1998. The success of Behrens Lofts catapulted her business, and Ginger ventured out on her own to create Waco Loft Living. Since then, she has assisted with two more converted warehouse buildings: Holiday Hammond Lofts and Praetorian Building, both mixed-use developments. Added to Ginger’s portfolio are the Austin Avenue Flats, a 46 unit condominium mixed use development constructed in 2008.
“If you are a young professional, a student, or even a faculty member of Baylor, Waco Loft Living is the place you want to go,” Ginger said. Ginger’s experience managing multi-family units has given her the experience to venture into another area of management: managing community associations. Operating under Paramount Commercial Group, she has been managing the HOAs for Waco Loft Living, and manages the HOA for the Villages at Twin Rivers, a premier subdivision in Waco with more than 400 homes.
According to Ginger, the boutique setup of her group allows her to provide a more hands-on experience that is more like a concierge.“Corporate property management companies have strict guidelines that can’t vary,” she said. “We can adjust our property management policies to the owner, and are readily available to help them at all times. My phone is on 24-7.”Ginger’s talent for what she does is apparent in her results. Each year’s revenue keeps getting better and better, and she has many high producer awards. However, her expertise didn’t come without a lot of hard work.“This is an industry dominated by men, and as a woman, you need more credentials to really be treated like an equal,” she said.
Ginger has studied business and real estate at the University of Texas at Arlington. Because of her work managing and selling multi-family buildings, she became a member of Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM) in 1999 and received her Certified Property Manager (CPM) designation in 2005.
“During the Real Estate boom in 2005, I was co-brokering millions of dollars in multi-family,” she said. “Because I was a CPM, my clients respected my valuation and critique of properties presented to them for their evaluation.”
After interacting with high-profile buyers like Paul Orfalea, the founder of Kinkos and his partner in O&S Holdings, Gary Safady, Ginger decided to up her game even more, and in 2005, she began her quest to become a Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM).
“I am the only Realtor in central Texas with CCIM and CPM designations,” she said. “It takes a lot of experience just to be able to qualify to be a candidate. And both designations require an abundance of time and energy, among other resources, to pass the courses and the final exams.”
According to Ginger, the commercial designation is achieved by most male Realtors. In fact, less than 20% of the CCIMs are female, which makes her accomplishments even more notable.
Ginger is hopeful that more women will enter the commercial market. She is a member of the National Association of Professional Women, and she networks with other professional women for different Real Estate client needs.Her advice to any woman wanting to enter the field is to find a mentor who is willing to teach her every aspects of commercial sales or lease. Ginger is currently mentoring her Property Supervisor, Alison Brown, a 2008 Baylor graduate, who has been with her for six years.“My hope is that I can mentor Alison as effectively as Stewart did to me and all of the other agents that were eager to learn,” she said. “Stewart, a fellow CCIM, is a great teaching broker and that’s what I hope to be for Alison and to the next generation of Real Estate professionals as they pursue similar paths.”“Without mentors in our lives we are limited to our experiences. It’s not only important to seek out mentors in our professional development journey but it’s just as important to give back and be mentors to others, as well.”