JUPITER, Fla. — Katie Blineau just became a Realtor. She works with the Meyer-Lucas team at Compass in Jupiter. Her event rental company took a dive with the start of COVID-19 and the pandemic, so she took a chance on real estate with more people moving to South Florida.
"I was always interested in real estate but I also happened to own my own company for the past nine-plus years," she said. "I saw that as my opportunity to really get into real estate."
It’s a field that is drawing more and more women like Blineau. According to the National Association of Realtors, more than 60% of all realtors are female.
"Women are empowered to be able to go out and do this for themselves and be in an industry that maybe once did not welcome them," Blineau said.
Many experts point to flexibility and additional income as the main drivers.
"It's as much as you put into it," Blineau said. "Even some of the best Realtors that I've come across, they're moms and their kids come first. So from 2 p.m. school pick ups until 7 p.m., 8 o'clock, that's family time and then they are on again. Making deals, selling houses and doing what they need to do for their clients."
"I have been working in real estate now for 20 years," Bonnie Heatzig said.
Heatzig has seen the change first-hand.
"Women in the real estate agency were clerks," she said. "They were administrators and fast forward to today. I think there is wonderful flexibility in real estate and I think women have seen a lot of success by virtue of so many traits, of passion and drive."
Heatzig switched careers herself.
"After many years practicing law, I realized, it wasn't even for me so much the flexibility, but the feeling I could be really successful in this industry," she said.
Heatzig said there is still work to be done when in comes to women in real estate and making dents in the lucrative commercial market.
"There is still gender bias and still gender inequality in real estate," she said. "As many as 64 percent in residential real estate, but many more men hold positions in the upper echelon of management of leading real-estate brokerages."