2023 Midwest Regional Rookie of the Year Heather McColaugh Pours Into Her Community

Since jumping into real estate, Heather McColaugh has taken the industry by storm. After years of managing her career in pharmaceutical sales and caring for her three adopted children, McColaugh realized that something needed to change.

“I had absolutely no control over my day, and no bandwidth,” says McColaugh, one of five Regional Rookie of the Year winners in RISMedia’s second annual Real Estate Rookie of the Year award program—sponsored by industry education leader, Colibri Real Estate. “I felt like I needed to be more accessible to my kids. That was the biggest stressor, and that was what ultimately pushed me to do something different.”

Upon entering the industry as an agent for Loveland, Ohio-based BF Realty, McColaugh conquered her fears and dove headfirst into the new path ahead of her.

“I was terrified,” she says. “I gave up my free car, my 401K, my health insurance, my stock options and my regular paycheck. With my three kids, it was scary to leave that all behind. But I knew—having been in sales for so long—that I’d be able to pick real estate up.”

After connecting with her broker, Brittney Frietch, McColaugh faced these fears head on and realized the full potential of her real estate career.

“Now I laugh because I couldn’t imagine working for someone else,” says McColaugh.

In addition to giving time and space to embody her role as a mother of three, McColaugh is passionate about finding ways to give back to her community. This desire to pour into the people around her has awarded her resounding success during her first year in the industry.

“At BF Realty, we give our money back to the community,” McColaugh says. “We don’t buy leads. We don’t have our names on billboards. We don’t do any of the fancy real estate. We just give in a thousand different ways.”

From buying jerseys for her kids’ sports teams to providing books for local schools to renting an ice cream truck for the junior high school, McColaugh is dedicated to uplifting her community and offering support to those who need it.

“Brittney has built BF Realty on the principles of servant leadership and a growth mindset,” McColaugh says. “She is all about how you can create a name for yourself by pouring back into the community.”

As McColaugh’s business continues to grow, she is certain to always prioritize authenticity. She recognizes the importance of bringing her truest self to each interaction.

“Being perfect doesn’t encourage anyone,” she says. “When a client is in the stress of trying to stage their house, they’re going to want somebody that’s like, ‘Girl, I got you. Let me get the vacuum.’ I work to always seem approachable.”

Among the communities that McColaugh interacts with, one group, in particular, inspires her to keep moving forward.

“Nearly 30% of my clients are women who are either getting a divorce or have just gotten a divorce and are ready to branch out into their next phase of life,” McColaugh says. “And at one point, that was me, and I was terrified. Building women up during their second-chance journey is so powerful to me. It’s one of my little heartbeats.”

McColaugh emphasizes the importance of not chasing a paycheck. In her practice, selling homes is about so much more.

“It’s rarely about houses,” she explains. “It’s about being a part of something much larger. When you’re given the opportunity to step inside someone’s situation, you’re given a great deal of responsibility. Every single transaction that got me to this milestone means there were lives that got changed for the better.” 

For more information, please visit https://www.rismedia.com/rookie-of-the-year-2023/.

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