By: Santino Filipelli

My decision came at a pivotal moment in my life. Just after I turned 20, due to family issues, I was granted legal custody of my youngest sister Selena, who was only 10yrs old. At the time, I was going to college full time & working two part-time jobs--installing real estate posts (for

$30 a post) and working a graveyard security shift. I soon realized that to be a successful parent figure, I needed flexibility in my schedule to be there for Selena.

After a few months of trying to hold everything together, I couldn’t keep up anymore.

(Pictured above Santino (20) Selena (10))

A majority of our living came from student loans and food stamps. My grades were tanking and I was on the verge of getting my financial aid suspended. Since this was my primary source of income, I quit my security job to focus on school.

I had just started a new semester in college and had a small amount of discretionary money left over. I learned from my aunt that real estate offered flexibility, and financial opportunity. I also saw how hard it was as the market had just crashed.

It was a scary moment to sit in front of my computer debating the purchase of buying the course online - $400 at the time was a lot of money to us. It could be tanks of gas, or trips to the grocery store. In the end, I told myself that if I could close at least one sale every three to four months, it would make just as much if not more than my part time jobs. So, I trusted in the Lord, and made the leap faith to obtain my real estate license.

Author: Santino Filipelli is the CEO/Owner of Modern Realty in Portland, OR & Vancouver, WA. Amongst other business endeavors he enjoys writing.

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