Five years ago, Frank Parks was a furniture salesman with a real estate license. A lot of young households that buy furniture also buy houses—and before he knew it, he was selling more houses than couches.
A few years later, when signs pointed to big growth in his largely rural market area, Parks worked out deals with developers. Now new-home sales make up more than half of his volume, which is on track to hit $5 million for the second year in a row.
Parks doesn’t miss an opportunity in his existing-home sales business, either. When he couldn’t find a buyer for a tiny flat-roofed house in a rundown part of town, he went to city hall and suggested that the house would make a wonderful police substation. The town agreed.
Capitalizing on opportunity, though, never comes at the expense of his reputation. “I want people to say positive things about the way I do business,” he says. “That’s more important than making a dollar.”