Women Thrive in the Cayman Real Estate Market
RReal estate can be a demanding profession, but for Debi Bergstrom, it has allowed her to forge her own path.
Indeed, the longtime real estate professional has survived – and thrived – in an ever-changing industry.
âReal estate allowed me to combine my passion for people and real estate,â she says.
This combination was the key to building her business, Edgewater Group – comprised of Edgewater Development and Edgewater Properties – alongside her husband, Kris Bergstrom.
Debi is the Managing Director of the company and leads the all-female team at Edgewater Properties, a member of the Cayman Islands Real Estate Brokers Association (CIREBA).
The real estate landscape has changed for women rapidly over the past 20 years. Today, women make up the majority of the industry in the United States, accounting for 67% of realtors, according to the National Association of Realtors of the United States.
This is also the case in the Caymans. Within CIREBA, 54% of agents are women, 51% serving as brokers for their agencies.
âWomen in real estate are emerging stronger than ever,â says Debi. âThe flexibility to manage your own schedule can be great for busy working moms, but I also find that women can bring a certain level of confidence to the industry for their clients. “
With flexible hours, good earning potential and a low barrier to entry, real estate makes an attractive industry for women. But make no mistake, it’s a lot of work.
âAs in any industry, there are always challenges to overcome,â says Debi. âDealing with sales in a fast-paced environment with fierce competition certainly allows you to stay alert. “
Late nights, long hours, and weekends are often a part of the gig, especially for beginners.
âReal estate never sleeps and the job can be done 24/7, 365 days a year, so you have to be prepared to put the time into it and not let it get the better of you,â explains Debi. âHaving a good work-life balance is very important to spending time with my family, so finding that balance is essential in this industry. “
Debi has been in the industry for over 30 years, witnessing vast changes, both for the women in the field and for the market itself.
âThe Cayman Islands have seen tremendous changes over the past 20+ years,â she says. âKnowing how to successfully maneuver this ever-changing market takes dedication and real motivation for the industry. “
She says having a mentor when she started out was a big help.
âMy mentor in this industry, Alister Ayres, didn’t hesitate to show me the ropes and to this day he has supported my growth and success, for which I cannot thank him enough,â she says.
Debi now returns this favor.
âI strive to bring this mentorship to the ladies at Edgewater Properties, offering them guidance and support throughout their transactions and their lives in general,â she says. âWe’re a tight-knit team and celebrating success is just as important as being there during the toughest times. “
How do you feel after reading this?