A Brave New World? Go After What You Want Starting NOW


Is it going to be a brave new world in 2017 and beyond, or should you plan on thinking ‘holy crap!’ on a daily basis because maybe-somehow it’s a  different world now?

If we take a page from the Chicago Cubs long time mantra of “Wait till next year,” almost everyone knows that meant 108 years of resignation before the rousing, electrifying, its-okay-to-die-now joy of the Cubbies finally winning the World Series. True, there’s now a WHOLE lot of world playing baseball that wasn’t involved in deciding who was the best so long ago, which fits with  certain declarations that ONLY America should be considered, but work with me.

Having made it clear about Glenn Shorkey’s change in careers decision path at my 40th reunion, then getting the training/certification/paying the fees to become a realtor, and, after a tough 2016, gaining a specific break I needed-wanted just a couple weeks ago, *I’M* not letting many potential negatives slow my roll.

I’ve moved one of the fire fighters I made spaghetti dinner for last week on to a mortgage person in the office, and while it will undoubtedly take time to make that an actual sale, steady effort gives him, myself, and the economy a desirable ending to work towards. He has several elements going for him—including more money in the bank than I have—but doesn’t know enough of the ABCs-123s of programs that can help him get a house, maybe one with the basement for a work area like he dreams of. My job is to *help him*, and I have.

I’m going to the office on a Saturday morning to review the three pages of possibilities I sent my boss/partner Shaleen at Young Realty & Associates of Keller Willams yesterday; we’ll be working on a game plan for some clearly ready projects, and sharpening my focus on turning ‘maybes’ into something better. If that universal equation about ‘for every action there is an equal reaction’ is true, it makes no sense to sleep in, or worry about the signing on that condo I’m going to list moving to Tuesday. ‘Next’ is *always* going to count, and while politically and socially speaking a lot of America is holding its collective breath today, I’m going to continue putting as great a volume of possibilities into gear for the business situation I’ve created as possible.

For clients who don’t know enough of the ABCs-123s of programs that can get them into a house, my job is to *help them*, and I have.

Whether or not a lot of coal miners are probably going to be disappointed their jobs DON’T come back, or that 30-year mortgage rates tick upward to 4.3 or 4.5%, I can’t affect that. One of the ‘7 Habits of Highly Successful People’ (Covey) tenants is not to sweat things that will happen whether I worry about them or not. Why a potential client thinks it’s a better idea to put a FSBO (for sale by owner) sign in his yard than consider plans we talked about for listing, THAT is going to be examined more closely.

All systems GO! on a much better professional outlook for 2017


Green Bay Packer analogy in article aside, Success rarely comes without being willing to stick your head in and PROVE how much you want something

Ending my first work week of 2017 with a satisfying ten-mile bike ride in terrific weather, there was a decent check list of accomplishments to go with a cold one and football on TV:

  • Getting ‘first ink’ of year, by signing a listing agreement on a small condo
  • Having a conversation at a networking event that felt strongly like a successful recruiting
  • Earning a Continuing Education credit after a quiche and wine gathering
  • Getting a great connection on a developer for a $700,000 listing (while closing a bar—very ‘guy good’) after a community project group meeting
  • Serving up meatballs at a spaghetti dinner (with salad and cake) for the crew at a fire station, first of 3 monthly dinners to put something solid with thanks I’ve given easily for their first responder help for my Dad several years ago
  • Gaining a major possibility to utilize both my writing skills as a volunteer and professional real estate abilities from attending a delightful organizational luncheon for a military support group

We’re often told if we keep doing enough of the right things, ‘if we want it bad enough,’ we’ll get a break that makes the difference. All I actually got was a phone call just before New Year’s, asking if I wanted to be on the just formed Young Realty & Associates team, a timing that constituted ‘just inches’ from a less-successful-than-desired 2016 and a confident, all systems GO! start on a much better professional outlook for 2017. As terrific a feeling as doing some small extra Goodness for those fire fighters was, the results of my decision to change offices and work with the dynamic Shaleen Young, gaining both her expertise with senior communities and military relocation, became that break.

All of the joy stemmed from one last phone call at the end of last year, and its legitimate to make an analogy with the Green Bay Packers razor-thin 34-31 victory over the Dallas Cowboys.

The difference between thrilling Success and devastating failure is frequently very small things. For the Packers, it was a foot-dragging-while-falling-out of bounds- reception, followed by TWO long-distance field goals that ended a great comeback by the Cowboys. There wasn’t anything lucky about Aaron Rodgers 40-yard throw to tight end Jared Cook—he credits ‘muscle memory’ for gauging all the physical factors. Anything less than a perfect, laser-like throw and that inches from out catch would have resulted in overtime. (Then the kicker had to do his job a *second* time, because Dallas attempted to break his concentration by calling a time out just before his first successful kick.)

I’ve always said not to bet against Rodgers in the clutch: He is a winner who– more often than not– will put his team in position to win. It’s a great feeling when others have the same faith in you or me, or when you trust them in that way. Was I *close* to making positives happen like this past week if I’d continued on the same path? Possibly. Sometimes you get the break you want/need because God or the Universe seems to have dropped it on you, and other times you might’ve done something to cause-deserve it. Sometimes it’s a little of both.

Congrats to the Packers, and even to the Cowboys, because for them, in many respects it was a season of resurrection for a proud franchise. I know the feeling.

That Last Call Before New Year’s Was A Difference Maker for 2017


Although not as classically impressive in the light of New Year’s Day as night-time version, The Choir Boys, life-sized when Dad created them in 1966, have been a standard for years.

Okay, on the 7th we should still be relatively strong on NYE resolutions  made a week ago, although I for one never said chocolate covered doughnuts were forbidden. Java in hand and laptop fired up, I’m just as susceptible to a pastry as anyone, so that leftover from Room In The Inn duty overnight Thursday/waste-not-want-not rationale works no problem.

That Charlotte is scheduled for 3″-plus of snow–on top of inch of ice that postponed our Men’s Club meeting last night– makes travel in the Queen City fairly hazardous, and opens up time for philosophy. I haven’t got an open house today, so java and a doughnut, knock out a blog, watch some football, that’s going to be legit.

Professionally speaking, I had necessary and significant talks with the BIC and Team Leader at my new office (KW- University City) on Thursday, handled all the paperwork and fees, made a quantity of phone calls and sent e-mails to let people know about the change. It won’t usually make a difference to clients where I set up my laptop, but in real estate, taking an opportunity to ‘touch’ someone is good. Even doing that overnight for homeless with RITI, talking to two long-time friends/hosts about why it makes a difference that they tell me how to reach others who have brought up the subject of down-sizing, moving, ‘thinking about’ a change, was a moment of awareness about my business worth sharing. (FYI– Statistics say once people mention it, the chances of next agent they talk to becoming *their* agent is in the mid-80s.)

That call from my genuinely dynamic boss/partner, Shaleen Young, on the 30th, asking whether I still wanted to work with her– and her documented passion and strengths in senior communities and with veterans being exactly what I want to focus on made a YES! easy– is the Good News I’ll be wrapping this entire year around. That opportunity was the first item I put on a new Facebook business page, which got 40 responses, making  clear another fact of business, about putting myself out there consistently.

Statistics show that once people mention it, the chances of next agent they talk to becoming *their* agent is in the mid-80s


January 22nd I’ll turn 60, and every time I’ve had cause to write that particular number the last couple months, there’s been a sense of foreboding about what it actually signaled. Old? Wellll… yeah, and was I actually *ready* for that designation? Mmmm… even with that knee requiring replacement propped up, will have to go with ‘not ready’. Like many people, those recession years took the heart out of what are generally the best earning years, although, as one brother pithily questioned several years ago (like when I was a mere fifty), “Are you planning on writing a best seller soon?” to make up for my earnings shortfall to that point.

Having just survived (an unfortunately too-accurate word) my first year in real estate, that call was a signal that I hadn’t made soooo many mistakes that I was irredeemably screwed. Giving appropriate thanks to the friend who put a particular Osteen book in my hands positively changed some negative attitudes, and confidence in the God-given talents I’d (almost) always believed in has been restored. I’m looking forward to putting my first sign on a front lawn, quite possibly even before that last day of my 59th year. Thursday night, when I serve up spaghetti and my terrifically moist-tasty meatballs for the crew at Fire Station #14- Cotswold— the crew that aided my Dad, and gave me another Christmas with him years ago– I’ll again be thankful for the power one phone call can have on someone’s Life.

If or when you get such a Quality Call, its not about resolutions, WORK IT!

‘Thank You’ Works Pretty Well Every Other Day, Too

Several million ‘Thank you!s’ will be offered to U.S. veterans today, and of course, deservedly so. While my father and his brothers rarely heard it from me, it almost seemed unnecessary—my Dad was in the service, hadn’t everyone’s Dad done that?

Real estate clients are often excited about a sale or purchase that goes smoothly, but also have similar expectations about “that’s how it should go.” That would be a miniature comparison I’m proud to be awarded for my efforts.


Because friends are always there for you.

I’m actually proudest of the fact Dad had served after having polio as a child, a fearsome disease that frequently took the lives of children in the 1920s and 30s. He was never an ‘iron lung’ invalid, but his left leg was obviously smaller, and he never actually played sports as a result.

I always mention his three brothers served, too: Dad and Harold were Navy guys, Don was Air Force, 19 yr. old Howard was a Marine with two island-hops in the Pacific during WWII. My nephew—Capt. Curt—is a Blackhawk pilot who just passed through Charlotte on the way to Ft. Rucker for six-months training; his wife since June, Stephanie, got her captain’s bars a month ago. I have a cousin whose son was smart enough to be trained on nuclear subs—even more impressive smarts by becoming an interpreter, with expertise in a specific Iraqi dialect.

I learned at a September luncheon for veterans that many of them are articulate as hell about their qualifications-documented job experiences. In discussing that impression vs. ‘trigger pullers’ like Uncle Howard, it turned out I was speaking with a retired Lt. Col. who’d been Rumsfeld’s Chief of Staff. Talk about straight-shooters! Another contact was Dr. Alan Freitag (also retired Lt. Colonel), an Assistant Dean at UNCC Graduate School and a Fulbright Scholar– not something achieved by tons of people. I certainly respect Shaleen Young, an outstanding Woman in local real estate, mother of four and ex-military with a K-bar sharp mind, especially regarding MRS (Military Relocation Specialist) area of her business.

The point is, ‘they’ are all around us daily. While it’s habitual to say, “Thank you for your service,” to veterans, I save my most sincere ideas on that for fire fighters, especially from #14- Cotswold, who gave aid to my father one Christmas season, which provided another Christmas with him as well. After telling that story to Joey Hagar at #11, he said, “‘Thanks’ really does mean something to firemen and first responders, maybe because people we’re meeting are enduring stressful conditions,” and maybe because they just *expect* Joey and his brothers to do their jobs.

Working with fire fighters to advance their collective mission about home-owning part of our American Dream, saying ‘thanks’ means the same dedication to finding *their* homes as they do into saving houses, and possibly important Dads. 

It’s not difficult to say ‘thank you’ on a regular basis, now certainly works.

To all the vets, OOO-___, whatever your service variation of rah! is.

From Swinging in the Dirt to Top of the Baseball World, Cubs Are Finally Champs

Observing the super-enthused (and equally nervous) fans packed in and around “The Friendly Confines of Wrigley” on TV, one has to believe that a fire marshal or three MUST be looking the other way. The opportunity to take part in, literally, a once in a lifetime event—the Cubbies haven’t gotten this far since 1945, or won it since 1908—has a ‘gotta do whatever it takes’ effect on people.

I have to relate the situation with a recent real estate client, which has a totally different time line. We met last Wednesday, and being a dedicated agent, one who explores all possible avenues to get clients in the right position (a la Cub manager Joe Madden)to ‘win’ the home-buying game, I’d found and previewed a for sale by owner (FSBO) townhouse, at a bargain price, by Saturday. While client was unable to see the property because of Sunday commitments, it was a known tax lien that couldn’t be cleaned up by Monday that prevented victory– or at least entry into a multiple bidder ‘playoff’– for an almost ideal home. Better luck…y’know, next time.

It’s easy to make a decent real estate analogy for the quantity of in-the-dirt curves and sliders that Cleveland Indians pitchers got Cub batters to take futile hacks at, but those faithful, long-suffering fans would have had a tougher time with their traditional “wait ‘til next year” mantra after a 103-win regular season. My personal desire to help fire fighters overcome lip service about their importance–but with frequently less than significant supporting action–gain their piece of the American Dream, is because aid from the crew at Station #14 (Cotswold) gave me another Christmas with my Dad. While that kind of pales in comparison to Chicago fans collective angst, just recognize that when you feel deeply about something, its got to be legitimate to keep actions in line with beliefs.

The Reality is that many potential home buyers are in essentially the same ballpark with opportunities. Even knowing what is necessary—laying off the low/in the dirt pitch—they want to get to the plate without the most necessary implement to hit with, which is pre-approval. While buyers have a much greater possibility for success (being involved in home ownership) than finding a ticket for or playing in the World Series, it’s still about handling specific functions properly. Real estate brokers can steer through and around many obstacles in the buying process, but 99.5% of the time, they will demand clients have at least a loan pre-qualification letter before getting in the game.

(Ed. Note- That Cub hitters DID stop swinging at pitches in the dirt, especially from Indians pitcher Korey Kluber– who struck out 15 in his last Series outing– is why they triumphed in Game 7. After hearing retiring Cub catcher Mark Ross tell first baseman Rizzo to contain his excitement about a 5-1, 5th inning lead until the 9th (usual end of games), the Cubs endured a 17-minute rain delay at start of *10th inning* with game tied 6-6 and triumphed. The joy of their exceptionally long-suffering fans justifiably knows no reasonable bounds.)

The pleasure of taking in the ivy-covered walls on a sunny day and singing ‘Take Me Out to the Ball Game’ in the bottom of the 7th inning is significant; so is being seated on the legendary rooftops beyond left field wall for a once-inconceivable night game—in 43 degree temperature– or being massed outside Wrigley in anticipation during the Series.  The fire fighters/first responders I work with will never have to wait ‘til next year to be a home buying winner, and on a very real bottom line, the discipline of getting pre-approval is a lot more reasonable than trying to hit pitches in the dirt.

Congrats to the Cubs and their fans. I’ll do my best on object of home buyers desire to find a place that qualifies as “the friendly confines,” although for 108 years would be an impossibly long time.



Firefighters, Realtors Philosophies at Different Ends of ‘Fire’


While I will always put first responders in a slightly elevated position because their aid meant having my Dad for another Christmas several years ago, that their primary job is putting out fires and real estate agents try to create a fire to buy or sell homes is an appropriate analogy.

Because fire fighters (and teachers, police, often military) frequently get more lip service about their importance than actual support as people, doing whatever possible to help them gain their piece of the American Dream is my standard as a worthwhile goal. In this particular career of mine, that means finding houses that *don’t* require immediate rescuing, at the right price, and usually, as soon as possible. Because its logistically impossible to present information at individual stations—you’re on duty there– providing an online resource/contact point for information about elements like financing or finding a desirable home is a necessary starting point. As an essential first proof of my intentions,  http://app.kw.com/KW1DC9C2J is a link to Multiple Listing Services (MLS) accuracy regarding 4 million houses you can gain TODAY.

First responders don’t go somewhere just for the heck of it, they’ve been called because there is a need. Despite the location– and obvious presence of beer and several hundred potential competitors for my next sale– at a recent realtors event at Olde Mecklenburg Brewery, the objective of better serving client needs was still the primary objective. Like the legendary Dalmatian that leaps from a fire truck to point fire fighters at the nearest hydrant, the last business card exchanged was definitely even more important than a green-eyed, Jennifer Connelly look-alike mortgage agent, a 5’3” ex-military dynamo-mother of four-broker-in-charge, or a definitely brainy, mid-30s finance grad-turned marketing maven for a law firm, who recognized me from working in the Nautica department at Belk from two and a half years ago.

No, that last-of-17 cards exchanged, right at 7 p.m., went to a lady who said, “Cool, townhouses!” after hearing my description of a 10.24 acre-zoned R6CD property off Independence, a situation that has moved forward quite satisfactorily since.

Relative to fire fighters doing 24-hour shifts, my Dad needed assistance before 6:00 in the morning (with thanks to two nephews who were up early to recognize he needed help). Although real estate business never rises to that level of immediacy, whenever you want to find out about programs that can put financing into a next necessary gear, or you’ve gotten to that point in time where looking at potential homes has arrived, consider me ready to serve.

Please use the accompanying Contact Form to notify me of your interest in additional information. Allow me the honor of trying to return the dedication you’ve shown in a specific way in my life.

Panther tickets, fire fighters, oysters—It’s a brother share thing


A lot of PSL owners got to send the Love to military-first responders 

Friday afternoon my older brother, Mike, informed me that other Charlotte brother, Steve, wanted to give us his tickets for Panthers home opener Sunday. After watching a 46-27 Panthers do-as-we-want victory, with Cam sharp (24/40, 353 yds, 4 TD/1 int) most of the day, Benjamin reminded people why this offense is dangerous (8/108, TD) with him back. Along with Olsen’s long catch-run for TD, and Funchess’ TD catch from 16 yards, Gano’s final kick with 1:03 left beat back every 49er threat..

As for the love showed to veterans and first responders at the stadium, it took a lot of people to carry that field-covering flag. Charlotte started this season on the road, but 9/11 wasn’t forgotten just because the date wasn’t same. Having met an articulate group of vets at a Charlotte Bridge Home luncheon, and many fire fighters are veterans, my “thank you for your service” is sincere.

Barring an ongoing feud over politics, or maybe someone’s stupidity regarding a recent carpet stain though, brothers getting first shot at sports tickets, that’s just how it should roll– definitely  before any guy in another cubicle.

Organizations like fire fighters are synced on being a brotherhood, trusting the guy next to you does his job right, knowing that in the clutch, you can rely on him/her to the max, even to making a life-death difference at times. Cops and military share that, too: they know and count on a shared line of thought, history, that common training in procedures. 24 hours together is common for fire fighters; if you don’t always like another guy on a daily basis, neither do blood brothers.

Over the last couple days, I’ve had opportunities to help several fire fighters find RESPONDER-1 site, the KW app with MLS accuracy I promised in first blog, and previous real estate focused writing. The goal of ‘RESPONDER-1 on Real Estate’ (glennshorkey.kw.com/responder-1-on-real-estate) is providing something worth knowing about, considering, and using, so I’ll share two facts: Wells Fargo’s 3% down mortgage program, which is both better than FHA rate and less stringent about buyers ability to have ‘gift money’ involved in down payments, is worth hearing more about from a financial agent. More importantly, while called yourFirst Mortgage, the program is also available to buyers who *aren’t* buying first homes.

While I don’t have any Panther tickets, I do have a couple books of $25 tickets for my community groups Oyster Roast & Music Jam www.StGabesOysterRoast.com on October 22, which is Panthers off week. We showed everyone who attended—that Saturday between the ice storm and NFC Championship game–an excellent time in January. When I say, “Trust me on that,” I believe pointing you at a good time is as right a place to start on trust as any.