Realtor is a long way from New Jersey |

Realtor is a long way from New Jersey

Donna GrayGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Post Independent/Kara K. Pearson

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colo. Concealed beneath the still waters of her quiet, graceful exterior is a woman whose sense of purpose and adventure took her out of her comfortable, staid East Coast upbringing and led her west. Glenwood Springs real estate broker Sharon Beattie grew up in Short Hills, N.J., the second oldest of six children. Her father was a district manager for Proctor and Gamble, and her mother, a stay-at-home mom.Like many girls of the ’60s, after graduating from high school, Beattie went on to junior college. “My father decided the boys needed four-year college and the girls two-year,” she said. But after two years at Bay Path Junior College in Massachusetts from which she graduated in 1966, she wanted more.Her father balked when she asked to transfer to a four-year college. But then her grandmother and an aunt stepped in and offered to pay her way through two more years.She chose the University of Colorado in Boulder, a choice that was to have life-altering consequences.

“I’d never been west of Pennsylvania,” she said about the move. The wide open blue skies, the anti-Vietnam War demonstrations and the hippies that were the hallmarks of Boulder were an instant attraction. “I thought it was amazingly exciting,” she said.She met her husband, Steve, in their co-ed dorm. He was in his first year of law school and they were soon engaged. Then Steve was drafted into the Army and was sent to Vietnam. After his two-year tour of duty he returned ready to resume civilian life.That new life took them back to Boulder for Steve to finish law school and to Arizona for nine years. They came back to Glenwood Springs in the early ’80s. Along the way, they’d also had two children, Justin and Wade. Beattie found herself drawn to real estate and went to work for Century 21. While she was there she had an experience that was to define her life. One day a cowboy came into the office ostensibly to find out about real estate. “He took out his guitar and sang a cowboy song, and I thought, ‘I’m a long way from New Jersey, in a good way.'”In 2002 the Beatties and Steve’s law partner, Glen Chadwick, and his wife bought the lovely Victorian house on the corner of Ninth and Cooper which at the time was the Kaiser House Bed and Breakfast. Beattie had started her own real estate business some years before and set up her office alongside Steve in the house.Although she works on her own, Beattie is also affiliated with a group of local independent real estate agents who call themselves Smart Move Brokers. “We help each other out” and go in on advertising.

Over the years the challenge of selling real estate in this hot market has continued to challenge her. And never more so than now. Unlike the rest of the country, which is in a real estate slump, the valley market is sizzling. “We’ve never been busier than we are now,” she said.In fact, just a few days ago she had her fastest turn-around for a home sale – 24 hours. The price, in “the mid 400s,” a few thousand dollars above the asking price, she said. When pricing a property these days, she looks at the information about the property, “then I add $50,000.”The “crazy” market could go on indefinitely, or until the housing inventory gears up. “We’ve been short of inventory for three years,” she said.To keep in step with the times, Beattie has also recently acquired certification as an “eco broker,” who can steer interested clients to ecologically friendly and energy-efficient homes. She also has connections with “green” experts to whom she can refer her clients, whether it’s “straw bale homes or programmable thermostats,” she said. “I think the public is becoming much more aware of the advantages (of green homes), and I think they’re better built and save the customer money in the long run.”Looking back on her East Coast childhood, Beattie said she’s glad she made moved to the West. If she’d stayed there her life would “not have been nearly so interesting.”

Contact Donna Gray: 945-8515, ext. 16605dgray@postindependent.comPost Independent, Glenwood Springs Colorado CO

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Glenwood Springs and Garfield County make the Post Independent’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.

For tax deductible donations, click here.

Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User