From Homeless To Top Real Estate Producer • Darrin DeSilva

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Darrin DeSilva this year’s 30 under 30 laureate goes back to the beginning of his career in real estate. Darrin discusses how his addiction lead him to homelessness but ultimately both experiences helped built his life back up and how that ultimately lead him into his career in real estate. Darrin and DJ discuss the importance of surrounding yourself with people who will inspire and lead you to success. Next, Darrin describes how he transitioned from car sales to his career in real estate. Last, Darrin discusses open houses.

If you’d prefer to watch this interview, click here to view on YouTube!

Please follow Darrin in Instagram here.

Darrin DeSilva can be reached at (209) 346-5429 and darrin@desilvarealestate.com.

This episode is brought to you by Real Geeks and FollowUpBoss.


D.J. Paris 0:00
How does somebody go from homeless to top real estate producer in just a few short years? Stay tuned. This episode of Keeping it real is brought to you by real geeks. How many homes are you going to sell this year? Do you have the right tools? Is your website turning soft leads and interested buyers? Are you spending money on leads that aren’t converting? Well real geeks is your solution. Find out why agents across the country choose real geeks as their technology partner. Real geeks was created by an agent for agents. They pride themselves on delivering a sales and marketing solution so that you can easily generate more business. Their agent websites are fast and built for lead conversion with a smooth search experience for your visitors. Real geeks also includes an easy to use agent CRM. So once a lead signs up on your website, you can track their interest and have great follow up conversations. Real geeks is loaded with a ton of marketing tools to nurture your leads and increase brand awareness visit real geeks.com forward slash keeping it real pod and find out why Realtors come to real geeks to generate more business again, visit real geeks.com forward slash keeping it real pod. And now on to our show.

Hello, and welcome to another episode of Keeping it real the largest podcast made by real estate agents and for real estate agents. My name is DJ Parris. I’m your guide and host through the show. And in just a moment, we’re going to be speaking with top producer Darren de Silva. Before we get to Darren, just a couple of quick things to mention. Number one, please the best way you can help us grow telephone think of one other realtor that you know, that could benefit from hearing our episodes where we talk to top producers like Darren and ask them how they built their business. And they share all of their secrets, which is so we’re so grateful for all of our wonderful guests. So please tell other realtors about us. And second, leave us a review whatever podcast app you might be listening to us on. Let us know what you think of the show. We read every review and every comment. We’re always striving to do better for you. But enough about all that let’s get on to the main event, my conversation with Darren de Silva.

Today on the show, we have Darren de Silva from Realty One in Tracy, California, and also Central Valley. Let me tell you a little bit more about Darren. Darren grew up in Pleasanton, California, and he moved around a lot. Throughout his childhood around Northern California, he ended up landing in Tracy, California. And then there he became homeless at 22 years old, and really thinking maybe his life was coming to an end. But from there, he was able, of course, to turn his life around with help. And he received his first opportunity to do sales with Kirby vacuums. From there, he moved up to car sales, and eventually into real estate, which is where he is today. And it was the best decision he ever made. And recently, in the last couple of months, Darren was just awarded the National Association of REALTORS 30, under 30 Class of 2022, which is an incredible accomplishment because like 1000s of people apply for it, and they only give it to 30 people every year. So huge, huge. Congratulations to Darren and please check out his website, which is DeSilva real estate and that’s d s iLv. A real estate.com DeSilva real estate.com Also, please follow him on Instagram, which is Darren which is d a r i n underscore de Silva. Both of those links will be in the show notes. So uh, Darren, welcome to the show.

Darrin DeSilva 4:03
Thanks for having me. Yeah, it’s it’s a real honor to even be asked to be on on the show, let alone have so many interested in my in my life and kind of the things that have led me up to this point. So it’s, I’m grateful and I appreciate you guys, you know, reaching out to me.

D.J. Paris 4:20
I, I have always thought that gratitude is one of those. Well, now it’s talked about a lot I feel it’s kind of more commonly discussed. But I love that that gratitude seems to be really present for you. I’ve noticed that just in our interactions even before we started, I think I think that’s I think humility goes a long way in this industry as well where there’s so many people who you know, kind of go the other way with, with entitlement and things like that. So I am absolutely absolutely excited to hear your story. Let’s, let’s start at the beginning. So tell me about sort of growing up, and then how you ended up we mentioned that, you know, at one point you were homeless in your early 20s. We’d love to sort of hear the circumstances there. And then how you how you got out of those, that situation because, of course, a lot of people don’t. So I would love to hear you know, what got you there? And then what got you out?

Darrin DeSilva 5:21
Yeah, so, you know, you kind of I appreciate, you know, you recognizing, the way I am and interacting with you now, being grateful and everything like that, you know, honestly, the, that’s not me at the core, right, if who I am those, those types of characteristics, were born, being into me with pain and suffering and things like that, that I’ve gone through in life, unfortunately, but fortunately, today, I can say that, that’s, that’s what has molded me into the person that I am today. And the person that I’m working on becoming, as I continue to go through life, just like all of us, you know. So for me, I lived in a in a household with a single mother, she did the best she could, she had a lot of outside issues, and things like that, you know, addictions and that sort of thing. And my father, same thing, he was an alcoholic, growing up, you know, he would be one way on one day, the best father and other day and you never know what you’re gonna get. Right. So that was kind of my upbringing is just real instability, real craziness, but that’s what I was used to, you know, that’s, that was my normal, it wasn’t like, oh, my gosh, I had these weird parents. It was. That’s just life, you know, at an early age. So fast forward, you know, my, my first, my first encounter with for me, I was rebellious teenager, I was never told no, by my mother, you know, never really forced to be given responsibility. And held accountable for my actions. I’ve always was able to kind of, manipulate and things like that. These are things that I learned from my parents, you know, I was able to do it as a small kid, this is a child doing these things, you know, 1112 13 So at an early age, I was actually sent to a wilderness camp.

D.J. Paris 7:27
One of these sort of, we’re gonna get you in line teach you skills that you’re not learning at home kind of thing.

Darrin DeSilva 7:34
Right? Exactly. It was like basically, you know, like, like, your Bear Grylls right in out in the middle of Bend, Oregon, which is where I was,

D.J. Paris 7:45
right. I feel like a lot of those those. Those organizations are out in Oregon. They’re like, send your kids out here. We’ll get we’ll fix them. Right, exactly. They basically they basically taught you survival skills, as well is working together with others. I’m guessing a lot of interpersonal skills as well.

Darrin DeSilva 8:04
Absolutely. Yeah. Yeah. And looking back, it was one of the best experiences I think I had. It was funny, the way that they got me is me and my friend. Were actually staying in my, at our place. We were in Pleasanton, California. I was living at the time in the East Bay Area. And we we were sleeping and we got woken up by four people in black suits. It was dead middle of the night. They came up to our room. They said get up. We’re going. And they both of us. Yeah. Our parents were in on it, by the way.

D.J. Paris 8:40
Yeah, they were in on it. They gotta like, why don’t you hang out with your buddy tonight?

Darrin DeSilva 8:44
That’s exactly what happened. Yeah, exactly. Yeah, it was funny because they were in on it. And, you know, we were like, what’s going on? We, you know, we walked away downstairs when we were transported to Bend, Oregon. From that point, we were given to this band of people that you could smell from mile away. And they threw us in a car blindfolded us. And we were taken out the middle of nowhere driven about two hours. They drove on dirt roads, driving in circles, so we couldn’t count the directions we were we were driving. And till eventually, we were in the desert of Oregon, which at that point, I didn’t know. You know, there was a desert in Oregon, you know, my interpretation of a desert was like Dry and sand, not knee deep snow and you know, Sage bush for hundreds of miles. So and then we were separated at that point. And then we were there for two months. Two months we were we were there and like you said we had to learn survival skills. I had to make fire from steaks using like a bow drill and you know, we would we’d have to ration our food. We would, you know, always slept under was was a sleeping bag and just a tarp that was just a square sheet. You know, that’s, that’s it. But it was really cool was like a Native American base program. And, you know, after after a certain period of time they give you like a name, you know, like a Native American game. So it was really cool is like a badge of honor, you know, and for me, it was cool. They did like this ceremony when I left that they had never done for anyone before. Because you, you, you also become kind of like a leader with the people underneath you to, you know, the kids coming in, after you and so that that was kind of, I feel like one of my first experiences having to kind of be some type of leader and it felt good to be able, I got a lot of fulfillment, you know, being having to try to help other people and, and guide them. And you know what I mean? So, looking back at that, I think that’s where that started for me is just finding that, what makes me feel fulfilled in life. Is that,

D.J. Paris 11:10
and then how and then Then where did you go from there? So you went to the you went to sort of the middle of nowhere, Oregon? I think I’ve actually interviewed I know, I’ve done at least one interview from from a top Realtor in Bend Oregon. But, but but not anyone who’s had that experience. So

Darrin DeSilva 11:27
they don’t do real estate in the desert out that way.

D.J. Paris 11:30
Maybe, maybe they do, but probably not. Oh, yeah. But so So you were there for two months, you learned not only sort of individual skills about how to be responsible and disciplined and, and all of that, but then it’s like, oh, by the way, now you’re in a leadership position of sorts, and now you can, you can help others, not just helping yourself. So you know, if you really think about not you, but if our audience really thinks about it, like what an amazing, you know, obviously a lot of pain associated with with getting to that place, but But what an amazing experience for somebody to have and cheers to, you know, to your family for making that happen. That is that is that is really remarkable that enough people loved you to to want to see you succeed. And so So you came back from that and then and then then then where did you go?

Darrin DeSilva 12:22
Then I didn’t have a plan. We didn’t have a plan. We didn’t have structure, but we pull up what we like to call a geographical. And we moved from Pleasanton, California to a little cow town in the central valley called Newman, which had about 10,000 people. So we went from the Bay Area, Bay, growing up going to San Francisco, right. And Bart, I mean, all that, you know, San Jose, go into this little cow town, in, in nowhere, it’s about I would say about an hour and a half from where I was.

D.J. Paris 12:55
So So what why, what was the thought process? If I want to go to the smaller community? What was the what was the reasoning?

Darrin DeSilva 13:01
Oh, my grandparents lived there at the time. So my mom yeah, that was the Ria. Yeah, it wasn’t just some random town, it was more because my grandparents had had been living there. And our my mother, my mother, you know, wanted to live closer to them, she felt like there was some support there. And I think that was your reasoning. But from there, you know, I again, I didn’t know anybody and just kind of jumped back to what I do best, and how I how I met people at the time, and that’s, you know, finding the not so good people, if you know, what I mean, you know, people that get into trouble people that, you know, have other issues, addictions, things like that. Sure. That’s kind of, you know, the story of my, my adolescent, but my adolescence, you

D.J. Paris 13:49
know, so you fell back into some older habits. You had more skills now. So that’s good. But again, it doesn’t

Darrin DeSilva 13:56
make a fire if they needed it. Right. Right. That’s all

D.J. Paris 14:00
also some leadership skills to which, which obviously exist beyond I mean, it’s funny, it’s like, look, you know, people have these major experiences like you did out in the the Pacific Northwest desert. And, and, you know, you had a lot of success there. But then you go back to the real world, and it’s not like, well, everything’s magically fixed, right? Like, like, life is still a lot of ups and downs. So so the journey doesn’t stop. And, and as somebody who is who’s had addiction in my, in my history as well, I can absolutely, you know, understand a lot of what you’re talking about. So So you fell back in with some people that maybe weren’t the best, most positive influences you maybe fell into some old habits, and then sort of what happened?

Darrin DeSilva 14:45
Yeah, so you know, I got plugged in with the wrong people. And we were in new and I want to say six or seven years. And through that time period, I definitely got worse and worse. For me personally, you know, I’ve faced addiction alcoholism. I was I was screwed from the moment I was born because I got it all in my family, right? Oh, totally. Yeah, you know, so I think

D.J. Paris 15:12
I’m only laughing because I could I thankfully my parents don’t have it. Thank goodness. And my sister doesn’t, but love many other people in my family too. So I’m with you. I was, I was born with it as well.

Darrin DeSilva 15:26
Exactly. Yeah. So you know, it isn’t genetic. And, and it is a disease, you know? And, and, you know, there’s a lot that can be said about that, you know, especially when you’re going through, you have more of an understanding, it’s something that it’s very hard to understand. If you don’t have it, like when I talk to my girlfriend about it, she’s like, Oh, what, you know, so it’s very, like, it just doesn’t process right. So and that’s okay. And that’s why we have, you know, people that do understand and that, you know, there’s resources for people to find others who get that, you know, and that’s yeah, I just

D.J. Paris 16:01
wanted to interject with my my most I think this is a such an interesting and funny thought that maybe for the rest of our audience who isn’t, you know, doesn’t have to deal with with family members with addiction or addiction themselves. The best way I can explain addiction in one sentence, and this is I’m sure I heard this somewhere, is it’s a, it’s a read, it’s a, it’s considered a medical disease. So it is not a psychological disease, it’s an actual medical disease, acknowledged by by the American Medical Association as an actual medical disease without a medical solution. Without a medical, there is no prescription, there is no medical solution to a medical problem. And that is incredibly unique. For this type of disease, it is actually a disease. So anyway, I just wanted to make that point. Because that makes it makes treatment incredibly difficult. So people with addiction, if you haven’t been through it, or if you have family members that have it, you certainly know how tough it can be. But I always think, you know, a lot of times people think it’s more of a willpower issue. And it’s almost never willpower, in my experience. But anyway, sorry, I didn’t mean to read you, but I just wanted to make No, I appreciate that. There’s no solution to what you and I have, and there’s no way out of it, other than learning how to cope with it, and learning how to exist coexist with with it. So I just wanted to make a big point, because everybody listening knows at least one person who’s struggling with addiction. So something to think about, but I apologize, go right ahead into your

Darrin DeSilva 17:35
Yeah, no, absolutely. And I’m glad you shared that. Because you know, it’s something you know that for me, it I can’t help but be passionate about, because what allowed me to have the life I have today is because I followed people who some, for some reason didn’t find the solution. Yeah. And all I did just like with real estate, just like with with the gym, doesn’t matter, right? You know, I have a coach for real estate, I have a trainer for the gym, I have a sponsor for, you know, recovery, things like that, right? Sure. So it’s just for me, it’s the same, it’s just finding people who have some have what you want, and doing what they’re doing, right.

D.J. Paris 18:24
And also surrendering your own your own sort of identity in a sense, and not in a bad way in a really positive way. surrendering your own need for control, to say, you know, there’s certain things I just don’t do well, or I don’t know how to do, but this person over here does it. And I’m going to figure out what they’re doing. And I’m going to hang with them. Whether it’s a personal trainer, a recovery coach, you know, AAA or what, or medical doctor, you know, whatever it is, you’re you, you know that you can’t always manage everything yourself. And I think that lesson is so important. And most people don’t ever get to a place where you were at where where things were really bad. And you sort of were like, Okay, I give up, I surrender help. I need help. I think I think that is it’s it’s very painful, but it’s also a real gift because it allows you then to say, Who can help me and then you found those people?

Darrin DeSilva 19:19
Absolutely. And the cool thing about all of this is I can apply this to my real estate, business and forth. And frankly, it’s I believe, in my opinion, why I have the life I do today and why I have the career I have is because I have learned the same principles that I can apply to my business. And it’s the same thing, and that’s why I think it’s so it’s been so easy for me to transition because it’s something that I’ve internalized. And it’s it’s powerful. You know, it’s it’s the things that are taught and it teaches you how to deal with the motions it teaches you how to deal with I mean, if I’m with a client and they say something that I don’t agree with or UPS or It upsets me. Sure, you know, emotions can get involved, especially with large transactions, you know, it has allowed me as a business person to check my emotions, check how I respond to things look in the mirror, pause, and, you know, do work accordingly, right? So

D.J. Paris 20:21
make and make a better decision right now, to where maybe things are more impulsive in the past. And, look, this is not just for people with addiction, right? Impulse control is a huge problem for a lot of people, including myself who I would consider myself to be in recovery. But that being said, I still struggle with that. So I think the the all of what you’ve gone through has really set you up. In a lot of ways. I think you’re right, those skills are perfect. But before we get to the real estate, I want to go back because you did something that that I think is really, really difficult, but also awesome. Which is, you know, you then we’re like, okay, you’re trying to pull yourself out of maybe some old habits and you know, some maybe people that that weren’t working with your best interest in mind. And then you started to work at Kirby right for Kirby vacuums.

Darrin DeSilva 21:13
Yeah, so So what led to that is basically, from Newman, you know, went downhill from there. And my mother sold the house that she had paid cash for. And at the time, you know, again, I was raised, I had things, you know, I had to learn responsibility. I don’t learn how to be an adult at a late age. And, and so I didn’t, you know, have a job. I didn’t, I didn’t, you know, the my mom basically took care of me right. After high school after I didn’t, I didn’t seek it because I didn’t need to frankly, right, it was all taken care of. And so, eventually, when when she sold the house, we we were supposed to buy another house with that money. And we just kind of went from hotel to hotel, we moved from from Sonora, California to Modesto to Turlock, we stayed at a truck stop. I mean, that was the life we live for about two years. Just the craziness, you know, it’s a very difficult life. It was until eventually we blew through the entire net profit of of what she got from the home. And you know, we were just kind of living on her SSI checks and till eventually, we were sleeping in the car at times and

ended up in Tracy Tracy, California, and I had gotten a title loan against my car and obviously didn’t make the payments. And so we ended up

saving up enough money to just go stay at Motel Six to get cleaned up and everything and we were able to purchase a couple of weeks. And then the first two days I heard in the morning I hear a car alarm going off flatwork so I can rent it out. And it’s my car on a tow truck yeah being taken off because I didn’t make the payments and I was on some red flag system and that’s how I ended up in Tracy California by the way as I My car got towed and I we got left in a Motel Six so but I’ve never left and call it home so you know somewhere I started and we’re having now it’s kind of funny but we stayed in Motel Six for a while till eventually we got kicked out of there couldn’t afford it and so we were both homeless and went and found a place behind a CVS store stayed there my after about two days my mom left and said she was going to be right back she had come back so you know I’m left you know on my own everything. Everything I own is on my back I’m sleeping in a cardboard box I found a big refrigerator box that fortunately I could fit in. I was also 260 pounds at the time which was a big you know big amount of about 180 now and you know I just thought I lost everything that I had to find only pay for I feel like existed in the world at the time. Fortunately it was close by and you know called everybody in my family that normally I could call and would get me out of it right sure that that’s that was a story my life is I could always figure a way to either manipulate a situation or get my way out. And this was the first time in my life where I the people I call my grandparents everybody said sorry. Go go to Salvation Army go So we’re not helping you anymore. You’ve burned all your bridges. And that was the starting point for me of what turned my life around. My mom didn’t want anything to do with me, she left, did her own thing. And I was I ended up finding a spot on the side of the freeway. And actually, like, as I’m looking at this right now, I have a picture of myself homeless, I keep it in front of me in my office every single day, just as a reminder, and I found a place on the side of the freeway. Stay there, it was like a little igloo. Fortunately, it was like rain proof because it was raining a lot and and I would go hold a sign, I found a sign that some other homeless guy left. And it was like pre written didn’t even really make sense what it said on it, but it got the point across Hey, I’m homeless, I’m hungry, help me. And I would go Hold on the corner. And people will give me food people will give me money. And you know, I would go just try to not figure out a way to numb not dealing with today, not dealing with where I’m at in life not dealing with what happened any any way that I can numb that and just survive. That’s what I did. And did that for a while, a couple months. And until eventually somebody pulled over and talked to me. And they just talked that’s it gave me their time. Even took a picture. I mean, that’s the picture I have up there today was the first time and and then he left and then a couple of days later after I held the sign that sign on the corner. I would head over to the you know, I was heading to the liquor store, go get some food, whatever, you know, I could do and then that way I could just go back and then the gentleman saw me and he pulled over he said hop anybody have something to eat? You know, where do you want to go? I’m like, I’m going to KFC. I love KFC man. Yeah, that was some good stuff. And he took me and he got me something to eat. And eventually he got me into a, he helped. He never gave me a dime. All he did was either pay for, you know, maybe food, maybe gotten a couple packs of cigarettes at the time when I smoked. And that was it. He just gave me his time. That’s it. He didn’t say hey, Darren, here’s $20 Good luck. Right? Which it’s very easy to do. Right. And we think we’re doing good by giving people money, but in my case that would have only been enabling me. Sure if he would have gave me money.

D.J. Paris 27:40
And also, he also gave you I’m sorry, I don’t want to put words your mouth. No, no, no, I imagine that life is incredibly lonely as well. So yeah, now have because, you know, you just said everyone in the family said, Hey, we got to we got to cut you loose right now because we can’t really help you. And then this stranger comes around and says, Hey, you’re I think you’re you’re just fine. You know, I want to be part of of your life, whether it’s in a law, you know, long term capacity or short term capacity. But just even somebody reaching out, was that hard for you to even trust somebody like that? Or was it were you able to sort of, you know, embrace because a lot of times I find that, you know, people who are on their own, you know, there’s obviously a lot of mistrust. There’s a lot of dangerous people out there.

Darrin DeSilva 28:28
Right? Yeah. And you know, and unfortunately, a lot of the people that I met out there, too. I think after a period of time, you get used to being out there, I think I was fortunate enough to only be out there for you know, a few months. But these people who aren’t as fortunate as I was it just becomes their new normal. So they’re like, they’re less likely to want to change because they’ve gotten used to that lifestyle. And, you know, I think where I was at is I was so lonely, so beaten down. They call it the gift of desperation. Yes. And, and that’s where I was at. And I think fortunately, God put somebody in my life at the perfect time when I was ready, when I was when I was willing. And when I was ready to like you mentioned earlier surrender, you know, and, and, and I did you know, I had an option that day when he pulled over to hop in the truck or to continue to the liquor store, you know, and fortunately I jumped in and that’s when my life changed just making that one decision. You know, that one decision and not that you know, is when my life changed

D.J. Paris 29:46
is that day and so so how did you get to only because I just find this so so inspiring. So so you’re you’re at a particularly low moment you you found the strength somehow to make the healthy decision. Jen of, hey, this person wants to help. I’m going to, I’m going to trust you No. And then how did you how did things start to turn around for you? I want to pause for a moment to talk about our episode sponsor are one of my favorite companies out there follow up boss. Now after interviewing hundreds of top Realtors in the country for this podcast, do you know which CRM is used by more than any other by our guests. Of course, it is a follow up boss. And let’s face it, following up is the key to taking your business to the next level follow up boss will help you drive more leads in less time and with less effort, do not take my word for it. Robert slack, who runs the number one team in the US uses follow up boss and he has built a one and a half billion dollar business in just six years. Follow up boss integrates with over 250 systems, so you can keep your current tools and lead sources. Also, the best part they have seven day a week support. So you’ll get the help that you need when you need it and get this follow up boss is so sure that you’re going to love their CRM that for a limited time, they’re offering keeping it real listeners a 30 day free trial, which is twice as much time as they give everyone else. And oh yeah, no credit card required. So you can try it risk free. But only if you use this special link visit follow up boss.com forward slash real, that’s follow up boss.com forward slash real for your free 30 day trial follow up like a boss with follow up boss. And now back to our episode.

Darrin DeSilva 31:30
Well, I instantly was put in a min zone. At that point, when when I it was shared that I was you know, willing and put somewhere, you know, I had helped for the first two months as far as you know, rent. And that was it. But they taught me structure. It’s all like I mentioned, you know, for me, I was not taught, you know, responsibility, or I wasn’t, I wasn’t there was no reason because everything was typically either, you know, handed to me, I didn’t have like, a whole lot in my childhood. But I had I had more than most. And, and my mother made sure that she did the best she could but she was more of a friend, then a parent. And that was what did me wrong and affected me later on in life. So that that’s kind of that’s kind of what happened.

D.J. Paris 32:41
Yeah. And then so you’re in the men’s home. And then they say hey, it’s you know, it’s like we’re gonna help you for a little while, but you need to find employment, you need to start working, contributing to society being a good citizen. And and you started was Kirby your first sort of, and by the way, we let’s tell everybody what Kirby is because I think most of our audience isn’t familiar. I have just nothing but respect for people who who attempt the Kirby job because I think especially in this day and age particularly difficult. So can you talk a little bit about what that what what, what Kirby vacuum salespeople or like or what to do? And then and then and again? Yeah, absolutely. I think this is it. You know, 40 years ago, we’d be like, oh, yeah, people would go door to door like not that big of a deal today. That is not common. So I would love to hear this because I think it’ll people will be like, Whoa,

Darrin DeSilva 33:35
yeah, so I owe a lot to Korea. In fact, I owe everything to Kirby because that’s what opened the door for me into sales. And, you know, I was on the internet, like you said, gotten to the place and they kind of were like, Alright, after 30 days, you need to start, you start getting a job. So I looked on Craigslist, and I saw this ad Hey, open interviews, you know, come on down, right, you know, they they try to rally up and, and so I’m like, Hey, perfect, you know, here’s an opportunity I was excited. You know, when you go from a place of where you’ve lost everything, like they call it a pink cloud you’re on and I just was so happy to just be free. You know, I had been I had been without any substance or anything like that for a while. So it’s like you’re it’s almost like you’re free of your chains and like anything’s possible. So I didn’t care that you know, there was no guaranteed pay. I didn’t care that you know, I just was like hey, it’s a job. There’s opportunity. Let’s go so what their interview you know, they they hired me, right? And what Kirby vacuums is is basically you go door to door, they only sell vacuums door to door if you buy something that’s not that’s from somewhere else. It’s it’s more likely to pre owned back here. Pre Owned but brand new out of the box. They only sell door to door

D.J. Paris 35:04
and and they’re not inexpensive. They’re these are these are nice, very high end vacuums and, and just going door to door. Tell me what that experience was like.

Darrin DeSilva 35:16
Yeah, so it’s it’s nerve wracking. I mean even today when I’m knocking on doors, I use the same Kirby script, you know that I do. Hey, don’t worry, I’m not here to change a religion guys like going like, you know, all these skills and things like that, that I’ve learned in Kirby from getting doors slammed in your face I still used today. And it is it’s nerve racking, they take you in a van, you know, polyene say, Hey, you too, you go canvass this neighborhood. You go out, you walk with the flyer, you try to set up appointments for people, you know, and you say, hey, we’d like to come in and do one area rug one room free of charge, you know, to show you this, how this vacuum works. And you go in? They say yes. And you go in and you you know, I was 260 pounds, by the way at this time. And I sold I sold in about four months, I sold about 12 vacuums. And

D.J. Paris 36:11
and is that a lot? Or is that not a lot? I don’t even know that’s

Darrin DeSilva 36:14
a lot. Yeah, that’s a lot. These are $3,500 vacuum? Yeah, they’re not. And they’re not cheap, but they do everything. I mean, you know, I was washing people’s windows with these things. You could you could do the carpets, hardwood floors, everything, just the vacuum itself is so powerful. I mean, you would vacuum a rug, and it almost looked like it was shampooed because it’s sucking so much dirt out from even underneath the carpet. You know, I mean, I can go the Kirby salesman starting to come out here. You know,

we have a special code for our podcast listeners. Yeah, exactly, exactly.

D.J. Paris 36:51
Because it has to be door to door so you can’t We can’t have a code. And by the way, I want to make a point. For those of us that are familiar with Dog the Bounty Hunter. That’s where he, when he was he was in prison for for a murder charge. And he was released. And that’s how he got his life back and ultimately became well now he’s more of a celebrity but but when he was starting out, he became Kirby’s. I think I have this right. They’re basically one of their top salespeople in the country. So I don’t know if but but for anyone. But anyway, he’s got a particularly a very difficult past story as well. But anyway, so you started having success with Kirby which, by the way, not the easiest sales job, probably about the hardest sales job that exists. Yeah. And and so then Then what happened?

Darrin DeSilva 37:40
Yeah, so then it came down to, you know, a bad month where, you know, I don’t want to, I don’t want to say anything, you know, bad. But in my experience, let’s just say a meeting the manager or the owner of that curvy franchise just didn’t see eye to eye and some things there were some unfair things going on. And, and I couldn’t pay my rent is really what it comes down to came down to. So I had knocked on several doors, tried to get some appointments, to general managers of of cars, car dealerships, and, you know, sales managers, and about three or four different people told me dude, you should drop the vacuum thing and go get into car sales. And I after hearing that so many times, and then finally getting to where I could pay rent doing this thing where I’m like, You know what, I’m going to hit every car dealership, in Tracy until one of them hires me and I picked the day and I said I’m going to start at Tracy Ford at the corner I’m going to walk in and I’m going to go to Honda Volkswagen sure I’m walking in and one of these people is hiring me today. I’m going to start at the end and work my way back so I walked into Tracy Ford taught what to the manager and he hired me on the spot and and I was there for about five years for about four years Yeah, and you know worked my way up and that’s really what what really helped me you know, as I worked my way up in the car business I started seeing my effort pay off you know, I could I could you know my credit started getting better my all these little things that you know, I never really knew or took for granted you know, that mattered so much I was able to you know, get out of the bids place to get my own little spot and it was just it was it was really a blessing for me at the time you know, I moved up to like a manager role in the dealership and and from there you know, bought a brand new car and you know all these little things that they are the promises right and, and it’s just, you know, I they told me when I first kind of came in To make a list of everything you want in the next five years, and I made a list and they said, you, we, the reason we want you to do that is because if you do that, and you continue on the path you’re on, you’re going to short yourself. And I did that. And about a year and a half ago, I came across this list I made. Yeah. And I looked at it and everything was checked off, and more everything I made, that was like a dream list. Like, I’m like, There’s no way I’m gonna, it’s gonna take forever. And it’s so it was just so inspiring to see that, you know, because it really is the truth, you know, the sky’s the limit. And, and I went from the car business and, you know, working my ass off, making, I feel like as much as I could make without moving up to like a General Sales Manager position or finance. And, and I feel like that would have kind of made me just basically live at the dealership, because I already was working six days a week, practically, you know, 910 hours a day. So I was the only thing I could do to make more money at the time was given more time. And, and so that’s kind of what got me into real estate is I saw real estate as something that is the sky’s the limit. And whatever amount of effort you put into it, that’s what you’ll get in return. And it’s your own business. You know, it’s it’s something that you can be proud of, you’re not working for somebody else to make them successful. You know, it’s more risk, nothing’s guaranteed. But I felt that betting on myself was a great investment. Because I knew in my heart that I would work my ass off. And I believed I would make it work. I believed in my heart that no matter what, that’s the mindset I had going in to real estate, I feel like any new agent needs to have that mindset, especially if you’re leaving a full time job that pays you 100 grand a year. And going into this field, that you have no experience, and then there’s nothing guaranteed. You know, that took a lot for me, but I but I did it because I believed I could. And it was the best decision I ever made. One of the best decisions I should say.

D.J. Paris 42:22
Yeah, well, it certainly is incredible, that you know, so many people who start out on the path that that you were on based on, you know, hey, that’s what you knew growing up growing up. And of course, you know, you know what, you know, and, and to be able to, to, you know, to sort of get out of the cycle of that is, is tremendously difficult and also rare. Sadly, sadly rare. But obviously, the story has has a wonderful ending. And here you are today. And not only are you a practicing agent, a successful agent, you were just named one of National Association of Realtors. 30, under 30. Right in the nick of time, because you’re 30 Yeah. Or did you already turn 30 just recently turned 30. But yeah,

Darrin DeSilva 43:14
I recently turned 30. So the cut off is I want to save I think it’s June 1. And it’s weird how it works. It’s kind of like halfway, so anybody that has a birthday, even though there’s still 29 If they have a birthday before June 1, unfortunately, they their last opportunity was the year before to apply. So and my birthday is on the 15th of June. So I just I just made the cut off. Yeah, amazing. Yeah, so it was it was fortunate. Yeah, now I’m on the Big Three Oh, and, you know, I feel like, you know, my my life is, is it’s truly a blessing today. And I, I feel like if I’ve gotten this, this amount of fulfillment in this amount of this many blessings in this two to a little little less than two and a half years in real estate. I can just imagine, you know, where my life will be in my 30s. So I’m looking forward to it. That’s for sure.

D.J. Paris 44:19
I think this I’m curious because for any of for those of us that are versed in anything related to recovery or addiction, we know that surrender, you know, is is really the cornerstone, or the very first part of a recovery process. And the reason why is because our own efforts, we come to a place where we people who struggle with with addiction go, oh, I can’t actually do this. I’m not a I can’t actually live the life I want. I’m not in control, and most most people never have that experience. Right? Most people don’t get to a place where they’re out of control. Roll enough to where they have to surrender. And I’m curious because you have surrendered many times in your life in really extreme ways. How important that that sort of skill is in helping you be successful at real estate. Right, like the surrendering skill, I think I’m almost wondering if that’s maybe the most important part of who you are. Because it enables you to take your ego and your your your identity out of out of a problem, and just go, maybe there’s a solution here, and I just have to find somebody that died curious how important surrender is for you?

Darrin DeSilva 45:40
Absolutely. And I think, you know, just you bringing it up, you probably know how important that is. Because it’s like, it’s it, it’s instrumental to being successful, I think, you know, you have to detach from the outcome, you have to because then what happens is, if I’m attached to especially something as as, as, like money, right, if I’m doing this for money, like, yeah, we want to do it for money and grow. But there’s got to be something more than that, right? And if I go into a listing appointment, and I’m like, Oh, I gotta pay my bills, and I need this listing. And in this, they’re gonna sense that they’re gonna sense that I’m trying to solder desperation. And now I’m cutting my commission. Now I’m so you know, there’s no value there. Right? Like, I wouldn’t want a realtor like that. So, so for me, it’s just detaching from the outcome. Now, fortunately, I’ve had a lot, and I have lost everything more than once. Yeah. So so that’s why for me, like the pain and things that I’ve gone through, I think is it’s, I don’t say easier for me. But it’s just because I know that if I lost everything today, I would be fine. I can rebuild. And and start something new. Right. But I think you got

D.J. Paris 47:02
no, you know, what’s amazing, and I’m sorry to interject, but I think this is a good gut check for a lot of our audience, because I have, I’ve dealt with a few issues that that you have it but but a lot of issues you I have, you have experienced that I have not, and I am I am not confident that if I lost everything, it would be easy to rebuild, I’d have a lot of help. And I think people would help me. But as far as me on my own, I don’t know that I would, I could say I’m confident, but I’ve never had to do it. And I’ve never been in that position. And I think that that has obviously helped. Obviously, nobody wants to have to go through that. But boy to know that if it all went away tomorrow, if you know, for whatever reason, you had to start over again, to just know that I’d figure it out. And to be confident because you’ve actually done it more than once is, is really a tremendous skill that propels people who have you know, who might be at the bottom, who are really struggling to get to a much more elevated position. So I am really because I was thinking about that, as you were saying that I was like, oh, yeah, me too. And I went, No, would I really be okay, no, I probably wouldn’t. It would, I’d have to go through losing everything to really then develop certain skills. So I hope to god I don’t have to but but that gift of desperation is it. You know, that phrase you said earlier, the gift of desperation is a it is it’s a double edged, double edged sword gift, but, but it does actually provide freedom because you’re like, I can do this. It’s not easy, but I can do it. And knowing that I think a lot like, you talked about this with getting a job as in car sales. You’re like, I’m going to get a job, someone’s gonna hire me because I’m gonna go in there and say, you really should hire me, I’m really going. I did that really well, with Kurt with vacuums. I know how to do this, I can do this. Someone’s gonna give me a job. I never have thought that way about myself. And I think that is an incredible thing that you know, I’m going to figure this out. I can figure this out. And that is, that’s amazing. So I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to take over there. But just No, no,

Darrin DeSilva 49:23
I appreciate that. One thing, you know, I do want to make very clear for for me, and everyone who’s listening is I do not believe that I could have done any of this on my own. Right. I know for a fact that the only reason that I have the life I have today is because I surrounded myself with individuals who were willing to help me and were willing to show me away. One person that told me this great analogy. It’s kind of like if you’re trying to climb Mount Everest. You know, if I were to climb Mount Everest by myself, I probably wouldn’t make it back. Yeah, why?

D.J. Paris 50:00
When you die, yeah,

Darrin DeSilva 50:01
I’d die. Yeah, I’d be frozen up there, you know, and but the chances of me making it back with a guide, somebody who has been to the top multiple times who has found a solution, who knows the path knows the way, my chances of surviving and getting to the top are a hell of a lot better. You know, and, and that for me, I, the only reason I feel like I would be able to come come out after losing everything is because I would find the right people to be around, I would seek those people out who who have also lost everything before and came back, you know, and just follow what they’ve done. You know, and I think the only thing that I do have is that belief that it’s possible, you know, like you mentioned with the car dealership, is I believed that it was possible, and I can do it, you know, I just needed help to figure out a way to do it. And, and I truly believe that me on my own, I’m nothing but me, as was somebody else. And with the unit and with the team and with people, we can achieve impossible things. And I truly believe that.

D.J. Paris 51:18
Yeah, it’s like that one plus one equals three kind of thing. It’s like, it really is. The sum is greater than then than the parts, right? It’s it really having i I’ve always thought like, not always I took me to I was in my 30s to realize, oh, I need to counsel with people in life, who will tell me the truth, right, actually be there to say, Hey, man, you’re going a little nutty about this thing, or we see you heading in this direction, which may be great. But also people that are like we believe in you. You’re you know, and we have skills that you know, and just having people around who, who and the good news is, there are tons of people who are willing to help. The hardest part is finding those people. I think, for me, it’s it’s about being willing to ask, because it is hard to ask whether you’re a real estate agent, and you’re brand new, and you’re like, I don’t know what I’m doing. I don’t know how to get clients, I don’t like go talk to I mean, this whole podcast started because I thought, wouldn’t it be cool to like if we could get a list of, of all these stories of top producers and how they made it like I didn’t think, Oh, I’m going to be talking to top producers, I assume somebody else had already done this. And I was like, I’ll just find the podcast that already exists. And I’ll just give it to our agents because they want to, they want to hear from these top producers. And then I went, nobody’s done that. And I went, Oh, okay, well, we should accumulate these stories. But but it’s all because you know, it people who have risen above our, in our, in my experience, have are very willing to tell their story. And, and, and help others. And if you can find people that are willing to help you, that’s great. But you have to you have to go first you have to be willing to ask for help, right? And that’s probably not something you struggle with as much as maybe other people who haven’t been as desperate at times. So let’s talk about, you know, you’re you’re starting in real estate. How did you start your business? I mean, you don’t have the traditional background of like, well, I don’t know, actually, so So did you have a sphere of influence when you started? Or was it like, I’m starting a whole new thing, and I’m starting over from scratch.

Darrin DeSilva 53:34
I mean, a little bit of both. It the sphere I have, I’ve created from car sales and doing that, you know, I was kind of doing a lot of social media, with car sales as well. So I think that helped me because I would have people the same way they they reach out to me for houses. Um, there was the same thing with cars too. And so I would I would establish that branding, you know, as a car salesman, so that transition was really weird. But I think I made the transition very well because I went from being that car guy to real estate, you know, and I announced it ever I’d like to on your obviously I burned the boats today,

D.J. Paris 54:20
right? Yeah, so I cut off all other opera options. I burned the bridge behind me not burn bridges in a negative way. I just I burned the lifeboat. So this is all I got. I’m gonna exactly I

Darrin DeSilva 54:33
announced it to the world. I am leaving the car business. Thank you for all of that. So that way I have some sort of accountability. Yeah, when things get rough, so there’s no turning back. So again, that that just it’s gonna work mindset, you know, it’s gonna, I’m gonna make this happen. And that’s so powerful. Like I think back to that, that mindset, you know, it’s a lot sometimes Was it gonna be difficult to have that same mindset, especially having a little bit more time in the business and just continuing to have it? I don’t, I don’t really don’t know if that’s even sustainable, right, but I think you can get it in waves. But at time, at that time, I had that mindset. And, and that’s what I needed, especially breaking off in real estate. And I joined this little brokerage, you know, local brokerage, that there was like a referral to me and people that I trusted and, and I just went in there, and I had one guy, he fortunately took me under his wing. And he, he really helped me, you know, he, you know, do open houses with me, whenever I would have a question, I would reach out to him, and he would answer them for me. You know, I felt like I was pretty resourceful, fortunately. So I would try my best to not be needy for things. And if I could figure out a way to find it out myself. I would. That’s fortunately what the internet’s for. Right? And Google. And it just asking people to asking other people. So it took me, it took me two months to do my first deal.

D.J. Paris 56:24
Which, by the way, two months is pretty short timeframe for somebody’s first transaction is a real estate agent. That’s, that’s, that sounds like an eternity for those of us in, you know, but we can, everyone listening can remember, you know, doing a deal in your first couple months is not very common. So, so, but cheers to you for even getting that accomplished, you know, yeah, and that’s another

Darrin DeSilva 56:46
thing too, about mindset. Because if there’s any new agents that are listening, you’re going to be told that it may take six months to a year for your first home, you’re going to be told that. And I would hear people say that, and in my head, I would tell myself, you know, maybe for you, right, but not for me, I’m going to make this work, right. And I think if you just again, that belief system, if you have that belief system, and just continue to believe and stay consistent with your activities, just like prospecting, just like working every day, you know, treating it like a business. You know, real estate is one of those things where you put in the work today, and you get the results, a month or two, you know, at the at the soonest

D.J. Paris 57:36
I was gonna say could be a years. Yeah, could be a year. Yeah. And more than

Darrin DeSilva 57:41
likely, it’s gonna be that long, right? But you have to put in the effort to have the mindset that what you’re doing today is going to benefit you later on, right? It’s not going to be

D.J. Paris 57:52
quick. And that’s the thing too, and I hope, I’m glad you you sort of challenged me a little bit on that. I appreciate that. Because it is impressive to do a deal within your first two months, but it’s not unheard of. And it’s absolutely doable. It’s just not as common. But also most people don’t have as much desperation, to say, I gotta make some, I gotta pay my bills, I gotta make something work. It’s amazing, again, back to this gift of desperation. But what happens is by putting the blinders on and realizing, okay, most of my efforts today in real estate won’t manifest to actual income, maybe for a year, maybe six months, you know, a year, whatever, whatever the the, you know, the time sales cycle is in your particular market. But you also end up making some quick luck along the way, right? Like, exactly like it ends up like lucky things start to happen to people who are quite crazy discipline. So it’s not just like, I mean, look, we could say not a whole lot of luck fell your way. Or we could say you had a lot of luck fall your way at the right times. Either way, you have always been on your way up a very disciplined person. You’ve always sort of made your own luck. It sounds like like, going from car dealer to car dealer is no is not fun and beg, basically begging for a job. And I don’t mean begging in a bad way. But being like I gotta get a job. That is is in most people would never do that. Most people won’t go to 10 different dealerships now. You got you got lucky on the first one in a sense. Yeah. But you would have kept going until someone said yes. Anyway. So so the reality of it is you could say, oh, was lucky it was the first one well, yeah, but it might have been the third one or the fourth one or the 10th. One, you would have still got a job. Because well, or maybe you wouldn’t have it then you would have pivoted to something else. But the point is, is you were convinced that there was a way out, and all you had to do was put is put the blinders on and just go to work essentially. And someone’s always going to give somebody a chance. Who has that mentality like that is It’s really kind of a boss’s dream hire, somebody comes in and says, I have to work here, I need to work here, I want to work here. Like that attitude. And I imagine that’s probably endears you to your clients. Because as you show, or you didn’t show, but But you have that picture of, hey, here’s a time when I didn’t have anything much, or much of anything, or maybe really anything I have that picture from, I remember what it was like, and not that there’s anything wrong with with going through that experience. Of course, it’s brought you to where you are today. But it’s nice to sort of say to say, oh, at one point I that that’s that was my reality. Today, I have a different reality. And, and, and, you know, there’s been a lot of people helping me along the way. But it’s really been a lot of effort on your end. So so let’s talk about the future. So you started in real estate, you you had did your first deal, and within a couple of months, and then then how did things progress from there?

Darrin DeSilva 1:01:00
Um, so from there, I always had at least one pending, which was nice, amazing. Yeah, it was, it was nice. And a lot of my business has come from, from my sphere, you know, from referral partners from those sorts of relationships that I nurture, and have developed a system around that. And that’s really where all of my business came my first year. And, you know, it was a blessing I made, I made more my first year than I did at, at my, my car sales job where I was killed, I was selling 30 cars a month, which is pretty good in the industry. You know, and just just crushing it in, in here in real estate, working less, you know, in a sense, like, like, compared to how I was working in the car business, right, where you’re clocked in, you’re at the dealership, right. And that’s also one thing is, like, I just thought, like, if I was able to take that same mentality that I had in the car business, and apply it to, to real estate in my business, which let’s face it, I don’t think any real estate agent really does, you know, and but the ones that do, are super successful. And that’s what, that’s what I I tried to do and have a schedule, you know, just have a system and treat it like like a business, you know, just because I get to dictate my own schedule does not mean, I shouldn’t treat it like a business. And that’s what I’m starting to learn is just trying to have some structure and things like that, instead of treating it just like like a lot of agents treat it just as like a, Hey, I’m a realtor treating it more like this is my business. This is, you know, I need to have systems in place, I need to have a schedule. I add admins, transaction coordinators, you know, having team members just having that growth mindset. And that’s kind of where I am today is starting just starting that process with that. Trying to have the systems right, a guy that was living in a cardboard box, trying to develop systems for a real estate business, let me tell you is not easy. So I fail more than succeed, you know, but I learned and I learned new things every day and I invest in coaching, I invest a lot in real estate coaching, and other things because I know the value. I know the value in coaching is one of the things that I invested in right off the bat when I first started in, and if you have the funds to do it, I would 100% recommend any new agent. And quite frankly, anybody whether you’ve been in the business for 30 years to invest in coaching, because that it for me is is your game, you have to have a guide to climb Everest, you know? And yeah, and accountability as well.

D.J. Paris 1:04:16
Yeah, we all need we all need Sherpas to help us kind of lead the path guide the way Hold keep us on the path to and you know, they always say what it takes a village to raise a child. It takes a village to run a business. I mean, it just does. And boy, you know, aren’t you so are aren’t we so lucky that we live in a time now where we can get help globally from people that we wouldn’t have had access to 20 years ago, that just wasn’t wasn’t a thing. You couldn’t hire a virtual assistant 20 years ago they didn’t exist. Or if they did, I didn’t have access to them. And now we can get help from people all over the globe. And who can help us for, you know, reasonable cost. And you’re you’re helping them by providing them income, they’re helping you by helping run your business. I’m always shocked that individual practitioner agents, a lot of them, don’t think to employ somebody, even if it’s just somebody to help plan your day, or somebody to help structure. So you’re now building these systems. And you’re, you know, I’m curious now as the markets shifting, so I want to sort of talk about what’s going on currently in in the real estate industry, because you’re still relatively young, as an agent, also your age, you know, you’re a younger guy. Now, things are starting to shift, right, we’re seeing a slowdown, we’re seeing interest rates rise, we’re seeing, of course, inventories has been challenging for the last couple of years. And, you know, less buyers are now flooding the market, because rates have basically doubled, more than doubled some cases. So so how were How are you adjusting to that? Has that has that hit you yet? has had things changed for your business? Just curious on what you’re doing right now?

Darrin DeSilva 1:06:10
Yeah, so I am very happy the market shifting. I think we needed to slow down. Every buyer that I have right now, it’s like first offers accepted, which is nice. You can keep contingencies. We’re asking for closing credits, we’re negotiating price, like I’m like, wow, you know, you have new builders now like raising the Commission’s they’re buying, or they’re paying out to directors like you know, and sometimes, quite frankly, I’m like, Hey, if you guys, you know,

D.J. Paris 1:06:43
I used to deal with you a month ago. Where’s where’s that? For me? Yeah,

Darrin DeSilva 1:06:48
exactly. Yeah. And, you know, um, so I actually like it. And as far as the listing side goes, you know, I think it is who you who the sellers work with matters more than ever right now. And all the agents who stopped doing the marketing and the activities that that got results, when when you needed to market a house, you couldn’t just stick it in the MLS and put a for sale sign and say, I sold it for 300,000 over asking price, right? I’m the best realtor out there. I hate those posts. I absolutely hate them. Because it’s like, Dude, come on, like, what did you put a for sale sign one. And granted, you know, we all got to market ourselves. And I get that. But you know, as an agent, perspective, agent to agent perspective, it’s like, Come on, guys, you know, so the people I think that are getting hit and doing price reductions and all those things, I think are people that may need to look at what type of marketing and strategies they’re doing on their listings, you know, are they having, are they are they you know, going door to door like, I’ll give you an example. Right after this. I’m heading to Sacramento to do door knocking to invite everybody out to our open house this weekend. Right?

D.J. Paris 1:08:16
Okay, let’s pause real quick because this is a this is a really nice thing. door knocking for open houses. It’s so funny. You mentioned this I had done it did an interview four or five years ago with a guy named Nico apostle. So if anyone else would go back look, look for the just just search on our website for apostle just like apostle from the Bible, same spelling. And he did this and he’s the only other person and I actually just saw him a few days ago, cuz he’s a local guy here. And I was like, I still tell people about your door knocking Open House thing and I’ve yet so you’re like the first person in five, four or five years to talk about it. So let’s talk about what what this is telling me about the strategy for getting people to show up to open houses.

Darrin DeSilva 1:08:58
Yeah. So you know, you pick, you know, 50 I’d say 50. I used to do 100. But it was just too much. Because when you door knock, it takes a little bit more time. If you’re just dropping off flyers, that’s one thing, but I like to go up to the door. Because you you you have a conversation. And when you talk about like cold calling and making phone calls, the whole goal of all of that is to get face to face with the client. Right? That is the only goal. So imagine you have a listing, you actually have a reason to talk to somebody and you’re I’m not asking anything for you. I’m simply inviting you to check out your neighbor’s house, right,

D.J. Paris 1:09:39
which everybody wants to do just out of their own curiosity.

Darrin DeSilva 1:09:43
Exactly. So like what better way to leverage something when I’m not asking you to buy or sell anything, right? I’m inviting you to sing Hey, come on down. You know, we want to get your take on you know the house. Maybe if you can give us some feedback. We’d love for you to come over. We got some Wine, we got some, you know, work d’oeuvres, just come down, you know, in check it out. And hey, if you happen to know anybody that’s looking to move into this neighborhood, a family of friend, you know, we’d love to maybe get in touch with them, whatever you want to say to try to try to convert, right? But yeah, you go up to the door, you know, if it’s not specific neighborhood you knock they answer and you just simply, here you go. It’s Kirby one on one for me, right? He’s

D.J. Paris 1:10:28
gonna say this is Kirby. Yeah, you know, you have

Darrin DeSilva 1:10:31
your fliers in your hand. And the first thing you do when they open the door is you just stick your hand up, you hand them the flyer Hey, guy, and smile, you always smile, right? That’s the first impression big smile. Hey, guys, you know, and, um, just that and again, you know, back to the whole cold calling, and just doing phone calls. In general, you’re the whole point is to be face to face, I’ve literally all I’ve done is walk didn’t cost me $10,000 For lead, nothing, I literally walked over to this person’s house, who is a potential lead, and I and I gave them something of value. And I’m now creating a conversation with them. And if I if I track my numbers, I’ll know that if I talk to 10 people that I’ve knocked on their door, I’ll probably get, you know, two or three emails and phone numbers and one potential appointment to come back and talk about potentially selling their house.

D.J. Paris 1:11:32
Right. So is that are those numbers about right? So maybe knocking on 50 gets you about 10 conversations, which gets you two or three emails, which maybe nets you one customer and one opportunity, one opportunity? Yeah, so

Darrin DeSilva 1:11:47
So whether it’s by buying or selling, it’s it’s just an appointment lead generation, right. And that all that all was free, you know, so

D.J. Paris 1:11:56
it’s, it’s free, and it takes it’s free. And it just takes time. And it takes willingness. And it takes a little bit of getting over the lump in your throat to knock on a door of a stranger and, and I always I always have told tried to tell our agents. It’s not creepy if you’re not a creep. If you’re a nice, normal human, and again, women have a different and I’m not here to say it’s equal for men and women, obviously women have additional safety considerations. And maybe this wouldn’t necessarily be something a woman may want to do just for safety sake. But and I’m not here to to get into a gender conversation, but certainly, you know, think about safety. But you know, for doing that. I’m curious. Well, this is this is a question that I think will better answer this. How many how many other agents in your market? Are you aware of that door knock for open houses? Like you do,

Darrin DeSilva 1:12:56
I’m outside of my brokerage zero. I think the only reason I hear some of the people in my brokerage do is because we have you know meetings every week and people share what works for them so you hear it more often than none. Now doing it and being consistent with it, I think are two different things. You know, they do it for one open house and take a couple of Facebook photos and say hey, I did it. Which I’m totally guilty of too. I’m not any you know, consistency, that’s the hardest thing. But I find myself being able to be aware of that fortunately and and really trying to look in the mirror and seeing Okay, I need to be consistent with this. Otherwise it doesn’t it doesn’t work so there’s definitely I think if more people did it and did it consistently, they would see results no matter what you do. Right right.

D.J. Paris 1:13:52
So it doesn’t have to be door knocking I’m just saying yeah, but but but but I love I love that particular one because it’s it’s got that old school kind of like I don’t really want to do it. It’s it’s it’s way harder than picking up a phone. Phones are way harder than reaching out on social media. And not always not it’s not always that the hardest activity is the best activity but this particular activity I love because it’s it’s incredibly humbling it’s it’s not an ego based thing right? You can’t you’re not showing up like hey, look at how cool I am it’s a very humbling thing to have. Most people go I don’t really want somebody knocking on my door so you so you do have to go through a lot of of people baby poking through the looking through the windows. Yeah, who is that guy? What do you want? And and obviously you’re you’re a professional person so so you know you have you know how to dress and how to present yourself. But I think it is a wonderful experience. And by the way, for those of you who say open houses don’t work, do this. Well, so how do you do Would you go? Do you do it a couple of days before? Do you do it the morning of when do you do the door knocking for open houses? Yes. So

Darrin DeSilva 1:15:05
I typically do it a couple of days before, I know some people like to do it the weekend before. But I like to be fresh. Yeah, you know, fresh in people’s minds, because chances are that paper I hand them is gonna go straight from their hand to the trash can totally toe. So all I want them to see is my name in the bait. And your name should be the biggest thing on there other than, like open house. So that way, at least if they,

D.J. Paris 1:15:32
if on their way to the to the garbage, they see your name,

Darrin DeSilva 1:15:35
they see your name exactly. So you’re brand new yourself. And you know, and then just, you know, open house invite. So,

D.J. Paris 1:15:44
I know that and I didn’t mean to get to get stuck on this. But I think this tip alone is so important. And it doesn’t mean you have to go door to door for your open houses. But if you’re having if you’re going to all the effort to put an open house together, and I’m not saying Darren, I’m talking to our audience directly, you know, go the additional extra step and canvass the neighborhood. Really politely knock on the door, say, hey, just so you know, I’m listing a home down the street, thought you might be interested in checking it out, here’s a little bit more about the property if we’d love to have you over just to see come see the property, maybe give us some feedback. That would be awesome. It’s it’s, it will net you people showing up. So if you’re somebody who says open houses don’t work, I only want to hear open houses don’t work because I also knocked on 100 doors and still nobody, then you can tell me open houses don’t work. Right. Darren is here to tell you open houses work. But you have to probably put maybe more sometimes you have to put more effort in than just throwing it up on the MLS and saying Come Come check out the open house.

Darrin DeSilva 1:16:49
Right. And the only reason for me that I’m doing open house is because you with the listing, you can leverage you know, there’s there’s ways you can leverage buyers listings to but it’s more like direct mail and stuff like that. I don’t think it’s as effective. A listing you can really leverage in the only read the open house is not going to sell you. It’s not going to sell the house. Right? The whole point is you’re very lucky. Yeah, unless you’re very lucky you get you get somebody that walks in and sees it and you know, and that that happens from time to time. But regardless, if they really want to see it, they want to call their agent and have them show it to him. You know. So really all the open houses, it’s to generate you more business. That’s it, you’re leveraging one opportunity and making three more, you know, I can’t tell you how many buyers I had come in that are unrepresented and do an open house where not only did I get them in contract on the house I was selling but they had to sell house two to three deals. And one that happened that happened twice to me last year six deals just from one open house, right. And so you know, little things like that. And it doesn’t happen every time. Right. But again, it’s just it’s consistency. So that’s what I believe, again, belief, like I know, if I stay consistent, do I do I get deterred? And do I get down like Oh, this isn’t working man. Let me try something else. Yeah, 100% I get shiny object syndrome, right?

D.J. Paris 1:18:22
Oh, he too? Sure. No, we’re gonna fix everything. If I had that. That’s what I need. Yeah,

Darrin DeSilva 1:18:28
yeah, exactly. Let me listen to this guy and do this. And I’ll try this for two weeks, and I don’t get results. So now I’m gonna try this. If you can’t, you have to, you have to be consistent, no matter what you do. And then after doing it for, you know, six months, you know, three, four months, whatever it is, everything’s different. Then make your judgment. Maybe this isn’t for me, you know? Or maybe I need to try something different, or my approach is wrong. Or, you know, it’s for me, it’s like always looking within what can I do differently, not pointing the finger. You know, that’s the one thing like just for my personal life to once I stopped pointing at everybody else. And I started pointing the finger to me and seeing what I need to do better when I need to change what what I can do. Then I started letting everybody else or not letting everybody else control my destiny control. And I started taking responsibility in allowing me to control my life and need to control where I want to end up right because I can change my actions but I can’t change yours. I can’t change the brokerage. I can’t change anything so I can’t blame it on the brokerage. I can’t blame it on the current condition the market conditions. I can’t Well all I can do is adjust right. I think this market going kind of back to your your question about the market. I think this market is it’s going to show the trooper professionals and amateurs and people who do this as a side business or just don’t treat it how they should, you know, don’t take it seriously. Like we’re dealing with people’s largest assets. Like these, these are people’s lives. You know, I have clients crying to me sometimes because of how, how stressful the process can be. And and it’s like, I want to make it so smooth for them that I don’t have to hear one person ever tear up. That’s that’s where my in like, how can I make this escrow? Or this selling or buying? How can I make this process just so smooth for my clients? To where all they have to do is worry about packing. Right?

D.J. Paris 1:20:43
You know, it’s funny, I, I just I absolutely could not agree, I went through this process. A year ago, I bought a primary residence was not my first time buying a home. But it was my first time in a while buying a home. And I also work in real estate. And we have like, almost 800 agents here. So you would think that I would be like, pretty, I’m sort of in the industry, and I’m kind of like, shouldn’t be that emotional about it. And thank God, I had a people to help me through my own emotional storms of my own transaction, which was pretty normal. And there wasn’t even any major hiccups. And I thought, you know, I started no more than the average person who’s I’m not, you know, I’m not a product practicing agent. So I don’t know as much as you. But I know enough. We have enough agents here that I sort of feel like I have a general idea of how it all works. But it was so incredibly stressful. So I was like, Oh, I forgot how it feels. And you’re so right, that having the job of the realtor, at least for me, was keep DJ calm. And I and my boss was the guy who was keeping me calm. You know, he was he was he was the one where I went, I don’t know what to do. I don’t know how to do this, and so freaking me out. And then, you know, and I’m not somebody who doesn’t handle things? Well, I think. But even for somebody in the industry, it was crazy stressful. And it was a perfectly normal transaction. So I think you’re absolutely right. And then now think about, you know, of course, everyone else who isn’t in real estate doesn’t doesn’t remember what it was like to buy a home, because maybe they did it 10 years ago, or they haven’t ever done it. And now and now we’re in multiple offer situations, still even. So you have a lot of stress there. So I think you’re right, that you making things as stress free, of course, it’s still going to be stressful is really the main benefit of working with realtors having somebody say, Don’t worry, I will keep you up to date I’m on it. Do you find that that’s the most important part of your job is sort of managing, being on top of it so that your clients don’t you know that they’re able to, like you said, all they have to worry about is moving.

Darrin DeSilva 1:23:04
That’s it, it’s just communication to keeping people in the loop. If there’s, if there’s no update, send them a text saying hey, there’s no update, you know, don’t just not text them. Right? Like, like little things like that, that I’ve found people really appreciate. And not only that, but the service you give. Like to me it. I focus the reason I give high level service like that when I want to take care of people. But really, it’s because I want people to refer me to their friends, family and people that they know, because of how great of a job that I did, right? There’s all there’s always some, there’s a motive behind it, right? And then that’s the truth, you know, because that’s what I value, I want to be known as that guy that makes it smooth for people. So it’s in everybody’s best interest to focus on those things, too. So that way, you’re you can have a very lucrative referral business referral based business where you’re just getting referred clients left and right. You know, like, that’s the dream. You know?

D.J. Paris 1:24:15
Yeah. And it all has to do with service and discipline. Right. So So you have echoed that over and over and over again in the time we have and I think it’s a good place to sort of, sort of wrap up today because, wow, I feel like I’ve just been on this emotional journey with you. I appreciate your vulnerability, your honesty, your willingness to share some of some of your life sort of story and I think that is a takes tremendous courage and, and I have a tremendous amount of respect for that. So congratulations. And by the way also, not just me recognizing it. Clearly National Association of REALTORS thinks you’re poor. be special as well, awarding you the 30, under 30, which I know a few people, I know many people who have received that award. And they’re all they’re all amazing people. So you are now of course in that same same rarefied air, which is, I’m sure very humbling for you. But it is really impressive to the rest of us. So, by the way, we should also mention that Darren is now in a place where he’s like, I am now expanding, I’m building up this thing. And maybe he’s going to need some additional help and wants to build out his team. So if so, tell us, tell us who you’re looking for. Because we have lots of agents who listen from all over the country. Who are you looking for? Who would be a good fit for you and your team?

Darrin DeSilva 1:25:42
Yeah, so for me, I’m looking for somebody that’s coachable. That is, is willing to learn? I look for people that have more questions than answers, right. And that, for me is somebody who would fit into the team, I it’s not about you, selling a million houses, it’s not about it’s about your attitude and your work ethic. And you willing, if you’re putting in the work, and you’re showing up, that’s all I would ask for. And that’s, that’s, that’s the only requirement for me, is being coachable, being showing up. And getting into action doing what you say you’re going to do, you know, whatever your goals are, if you say you’re going to do something, and we then next week, we go over what you did the prior week to get there and you didn’t do them, those are things that I I don’t like to do, because here’s the thing, I, I have a coach, too, that I am accountable to who holds me accountable. So I expect the same thing from any of my agents, right. And that’s the kind of team I’m building. It’s something like that, and we grow together. And it’s a culture. And that’s, and that’s what I’m looking for. So I’d love for anybody that just wants to have a conversation or just talk about real estate, that’s, you know, in in Tracy area, San Joaquin County, Central Valley area to reach out to me, you can you can look me up online, and I would be more than happy to have a conversation with you guys and, and see if, you know, potentially working together would make sense.

D.J. Paris 1:27:27
And fun fact, my middle name is Joaquin. So I am a big fan of the Joaquin Valley. But for anyone out there who is in sort of central, or East Bay Area, Central Valley, and just you know, is is wanting to explore other options or wanting to work with somebody like Darren, who is really still at the beginning part of his career. And he’s already just on the right track to be crushing it, he’s already crushing it. But to go even beyond that, boy, I would join your team in a second. If I was a practicing agent, I don’t say that lightly. And I don’t say that, as as a platitude. It’s the absolute truth because I’m like, you have a track record of success. And you know what it takes. And so I encourage anyone out there who’s interested in looking at other options to consider the DeSilva real estate research real estate team and visit Darren at his website, which is DiSalvo, real estate.com. And that’s d s iLv. A real estate.com. Also, you can find him on Instagram at Deron, which is with an ID AR R I N underscore to Silva links will be in the show notes. Darren, this is probably the longest interview I’ve done in 400 episodes. Now, I hope I hope it was interesting for our audience as it was for me, I trust that it was I am so I don’t want to say I’m proud of you. Because that suggests that I’m in a different I see you as appear as an equal, for sure and somebody to look up to and admire. So I think you you are really somebody who has got amazing things ahead of him. But just the skills that you’ve developed, I think are are the truly truly incredible to to move from where you were to where you are now. And you can just tell that that you you seem to be at some level of peace and some level of of normalcy, which I’m so glad that you were able to find for yourself. And not only that, but be able to thrive and build something. It’s It’s It’s inspiring, and I hope our audience feels the same way I know they do. Please everyone follow Darren on Instagram. Check him out on his on his website, reach out to him. If you want to explore joining his team, he’d love to talk to you as well. And he’s just a good guy. So So reach out to him. Let him know that you appreciated him sharing on our episode. And before we go to we just ask everybody to do one quick thing to help oscaro, which is just a telephone, I think one other real estate professional that could benefit from hearing this really inspiring, impressive story with Darren is taking a selfie. So I am, I’m waving in the background here. But I want everyone just to tell one other person about this episode, send this to them, especially somebody who may be struggling right now in their business, or maybe with personal issues. And maybe they’re thinking of getting out of real estate. Or maybe they’re thinking that this just isn’t the right. The best path for them right now, maybe this would encourage them to get back on track. So shoot this over to him. And honestly, anyone really could could learn a lot from Darren, whether they’re a top producer or they’re struggling, so send a link out, send him over to our website, keeping it real pod.com. We appreciate it. All of our episodes are there or you can also find us anywhere podcasts are served. So please subscribe. And also last thing to please leave us a review whatever app you might be listening to this on. Let us know what you think of the show. Your comments, help us continue to improve as well. So Darren, you’ve given us a tremendous amount of time, and I know you got to race out of here to get to your next appointment. I hope I didn’t keep you too long. Really, really super proud of everything you’ve accomplished and also what you’re willing to share. You’re a great guy and we are a super excited to see your you continue to dominate the Central Valley market. So keep it up and stay in touch with us. We’re going to be checking in on you. And awesome, man. Well, hey, and congrats on the 30 under 30 thing. Huge, huge deal there. So I hope to hope hopefully you’ll come down to the Orlando NAR conference this fall. If you get out there, we’ll definitely have to meet up and say hi. So, congrats again. Thanks for being on our show. Really appreciate it. Thank you for having me. All right, Darren to solve everyone. Thanks for being on the show. On behalf of everyone. Thanks, Darren. And on behalf of Darren and myself. Thanks to the audience for sticking with us to the end. Tell a friend about our show and we’ll see everyone on the next episode. Thanks, Darren. Awesome. Thank you

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