My path to a successful real estate career in Southern California has been far from direct. I was born and raised in Iran. My father was in the oil business, so we moved around a lot when I was growing up. We rarely stayed anywhere for more than a year, and we almost always lived in company housing. This nomadic lifestyle was an adventure, but it made me yearn for the stability and structure of a more stationary life.
In the early 1980’s, when I was in my late teens, the tensions between Iran and Iraq escalated into all-out war, creating even more instability and uncertainty for my family. The financial and educational opportunities in my country became more and more sparse, and the situation for young men became very dangerous. So I decided to escape the chaos of war and seek a new home where I could build a better future.
Initially, I planned to flee to the United Kingdom, but my journey out of Iran proved nearly as challenging as remaining in my war-torn homeland. I faced many obstacles along the way. I travelled through other battle-scarred nations such as Afghanistan and Pakistan to get to my final destination. At one point, I actually made it to the UK on a flight from the United Arab Emirates. Once I got there, I tried to remain as anonymous as possible, but I was discovered shortly after my arrival and sent back to Dubai. Despite this setback, my will was not broken, and I set out again in search of positive opportunities.
When I got back to Dubai, I regrouped and decided on a new destination for my future: the United States of America. In 1984, after a treacherous and strenuous year away from my homeland, I finally arrived in Los Angeles. I was ecstatic to be in the “Land of Opportunity,” but my challenges did not end when I stepped on American soil. I was a 19-year-old kid in L.A. with no money, no home, and no connections. While I had nothing of material value, I instantly knew that I had made the right decision. I finally had the opportunity to do the things I always wanted: get a job, work hard, and go to school.
After getting my permit to work legally in the United States, I spent a couple of years working odd jobs while I searched for a profession. I started in insurance sales, performing as a top producer for five years, but I wasn’t fulfilled. I moved on to working as a paralegal, which was enjoyable for a time, but, was still missing something. Then in 1996, I was introduced to Real Estate and I immediately realized I could combine my sales experience and legal knowledge to provide my fellow Americans with the happiness and security that comes with being a homeowner. In the same year, I earned my license, and I have never looked back!