Brendan Mahoney | At Home Realty

From Mechanic to REALTOR®: A Journey of Transformation

“It sounds cheesy but I used to watch those late-night infomercials about making millions in real estate by buying a house, fixing it up, and using the equity to buy another,” laughs Brendan Mahoney, Team Leader of the Brendan Mahoney Team with At Home Realty. “By the time I jumped into the market that concept was crashing, just as the market was.” Still, he found the idea inspiring and figured that getting his real estate license was the first step toward his dream of owning investment properties. “I was going to be a landlord and own a bunch of houses,” he recalls. “You can’t do that unless you have a large sum of money to begin with so I learned the business of real estate and the art of working with people.” 

 Before diving into the world of real estate, Brendan spent nearly a decade working as a mechanic, specializing in cars and trucks. Fresh out of high school, he was guided by his high school counselor, who recognized his mechanical aptitude and connected him with a local automotive shop. Although Brendan possessed the skills for the job, he didn't have a deep passion for it.

As the years passed, Brendan developed a strong bond with the owners of the automotive shop, Houska Automotive, and they became a second family to him. Witnessing their growth and seeing the independent family business thrive inspired him to explore new opportunities. Additionally, his own experience with an old Volkswagen van camper, which required frequent repairs, ignited his interest in the world of fixing and flipping properties.

Brendan grew up watching his dad build a small landscape design company. He admits he was thrown into the deep end of the real estate industry during the 2008 recession and learned by making mistakes. “I learned real estate very slowly and probably could have made some different choices,” he says humbly. “But I had the drive to build my business on an even larger scale than my dad did.”

Undeterred by the challenging economic climate, Brendan was determined to build his own business. Despite the crash in the housing market, he recognized the potential in foreclosures and quickly learned how to work with buyers in that segment. Although he admits that his lack of deep understanding of the business at the time prevented him from fully capitalizing on the opportunity, the experience proved invaluable in his growth as a REALTOR®.

Overcoming obstacles has been a recurring theme in Brendan's life and business but his unwavering drive and determination pushed him forward. Together with his wife, Hannah, whom he met when they were young, they weathered financial hardships, including the brink of losing their first house in the challenging early years of their marriage. “We lived hand to mouth for awhile,” Brendan remembers. “Our parents were really supportive when we were broke, to the extent that a Safeway gift card here and there made a world of difference.” 

Through it all, Brendan's commitment to providing a better life for his family propelled him forward. He and Hannah became landlords owning multiple properties, and successfully navigated the ups and downs of the real estate market. Hannah loves her work tending the organic vegetable farms at Native Hill, and she holds a degree in interior design, which has been a tremendous help in the couple’s various renovation projects. The couple shares a love for travel, sports, music, and camping, instilling a drive to enjoy life to the fullest in their young son, Kelly.

For Brendan, the most rewarding aspect of his real estate career lies in working with clients and friends, and seeing their dreams come true. Helping others find their dream homes and witnessing their journey of building equity is what motivates him every day. He defines success as achieving a harmonious balance between work, family, and friends, spending time in nature, and exploring the world through travel. They also enjoy contributing to the community that has been so good to them. “About five years ago we got involved in the Bohemian Foundation to support arts, music, and open spaces,” Brendan says. “It’s important to give back to your community and we encourage young people and newer agents to find ways to donate their money or time to a cause they are passionate about.” 

Looking ahead, real estate remains an integral part of Brendan's dreams and goals. With his unwavering passion for the industry and a keen eye for identifying opportunities, he envisions a future filled with continued growth, expanding his network, and making a positive impact on his community.