Terrica Matthews: Empowering Others

Terrica Matthews posing on a bench in front of a bright red wall

When Terrica Matthews asked God to show her how to do social work her own way, she never imagined that real estate would be the answer.

As a human services professional, she spent years helping children navigate various mental health challenges. She found the work rewarding, but her time overruled by paperwork.

“I focus on impact over income, and I noticed that I was just pushing a bunch of paper,” she said. “So I asked God to show me how to do social work in my own way.”

Her silent prayers were answered over the next several years, unfolding in a grand plan that allows Terrica to change countless lives through financial literacy education, volunteerism, and real estate.

Private Prayers

Growing up, Terrica watched her mother, Tamatha, work hard and stretch every penny. “I was raised by a single mom who knew how to do a lot with a little, and she’s the type of mom who opened my mail,” Terrica laughed. “She was big on credit, always reminding me not to mess up my credit and pay bills on time.”

Terrica never took those kitchen table lessons for granted. As she continued to pray for guidance in creating her own path to make an impact in the community, opportunities to help others the way her mother guided her naturally arose again and again.

“Unfortunately, everyone doesn’t have the opportunity to have someone sit down and explain how credit works or how to create a budget,” she explained. She shared the financial knowledge she learned from her mom with friends. Soon, word spread about how Terrica helped people save money for a down payment and build credit to buy a house.

“I started fixing credit, teaching about credit, helping people with budgets, and I was asked to speak on various platforms,” she recalled. An entrepreneur through and through, Terrica felt like she had found her mission. She became the first FICO-certified credit coach in Louisiana.

“I felt like Oprah,” she laughed. “I was calling up Realtors like you get a buyer, you get a buyer!”

One day, a client admitted that she was scared to work with someone else and wanted Terrica to be the one to help her find the right house. That evening, as Terrica prayed, she made the connection. She reached for the notebook that lives on her nightstand and scribbled “from credit to closing” on the page, and a new journey began.

“I think the biggest reward in life is when we figure out why we were born, she said.

Terrica Matthews posing in front of a mirror

Public Rewards

After earning her real estate license, Terrica partnered with broker Carlos Alvarez to establish Premier Property and Consulting Group. And in her continued pursuit of knowledge, this year, she earned her broker’s license. When the days are long, she’s reinvigorated by the wisdom imparted in books and the stories of self-made entrepreneurs.

Prior to the pandemic, Terrica began Financially EmpowerHer, a community service initiative to educate young women and girls in high school on the importance of financial independence and being fiscally responsible. Terrica is also an active member of the Junior League to further her community impact.

But as hard as she works to make an impact on the lives of others through her career and volunteerism, she’s sure to make time for her favorite things in life - her family, traveling, trying new restaurants, and shopping. Especially family.

“If I’m not selling real estate, I’m with my family,” she smiled. She still looks to her mom, who leads by example as a selfless giver and problem-solver, for guidance in life. “It’s because of her that I have such a work ethic,” she said.

Her sons, 21-year-old Kadarius and 4-year-old Legend, come first. “I’m doing the only child thing twice,” she smiled. They never miss out on an adventure together, whether that’s watching Paw Patrol Live, attending her nieces’ cheer competitions, or spending the weekend together in Texas. “We don’t miss cheer competitions or football and basketball games for any of them,” she said. “No matter the circumstances, I’m going to show up as a mom and an aunt.”

Always ready for the next flight, Terrica enjoys exploring new cities through their restaurants and shops, but she’s adamant that she will always call Louisiana home. “I travel a lot, but I have no intentions of permanently moving to another state simply because no matter where I go, nowhere has food like Louisiana,” she said.

Terrica’s dedication to her faith, family and career forms the foundation of her purpose and desire to make an impact. Through her divinely guided mission to create lasting change in her community through financial literacy and stability, she has built a life she loves. With her newly earned broker's license, Terrica continues empowering others through knowledge and community service. Her role as a devoted mom echoes the values instilled by her mother. Her story is not just one of professional success but a living testament to the enduring impact of selfless giving, unwavering commitment, and the constant pursuit of purpose.

This article originally appeared in the April 2024 issue of Baton Rouge Real Producers.

Photography by Ace Sylvester