Paige Hardy Always Perseveres!

Written by Heather Pluard

Photos by Camille Hughes

Starting a business in a new city is hard, especially if you have a chronic blood disorder that causes constant pain. Fortunately, REALTOR® Paige Hardy has never let a challenge hold her back! Since obtaining her real estate license and moving to Charlotte in 2019, she has built an incredible referral network and has closed on almost $3 million in sales. Even better, she’s now living with minimum pain and her Sickle Cell Disease under control.

“I was born with a rare form of Sickle Cell Disease, called Sickle Beta Thalassemia, and have been on medication my entire life,” Paige says. “It’s a genetic blood disorder that affects everyone differently. Before I changed medications and became a pescatarian last year, my crises felt like a toothache everywhere that blood flowed in my body. Now that my pain is minimized, I feel like I have unlimited energy. I wake up every morning ready to go!”

Despite having nearly constant pain in college, Paige graduated Summa Cum Laude from North Carolina State in 2017 with a Bachelor of Business Administration and a concentration in Marketing. While in college, her father became a real estate investor in their hometown of Durham. He asked Paige to help him manage his properties, paid for her license, and introduced her to an industry she immediately fell in love with.

“I’m the type of person who can get thrown into an ocean and learn how to swim,” Paige laughs. “I enjoy the intensity of real estate, and I also appreciate the flexibility that comes with being my own boss. While I have a business-minded approach, I love building relationships with clients, keeping it real, and having a good time. But when it comes to negotiations, I will turn into a shark for them!”

Seeking a bigger city to launch her real estate career, Paige moved to Charlotte and started networking. “You have to get in the right rooms and be willing to learn,” she says. “I’m grateful I found wonderful people in the industry to mentor me and show me the ins and out of the industry. In 2020, I decided to join Costello Real Estate because it combines the personal attention of a boutique firm with the systems and processes offered in much larger brokerages. Plus, Jennifer and John Costello are committed to helping me reach the next level.”

Hiring an Atlanta-based branding consultant has also helped Paige elevate her career. “People choose you based on who you are as a person, so never shy away from your true self,” she says. “Be authentic and invest back into your business. Not only did Jammyra Weekley help me polish and market my brand, but she also made me realize that as busy as I am, I can do so much more.”

“More” includes maximizing online tools and boots-on-the-ground strategies for lead generation and brand awareness. “I was already using social media professionally and intentionally, especially Clubhouse,” Paige says. “Last year, I started raising my hand in chat rooms and getting up on stage virtually, talking about real estate and establishing my credibility. I gained many clients that way, and I was able to network with other real estate professionals who now refer to me. Jammyra took my social media presence and made it even better while stressing the importance of real-life connections. So, in addition to sending equity letters, I would also door-knock in targeted neighborhoods and hold monthly community events where people can see my face and know my name. It all works together.”

Outside of work, Paige is passionate about giving back to the Sickle Cell community. As a result of her patient advocacy, the governor appointed her to the North Carolina Sickle Cell Council in 2018. She works with doctors and department heads to identify and address patient needs. Paige also celebrates Sickle Cell Awareness Month by holding weekly events throughout September. “Growing up, I never saw anyone living a successful, thriving life with Sickle Cell Disease,” she says. “I want other patients to see that you can get this disease under control and live a vibrant life.”

To relax, Paige enjoys a good glass of wine and listening to live music. She’s a huge foodie who likes to try new restaurants and experiment. Paige also loves to travel, hang out with friends and family, and live every day to its fullest.

“Everybody goes through something,” she says. “My parents overcame a lot and taught me not to let my disease define me. I’m happy to make them proud because they’ve helped me so much. And I hope my success inspires people facing challenges to say, “I can do this no matter what. I can be anything I want to be.”