Chat for a few minutes with Nikki Buckelew and you’ll get a real feel for what Oklahoma is all about. A native Sooner, Nikki’s warm personality and professional diligence represent the core of what makes life in Oklahoma special: a true respect and caring for others.
But beyond the pleasant personality and compassion rests a seasoned professional – an Oklahoma City real estate agent – booming with experience and education in working with seniors and their family caregivers.
Nikki is recognized across the country as an expert in how to provide unique real estate services for seniors. It’s an expertise borne of Nikki’s initial experience as a licensed professional counselor and elder care case manager coupled with the early stages of her developing career as a Northwest Oklahoma City, Moore, Edmond, Mustang, and Yukon real estate agent. In 2001, she and her husband and real estate partner, Chris Buckelew, noticed a distinct need.
“We began serving seniors in our real estate business when early in my counseling career it became evident that the transition process late in life was more than just a physical move – it was an emotional move too,” says Nikki. “Most real estate agents only focus on the sale of the home, and while we knew that selling the house was important, we also knew that we could do more to reduce the overwhelming stress on seniors and their adult children. We decided to approach our real estate business by addressing both the emotional and the physical needs of elder clients.”
Nikki and Chris developed an extensive guideline of policies and strategic tactics to address all of the issues that are unique to seniors when it comes time to sell a family house and downsize. Almost immediately, they were faced with the need to serve as family caregivers themselves.
“We found ourselves right in the middle of helping our own grandparents with the process of downsizing,” Nikki remembers. “My grandfather had lived on the family farm in rural Oklahoma for over 50 years when he suffered a series of small strokes. No longer able to care for himself, we moved him to an assisted living community near us and 45 miles from everything familiar to him. We learned so much from that experience, making us even better at what we do.”
Over the following years, their success in serving the real estate needs of Oklahoma seniors led to the realization that real estate agents across the country (and world) required more training in how to better serve mature adults.
To that end, Nikki co-founded and serves as the CEO of the Seniors Real Estate Institute, the leading international training and coaching organization for educating seniors real estate professionals. As the Administrator and Lead Trainer for the organization’s Certified Senior Housing Professional (CSHP) designation, she teaches and coaches real estate agents and other senior housing professionals globally on how to better serve mature homeowners, caregivers, and elders experiencing late-life moves.
Nikki authored two educational guides for mature home buyers and sellers, “Downsizing Made Easy” and “Moving Mom & Dad: 5 Common Mistakes Made by Adult Children of Aging Parents and How to Avoid Them.”
An admitted “education junkie,” she holds a Bachelors degree in Family Studies and Gerontology, a Masters degree in Counseling, and is currently working toward a PhD in Psychology. Nikki is a Master Practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), a member of the Association for Integrative Psychology (AIP), and a Certified Leadership Coach through the John Maxwell Team.
“All the money, time and effort I spend toward education and training is because things are ever-changing. The aging process is fluid and so is the state of senior housing. In order to be the best I can possibly be for our real estate clients and professionals with whom we collaborate, I must stay current — or better yet, one step ahead of the curve.”
Nikki and Chris both love boating, scuba diving, blue water vacations, public speaking, and of course, their most cherished gifts, their kids and grandkids.
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