Helping build middle class is Vegas real estate agent’s American dream



Nora Aguirre

Mon, Apr 15, 2024 (2 a.m.)

A longtime Las Vegas Realtor is now playing on a national stage.

Nora Aguirre, a local real estate agent of nearly 20 years and member of Las Vegas Realtors, has been installed as president of the National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals (NAHREP), a nonprofit organization that advocates for homeownership in the Hispanic community.

“As an organization, we believe that homeownership is a gateway to the middle class,” Aguirre said. “And it is something that we definitely want our community to participate in.”

Aguirre, who was born in Mexico and grew up in North Las Vegas, said she first strayed into the world of real estate because she had to act as a translator for her parents when they purchased a house.

“I got my real estate license, and really didn’t think much of it—I actually was really hesitant to get it,” said Aguirre, who is also a veteran of the Nevada National Guard. “But slowly (and) surely, through the process of really helping the customers and seeing the process that it takes to get them prepared, I really fell in love with that part.”

She quickly realized there was a need for consumer advocacy in the real estate market, especially in the Spanish-speaking community, Aguirre said.

Aguirre leads the top team for Century 21 Americana in Nevada, and said she gives a lot of attention to first-time home buyers, particularly within the Hispanic community. Her team is bilingual, she noted, and provides people preparing to buy a home with the education and resources they need to do so.

Her business is “in the trenches” with first-time homebuyers every day, she emphasized. A real estate agent can help first-time homebuyers negotiate their down payment and closing costs, Aguirre said, which makes their job “extremely crucial.”

“Through helping people buy their first home, you can help them create wealth or put themselves on a path that they didn’t even realize could happen through real estate, which is having equity in a home,” she said. “So, it’s been a wonderful journey.”

Aguirre founded the Greater Las Vegas Chapter of NAHREP in 2017, according to the organization’s website.

Now, as the national president of NAHREP, Aguirre said, she has the opportunity to give real estate practitioners nationwide the tools and resources necessary to create more sustainable Hispanic homeownership.

The real estate industry is facing many challenges, Aguirre said, and a lot of the changes proposed within it are counterproductive for first-time homebuyers. In her new role, she has the opportunity to be the voice of Hispanic real estate.

“At the end of the day, we’re going to push for our first-time homebuyers to really have more opportunities,” Aguirre said. “We’ve seen the growth, but right now is a crucial time for us to really continue to stand strong and deliver and provide the resources first-time home buyers need.”

Merri Perry, president of Las Vegas Realtors, said she can’t think of anyone better to lead NAHREP than Aguirre.

“It’s a definite honor and a privilege to have a Las Vegas Realtor that is our National Association of Hispanic Real Estate Professionals’ president,” said Perry, who emphasized that she considers Aguirre one of her best friends.

Las Vegas Realtors is a unique association compared with its peers, Aguirre said, because its leadership has really stepped up to support local real estate agents—including herself.

“Camaraderie, here locally, is really what has led me to be able to be on the national level and just feel like, ‘OK, this is definitely somewhere where I could be,’ and knowing that I have the support on a local level,” she said. “So Vegas, we’re very united here.”

Hispanic homeownership is on the rise, Aguirre said, pointing to NAHREP’s 2023 State of Hispanic Homeownership Report, which shows there being 9.5 million Hispanic homeowners nationwide.

However, she said, barriers to homeownership remain.

“We’ve been growing gradually over the last nine years,” Aguirre said. “So, good news there, for sure, for our community—but we know there’s still quite a bit of work to be done.”

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This story originally appeared in Las Vegas Weekly.

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