“My goal is more to help people buy a home or sell a home more so than the money that comes in,” Thiessen said.
Thiessen received the President’s Award from the Wichita Area Association of Realtors for handling 42 transactions involving either the buying or selling of a house, he said.
The annual award recognized 25 or 30 real estate agents, Thiessen said, and he was the only one from outside the Wichita area to receive the award.
Thiessen attributed Fast Realty’s success not only to himself but also to agents Marlene Fast, Beth Hein and Tonya Richardson.
“Fast Realty is doing a good job of getting houses sold,” Thiessen said.
Selling houses means dealing with people, and Thiessen said he cares about those he interacts with. There is stress involved in buying a house, and he does what he can to calm home-buyers’ emotions.
“I give a lot of hugs and wipe some tears,” he said.
Thiessen, who grew up in Fresno, Calif., came to Hillsboro in 1972 and attended Tabor College for two years. He took a break from school to work before graduating in 1989 with a teaching degree.
In between, Thiessen did construction work, married Donna in 1975, worked at Parkside Homes and did refrigeration, plumbing and electrical work with Flaming’s Plumbing & Heating in Goessel.
After graduating from Tabor, Thiessen taught two years at Peabody Elementary and three years at Berean Academy before returning to Parkside.
Thiessen’s duties at Parkside included overseeing the grounds, buildings and maintenance. He also marketed the independent-living apartments and duplexes, he said.
Thiessen’s experience at Parkside prompted him to get his real estate license, he said, which involved taking a real estate class, passing a test and working under a broker for two years.
Thiessen completed the requirements and began working under Marlene Fast, the owner of Fast Realty.
Thiessen bought the business from Fast in August 2007, although Fast kept her license and still lists and sells real estate under Thiessen’s broker license.
“We basically switched roles,” Thiessen said.
Thiessen said his goal at Fast Realty is to support his family and build relationships, he said. Thiessen makes himself available for others and is willing to work around their schedules.
He also uses his skills in construction, refrigeration and plumbing to help the people he relates to, whether that be repairing a window or cleaning a rain gutter.
“I feel like everybody I work with is part of my family and I want to try to help them,” he said.
Thiessen said it is rewarding to make a transaction where the buyers are grateful and happy.
“I’m not going to get rich at it, but I’ve built a lot of great relationships,” he said. “That’s worth a whole lot more than some plaque on the wall.”
Fast Realty, 102 S. Main, is open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. The phone number is 620-947-5700.