Isatou Ceesay is more than a real estate agent at her own company. She is a beacon of trust and support for the communities she serves. Ceesay describes herself as ‘the bridge over the language barrier for her clients’, and her work proves it true. IsatouProperties is a woman-owned, BIPOC-owned real estate company that opened up in March of 2018.
Ceesay is the only person who works in her company. Although, one day she would like to expand her company and be able to hire people to help out.
In her community, she has always been seen as a friend, companion, and activist. A lot of the clients Ceesay serves do not speak English, so they rely on Ceesay to help them out one step at a time. Ceesay said that it can sometimes take one to three years for somebody to own a home. However, she appreciates that time since she wants the people she is helping to be confident in this huge financial decision they are making. She said that she sees her business as minorities helping minorities and will go out of her way to help minorities from thousands of miles away.
“I want to change the life of someone,” Ceesay said. “I want them to benefit from me because I have benefitted from many.”
Building Bridges in the Community
Ceesay is an instructor at the Washington State Housing Finance Commission (WSHFC), teaching down payment assistance and state bond loans. Thanks to her ongoing dedication and passion toward her clients, she has helped many overcome barriers in achieving their dream of owning property.
Additionally, Ceesay offers free weekly home buying education classes. Although, when COVID-19 hit, her classes were forced to go online. Now that restrictions have lifted, her classes are starting to make their return back to in person.
Ceesay is also well known for her charity called ‘IsatouProperties Welfare Funds’ that lend a helping hand to vulnerable citizens in Gambia. About 90% of her profits go toward her charity. The foundation started in 2002 and has flourished since it first began. This year, there have been more than $80,000 contributed to her charity.
Ceesay has loved living in Washington since she first arrived 20 years ago. For her, Seattle has created a sense of the American dream. “[Living in Seattle] creates this sense of power and confidence and freedom,” Ceesay said. “My heart is so rich and happy.” Since diving into the real estate world in 2008, she hasn’t looked back and continues to build on her business.
While looking for ways to help her business boom, Ceesay came across Business Impact NW. She was a showcase business for Celebrating Dreams 2021, and received business support from our Washington Women’s Business Center. She plans to continue to stay in the Business Impact NW network to learn more about marketing her business. Eventually, she also aims to turn her company into a nonprofit business.
“You guys are awesome. You make a difference,” Ceesay said, “I am confident with where I am at.”
Isatou Properties hopes to continue building on her impact through her business mission and nonprofit work. Aiming to build a lasting legacy for minorities in Washington State. We are incredibly proud of Isatou’s accomplishments so far with her ongoing dedication toward supporting her community. Our mission is to continue to support businesses like Isatou Properties that are small businesses with big impact. We cannot wait to see where her company will go in the future.
Join us to celebrate other woman-owned businesses like Isatou Properties at Celebrating Dreams 2022 – Get Tickets Here!