Real Estate Agent Caroline Mellinger

Meet Caroline Mellinger

RSR Realtors Office
cell: (530) 321-4088

Caroline Mellinger fell in love with Harrisburg while she was vacationing in the area, and decided to leave her hotel for a jog down serene, mansion-lined Front Street along the Susquehanna River.   

Born in Maryland but raised in the San Francisco Bay Area of California, Caroline often traveled with her father, a diehard Baltimore Orioles fan.  As a professor of history and a lover of travel, she said she always had her eye out for new teaching jobs in new cities.

After that fateful jog in 2006, she scrolled through the Chronicle of Higher Education website and found a job opening at Harrisburg Area Community College.

“It fit my credentials to a T.  I applied and, lo and behold, they hired me.”

And Harrisburg?  Even though she studied and taught at some of the most picturesque places in America, having obtained a bachelor’s degree from California State University, Chico in political science and history, and a master’s degree in history at University of Wisconsin-Madison, she said, “I love this city. I love this area.”

“Somehow it was meant to be that I was here.”

“People from California say, ‘Why Pennsylvania?’ and I say, ‘You’ve got to come out here and see it for yourself. It’s beautiful!’”

“Especially when the sun comes out,” she joked, after a series of dark, gloomy days had darkened the region.

This summa cum laude graduate drove her motorcycle out by herself when she relocated.  

“I left everything to come out here,” she recalled.  Her mother’s family was from the Loysville area and she had lived in Maryland, so she did have some tenuous ties to the region.

And she hasn’t regretted it—though she did have to sell her motorcycle to buy a refrigerator when she bought her first home in 2009.

She first moved to a modest home in Duncannon, Perry County, and now lives in Paxtang, Dauphin County, in a multiple-unit fixer-upper she shares with her mom.

After teaching courses in U.S. History, Western Civilization and World History at HACC, Caroline transitioned to an administrative role in 2012, serving as the college’s Executive Director of Faculty Relations for Virtual Learning, helping to lead more than 180 full-time and adjunct faculty.

She later decided to return to the classroom, and, as a self-proclaimed “lifelong learner,” to get her real estate license just this year.  She earned her license on May 10, 2016.

Serving as an academic affairs administrator, handling everything from setting up and staffing the class schedules for Virtual and the Lebanon Campus to managing a large student affairs staff, “gave me a lot of the skills and a lot of the confidence to go into real estate.”

Just last year, she had worked with RSR’s Rick Heinbaugh and Bill Rothman, who helped her find a multi-family residence where she and her mom could stay close to each other when she moved from Duncannon to Paxtang.

The home in Paxtang was “very needy,” Caroline remembers. “It needed work inside and out,” so she became a one-woman general contractor.

Even though she undertook this project while working a demanding full-time job, she found, “I kind of fell in love with the process” of repairing a home.

“When you see a house ripped down to the bones, it affects you. I love the process from start to finish.”

At HACC, and now as a Realtor, Caroline says her favorite part of the job is working with people. 

As an administrator who had at one time a dozen employees reporting to her, she knew “people trusted me and related to me, and trusted that what I was saying was for the good of what we were doing and good for them.’’

Caroline looks forward to developing the same kind of relationships with her RSR clients as she helps them find the right property and realize their dreams.

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