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2200 1st Ave NE , Cedar Rapids - IA 52402

About Cal Ernst

I work with all buyers and sellers to make their experience “special”! I’m dedicated to YOUR real estate needs, not mine!



When you’re making one of the largest investments of your life, you should know the professional background of your Real Estate Agent.  I have been in sales all my life and started my career with IBM as an Account Representative.  I was with IBM for 11 years and learned everything I know about sales and marketing from one of the greatest companies of our time.  I always tell people that I got my MBA from IBM and ended my career there as a Systems and Financial Specialist.

The allure of finance was so strong that I became a Stock Broker and Financial Advisor.  I started with a regional company in Cedar Rapids known then as Securities Corporation of Iowa(SCI).  After nine years with SCI, I sought a more national company and joined Dain Bosworth.  Through mergers and acquisitions, Dain finally became known as RBC Financial Company, a division of Royal Bank Canada.  I worked as an Institutional Broker and my clients were bank trusts, insurance companies, money managers and mutual funds.  You may have money invested with some of my former clients.

After 22 years in the financial industry, I retired to a life of leisure.  Not really!  All I’ve ever known is work, and real estate sales is something I’ve always wanted to do.  Being able to blend my experience in finance with real estate, allows me to provide a unique perspective to your housing and mortgage needs.  I LOVE what I’m doing.


My educational background consists of the following institutions:

  • Springville Community High School
  • North Iowa Area Community College, AA
  • University of Northern Iowa, BS
  • University of Iowa, Graduate Studies
  • IBM President’s Council
  • RBC Chairman’s Council
  • IBM Financial Analysis Certification



I grew up in Springville, Iowa, and played all sports, but still managed to graduate as a member of the National Honor Society.  My dad drove a truck for Standard Oil, and I would ride with him as we delivered gas and diesel fuel to farmers in the area.  I have two brothers and two sisters, and we all worked when we weren’t in school.  The Cedar Rapids Gazette was delivered by an Ernst for 15 years in Springville.  When I say that “all I know is work”, this is what my life consisted of growing up.  I mowed 10 lawns a week when I was 12, baled hay on the farms when I turned 14 and worked at the Shell gas station from age 16 all through high school.

Our parents were strict and demanded a lot from us including working hard, getting good grades, and graduating from college.  They couldn’t afford to pay for college, but we all found a way to get there and graduate.  I played basketball and baseball and graduated from UNI in 1972.


I am a member of several committees and was on the Board of Directors for the Cedar Rapids Area Association of Realtors(CRAAR) from 2018-2020.  I’ve volunteered and/or taught for several organizations including:

  • Junior Achievement
  • United Way
  • Ex Club
  • Rotary Club of America
  • Elmcrest Country Club
  • Zach Johnson Foundation – Kids on Course



My personal interests have changed with time.  After college, I played fast pitch softball all over the country for Rockwell Collins and the Iowans.  Our teams won three state tournaments.  We were fortunate to play in three National and two World tournaments and, I was lucky enough to be named to All American teams twice.  I was inducted into the Iowa and Cedar Rapids Softball Halls of Fame in 1995.

My passions have now changed to golf and traveling, and I love both.  When I’m not working, you’ll find me on the golf course.  My traveling passion is historic Europe.  I’ve traveled to London, Windsor, Paris, Versailles, Nice, Grasse, Cannes, Ventimiglia, Prague, Vienna, Bratislava, Budapest, Venice, Rome, Florence, Sienna, Pompei, Pisa, and Naples.  We just went to Australia in 2017.  My daughter was working for a medical device company and lived and worked in Melbourne for three years.  We traveled all over the southern peninsula and to Sydney.  I have a few other places I would like to go, but finding a slow time in real estate is the challenge.


I’ve done volunteer work for several community activities including:

  • Zach Johnson Foundation, Kids on Course
  • Junior Achievement
  • Washington High School Activities
  • Marion Girls Softball
  • YMCA Girls Basketball
  • Linn Mar AAU Basketball
  • Cedar Rapids Panthers Basketball
  • Coe College Softball



I try not to close my eyes to any real estate opportunity.  The homes that I’ve helped buyers and sellers with range from under $100,000 to over $1,000,000.  I believe my background and experience allows me to connect with any buyer or seller.

Cal Ernst

Coldwell Banker Hedges Realty

Cal Ernst


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