What was your first job in the realty industry? I was licensed in 1987 and went to work at Coldwell Banker in the La Grange office. I became Rookie of the Year my first year. I worked FSBOs, expired listings and cold called because I had no local sphere of influence and didn’t grow up in the area.
Where did you grow up? I grew up in Chicago’s southwest side, moved to La Grange after grade school and attended Lyons Township High School.
What is your favorite free-time activity? Going to the health club, learning to golf (when time permits), reading and crossword puzzles.
What do you do to relax when you’re stressed? Go away for three days.
Growing up, what did you want to be? In my yearbook, I stated “an actress” after doing a little theater in high school. Also, I always thought I would have loved to be in law, either as an attorney or public defender.
If you could have lunch with anyone, who would it be and why? My mother. I never met my mother, and would love to ask her all about herself, and the troubles she had before she passed. I’d also ask her, since business is a driving force in my life, if that is a family trait within her or her side of the family.
Where is your favorite place to hang out? The city. The weather is great in the spring and summer, and even in the winter months, it’s great; I like to take in the fabulous holiday and Chicago Christmas feeling.
What do you love most about the industry? Real estate is one of the few industries that is constantly changing, and not boring. We have different challenges day to day, year to year. That, along with a sense of helping people and being able to assist people with compassion during the current market, is rewarding.
How do you distinguish yourself from the crowd of agents? Having many years of experience in the market, I strive to give above-average service and a quick response time to agents and clients. I built Smith Partners and Associates to provide a complete system for agents and clients to always get responses, and the ability for one of our team members to always give them what they need when asked. Also, my team works together efficiently for agents and clients to effectively close transactions smoothly.
What is the most difficult aspect of your job? Delays that are out of our control.
How do you network and meet new clients? Experience, word of mouth, referrals, memberships and my sphere of influence.
What has been your greatest accomplishment? My family and my business, with a great team to support and help grow.
What was the last good movie you saw or book you read? “50 Shades of Grey,” what else?
What is your favorite restaurant? Tufano’s Vernon Park Tap.
Architecturally speaking, what is your favorite building in Chicago?
What kind of car do you drive? A Mercedes.
What is your favorite city after Chicago? Indian Wells, California.
Who are your favorite people to follow on Twitter? The Huffington Post and Warren Buffett.