Watching clients envision how to make an empty home their own is Inez Drayton’s favorite aspect of her work. Her full-service real estate brokerage also offers property management, sales, buying and rental services. Assisting a broad range of clients from low to high socioeconomic backgrounds, Drayton likes that every day is filled with excitement in the property management world. She knows that each owner’s and resident’s concerns are vitally important to them at the moment, and she does her best to listen and respond quickly. “You must be able to provide a high level of care to both parties simultaneously,” she says. “I strive daily to deliver that care with excellence.”
As the community association manager, managing broker and owner of Angel Apartments & Condos Inc., Drayton offers a unique skill set. She has been in the industry for 21 years, and thanks to her education in psychology, she is able to listen to what is said and observe nonverbal cues. “A person’s facial expressions and body movements can give great insight into their likes or dislikes before they utter a word,” she says. “I take nonverbal cues as an opportunity to relate to the client and let them know that I am connecting to them.”
Drayton contributes to the community by demonstrating that numbers don’t always tell the entire story. “Oftentimes, owners are reluctant to rent to residents with low credit scores, which can keep them from having really good occupants in their properties,” she says. “I educate them on looking at the entire picture, such as work history, previous landlord verifications and recommendations from employers.” She helps them understand that people can go through a rough patch, due to the economy and other hurdles, but that they can generally get back on their feet.
A member of the Chicago Association of Realtors, Drayton serves on the Illinois Association of Realtors’ Housing Opportunity Committee and is chair of Urban Mission, an organization that supports underserved people. Her greatest joy is her family. “I could not do what I do without their love and support,” she says.