Top Players in Chicago Real Estate: Amy Duong Kim

12 questions for one of Chicago real estate’s rising stars

Amy Duong Kim joined the real estate world in 2005. The former data-analytics professional was inspired by her brother, a realtor at a boutique brokerage in Chicago, to get her license. One week after getting her license, Duong Kim sold her first house. Eight years later, The Duong Kim family brokerage joined forces with Compass, a technology-focused real estate company, creating one of the most sought-after firms in Chicago real estate.

Today, Duong Kim is the senior broker at Doung Kim Global - Compass. She talked to ESTATENVY about the importance of treating each deal as if it’s your own, finding opportunities before they are on the market and finding a mentor in the industry.

How did you get started in real estate?

I was frustrated with my current job and looking for a new career. I interviewed at several places and landed a job at Deloitte & Touche doing data mining. I wasn't in love with the idea of doing more analytics, so my brother, also a realtor, recommended I look into real estate, and I decided to sit for my license. I got my license in a week, and I happened to be sitting at my brother's office, license in hand when someone walked in asking to talk to a realtor to sell their home. I sold it in a week, and the rest is history.

To what do you attribute your success?

I treat every deal like it's my own. This is the most expensive purchase anyone will make. I want to be sure I educate and advise the best I can. Helping people through real estate is my passion, and I think that shows to my clients.

How do you make yourself stand out to potential clients?

For buyers, especially out-of-town or first-time home buyers, they often don't know where to start. I think our attention and focus on all our clients is what really differentiates us from other realtors. For sellers, we try to go above and beyond with our media to really make the properties stand out. We love video, 3D tours and amazing photography.

What is the key to closing deals in the real estate industry?

I love finding the right property for our clients. I love finding opportunities that are not yet on the market so my clients can be the first ones to get in. I love getting the maximum dollar for my sellers through amazing marketing. These are the keys to closing deals in the industry.

What trends do you see in the market right now?

We are seeing an uptick in multi-units. I think a lot of savvy buyers are understanding that they can live in their home also have it as an investment tool. We are having a wave of new construction come through. This is a fantastic time for pre-construction pricing. There are new neighborhoods that people are considering, so it's exciting to see the changes in those neighborhoods.

What excites you about the future of real estate?

I love our platform at Compass. Our app is so interactive and powerful. The process is streamlined for correspondence with clients. As far as the seller's market, I love all the innovative marketing out there now. It really is beautiful work and shows property in the best light. As far as the buyer’s market, I'm excited to see it continue to get stronger. Even as they are rising, rates are still great. New construction is back and interiors are gorgeous. It's nice to see all the opportunities out there right now.

Why is Chicago a good place to work in real estate?

The great thing about Chicago is that it's still very affordable. Whether you're looking for a one-bedroom condo or a seven-bedroom single-family house, you have many options.

What’s the hottest neighborhood in Chicago, or the Chicago suburbs right now?

I’m in love with the West Loop. West Loop is hands down the hottest neighborhood. I also love working the Hinsdale market. The schools, community and proximity to the city are all fantastic.

What tip should buyers/sellers keep in mind when working with an agent that they might not already know?

Always get pre-approved first before you start looking. People always get excited about checking out property, but the first thing to do is to know your financial situation. If you don't know an area, check it out during the day and night. Could turn out not to be what you expected, good or bad.

Who is your real estate idol?

Ryan Serhant.

Do you utilize social media to enhance your business?

Of course! We’re on Facebook at Duong Kim Global - Compass and on Instagram at duongkimglobal.

What advice would you give new agents

Find a mentor. This is the most expensive purchase for your clients, do right by them by getting trained properly.