In the coming weeks, we will sit down with the agents of the CityLiving Group to get to know each of them a little better. This week, we had a chance to chat with CLG agent, Crystal Atkinson, a Nashville native and veteran in the Real Estate industry. Here’s what she had to say.
Q: How long have you lived in Nashville?
CA: My whole life, with the exception of two years I spent in New Orleans. My parents are natives too! I’m kind of a unicorn these days.
Q: What do you love about selling in the urban core?
CA: I love watching the growth and change for the better in so many urban neighborhoods. It’s really rewarding to see how certain pockets have transformed, in large part because of the huge influx of unbiased transplants from other parts of the country moving to Nashville. The array of architecture and history of homes in Nashville is also a big part of why I love my job so much.
Q: Why did you decide to become a REALTOR?
CA: Right out of college, my career began with marketing real estate and residential development. I learned so much about the industry itself and how exciting it can be. The recession hit and a lot of things changed. I started working more with individual agents, helping them set themselves apart in a market that had dwindled. Then more change happened.
I was forced to leave Nashville and move to New Orleans for my husband’s career, but with this struggle came great growth. I began working for an incredibly talented, well-seasoned Real Estate Broker in NOLA. I was her right-hand woman. I had already learned all about the marketing side of real estate, but she taught me the other side of the business: the negotiation, the strategy, the grit it takes to be in this field. She also taught me the importance of building relationships. I knew that as soon as the opportunity arose to move back home to Nashville, I would get my license. I contacted Mark about joining the team and got my Real Estate license within two months of moving home, and I haven’t looked back since.
Q: What is your favorite thing about the job?
CA: Making people happy. I love meeting new people and getting to know them and what makes them tick. Doing this drives me to help them find their dream home, or move on from a previous home. Getting to tour amazing homes is certainly a perk, but seeing the smiles on my clients faces on closing day is my definitely my favorite.
Q: What is your favorite restaurant in Nashville right now?
CA: Bella Napoli. It’s tucked away in Edgehill Village. It’s quaint, it’s quiet, great for lunch or dinner, and I think they have the best pizza in town. And no need for reservations, so you can go spontaneously, which is hard to do in Nashville these days. As far as trendy spots, I love the food and atmosphere of 5th and Taylor in Germantown, too.
Q: Where would we find you or what would you be doing on any given Sunday (aside from showing a house)?
CA: I try to reserve Sunday mornings for worship. My husband and I are members of Belmont United Methodist Church in Hillsboro Village. On rare free Sunday afternoons, during football season, my husband and I are cursed Detroit Lions fans, so we’re usually at home watching the game and yelling at the TV. During the summer, we love going out to Center Hill or Old Hickory Lake with family or friends.
Q: What area of town do you currently live in?
CA: Hillwood in West Nashville
Q: What do you love most about Nashville?
CA: I’ll be honest. Sometimes the amount of growth can be frustrating to me (hello traffic!). We recently had family in from out of town for a long visit and while showing them around the city, going from one hip neighborhood to the next, it really made me see the city in a different way. I’m lucky to live here and to have contributed(in a small way) to making it what it is today. I definitely understand why people visit and then ultimately decide to move here.
Q: Anything else you want to share?
CA: It’s never too early to contact a real estate professional, especially for first-time buyers. Having a buyer consultation can help you to be prepared for the process, and have plenty of time to do so. I always like to meet with buyers before looking at homes. It’s about working together and I can serve you better if I get to know your wants and needs, and you can be sure there are no surprises in the process.