TOP REAL ESTATE AGENT IN THE CARIBBEAN KRYSTAL CHUNG
Diligence, excellence and compassion are a few of Krystal Chung’s outstanding traits, but there’s one more that gives her an edge over the competition: she earned a degree in architecture and practiced for several years. She knows if a house has good bones and how to fix it if it doesn’t.
“Jamaicans aren’t always open to renovation projects,” she says. “They think it will cost much more than it does. I give them a realistic idea of what they’re taking on and what adjustments can be made.” Krystal also understands the products very well and has a network of trusted vendors.
She didn’t know it then, but 2009 would be the year that changed her life. She wasn’t really enjoying her architecture career. A cousin who had been doing real estate in Massachusetts suggested she try it, thinking it would be a good match for her skills. She took the classes, but almost didn’t go for her license. “The last day of the course,” she says, “a broker came in and told us it was going to be a rat race out there. I don’t do rat race!” But her cousin pushed her, and in June 2009 she was licensed. Six months later she gave up architecture to do real estate full time.
Today serving primarily the Kingston, St. Andrew and North Coast area, Krystal has a repeat and referral rate of 90 percent. She ranked as a Coldwell Banker Top 10 Producer every year from 2010–2015 and was named to the company’s International Sterling and Diamond societies. “I wrap my business around my clients,” she says. “I’m very accessible and really enjoy what I do. People usually know when you actually care vs. when you’re trying to make a buck.”
A little old-school (her own words), Krystal prefers to stay in touch with past clients in person, sending just the occasional email. She hand-delivers Christmas gifts and attends every birthday party. She treats new clients the same way, offering face-to-face meetings and long talks. Since the bulk of her clients are 35–60 and often not so technologically savvy, they appreciate her approach.
When it comes to listings though, she’s hardly old-school. Because each one is unique, she considers the type of property it is, who her target audience is and what the best way to reach them is. “I will do anything, from brokers open houses and regular open houses to full-page newspaper and magazine ads and international websites.”
Krystal absolutely loves meeting people and helping them go for their dream, whether they’re buying or selling, living on the island or around the world. She’s been actively involved in the Kiwanis Club for much of her life, supporting projects in the community. Seeing new places and understanding new cultures is also part of her DNA, so she travels to at least one new country every year; and she makes it a point to spend quality time with her family.
Her goal for the near future is to be known as the agent who does development projects—although developers typically give their projects to many different companies rather than one agent. “I’m trying to overcome that hurdle by helping people realize the value of hiring one good person who gets along with everybody,” she says. She put together a team from companies all over the island and is currently making presentations to developers.
It’s evident that Krystal loves her work. “It’s important for agents to be honest, work hard and be mindful of things that really matter,” she says. That’s exactly what she does.