With a bachelor’s in psychology and a master’s in biblical counseling, Kacie Jenkins often gets asked why she isn’t in the field she studied. To which, she replies with a smile, “I use what I studied every day as I work with and love on people.”
“God has used my schooling to help me talk with, love on, and guide people through the largest decision of their life,” Kacie explains. “What I learned at Virginia Tech taught me how the brain worked, and Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary taught me how to help people.”
Nearly everything Kacie has gone through in life has brought her to where she is now and has helped her succeed these past three years in real estate. Even going as far back as growing up in Richmond, Virginia, and meeting her husband in eighth-grade keyboarding class. It was her husband, Ross, who initially got Kacie into sales, sparking a lifelong love for customer service. She was a sophomore at Virginia Tech when she received a phone call from Ross saying he secured a summer job for her.
“He had gone out to eat at a brand-new restaurant in town. I think it was their second day open,” Kacie explains. “His family’s order took almost an hour (if you’ve ever been to a new restaurant, the first week is killer), and after the manager paid for their food, he asked if there was anything else he could do. Ross spoke up and said, ‘Give my girlfriend a job when she gets home in three weeks from college.’ The manager said, ‘Done, send her over.’”
Although Ross was super excited about the job, Kacie was not. “I had a million excuses for why I couldn’t be a server,” she says. After more thought, however, Kacie returned home for the summer and became a server at Uno’s Chicago Grill. “If it wasn’t for that move into sales, I don’t think I’d be here owning my own business and selling homes today,” Kacie explains.
Kacie loved sales and customer service. After marrying Ross on April Fool’s Day 2007, on Corolla Beach in the Outer Banks, NC, she and Ross moved to Wake Forest, NC, where Kacie pursued her master’s degree and continued working in the restaurant industry. When they bought their first house in 2008, they had an “amazing REALTOR®,” according to Kacie. Although Ross couldn’t secure a job for Kacie this time, he started encouraging her to go into real estate.
But, like with serving before, Kacie resisted. She was working as a server and soon got into restaurant management. During their five years in North Carolina, Kacie developed a love for wine. So when they woke up one day and both decided to move back home to Richmond, Kacie obtained a job at Breakthru Beverage, selling wine to restaurants.
“I learned so much more about sales at Breakthru — the art of selling, knowing your product but knowing your client more, and to care more about the client than your own goals and needs,” Kacie explains. After three years as a sales rep and four years as a manager at Breakthru, however, Kacie was looking to get out. “The wine world had changed a lot since I started, and the company I worked for too.” As Kacie talked to Ross about changing jobs over the next few months, she couldn’t get real estate out of her head. “I knew I could again serve my customers and their needs in real estate, not force them into something they didn’t want,” she says.
Kacie started her career in real estate in February of 2019 and hasn’t looked back since. She loves how she can pull everything she has learned thus far in life to genuinely help people through what can be a very challenging time in their lives. “I’m here as a guide and protector,” she says. “I don’t let my clients do crazy things like waive appraisals and inspections completely. No matter how bad they might want a house, I don’t want them to do something they’ll regret later. I’m also here to help them find that perfect house no matter how long it takes. I don’t want them to feel rushed or pushed into anything … it’s their house, not mine.”
As Kacie continues helping her clients and building her real estate business, her “highest hope” for the year is to make the top 20 in Hometown Realty. She wants to continue to grow and teach others how to have a successful career in real estate as well. She says she would love to start her own team someday but is in no hurry to do so as of now. In the meantime, she plans to just continue loving on her clients and her family. She and Ross have plans to adopt another child through the Children Home Society of Virginia, where they adopted their first daughter, Tonia, at the age of 13. “We love her to death and are so glad God brought her to our family. She just graduated from high school and is a freshman in college,” says Kacie.
Kacie loves camping and going on short weekend trips to the mountains with her family, where they can hike, play in the river, and eat good food. Kacie’s favorite way to relax is in the kitchen, cooking a gourmet meal from scratch. She approaches cooking the same way she does real estate — gourmet service with as little stress as possible.