Kristen Abell | Abell to Sell Denver CO with @Compass


An Oklahoma native, Abell graduated from the University of Kansas and headed out to Denver, Colorado over a decade ago. An avid real estate investor with her husband, she is an expert in vetting top property for the marketplace, and is renown for her knowledge of the West, East Wash Park, Platt Park, and Wellshire neighbourhoods. She consults clients not only on the real estate transaction but throughout the entire process from designing and staging a home to renovations. This has made her a key asset in real estate.

Her team has only permitted her to grow more, to cover more locations all whilst empowering women to be part of a bigger picture. Abell is known to provide both mentorship and leadership skills to her team. From being a stellar business woman, a wife and a mother, she excels in all that she does, showcasing that a healthy balance can allow you to succeed in both personal and professional endeavours.

Here is her journey to success.

Tell us about the path that led you into real estate?

I worked many jobs before getting into this industry. I was a ski instructor and before that I taught English abroad in mostly Europe and South America. I studied at the University of Kansas and then landed in Colorado. I have been passionate about traveling all my life and kind of did that until I got into real estate after the crash of 2008.

Our move to Compass as a team has allowed us to focus on the whole Denver Metro but we are local experts on the core Denver central neighbourhoods. I particularly love and work a lot in the West Wash Park and Platt Park neighbourhoods.

Is there a price point that you usually choose to take on clients?

No, we take on everyone. That being said, this year our average price is going for a million dollars. We still work with a lot of first time home-buyers all the way to the savvy investors that have already bought five or ten properties with us. In today’s market, those neighbourhoods that we focus on such as West Wash Park and Platt Park, a million dollars will get you a bungalow that will need renovations. The market is really high right now, but there is always something to find within each budget.

What is your field of expertise in the marketplace?

We focus solely on residential. That being said, my husband and I actually buy homes that we like, live in them and then re-sell them at a higher price. We’ve always done that and it has worked wonders for us. Everyone on my team is really into design and renovation, and we all have a lot of experience in renovating our own homes, flipping some and even building new ones.

My husband and I usually outsource the renovations to general contractors. This year however, my husband is doing his first project from start to finish without a general contractor, and then we will have the experience to go do that for other people as well. Once he’s licensed we are considering taking this side of the business to the next level.

Did you have any mentors that helped you get to where you are today?

I use this coaching company called Tom Ferry. My coach is a woman and I must say she has helped me tremendously in breaking barriers and I love her dearly.

Would you recommend other woman in and out of the real estate industry to invest in a coach?

100%. I would recommend it to anyone who is willing to go in with an open mind and actually implement and test what the coach has to offer. I started by having a coach for myself personally and it worked so well that my whole team now gets coached as well. It has made our business sales rise tremendously.

In your opinion, where should people be looking to invest in real estate in Denver and surrounding areas?

If you’re looking to flip properties and find great tenants afterwards I highly advise that you concentrate your efforts in core Denver. Now, if you’re looking for good cap rates then I would say you have to look at places like Aurora, North and West side of town and some parts of the suburbs.

What advice would you give your younger self looking back?

To be part of a team much earlier and to start my own team. I really love mentoring and supporting people, it brings me the outmost joy. The dynamic in a team with a positive collaborative mindset can take you to new levels both personally and professionally.

Interesting! Why do you think people should start off in a team in the beginning?

Well for the first five years I was winging it on my own. Looking back, there is so much benefit that comes from being on a team. First and foremost, you learn so much more when you have experienced people around you. Secondly, you don’t make those smaller mistakes because you have good people to lean on and guide you from the start. I think it is imperative to start off in a team and I highly advise newcomers to do the same. I could have grown much faster and better if I had started directly with a team. 

What has been the biggest challenge you have faced so far in real estate?

It’s definitely growing my team! Dealing with different personalities and blending everyone into a focused synergy to make the team as efficient as possible takes time and knowledge. Also having kids and running a business is a wonderful experience, one that I loved undertaking but it is nonetheless challenging. My children are extremely strong willed and stubborn. I needed to find the right balance to make everything work.

How did you find that balance?

I always find people to whom to delegate some of my responsibilities to that I trust and love. For my kids, I have a nanny that helps me a lot and I fully trust her so I can concentrate on my work and team. When I need to be at home, I have trusted colleagues to whom I can delegate work to if I need it. It really helps having the right people by your side who are like minded and understand that life is a balance.

I have my husband who always handles things at night and on weekends because I was always busy with work. Like I said whether at home or at work when the synergy of the team is aligned, everything is manageable.

What are the thing that you do for yourself to give yourself some time and balance?

I am a part of the 6 am club at Compass. I always have to do my gratitude in the mornings and always keep myself some quiet/reflecting time before my kids get up which has proven itself to be quite helpful to start my days off right.

Furthermore, I put a lot of importance on self-care. I get massages because I really love them and they help me remove any stress that has been accumulating through the days in my body. Another important thing that I do for self-care and this is more for my mental health, I shut my phone off at 9pm and don’t open until 7 am the next day. Between those hours, I make sure to give everyone my all, but after that it’s all about recuperating from the day to start all over and be at my best in the morning. I actually leave my phone in the bathroom to charge over night just to make sure that that rule is upheld.

What is you vision for your brand in the next years to come?

I have a few things, but definitely bringing an investment division to the team. It would be an investment division of my brand, that helps and advises people on building a real estate portfolio. I think there’s so many people like myself, especially women out there that don’t even realize that they can leverage money they already have in a home to buy their first rental property.

I’m very passionate about showcasing and educating women in particular about building up a rental portfolio and to showcase what that can do for their long term wealth. That is my big goal for the next five years. Furthermore, I want to keep growing my team and helping every agent to become a powerhouse rockstar agent, while still being able to maintain their work-life balance.

Photo Credit – April Martinez

Follow Kristen Abell and her team on Instagram. @AbellToSellDenver

For more information, to list your house visit her website.

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