If we had to describe Chris Veech in one word, it would be well-rounded. Ok, so that’s kind of 2 words, but you get our point. From jumpstarting her mornings on the right foot to taking on Lollapalooza in Grant Park to volunteering in her community, Chris leads a balanced life.
And when it comes to the people in her life, it’s clear that this music fanatic has a heart of gold.
At Home with Chris Veech
@properties: How do you start each day?
Chris: I wake up, lay in bed and think about what I am grateful for, start the coffee and read something inspirational before jumping into my day. If I haven’t reviewed my calendar the night before, I check out everything I have ahead of me for the day and begin my outreach.
I follow up on emails, check in with clients, make notes and update my to-do list, and then pour more coffee. For a couple of years I’ve been on a fresh berries and no-fat Greek yogurt breakfast kick. If we are having a dreary weather streak like this April, I may turn my Happy Light on while I’m eating breakfast and checking the MLS Hotsheet.
It’s a great way to bring some sunshine into my day when Mother Nature isn’t cooperating. Ideally, I make it to yoga, play paddle tennis or work out several mornings a week, depending on whether my schedule allows it. I also try to pack a healthy lunch to eat while on the go or at the office.
@properties: Describe your own first home.
Chris: A really cute, renovated farmhouse with a big front porch in Winnetka where my husband could walk to the train. The family before us had totally renovated the house and it had a great family room with a fireplace, and we burned endless logs there over six winters.
We moved in as newlyweds, and began filling up the bedrooms with our three baby boys until we were eventually bursting at the seams and it was time to move. We were like a lot of today’s young buyers who want to find a house that is all done where you can simply move in.
The idea of doing a renovation was an overwhelming concept to us back then. But for our second and third homes, we did major renovations and it was a fun process and very gratifying in the end.
@properties: What is the first big-ticket item you bought when you moved into your current home and why?
Chris: I bought an enormous beige sectional couch that is U shaped and seats a crowd, and we LOVE it! We downsized from our longtime family home to our empty nester pad after our kids left home, and wanted to start fresh with a new look in our new home, so we had an estate sale and sold about 80 percent of what we owned.
We have a great open floor plan and I wanted to be able to maximize seating in our family room around the fireplace and TV, and this couch is perfect. It’s big enough for a large group to watch a big game on TV or for a couple of us to take a lazy nap on once in a while. Another bonus is it’s made of microfiber so spills clean up miraculously well.
At Play with Chris Veech
@properties: What do you love most about the North Shore?
Chris: I’ve lived on the North Shore all of my life, mostly within 2-3 blocks of the beach, and I’m a huge fan. As a teenager, I went to the beach almost every day in the summers. Water, sand, and sun are my happy place in life. All of us lucky enough to live close to the beach should take time to enjoy the beauty and peacefulness that time there brings.
A couple of years ago a friend mentioned that she keeps a beach chair in her car trunk all summer so that when she has a few free minutes she can zip down there for a little visit. I borrowed that idea last summer and it was a great one!
Taking a weeknight dinner picnic to the beach, or a late evening bottle of wine and a blanket has always been a favorite summer outing for my husband and me. My kids used to love night swimming in August when it’s dark at 9 pm and still really hot outside.
@properties: How do you stay involved in your community?
Chris: I’ve been very fortunate to have some really awesome local volunteer experiences and opportunities over the last 25+ years, and I’m especially excited about an event coming up June 15-16….I’m a Winnetka Music Fest Gold Level Sponsor for the second year, and I signed on as one of their founding sponsors almost two years ago when the concept was being launched.
I’ve been a die-hard music lover and concert goer since I was five years old and so this event is very near and dear to my heart. I’m looking forward to hosting my second annual VIP Winnetka Music Fest Kickoff Party on Friday, June 15th.
The WMF fest is FREE and features amazing up and coming talent from across the country on multiple stages. Over 10,000 people attended the inaugural fest last year and this year will be even bigger. The acts come from every genre and the quality of acts is truly excellent. This is a Don’t Miss Event June 15-16!
@properties: What is your proudest achievement to date?
Chris: My three sons are by far my proudest achievement….they are all out of college, working and supporting themselves, have good hearts, strong faith, and moral compasses, have wonderful friends, and are the light of my life. It’s really fun having adult kids and spending time together, the boys are hilarious together and make me laugh, but are also sensitive guys who can have a good serious conversation about life’s ups and downs.
Deciding to join @properties in 2011 was a critical decision that led to my career success as Rookie of the Year. I had so much support for launching back into the real estate world after staying home to raise my kids for many years. Year three with @properties I achieved the Road to Rolex award, and as a watch recipient, I have joined the Top 100 agent group at @properties, which is a great networking and support group for the top producing agents in the company. @properties rocks and I am so grateful to be part of such a dynamic company with awesome corporate culture and with amazing local owners and leadership.
At Work with Chris Veech
@properties: How did you decide that real estate was the right career for you?
Chris: I grew up in Evanston next door to a realtor, who was my Mom’s best friend. My Mom has had investment properties there since I was a kid, and they have worked out really well for her. After my husband and I bought our first house in Winnetka in 1990, I was hooked on the idea and got my license after that. I loved the idea of helping people find a great home, and still love the thrill of the hunt today!
@properties: How did your previous experiences prepare you for real estate?
Chris: After studying Economics at Indiana University I worked at Leo Burnett Advertising as a Media Planner & Buyer on Kellogg’s cereals. Frosted Flakes and Frosted Mini Wheats were my brands, and I created the television media strategy to maximize exposure to both our adult and youth demographics.
I negotiated large television deals with multiple TV stations in over a dozen US markets each quarter. This experience directly translates to my love for creating Custom Marketing Plans for my sellers and my expert negotiating skills for all of my clients. I was also a stay at home for many years and was very involved in board work at local schools, sports and charities, which has given me deep ties all across the North Shore.
@properties: What is your favorite part of the job?
Chris: There are so many rewarding aspects of my job, it’s hard to name just one favorite. Meeting great new people and helping them make a successful change in where they live gives me the chance to make a positive difference in people’s lives. Whether it’s an exciting first house, selling the longtime family home, helping someone smoothly relocate here from far away, or a difficult downsizing move due to a life change, my clients and I develop close bonds and have some laughs together along the way.
Another favorite part of my job is seeing and creating the “before” and “after” when it comes to home staging as well as renovation projects – it’s truly magical what paint and furniture can do for a space! It’s also very cool seeing a home transformed by different owners over the years and how different it looks each time it sells.
@properties: What is one thing you literally could not do your job without and why?
Chris: Claire Borders joined my team last year and she has quickly become an integral part of my business. She was my next door neighbor and babysitter for 10 years when my boys were little, and now she is the married mom of son Oliver, and she brings the 30something fresh view to my team.
She is a natural at real estate, wonderful with clients, has great intuition and gives incredible care to everything she does. She has a discerning eye, learns quickly and is truly a joy to work with. Claire is a fabulous new broker and my clients and I love working with her. I’m thrilled to have her on my team!