About this Episode – A Day with Developer Vicky Lee

Welcome to the A.CRE Audio Series! On this episode, I am here once again with the creators of the Adventures in CRE website, Spencer Burton and Michael Belasco. Today we have a great guest, Vicky Lee.

Today we are talking about Vicky’s career path and what she does on a day to day basis. Vicky is the vice president of development for Focus in Chicago. Vicky has over 10 years of real estate development and design experience. She is a great resource for many, especially those starting their career or looking for a transition.

Learn more during this episode from Vicky about topics such as transitioning from the design or architecture side to ownership. We also talk about bridging the gap, beneficial skills to develop and the seven phases of development.

Show Notes – S2E8: A Day with Developer Vicky Lee

  • What’s the Atworth [1:43]
    • The Atworth is a project just sold in California.
    • It’s a 260-unit rental unit.
    • It was a deal that came via Regency.
    • It’s a combination of residential and retail/restaurant.
  • The path that got Vicky where she is today [3:28]
    • Ever since Vicky was six she wanted to be an architect.
    • She loved driving past houses and see families having a good time in their home.
  • Impact on the owner [8:33]
  • Going from design and architecture to ownership [9:07]
    • The CEO is also an architect. They have their own construction company as well.
    • If you hire smart people, they can learn the finance side.
  • Bridging the gap for architects [11:24]
    • She recommends the business degree path.
    • Because she was so focused on architecture, she didn’t have a drop of a business background.
    • The business background provides another opportunity.
  • Beneficial skills and classes [13:55]
    • Most people don’t recognize soft skills.
    • Be able to communicate clearly, sell, and read the person you are speaking with.
    • Negotiation skills are also important.
  • A day in the life [17:22]
    • The day to day can be a lot, it takes the right person.
    • It’s not the same every day.
  • The seven phases of development [18:27]
    • Consideration.
    • Pursuit.
    • Purchase, sale and due diligence.
    • Schematic design.
    • Construction.
    • Operations.
    • Disposition.
  • The most important skill needed to succeed [20:31]
    • Sift through all the market data that you have.
  • Engaging equity [27:16]
    • Determining which equity partner you want to go out to.
  • Work life balance [33:05]
    • Very rarely would you have to work nights or weekends.
  • Parting advice [40:08]

Resources from this Episode