Business is booming in the neighborhoods surrounding the Urban Wilderness and Knoxville residents are ready to invest in seeing this area of the city grow. After 13 years of working for Wood Realtors, as a real estate agent, Caroline McDonald has decided to spread her wings and open her own real estate firm, McDonald Realty, LLC.
Although her company falls under the flourishing entrepreneurial category of being a woman-owned business, McDonald credits her father, Bill McDonald, for the corporate culture of her new venture.
“My dad helped me create the foundation needed to start this journey,” she said describing the 13 years they worked together. “Dad was referred to as the “work horse” and the “go-to person” of the office. His no-nonsense approach along side his dedication are qualities have been instilled in my character and work ethic.”
McDonald first began to partner with her father after he was her real estate agent when she bought her home in Colonial Village. “I was in pharmaceutical sales for six years and one day I said, ‘I want to come and work with you, dad.’ I enjoyed the process of searching and buying my own house. It was exciting, and becoming a homeowner felt like a huge accomplishment.”
McDonald said she learned through the years of his mentorship that there’s a fine line between educating the client and telling them what to do. Good real estate agents provide the information clients need to make the best possible decision for themselves.
“You can’t make people buy and sell,” McDonald said. “My dad taught me that it is a service that I offer folks. Being the trusted resource for any real estate needs. In addition to being able to master the technical side of the real estate industry, you have to be able to talk to people. It is a relationship business and you should treat people the way you would like to be treated.”
Born and raised in Knoxville, McDonald knows the market. The continuous referrals from previous clients speaks volumes about her character and quality of her work. “The core principles that my dad taught me to live by are the same that I want folks to recognize when they see McDonald Realty logo: honesty, integrity and taking pride in what I do,” she said.
McDonald’s father passed away suddenly on July 16, 2017, but this only served to motivate McDonald to pursue her dream of owning her own business and to carry on the legacy that her dad left behind.
“Several years ago, my dad encouraged me to complete the education and testing required to get my real estate brokerage license. Dad felt that it would serve as a safety net professionally, not to mention, would satisfy the State requirements needed, should I decide to open up my own real state firm. He set me up for the future. This is the opportunity he set me up for,” McDonald said. “Now, I can spread my wings and take full advantage of what I see on the horizon for Knoxville. To be a part of the growth of our community is a privilege that I take very sincerely.

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