Kim Trouten Keeps Her Eye on the Ball!
Written by Heather Pluard
Photos by Kelly Klemmensen Photography
Some REALTORS® in the Queen City deserve a crown, and Kim Trouten is definitely one of them. Despite the pandemic and a serious cancer diagnosis, Kim closed $40 million in sales last year, landing once again in the top 1% of brokers in the country.
“The more challenges I’m handed, the more I’m compelled to overcome,” Kim says. “The last 18 months have been exceptionally hard for all agents, and we need to stop pretending we’re okay. Instead, let’s figure out how to better support one another. Everyone is carrying some kind of burden in 2021. Mine included finding a way to manage my stage 4 cancer, which I’m thankful is now under control. But, as we know, life keeps coming at you. You either pivot, or you fail.”
Originally an interior designer, Kim has lived everywhere from Canada to Texas with her husband, Jack, who has his General Contractor’s license. They moved to Charlotte 21 years ago, and Kim worked as a Business Manager for an ultra-high-end developer until the luxury market tanked after the housing crash. She had to decide “what next?” That pivot led her to become an award-winning REALTOR® and Jack becoming a significant asset on her team.
“I’ve always come from a place of enjoying people and wanting to be generous to others,” Kim says. “I’m grateful for all that I have and for the real estate team that gave me a start. I might encounter challenges, but I always work hard.”
In 2021, Kim was referring out more business than she could handle. To continue giving clients the best possible service, she brought more talented professionals on board. “I’m about creating a memorable experience,” she says. “Once I have a relationship with a client, I make sure they know I’m there for them forever. Whatever they need, they can call me. And they do! About 70% of my business is past clients and their referrals. The other 30% is relocating buyers from out of state, most of whom find me online. I get to be an ambassador for our beautiful city.”
Kim and Jack also started an investment company, Vaisseaux Corp. “Vaisseaux is French for ‘vessel,'” she explains. “It’s from the parable in the Bible where the widow goes to the prophet and tells him she has to sell her children into slavery to pay her debts. He tells her to gather every empty vessel she can find. When she does, he tells her to pour into the vessels, and God will fill them with oil, and she can sell the oil to pay her debts. She is relentless and grabs every vessel anyone will give her. And it happens. They’re filled to overflowing.”
That’s what we do. My husband and I see every home and family as a vessel, and we ask God to use us to fill them to overflowing. It’s pretty amazing how He has. And we now have great investment properties, and the people we love and serve are blessed. Everything we have is a gift, including the ability to meet the needs of others.”
As someone who feels you never stop learning, Kim’s best advice for new agents is to do the same. “Be willing to do the grunt work in the beginning and say yes to everything. Many of my early opportunities seemed insignificant, but 10 years later, small opportunities have multiplied and opened more doors than I could have imagined. I think that’s the secret to success, seeing what comes across your path and seizing the opportunity. Also, be generous and kind to everyone. It will return to you. And even if it doesn’t, do it anyway.”
A creative at heart, Kim loves social media and can be found on Instagram: @fabulouscharlottehomes. “I let people see that I don’t always have it together,” she says. “It feels good when someone lets me know that I’ve helped them by what I’ve posted. We all have hard days mixed with the good. The key is to have faith and move forward with grace and joy.”
Kim loves adventures and traveling, especially with Jack and their adult children, Joshua (32) and Chelsea (30). Kim works one week a month from Charleston, SC. Back in Charlotte, she enjoys wine on the porch with family and friends and welcoming people into her home. In addition, Kim is involved in ministry and supports Urban Ministry, A Roof Above, and A Child’s Place.
“You’ll never find me standing still for very long, content with what I’m doing,” Kim laughs. “I’m always looking for the next disruption or opportunity. Of course, there will always be challenging circumstances or things we can’t control, but I’m paying more attention to what I CAN control. Life/work balance is non-negotiable. And we should all take ourselves less seriously while we enjoy the life we have right now. I plan to keep sharing my joy and helping clients in the Queen City for many years to come.”