How did you become interested in commercial real estate?
That’s an interesting story—I sort of fell into it. When I graduated college I was offered a job at my great uncle’s company, Yedla Management, that develops hotels across the Southeast. I became very interested in the development side of the business and he suggested that commercial real estate might be something that would fit me. He was right.
I wake up every day feeling blessed to be in my position. It’s challenging, fun, and very rewarding.
What do you love most about your job as a commercial real estate broker?
Being able to help the City of Huntsville grow and thrive is something that never gets old. We are a big city with a small-town feel, and it’s amazing to watch new businesses be supported by the community with such enthusiasm.
Even the challenges are enjoyable—they can end up being the most fun. Creating retail synergy is a giant puzzle, and I have the privilege of thinking through those challenges and helping produce something out-of-the-box, memorable, and highly successful. And of course, the relationships I’ve built through my position have been a major highlight. What makes Huntsville a wonderful destination for new businesses?
We are starting to see the urbanization of Huntsville as our city is embracing the live, work, play lifestyle. Like I said, the support that the community gives is unmatched. Huntsville is on the rise, and new concepts are welcomed here with open arms.
The city shares a passion for development and growth, and that’s reflected in the way we encourage new business ventures. I hope to bring more interesting retail concepts to the Rocket City. You specialize in retail leasing—what does that mean?
Focusing on a particular area of commercial real estate is something that differentiates Crunkleton. We have brokers that specialize in certain types of leasing, allowing them to stay hyper-focused on a specific side of the business. My specialty is retail.
I understand the landscape of boutique, restaurant, and specialty retail leasing and what it takes to be successful in those areas. It’s something that has always clicked with me and it’s where my passion is. What projects have you found especially rewarding?
That’s too difficult to answer; every project is unique. I do love the challenging projects, because they make you stay on top of your game and expand your skillset. You are never stagnant in this line of work. It requires you to keep growing.
That being said, it has been a privilege to be a part of the revitalization of Downtown Huntsville. Wesley Crunkleton did an amazing job of executing his vision for The Garage at Clinton Row, and I was given the opportunity to lease the development. Working with Charlie and Sasha Sealy on The Avenue was also an exciting undertaking because it was one of the first large-scale mixed-use developments in the downtown area.
But it’s not just about downtown, projects like Central Park Village, 2700 Capitol Park in Tuscaloosa, and the chance to work with retailers in expanding to other cities has been very fulfilling too.
What piece of advice would you give to someone considering a career in commercial real estate?
It takes grit, persistence, leaving your comfort zone, and developing meaningful relationships to be successful.
Be ready to work hard. It involves constant research and putting yourself out there to make sure the job is done. How do you stay on top of your game?
In this business, you have to stay ahead of the trends. What do people want? Where do people want to shop? What experience can you deliver to a retail consumer that leaves a lasting impression? I am always researching trends—Business Insider, Forbes, Shopping Centers Today, you name it. I also attend major conferences like ICSC and I travel to research new concepts.
It’s important to understand how millennials live, work, and find entertainment. Trends change rapidly and are vastly different today than 5 years ago, or even 2 years ago. What value do you hope to bring to your clients?
I want to ensure a seamless process and be a resource for them. I want to be there to connect them to the people and assets they need for a prosperous business. Watching my clients grow and flourish is why I do what I do.
What do you enjoy doing outside of the office?
Staying active in the community is important to me, which is why I try to spend my free time volunteering with organizations like Mayfair Inner City Church and Junior League of Huntsville. I’m also a member of Committee 100 YP and a newly elected member of the Huntsville Museum of Art Foundation Board.
I also love fly fishing, spending time with my family, my boyfriend Matt, and my dog Charlie.
You can contact Anusha by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 256-536-8809. Make sure you’re staying on top of the latest trends, newest developments and hottest new stores in Huntsville by subscribing to our weekly blog updates!
CRUNKLETON COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE GROUP HALEY@CRUNKLETONASSOCIATES.COM
Over the last couple of years, we have discussed how, despite the growth of online shopping, traditional brick-and-mortar retail continues to thrive. We’ve talked about how much of the highly publicized, and we believe inaccurate, “Retail Apocalypse” is largely due to the decline of the old, enclosed mall model ...