mox·ie [mok-see] –noun Slang.
- vigor; verve; pep.
- courage and aggressiveness; nerve.
- skill; know-how.
[Origin: 1925–30, Americanism; after Moxie, a trademark (name of a soft drink)]
Moxie is exactly what Justine and Mishell bring to their work. Justine started in real estate first; Moxie was her brain child. When she was renovating a house, a contractor told her with some admiration, “Lady, I don’t know if you have the money, but you sure have the Moxie.” From that seed, Justine nurtured the idea of a business that wouldn’t specialize based on an area of town or a type of architecture, but on a genuine effort to match people and places in the best way.
Mishell and Justine met in 2006 and immediately hit it off as friends; Mishell hired Justine to be her realtor and help her find duplex she still owns. Seeing that she had caught the “bug,” Justine encouraged Mishell, an attorney, to get her real estate license. They became partners soon after.
Moxie knows that real estate is not a “one size fits all” business. They have worked with everyone from those with “traditional,” salaried jobs to artists, musicians, and the self-employed. They have also helped several local businesses buy and lease property. Finding the right solution to the jigsaw puzzle by fitting together the people, the property, and the resources is one of the most interesting challenges of their business.
Even though Justine and Mishell have different backgrounds, education, and experience, their skills and interests complement each other. With the Moxie Ladies, you get two for the price of one—a team that will work together to help meet your goals!
MEET THE TEAM
Justine A. Smith
Graduate, Realtor Institute (GRI), Seller Representative Specialist (SRS), Texas Affordable Housing Specialist (TAHS), Certified Divorce Real Estate Specialist (CDRES), Certified Probate Real Estate Specialist (CPRES), Internet Marketing Specialist Designation (IMSD)
Justine moved to Austin in 1991 on what could best be described as a whim. She and a high school friend decided to leave California to see the world; they threw a dart to pick their first stop. The dart landed near Corpus Christi—Austin was the closest city they were interested in. If it didn’t work, Justine reasoned, she could move to New Orleans. Little did she know that it would more than work: Justine would grow to love Austin and its surrounding areas and make them home.
Justine and her husband, Kevin, bought their first house in South Austin in 1997. It was the realization of a life’s dream for Justine. Growing up the child of a free-spirited single mom, she’d never had that type of stability and her family never owned a house. Justine began turning her hobby into a career when she joined Keller Williams’s Realty International as a web designer, and her interest and enthusiasm just kept growing. Justine and Kevin have since sold that first little piece of South Austin, but have also known the joys of living in Driftwood/Dripping Springs and in Oak Hill.
Justine became an investor in 2002, when she bought a small fixer-upper on the East Side. Justine was featured in season 2 of TLC’s (The Learning Channel) Flip That House, rehabbing a house she’d moved to the East Side. Moving and remodeling houses is another of Justine’s passions. “The architecture and style of Central Texas in the 20s through 40s just has a kind of soul. Sometimes I joke that I’m saving South Austin’s houses one at a time – but by moving them.” Justine has experience in land development, new construction, rehab projects, house moving, and condo conversions.
Justine is the mom of two terrific kids, which gives her insight into the issues facing families in deciding where to move. When he’s not on the road with Dwight Yoakam, or Willie Nelson, her partner in crime, Kevin, plays in Austin with Heybale! and is highly sought after to provide the bass line for many other bands as a guest and session musician. Justine’s family has probably been to nearly every hill country swimming hole and BBQ joint, taking advantage of all that Central Texas has to offer.
When Justine’s not out selling real estate she loves taking the back roads, visiting small towns, seeing live music, and finding treasures at estate sales.
Mishell B. Kneeland
Graduate, Realtor Institute (GRI), Accredited Buyer Representative (ABR), Green Designee, e-Pro Certified, Certified International Property Specialist (CIPS), Certified Probate Real Estate Specialist (CIPS)
Mishell is also a native Californian, but found “home” in Austin after spending sixteen years on the East Coast in Philadelphia (at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania), Washington, D.C. (consulting, going to law school at the Georgetown University Law Center, and working for a federal judge), and Manhattan (practicing commercial litigation and employment law). When she decided to leave Manhattan, Austin was the clear choice. Among the things that drew Mishell to Austin were the culture, especially the live music and art scenes, the friendly people, and the fact she would be able to buy a home of her own.
Mishell moved to Austin in 2002 and bought her little South Austin bungalow in 2003, which she remodeled with the help of her very handy friends. Like Justine, Mishell grew up with an off-and-on single mother in various rental houses or apartments. She enjoys working on her house and has added solar power and an organic vegetable garden to her property. She loves living in Austin and enjoys introducing others to the benefits of home ownership and real estate investing in the Austin area.
Mishell leads a double life as a practicing attorney and a REALTOR ®. Her legal experience, especially in land use cases, has served to keep Moxie alert to pitfalls involved in complicated transactions. She’s also an experienced real estate investor who owns two investment properties and has helped clients figure out if investment properties are right for them. Her business background and legal experience have given Mishell particular skill in working with international clients and in working on commercial purchases and leases.
When she’s not working, Mishell loves throwing parties, cooking, reading, and going to see great live music.