Growing up, Courtney Kohl Paulson remembers watching her mother, Sue Kohl, start her career as a full-time real estate agent in the early 90s. Years later, and Courtney has decided to join her mother as an agent in Pacific Palisades, creating a powerhouse mother-daughter partnership.
“I remember very clearly the first home my mom sold on Avondale in Brentwood Park,” Courtney said to the Palisadian-Post. “We currently have a house listed around the corner, and every time I drive by the Avondale property I revisit the memory I have of my mom putting up the signs around the neighborhood and hosting her first open house. It reminds me of how far she’s come and how she continues to succeed in a very competitive business.”
Sue shared that she has worked in the real estate industry on the Westside since 1990, and has been at Berkshire Hathaway for 26 years.
Born in Los Angeles and raised in Brentwood, Sue, who has been married for 27 years, moved to the Palisades in 1994 and is a mother of five. Her eldest, Courtney, began working with her at the Berkshire Hathaway office in the Palisades in 2021.
“I cannot imagine anything better than being able to work on a daily basis with my fabulous daughter Courtney,” Sue shared with the Post. “She has a background in art and design which is extremely helpful when preparing properties for sale.”
Courtney shared that she was born in Santa Monica, then raised in Brentwood and the Palisades. She attended St. Matthew’s Parish School and graduated from Palisades Charter High School, where she was the team captain of the volleyball team.
After graduating from USC in 2000 as a communications major, she worked selling print advertising at LA Confidential and Los Angeles Magazine, then worked in fine art sales.
Having supported her mom for years with open houses and work overflow, Courtney formally teamed up with her mom right before the COVID-19 pandemic hit.
“I am so grateful to have the opportunity to work with my mom,” Courtney said. “The past couple of years have been unpredictable and challenging for everyone both personally and professionally.”
Looking back at the last year, Courtney said their partnership began virtually due to stay-at-home orders in place during the pandemic.
“The beginning of the pandemic was a scary time,” Sue explained. “The idea of trying to sell properties, while remaining under quarantine conditions, was pretty daunting … Personal meetings with clients, showings at properties, meeting with fellow agents—all of that was put on hold, and we had no idea how long it was going to last.
“Fortunately, the real estate industry quickly put into place safety measures that allowed us to resume our business, with altered protocols and procedures.”
Sue added the gratification of helping people find their home is one of her greatest motivating factors. From the first search, to closing escrow on a new home, she looks forward to continuing on this journey with her daughter, Courtney.
Both mother and daughter have returned to in-person showings and open houses, and are finally getting to work together in-person and on-site.
Sue said Courtney’s background in art and design has taken their practice to the next level. Having created a new website, a new customer relationship management software and social media platform, Sue credits her daughter for enriching her working environment and being a terrific influence on her with her “smart, organized and positive attitude every single day.”
Courtney said she has enjoyed watching her mom advise her clients with not only her knowledgeable professionalism, but her empathy, emphasizing her mother’s value in wanting to help families establish their roots.
With a love for architecture and interior design, Courtney looks forward most to not just helping Palisadians find a home that is beautiful and personal to each client, but doing so with her mother.
“There is nobody that wants to see you succeed more than your own mother,” Courtney said. “And I have the pleasure of walking into work every day with her unrelenting support.”