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About Us

Noel Kao — Chicago General Manager

Originally from Southern California, Noel worked in hospitality and managed teams in both the food and real estate industries for over a decade. She took a leap of faith and joined the Smart City Dallas team as an agent in 2020, where she quickly fell in love with helping clients find a new space to call home. She has a passion for mentoring new agents and the rich Smart City culture, which she decided to bring with her to the Windy City as she elevated to Market Leader, launching Smart City Chicago!

Our Story

Smart City started in 2013 as a small apartment locating service in Dallas, Texas. In the early days, our founder and CEO Cassie Brown just wanted to help her friends find great places to live, but her innate drive to offer an amazing client experience quickly set Smart City apart from the competition. Since then, Smart City has taken big strides to disrupt the real estate industry by choosing what’s right over what’s profitable. We are growing rapidly, with services available in major metro areas across three states. And, as always, our goal is to always put you—our customer—first.

Our Purpose

When Smart City was first founded, our goal was “to become the most trusted, most referred, and most utilized resource among renters in Texas.” We’ve broadened our scope considerably as our business has grown, but those basic ideals still remain. In short, Smart City is here to find you a space where you can be yourself.

Finding You a Space in Chicago Where You Can Be Yourself

Apartment hunting in Chicago shouldn’t be a chore. We want you to be excited about the process and thrilled about your prospects. We want to build a connection with you and find out your wants, your needs, your “gotta haves” and your wildest dreams so we can find the Chicago apartment that’s absolutely perfect for you.

We’re Smart City – Chicago, and we’re here to find you a space where you can be yourself.

Our Accolades

Diverse & Inclusive Employer
  • The Startup Weekly


Best Places to Work
  • Dallas Business Journal

    2015, 2016, 2017, and 2019

  • Houston Business Journal


  • Glassdoor

    2018 (#19)

Dallas 100 Entrepreneur Award
  • Caruth Institute for Entrepreneurship (SMU)


Inc. 5000
  • Nationals

    2019 (#670), 2020 (#1086),

    2021 (#2447)

  • Regionals: Texas

    2020 (#87)

Entrepreneur 360
  • #190


  • #299


Top CEOs
  • Glassdoor

    2019 (#16)

35 Under 35
  • LGBTQ Leader, Business Category


Women in Business Award
  • Dallas Business Journal


Best of Austin
  • Austin Chronicle

    2019, 2021, 2022, 2023

“I just wanted to give a huge thank you to Shelby and the Smart City team for all their hard work and making a typically difficult task such an easy and smooth experience.”

Robert S.

“Smart City even connected me with someone after I had signed my new lease to provide me with information on recommended moving companies, starting my utilities, recommendations for renters’ insurance, and so much more. I feel super confident and excited for my upcoming move thanks to Katrina and Smart City!”

Gabriella R.

“Living in a different country and trying to relocate to another country is a daunting task at best, but utilizing this service and the people that assist you in securing a place and the services you need to live is mind-blowing and a relief. Having a service like this allows me to focus on the BIG stuff while they handle the details…awesome and thank you!!”

Lee H.

“…Once I secured the apartment I was passed over to the Connect team and was connected with Brad. Brad relieved all the stress and anxiety of setting up new accounts for electricity and internet. He also helped ensure I picked the best plans for my needs. He was able to get my consent and a few details and within 20 minutes I was receiving confirmation of my electric account. I highly recommend them!”

Hannah K.

“Rachel through Connect services is amazing — I’m getting all the info needed to set up utilities and internet weeks before moving from out of state. Highly recommend and cannot thank this team enough to take the stress off of moving and getting everything in line before my arrival.”

Bryan H.

Working for Smart City means taking control of your own future – the direct reflection of hard work into big paychecks makes this job motivating and fun

Caroline W. – Smart City Agent

I love love love working for Smart City! Going to work with your best friends and incredible leaders has made me SO HAPPY! I go to bed every night with my heart full knowing that I get to make a difference in peoples lives. If you’re looking for an exciting and fulfilling career with a ton of opportunities for growth – this is it!

Candice D. – Smart City Agent

I love being able to be myself, create my own schedule and the sky is truly limitless on the money I can make.

Victoria C. – Smart City Agent

Working at Smart City is like having clear skin, being fit and rich all at the same time… It really is as good as it sounds.

Annette O. – Smart City Agent

Moving had always been stressful until Now. Thanks to Smart City, I have found a place along with services.

Leslie R.

We found a place in a few days and afterwards they even had someone follow up to recommend moving services and housekeeping! Pretty awesome for the low price of free!

Erin M.

[My agent’s] energy was wonderful, and I had quite a few crises that she was able to help me navigate with such a positive attitude. I was able to find an apartment that I loved with a price they negotiated, and she was super supportive the entire time. I told my boyfriend to reach out to them as well, because she was always available and responded really quickly.

Haley M.
via Yelp!

[My agent] went above and beyond for me and found an apartment that exceeded all of my requirements. She even managed to find it on extremely short notice!

Beatrice G.

I appreciate how timely and dedicated [my agent] was at responding to my questions and getting me the right answers. I’m truly happy I went through Smart City instead of somewhere else or searching on my own.

Trevon B.

This service was amazing!! It was my first time apartment shopping and I was so nervous until I found Smart City…They helped me through the entire process and found me the perfect apartment!

Deanna T.

[My agent] not only worked with me for weeks on end to find the perfect spot, but came to help me move when I had no one else. Smart City Apartment Locating is an awesome free service that will go above and beyond to find the perfect apartment for your needs! Highly recommended.

Dominique P.

I highly recommend their services. [My agent] was beyond helpful and extremely professional throughout the entire experience.

Arnereanna B.

If your looking for an aparment, I would 100% recommend this service…I couldn’t have found the perfect apartment without [my agent] and on top of it all, it was FREE!

Justina L.

Once I applied [for my apartment], I figured my time with Smart City Locating was complete but I was then connected with someone else to help me properly prepare for the logistics of my move. I am so blown away by the quality of service with this company and I would recommend them to anyone else who is looking to move!

Kelsey C.

Had the best experience using Smart City! [My agent] helped me find a great deal on an incredible apartment complex, I would definitely use them again!

Mariah S.

I’d recommend [Smart City] to anybody moving. Nashville has so many options for apartments and they make it a lot easier to find what you are looking for. Thanks so much!!

Mariah B.

I was a nervous wreck trying to find an apartment on my own and then I saw Smart City’s ad on Instagram and took a chance at it. Best decision I could’ve made, I got exactly what I wanted all thanks to [my agent]. Thank you!

Hunter M.

[Our agent] helped us find an apartment from moving out of state. He was so nice and very responsive. 100% recommend!

Cynthia H.

Could not imagine [moving] to a new city without Smart City! I am so picky and have tons of questions…They gave me so many details and options…They were so personable and always had my back. Cannot recommend enough!

Ashley R.

Smart City took the pressure off of us trying to search through hundreds of properties. Working with [our agent] was the best choice we could’ve made!

Ashley P.

[My agent] was so helpful, patient, and responsive. She really went above and beyond to help me find a place that felt like home! I would 110% recommend.

Kelly H.

Everyone at Smart City Locating sets out to meet the needs of their clients…their friendliness and professionalism are greatly appreciated. I would highly recommend!

Imani P.

The service in general is helpful, especially when you’re not from here. [My agent] was quick to respond and get things done. Seriously, cannot say enough great things about her and about the service.

Kathryn K.

If you are looking for a new place in Denver, USE SMART CITY!!! [Our agent] went above and beyond for us. My roommate and I are kinda extra & have very loud personalities, [our agent] totally just took everything we threw at her and made it happen.

Anna D.

Very helpful…loved being able to text my [agent] in real-time with fast responses! Highly recommend using this service (:

Sarah C.

[My agent] found me better quality options than I was finding on my own, and with move-in discounts…This service has been a dream! I wish I could give it 10 stars!!!

Tori B.

Because of [my agent’s] quick responses, I was able to find my apartment in a matter of 4 hours! He provided me with a video tour and guided me through the application process. I really felt like he was genuinely looking out for me and wanted to make sure I’d be happy with everything!

Chai G.

There’s a ton of locators in the Dallas area, but if we ever move again Smart City is the only one I’d consider. They make the process so easy, especially because you can communicate via text with your agent. Best of all the process is so quick.

Amber R.
via Yelp!

From finding the apartments that fit what I was looking for to scheduling the tours, [my agent] made everything stress-free for me. I highly recommend Smart City!

I worked with Smart City again and they did not fail. Amazing service, loving and caring agents…I have a really, really busy lifestyle and Smart City really helped me not to be worried and stressed about finding a nice home with my needs. I love Smart City and I promise that no one will regret using them.

Parisa H.
via Birdeye

Best apartment locators on earth!

All of our moms

Smart City — a free apartment locating startup founded on a radical commitment to caring about clients —everyone is essential because everyone is a human being, not just a name on a spreadsheet.

Mile High CRE
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Smart City has been one of our biggest partners in leasing units in bulk, and their team is really engaged with our staff. Any time we need to lease a block of units to hit our occupancy goals, the property success team at Smart City is one of our first calls. Kendall and her team are really great at communicating on goals, timelines, and specific units that will be marketed to their clients. We would recommend them to any client or property management company looking to fill up their property!

Cypress at Trinity Groves

Chip Lambert and team have done a great job about making sure they send us qualified prospects, calling to make appointments, following up to see how they went, explaining our specials to the prospects so they’re more well-informed when they come in the door. They are helping us to lease up our community!

Alexan Avondale

The self-described ‘hip, trendy and client-focused locators’ are passionate about helping provide housing accommodations, as well as working with each other.

Dallas Business Journal
link to post
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