"I think I was meant to do this," Kirsten tells ET over video chat. "I mean, I had been doing this for a really long time. It's been 13 years of being in the business. I've been kind of behind the scenes. I worked as an assistant, and then I was on a team. I've been on teams, and this was kind of my breakout, my breakout move."
Kirsten started filming MDLNY nearly two years ago, as she left behind one company to start her very own real estate team at another.
"It was a time when I think a lot of people were saying, 'Don't make the move. Stay where you are. Let your career blossom. Just start your own thing, staying where you are,'" she recalls. "For me ... I feel like I needed to just really go all in, and that's what I've done. It feels awesome. I've started a team for the first time. I mean, I've been in the business for 13 years in the shadows, and now it's like my breakout. So that's been basically my theme."
Kirsten focuses on high-end real estate, and says she's sold more than $500 million worth of property over the course of her career.
"It was just kind of a miraculous thing," she adds of throwing the show in the mix. "I was approached, and it just felt right. That's why I thought... once I started doing the whole taking a videotape of myself, I was like, 'I think I'm supposed to do this with my life.' Here I am, and [Ryan Serhant] told me he thought it'd be cool if I did it, so I thought that was great."
"I'm excited that we finally have our first woman broker on the show," Ryan shares, joining the Zoom call from his car. "Most of the deals we do are with women, who've been underrepresented. It's crazy that it took nine years, but Kirsten's the best."
In the premiere, Ryan calls Kirsten (who makes it very known that her name is pronounced kur-sten) a "shark." It's a label she wears proudly.
"I've seen a lot, I've done a lot," she notes. "I have been on both sides, because my husband is a developer. So I've seen what it's like to underwrite a project, to really work on it, to get it to the point where it needs to be sold and what that feels like. So I feel like I've seen everything from all the angles, and in order to make it in Manhattan real estate, there are definitely some shark moments. I don't even think Ryan and I feel like they're shark-y anymore. We're just doing business, because that's what it takes to get business done. It's moving quickly. It's being smart. It's jumping on things when you know because you've been doing it for so long that it's a deal and everybody just needs to shut up and take whatever you're telling them to do. That's what being a great broker is right now. So, I mean, yeah, of course you can call it shark-y. You can call it cutthroat, which is what the industry is. But there's also a lot of real brokering that that's the only way to do it."
An interesting layer of Kirsten's story is the fact that she's in business with her husband, Stefano Farsura, a real estate developer/investor who specializes in residential spaces and is, also, Kirsten's biggest cheerleader.
"My husband's incredibly supportive," Kirsten gushes. "He has been just an incredible figure for me in this whole process of just saying, 'I want you to go for it. I want you to go all in. Let's put the family in it, too, because that's the best way for the world to really see what it takes to be you.' We're just going to keep rolling with it, and I'm just going to try to keep putting a smile on my face about it."
Kirsten and Stefano share three children -- Sofia, 7, Bira, 5, and Tommy, 3 -- whom viewers get to meet in the premiere.
"My kids actually are really excited," she admits. "My oldest keeps asking when she's going to see me on TV, and she gets it. She understands how cool it is. She keeps walking around and telling people about it. I'm like, 'Quiet! Stop!'"
Kirsten admits the only part of this process that makes her a bit nervous is the show actually airing. She's been living in a secrecy bubble for a year and a half. Now, anyone and everyone can comment on her life.
"We didn't know what it was going to be like, we still don't know what it's going to be like, because we actually aren't in it yet," she says. "We're only doing Zoom interviews and have been doing a bunch of filming for a year and a half. So we've just been just rolling with it."
Ahead of filming, Kirsten got advice from Ryan -- she says it's too "unedited" to share publicly -- and from Million Dollar Listing Los Angeles star Tracy Tutor, who broke through the boys' club barrier on the West Coast first. They recently got to meet in-person to tape an episode of Celebrity Family Feud.
"She definitely told me to be really strong, and I used watching the show and watching her on the show as absolute inspiration, because she's incredible," Kirsten shares. "She also gave me a bunch of fashion advice, which I took a little bit of it ... but we're still New York, and we're still pretty buttoned up. So I took as much of it as I could, and then I turned it New York style."
When asked what will surprise viewers the most about season 9, Ryan is quick to blurt out, "Kirsten Jordan."
"Yeah, I'm everywhere," Kirsten quips. "I think that's what the most surprising part is, is I've known all these guys."
The season 9 cast is filled out by Fredrik Eklund, Tyler Whitman and Steve Gold. Luis Ortiz, who's been on and off the show for a few years, left to focus on his own series, according to Ryan.
"This is probably the most interesting season and the most volatile one we've ever made in nine years, because the market is so scattered," Ryan shares of the next batch of episodes. "It's all over the place. People are selling for lots of different reasons. You've got people wanting to move, people having babies, to people fleeing the city. I think there are real stories that, at least we followed up on my side, of people being scared in New York and having to get out and, 'What do we do?' And, 'What do I do with my home? What do we do with our project? Is New York ever going to turn back on?' Kind of the resilience of the city really, really comes across and the fact that we filmed on our phones mostly through COVID, you'll be able to see empty New York from a first-person point of view. I thought it was really wild that we did that, and I think it'll be really cool for people to see."
Kirsten describes season 9 as a "marathon," which is fitting, seeing as she was once an Olympic hopeful in the lesser-known sport of race-walking.
"You're going to learn all about my Olympic sport abilities of race-walking," she says. "I was the national champion in the race-walk when I was in high school. So that's a little-known fact. All-American race-walker. So, yeah, don't mess with me if there's a sale or something like that."