Tackling The Urban Market
We have a confession to make – we are spending a lot of time in the land business working in the Twin Cities!
These days it is nearly as likely to see us at a Starbucks in downtown Minneapolis as seeing us meeting with a family in the town of Starbuck, in the heart of rich Minnesota farm country in western Minnesota. No doubt, in either location, the topic will be the same – we are talking farmland.
If you see us at the Starbucks in Minneapolis, the person sitting across from us is probably a 4-H alumni or an FFAer who wore the blue jacket or a Minnesotan who knows what it feels like to stack hay in a hot barn in July or a person who was once a grandkid who loved visiting their grandparents on the farm. These are farm kids at heart, who are proud of their heritage, and are living in the Twin Cities.
Yes, it has been an advantage that we grew up on a farm in west central Minnesota, where our dad still farms 600 acres. And yes, it has been an advantage for us to have an office and sales personnel living in Minneapolis. We know how to beat the rush hour traffic on I-94, but we also know the price of corn and fair cash rental rates in Kandiyohi County.
But the bond is much deeper than that. It is a bond not based on the latest marketing techniques of Facebook, Twitter or email blasts; nor it is a bond based on us attending the same colleges or universities. It is a bond based on true appreciation, respect and enthusiasm for our rural, agricultural heritage, where people can sit at a suburban restaurant and get excited together about what is happening in the farm economy (this is kind of like the excitement when you see someone from your home state when you are out of the country)! It is this personal connection that has created some of the best business relationships we have had in the history of our company, and even more importantly, some life-long friendships.
The truth is, many of our Twin Cities sellers are facing the same tough life choices as our rural sellers. Can we keep the land forever and afford our retirement dreams? What do we do when some of our siblings want to sell and others don’t? The land prices are so high now, if we wait, will they go down? If we sell our land now, where should we invest it?
These are all tough choices, and the answers aren’t always easy. And like our rural sellers, our Twin Cities sellers aren’t looking for us to have a perfect answer for everything or predict by looking into a crystal ball. What they are looking for is a real estate professional who can connect to them, who can share their personal attachment to the land, and relate to the opportunities of selling land in this market with honest and professional service based on their long-term goals.
Not only have we enjoyed interacting with them - and servicing their real estate needs - we have enjoyed the relationship with people who are still in love with the farm today, even though the road of life took them to the Twin Cities.