Moving to Bend and starting a real estate business in 2008 was probably not the easiest choice, but since they loved Bend, it was the choice that made the most sense to Keeley and Fred. “We fell in love with Bend the first time we visited. We spent the next year or so making trips over the mountain from Portland to Bend for impromptu long weekends, and every time we’d dread having to come home. During our trips to Bend, we’d drive around town looking at various neighborhoods and dreaming of being able to live there one day. We had a lightbulb moment during one of our drives home; we HAD to move to Bend. It was truly the first place that felt like home for us. With young twin boys, we knew we wanted to raise them in a community we loved. So, having an idea for a business, we put a plan together, loaded up the moving trucks, and officially made Bend our new home in 2008.”
Their new real estate company struggled at the start, but has ultimately thrived. “We started a real estate brokerage in a town we didn’t really yet know, in one of the worst real estate markets in the country at the time, and we decided to name the company Fred Real Estate Group. Despite all the nay-sayers (there were many who laughed at our vision and company culture), we have grown to be the largest independent real estate brokerage in Central Oregon. Proof that hard work, passion, and belief in yourself works.”
The Fred Real Estate Group company philosophy is simple: “Work hard, provide unbelievable service, and have fun.” They publicly advertise over $1.2 billion in sales—and 0 egos or drama. As retro as this sounds, Fred and Keeley insist that the company and its agents continually strive to do the right thing. And with over 3700 real estate transactions in the nearly 10 years they have been in Bend, their approach seems to be working.
However, for Keeley and Fred, the company’s success is only part of the story. What they are truly passionate about is their family. “Our family motivates us. It’s cliché, but time is going by so quickly. When we moved to Bend, our twins were 4. Now they’re 13 and almost off to high school! Our kids have seen us work endless hours building our business, but they always know that they come first. We want to show our kids that they are in control of their own destiny and that by believing in yourself, putting in the work, and by doing the right thing, you can do anything you set your mind to. Raising great kids and building a company that provides for our family and enables us to enjoy the place we call home; that is our motivation.”
Fred and Keeley hope that newcomers to Bend make it a point to “Explore! There is so much to discover around town and in the outlying areas. Within an hour’s radius you can hit mountain trails, swim in a lake, or grab a glass of wine at a local wine shop. Float the river, hit the slopes, hike, eat, relax, and enjoy. Bend is seriously awesome.” And for Bend itself, they recognize the importance of all the local businesses. “We’d like for Bend to embrace a smart growth strategy while keeping the small-town vibe that promotes a sense of community. We need to retain and encourage the entrepreneurial spirit that’s here because it’s what makes Bend so great; all the local business owners that are each a part of the city’s fabric.”
Thanks to Keeley and Fred for sharing their inspirational local business story. If you want to be profiled in Go Local Bend, or want us to profile someone else, please email email@example.com.
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Photo credit: jasonbagby.com
Story credit: Kathy Schroeder