Oak Realty Your Annandale Area Real Estate Specialists
It doesn’t matter how you found the Heart of the Lakes. You’ll just be
glad you did.
Our Story Over 39 years ago, Oak Realty began selling property to friends and family in the beautiful Heart of the Lakes. Ask any of our Realtors®, and they will tell you there is no place they would rather sell property than here. It’s sort of a secret, how wonderful this place is. Most of us grew up here, all of us have spent the majority of our lives here. Together we form the oldest real estate group in town and there is a reason we’re still around. We love this area, its lakes, and its people. Most of all we love what we do. Buying and selling property can be exciting, scary, life-changing. Our promise is to educate you every step of the way, so you can make the best decisions for yourself or your family. Whether it’s a move or an investment, we are here to be your guide. We look forward to the opportunity of working with you on your next search or sale.
is where we hang our hat.
Open Houses Simply put, we believe in Open Houses. By opening properties similar in price, style or location at the same time, we also give buyers the convenience and opportunity to see more homes at once (and save them some time.) Sellers love the increased traffic. Our signs and balloons flood the area, often on Saturdayâ€™s from 11-1, when so many people are out and about. Our popular Open House page on our web site lists all area opens houses, with times, directions and additional information.
Photography & Virtual Tours Buyers deserve quality pictures, and we are dedicated to providing images that showcase your property from every angle. Our SkyCam can take sweeping views of your property from 60â€™ up for a birds eye view. In addition, we operate our own virtual tour camera, giving us control over the number of virtual tours we shoot and the ability to re-shoot seasonally. When we market your property, we will make sure it looks its very best. Excellent photography is not an add-on, it is necessary for every listing.
Advertising Our Heart of the Lakes Property Portfolio is a beautiful 60+ page catalog, published seasonally, that includes all of our area listings. They are distributed in a number of local establishments and mailed directly to hundreds of clients who are specifically looking to buy in our area. The most important place your property appears is in the Multiple Listing Service. Our agents will talk to you about how your property appears there, and why a careful and thorough listing in the MLS is so important.
Electronic Marketing New technologies and buyer trends are constantly emerging, we need to stay on top of how we are connecting with our buyers and sellers. We reach our clients online with a monthly market update, custom property trailers on our YouTube Channel, and through an active Facebook page. With each printing of our Property Portfolio, an interactive digital edition is also shared on our web site and with hundreds of buyers who have requested to have it sent directly to their inbox.
Our market The Heart of the Lakes is just a half hour South of St. Cloud and an hourâ€™s drive Northwest of the Twin Cities on Highway 55. Although near these bustling areas and their conveniences, the Annandale Area is absent of traffic, alive with tradition and just when you need it most, it can be oh, so wonderfully quiet. A peaceful but convenient destination also means a valuable one. This is truly a market all its own. Comparables are unique by body of water, neighborhood and community. Working with the most established real estate team in the area guarantees you dependable professionals that are fun, comfortable to work with and incredibly knowledgeable. A firm understanding of the local market is key to a successful search or sale.
At the heart of who we are, and why we all love what we do, is the Annandale area itself. The Heart of the Lakes, as it has long been called, is a wonderful lake country area that attracts young families and retirees. Many who once vacationed here now live here full time, and it’s no wonder why. It’s a charming small town with great schools and endless recreation. It is important to us that we surpass being just knowledgeable of the area, and that we also provide you with service that goes above and beyond. As clients of ours, you will be treated like a neighbor... because you are. There are a couple of things are at the core of what “Seriously Local” means: Niche Marketing Our focus is here. We know the local market, and its history, extremely well. If you’re looking at property and want to know specifics about fishing or a local school bus route, we have your answers. If you’re selling, these are things your buyer will want to know about too. As an independently-owned office, we make all of our own decisions, and at the heart of those decisions are what is best for serving our clients and the community. Locally-focused Technology We won’t adopt a tool or system just to impress you, but we will implement technology that makes sense for you as a buyer or seller. For that reason our web site, www. oakrealtymn.com, is useful and full of local information. It offers quick links to area lakes, a fantastic map search, and upcoming open house information. Our daily hot list is a favorite, and the only resource of its kind for immediate updates solely on the Heart of the Lakes market. Heart for the Community This area is much more than the place we work. We are all active in the community, from various non-profit/civic groups to lake associations, schools and churches. We love participating in local traditions like Annandale’s historic 4th of July parade and the Chili Cook-Off, among many others. We also join in to support other surrounding communities in their celebrations as well.
How we got our start and who we have
Oak Realty was founded in 1974 when Don Bruggeman purchased Daryl Gunnarson Realty, and changed the name to Oak Realty after its location on Oak Avenue, Annandale’s charmed Main Street. Our red and white leaf was born and along with it, a tradition of providing quality real estate service in the Heart of the Lakes area. In 1986 Don’s son Steve joined the business. Opportunities to own lakeshore property were abundant in those days. Lake homes and cabins in the area ranged from $40,000-$100,000 and real estate companies literally held the keys to their front doors. The Sunday Star Tribune was widely-agreed to be the resource for new listings, and buyers often came through our office door with that ad in hand, eager to look at property. We expanded into the 90’s and outgrew the office on Main Street. In 1996 Oak built a new office with more space and visibility on Highway 55. Steve purchased the business in 2000, and soon after the Internet began to change the industry in profound ways. By 2001 we had our first web site and the fat MLS books were collecting dust in the corner. Oak Realty acquired Lake Country Properties in neighboring Maple Lake in 1997, our local presence expanded to two offices, and our staff grew again. In 2009 we celebrated a milestone, 35 years in business. The anniversary also marked a new beginning.
Though excited about where perseverance and hard work has brought the company in its early years, we’re even more excited about what lies ahead. We are opening the doors on a new era in Oak’s history. We’re refinining how we do business. At the top of our list is our providing unmatched local expertise to area buyers and sellers, exceeding our clients expectations in marketing and service, and putting quality at the forefront in everything we do. Our approach to business has changed greatly due to the shift in how buyers and sellers can obtain information. Over the years, however, the true relationship between agent and client hasn’t changed. Since our founding over 39 years ago, our success has been carried by our ability to build longstanding relationships. Relationships based on honesty, respect and fair business practices. We love taking our customers for a drive through the area and educating them on the various lakes, neighborhoods and their histories. While the majority of today’s buyers (and sellers) have done research online before speaking to an agent, many are quick to realize there is a lot to learn about this area, and a visit with a local expert is a great place to start. We are proud to be an innovative company. We enjoy seeking new solutions to bring into our business and have continued to do so as we grow and change. We want tools that help us do our job better and more efficiently, and systems that help you buy or sell property with greater confidence. While no one can predict the future, it seems almost a certainty that the Heart of the Lakes will continue to retain its warm character and draw new people to its lakes and countryside. For those that its lifestyle appeals to, (frankly, we wonder how it couldn’t) our friendship and services will be there.
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Annandale Office 720 Elm St. E (320) 274-5737 | Maple Lake Office 501 Maple Ave. N (320) 963-2088