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Edina Realty opens first Florida office to capitalize on Minnesotans who head south for winter

In World
April 05, 2024

Edina Realty is heading south and not just for winter.

“Full time,” said Greg Mason, CEO of the Twin Cities-based company.

The brokerage, which has 75 locations throughout Minnesota and Wisconsin, has opened its first office in Florida as a way to cater to snowbirds from the Twin Cities looking for a warmer-weather home during the North’s coldest months. Prospective buyers can now see listings from nearly the entire Sunshine State on the website.

“A number of our agents who winter in Florida or spend significant time there asked for this expansion,” Mason said. “They want access to Edina Realty’s technology, products, network and services when they’re working with clients in the Sunshine State as well in Minnesota and western Wisconsin.”

The company’s new office in Naples — on the southwest coast about an hour’s drive from the Minnesota Twins’ spring training grounds in Fort Myers — will focus on buyers and sellers in communities along the state’s Gulf Coast between Marco Island and Sarasota. Mason said the company is also considering a second office in the Fort Myers area down the road.

Florida has been one of the most active states in the nation for home shoppers. It was the top state for out-of-state moves, according to an analysis of the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2022 American Community Survey (ACS). It showed more than 187,000 people moved to Florida from another state, besting the No. 2 state for in-migration (Texas) by more than 64,000 people.

Edina Realty is an affiliate of Berkshire Hathaway and a subsidiary of Minneapolis-based HomeServices of America, a real estate holding company that owns several brokerage brands across the country. The new office is the first upsizing for Edina since its acquisition of Hegg Realtors in Sioux Falls, S.D. at the end of 2021.

Mason said with so many Twin Cities business connections already in Florida, including Jerry’s Foods and a Minnesota Club in Naples, a Florida office has long been on the company’s wish list. The COVID-19 pandemic and remote work accelerated the plan, though.

He said in 2022 alone, the company made more than 100 referrals to other brokers in Florida.

“There’s always been a connection between Southwest Florida and our area,” he said. “Why send that business to other brokers?”

He said about 70 Minnesota agents were initially interested in obtaining licensing in Florida. So far, 20 agents have done so, including a few from Florida.

“Now that consumers can search our website for listings in Florida, we expect the activity to grow,” Mason said. “Real estate is a local business, and many Edina Realty agents have lifelong relationships with clients who they help through repeat home buying and selling processes at various points through their lives.”

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