30A Realty is an Original
February 11, 2015 by Manny Chavez
When Alice Forrester and partner Mickey Whitaker opened their business, 30A Realty, in June of 1995, they were excited by the prospects. Then, in October, just 4 months later, Hurricane Opal came through and pretty much put a dent in South Walton businesses.
Since 1995 they have weathered other lesser hurricanes, a recession or two, and a real estate downturn that sent many real estate businesses packing. They have weathered the storms and continue to work in the field as some of the most experienced real estate professionals on the coast.
Explains Alice, “We were the first 30A real estate company to take on the “30A” name….all the other real estate companies (there were only a handful back then)…named their companies according to their location (Seagrove on the Beach, Dune Allen Realty, etc.).”
In the beginning (1995), Alice and Mickey had 50 agents and worked out of 4 offices. With the ups and downs of the real estate business, they are quite happy now to have their one signature office in Seagrove Beach (behind Angelina’s Pizzeria & Pasta) and currently work with 15 real estate agents.
30A Realty handles South Walton residential sales including personal residences, investment properties, second homes, condos, and developments for both buyers and sellers. Both Alice and Mickey are licensed real estate brokers. “We do some commercial real estate business, but mostly we are involved in the residential aspect. We do not work with rental properties,” explains Alice.
Asked if the typical buyer of South Walton properties has changed much in the past two decades, Mickey is quick to respond, “The buyers themselves haven’t changed much, it’s just that they are coming from a lot further away. We used to sell primarily to the close-by surrounding states, but now we literally sell to folks from all over the country and from other countries as well. Mostly, the distant buyers are looking for investment properties.”
Both Alice and Mickey agree that the new Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport has opened the door for future international prospects in the South Walton area.
“30A still continues to be unique in that buyers soon realize that they can find upscale dining, niche boutiques, music, wine, and art festivals…you can have it all without ever leaving 30A. Of course, a family can always jump in their car and head for Destin or Panama City Beach if an amusement park experience is needed,” continues Alice.
Asked to ponder the future of 30A Realty and 30A real estate in general, Alice continues to be very optimistic…”I think we’ll continue the uniqueness that 30A has here because of what can and cannot be built. I can see the market continuing to be a good one and everyone still feels that 30A is unique…we are not having an ‘off season’ around here anymore. This is a genuine resort area and there is just something special about it. People just plain enjoy being here and are always commenting on how friendly we are. We’ve gone from buying our groceries at the Seagrove Village Market to having two Publix stores close by. We can’t ignore progress, but we’ve found a comfort level in our current one-office location. We are still here, we’re working every day and we’re not going anywhere…we are the original 30A real estate company to have “30A” in our name and looking forward to keeping up our tradition.”
Alice and Mickey. True “30A” ambassadors!
For more information, please call 850-231-5030. Office location: 45 Sugar Sand Lane, Suite D, Seagrove Beach, Fl. Visit the web site for current homes and land for sale at www.30Arealty.com.