Real estate company to move into historic property in downtown Batavia

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Peter Hunt, Managing Director of Hunt Real Estate

A coveted downtown property will soon be home to Hunt Real Estate, said managing director Peter Hunt.

The company purchased 97 Main St., Batavia, at the corner of Main and Jackson streets. Give them a few months, and its thriving team – around 16 people and growing – will operate from the site.

Company executives chose to add a branch in Batavia because it provides an integral connection between two of the company’s main markets, Hunt said.

“First, it provides us with a very powerful bond between Rochester and Buffalo. We have been watching the market closely and believe there is stability and there is apparent energy and a renewed investment spirit, especially along Main Street, which we were not a part of,” he said, referring to the company’s impending move. “We are very excited about this.”

Peter Hunt lives in Buffalo, and he knew that area quite well as a hockey coach, and that athletic role brought him to Batavia whenever his team played at the rink. Hunt Real Estate has been in a temporary dig at 5 Jackson St. for a year. The new space will have room — about a few thousand square feet on each of the three floors — for staff and office growth, and an apartment on each of the second and third floors, he said.

“And we also see how the real estate market has changed, especially since the pandemic hit us. We see that communities like Batavia have a great opportunity both for improved quality of life and also for growth, as it becomes increasingly desirable to be in small to medium towns and communities that have the kind of natural beauty that Batavia has all around. he said. “And we think being part of this renewed enthusiasm for communities like Batavia will be very important to us.”

Hunt followed in the footsteps of his father and grandfather and joined the family business right out of college. His son Charlie Hunt did the same, and the COO is 10 at this point. The company has 58 branches from Boston, MA to upstate New York and Phoenix, AZ. The company deals in mortgages, titles, insurance, residential/commercial sales. He is ready to provide services that no one else offers to Batavia, said Peter Hunt.

“Our vision is very simply ‘always there for you’, which means that we are an integrated real estate services and homeownership organization, which we are the only one currently serving Batavia,” he said. . “So we are excited to add value to the relationships our sales professionals have with our clients and clients.”

With a view to growth, another sales professional was recently added to the Batavia branch, and 97 Main will eventually include two apartments for renovation on the upper floors of the building.

“Which, really, I think are going to be very cool units. You might know they’re in a nice space in terms of high ceilings and nice windows, and so it’s going to be a great place,” he said. “We intend to grow; that’s always our goal. As far as I’m concerned, growth is the name of the game in any business. »

Property sales hit an all-time high in 2021 – the best sales in the company’s 110-year history, he said. There is a balance between supply and demand, and Hunt believes “there is much less supply than there is demand”, which will continue to push the market higher.

“So for this market to really cool down, there would have to be a huge influx of inventory, more homes for sale. As a percentage, there’s been huge growth, otherwise there would have to be a huge decrease in demand. Interest rates have only risen very little in the last two months, which will make things less affordable. And we think that will affect demand a little, but not a lot, because there’s still a lot of pent-up demand for a nice house, a decent place to live,” he said. “We’ve been in the business for four generations, and while I guess I haven’t woken up six or seven years old saying, “I want to be in real estate,” it’s always been part of our family culture. .”

Batavia’s market includes many older homes, compared to new projects, making it a great product in the eyes of younger buyers, he said.

“It’s the whole upstate that has had a long-standing shortage of new housing. So existing housing — you say older homes — is still really in high demand,” he said. “Young people, in particular, see this as an opportunity to get a very nice house for a price that is still very reasonable compared to other parts of the country, and also an opportunity to improve this house and make it more precious.

The schedule is to move in and settle at 97 Main Street in the next few months, before focusing on apartment renovations, he said. He expects work to start on the two apartments late this year or early 2023. The former Genesee Bank building also housed the Thomas & Dwyer shoe store during the height of the trade in downtown retail, and more recently House of K, Foxprowl Collectables and other miscellaneous businesses.

Top and bottom photo by Howard Owens.

Top photo from front left, Carol Hunt, branch manager Michelle Schlossel, Annette Rotondo, Gavin Townsend, Carson Marzolf and back row left, Stephanie D’Alba, Bob Kwandrans, Marie Scofield and administrator of the Lauren Becht office.

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The property at the corner of Main and Jackson streets, Batavia.

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