Ed Murchison didn’t want to leave Virginia Cook Realtors. They treated him well over the past 15 years. However, when the firm announced it was shutting down this spring, he knew he had to find another brokerage with a strong and deep offering of market support for agents.
“I was really impressed with Coldwell Banker’s suite of agent marketing, property marketing, sales marketing, and all the tools that they had,” he said. “They offer so much it’s almost overwhelming, and they allow agents like myself to customize it.”
Murchison considers himself a “unique bird” because he built his brand on a very specific niche. All of his marketing is geared towards people looking to focus on Midcentury Modern or modern homes. He figures he first fell in love with the style around the time he was born. One of his earliest memories is being six or seven years old riding in a car with his parents and seeing a flat roof, clean-lined home.
“It just drew me in,” he recalled. “Every time we would drive by it I remember just focusing on it.”
After considering a career in architecture, he decided that real estate would be the best way to pursue his passion. By the 1990s, he was ready to buy his own Midcentury Modern, or “’50s home” as he (and most other people) called them then.
During the course of his home search, Murchison felt like his agent didn’t really understand him or what he was looking for. The experience gave him an idea. With so many Realtors out there competing for clients, how could he set himself apart? The answer was to focus almost exclusively on the architectural style he’d always loved. His idea proved successful, as over the past 15 years he has had a steady stream of clients regardless of the day’s prevailing trends. His business even continued to grow during the down years of 2007 and 2008.
“There have always been, and will always be, people that appreciate good architecture,” he said. “Different styles can have their vogue moment, but good architecture stands the test of time.”
And while he enjoys the fact his mid-20th-century tastes have become popular, Murchison cautions against those who go too far with the remodeling process. In some renovated homes, the interior is not much different from a home built last week.
“The end result is that they’ve ripped the soul of the house out,” he said. “Thankfully more buyers now are rejecting that. They want authenticity.”
Of course, it’s not just Midcentury Modern homes that Murchison loves. He’s also an avid collector of art, dining ware, and furniture from that era. As a member of Preservation Dallas, he works to help older neighborhoods maintain their viability. Part of that is assisting DISD schools through events like the Northaven Home Tour that supports Kramer Elementary School and the Modern Mile Home Tour that benefits Walnut Hill Elementary’s autism program.
“One of my goals has been to try and improve the community where I sell homes through supporting the local public schools,” Murchison said. “There are some outstanding schools in DISD, and people should consider those neighborhoods and consider those schools.”