Three Coldwell Banker brokerage owners and some 40 agents lost most of their files and office equipment Sunday night when a real estate office in Michigan burned to the ground.
“We were able to save our listing file and pending sale files and a few other files related to the business itself…but we lost way more than we saved,” said David Ebbinghaus, associate broker and office manager of Coldwell Banker Mt. Pleasant Realty.
The fire that started around 11 p.m. destroyed the commercial building at 304 East Broadway in downtown Mt. Pleasant, Mich., where the brokerage company was headquartered.
Ebbinghaus began calling the agents shortly after he found out about the fire late that night.
“I had a call from a friend who heard over the police scanner that the building was on fire. Through the night I tried to contact the rest of our staff,” he said.
No one was injured in the fire. Local firefighters and police haven’t announced what caused it.
The brokerage has since moved into temporary office space it obtained from a local telephone service provider. The space is equipped with telephone and Internet connections, so employees can attend to normal business activities.
The company plans to publish an announcement in the local newspaper to let clients know it is still in business. Mt. Pleasant Realty is answering telephone calls at its office telephone number and still plans to set up a booth at the Central Michigan Home Builders Association convention this weekend.
The brokerage company is buying new office equipment and securing another temporary office space while it awaits a new permanent home. The company’s three owners also owned the building that burned. They plan to rebuild in the same location, Ebbinghaus said. Other local businesses rented space in the building.
“We’ve got to move on, and I’m sure as time goes by, we’ll be just fine,” he said.
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