For nearly 60 years, Bjurfors have created successful housing deals. The agency is not only Sweden’s largest privately owned estate agent, it’s the most recommended agency according to a recent survey from the Swedish Quality Index.
Their journey as an agency began in 1965 when Ragnar Bjurfors decided to challenge the industry and think anew. His business acumen and professionalism combined with proactivity, personal relationships and commitment shaped a premium offering at the forefront of the industry – something that still characterises the agency today.
Today, Bjurfors has more than 600 employees in 90 offices in Sweden and Spain. In Spain they have one office in Nerja, one in Mallorca, two in the Costa Blanca and one in Marbella where they have been located for almost six years. They have the advantages of both a small brokerage firm and the resources of a large agency.
We talk to Jerry Kyrk, awarded “Best Agent of the Year 2022”, to find out more about Bjurfors and the Swedish market in general.
1) How would you describe the Bjurfors philosophy?
Bjurfors is one of Sweden’s largest and oldest privately owned real estate agencies. Since the start in 1965, we have expanded to large parts of Sweden and conduct our business with a presence in and around the larger Swedish cities, holiday resorts and the most attractive locations around the Mediterranean.
We help our clients to buy and sell properties in Spain, from our 6 offices. For us, the key to success is completely satisfied customers. That is why we are always keen to find the right buyer for the right home, and always at the right price.
Our agents work according to a unique business process that ensures the quality regardless of selling or buying a property.
Each phase of the Bjurfors method has its own tailored activities so that the client can feel secure and make the best deal possible.
2) What do you feel sets your agency apart from others in this area?
We have both the advantages of a small agency and the resources of the large agency, in combination with a lot of experience in Spain. For the luxury segment we have our unique concept called Bjurfors Beyond.
At Bjurfors Beyond, we provide exceptional homes in Sweden and Spain where no two homes are alike. With careful processes and a unique network of contacts, we ensure that our clients make a deal beyond the ordinary.
For instance, we use a special photo technique for our Beyond properties, in combination with our unique client register with potential buyers which will have priority to buy the properties.
3) Congratulations for your recent award “Best Agent”. What do think it was that earned you this accolade?
It is a great honour to be awarded this for the third time. Living and working in Marbella is a dream, here you wake up to sunshine and the quality of life is high.
A home on Costa del Sol can be a good financial investment, but it is above all an investment in quality of life – it is something that I am passionate about helping my clients with.
My philosophy is to help people to buy a property. I am not selling a property to them. It is a big difference.
I would also like to take the opportunity to point out the help from my entire team at the Marbella office and around the rest of the Bjurfors organisation who are of great help.
4) What are the most challenging, and satisfying parts of your work?
The last year or so, we’ve been struggling with a low inventory, and it has been hard to find the homes that the clients are looking for. The good ones have been selling quickly. But when you feel that a property is 100% right for your client, it is worth all the work that you put into the process, and it gives you the energy to keep on doing this day after day.
5) Many agents in Marbella experienced their most successful year ever in 2022, was this the case for Bjurfors as well?
We had a really good 2022, but 2021 was even better for us. In Sweden we noticed a slow down in the second half of 2022, which also spread over to the Swedish part of the Spanish market. During the last years, the Swedes been one of the top seven nationalities buying in Spain, but in the fourth quarter of 2022 they fell to position nine.
This did impact our business to some extent during the last part of 2022.
6) Have you seen a rise in the value of luxury property since the pandemic?
Yes, I think we have all seen this. The luxury segment has shown incredible strength during the last three years. The demand has been huge, and the inventory limited. I think that the pandemic was a wake up call for a lot of people, that made them realise that the time to live is now, and not wait until you retire.
7) Is the number of Swedish people wanting to live in Spain growing exponentially?
We see that more and more Swedish people are relocating to Spain on a more permanent basis. This also changes their buying pattern, from a holiday home to a more permanent type of residence. So during 2023, there will be a little bit less transactions when it comes to Swedish buyers, but a large portion of these transactions will be for a more permanent home.
8) Which area in Marbella is your favourite?
I bought my place here in Nueva Andalucia 21 years ago, and I have to say that I still love it. But other locations that I like is of course the famous Sierra Blanca, but also La Montua which is a small hidden gem just above the centre of Marbella with some stunning views.
9) What do you think of the area that Vista Lago is located in – Real de La Quinta?
I have to say that Real de La Quinta is one of the most exciting projects ever. I would consider it the area with the most potential maybe in the whole of Spain. Previously, you had to go to Zagaleta to get the security and privacy, and that is quite far away. Real de La Quinta is our own version of Zagaleta, but with better access and some world-class amenities.
10) What prompted Bjurfors to choose to work alongside BRIGHT?
We really love the way you work. You don’t build just a home. You start with the interior and build the home around that, so you get a product that will give you the WOW feeling, without any compromises. Then, you are always listening to the client, and show a lot of flexibility, which goes in line with our philosophy regarding completely satisfied customers.