Christie's Blog, Flathead Valley

Exciting Changes for Bigfork Montana Real Estate Office!

As the largest independently owned brokerage in Montana, PureWest Real Estate has 17 offices across the state, with more than 160 elite agents in total. In past years, our team has been recognized with numerous honors—such as being named the Best Real Estate Brokerage in the Flathead Valley, two years running. Our brokerage has become the top selling agency in NW Montana, leading the industry year after year. Our exclusive affiliations with Christie’s International Real Estate and Leading Real Estate Companies of the world allow us to offer unmatched global exposure. We’re so proud of PureWest’s growth, and we’re just as proud of our longstanding connection to Bigfork. In the 1970s, when Dan Averill founded his real estate company, he chose to open shop in the former post office building on Electric Avenue. Decades later, we have 10 excellent agents working from the very same quaint log cabin. Our shared history with the Bigfork community is just one reason that we’re thrilled to announce a new project: the much-needed renovation of PureWest’s Bigfork Montana real estate office!

The building that houses our office dates back to 1905, when Bigfork was freshly platted, and its residents were all homesteaders. During the 1950s, the small cabin served as the town’s post office. By 1972, the building was back on the market, and 21-year-old Dan Averill, who was working as a ranch agent for United Farm, purchased it. The cabin seemed like the perfect place to open his own real estate office. He called it Trails West Realty, and operated on his own, as a one-man office, until the early 1990s. Though his brokerage was small, Dan established Trails West as the go-to for higher end clients and celebrities in the Bigfork area.

Bigfork Montana real estate

The original Trails West logo , drawn by Fred Fellows


In 2001, Dan’s son, Sean, joined the family business: He launched the Trails West Real Estate Whitefish office, and over the next 14 years, expanded the brokerage substantially throughout the Flathead Valley. In 2013, Sean purchased a Bozeman-based real estate company called PureWest. Two years later, in June 2015, he joined forces with Dale Crosby Newman, owner of West Venture Real Estate, in a merger that formed Montana’s largest independently owned real estate company, under the PureWest name.

In 2018, top producing Bigfork agent Jennifer Shelley joined the PureWest team as an Owner. Jennifer, along with Managing Broker Steve Dooling, leads our dynamic team of talented and passionate Realtors who have strong ties to Bigfork and serve this community with pride.

Throughout all the changes and growth of recent years, our charming Bigfork Montana Real Estate office, and the relationships we have with this community, has remained vital. Our motto of building Relationships for Life has been a cornerstone of this company—from our very beginnings at Trails West, up until today.

So, it is with great excitement that our Bigfork office steps forward into this next chapter. Time has taken its toll on the building, and it needs a facelift and remodel. We plan to incorporate historic elements with modern mountain style—paying homage to our roots with an eye on the future. These changes are bittersweet: we’ll miss the historic look of this downtown staple, but we also know that a remodel will secure PureWest’s place in Bigfork for the decades to come. Our company’s legacy is inextricably tied to Bigfork, and we look forward to a long future in this beautiful lakeside community! The project won’t be completed for a few months, but, in the meantime, we invite you to preview the remodel plans:Bigfork Montana real estate

Our office is still open for business, if you’re interested in listing your Bigfork Montana real estate! To reach out to one of our esteemed agents, click here. And, as always, feel free to browse Bigfork real estate online, as well as all Flathead Lake waterfront property, and nearby Lakeside Montana real estate.

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