There’s a new team on the Bellingham real estate block, and they’re taking the industry by storm. At the helm is Julian Friedman, a lifelong Bellingham resident whose mission is to help homeowners market and sell their homes for the most amount of money in the least amount of time.
“I have a personal relationship with almost everywhere [in Bellingham]. There are few parks I haven’t spent time in, or hikes I haven’t gone on, or restaurants or breweries I haven’t tried … all the things that make Bellingham hum, I’ve watched them develop, been present for the changes,” he says.
This intimate knowledge of the area, combined with a knack for negotiation and contracts, combine into a winning style. In fact, though Friedman only entered the real estate business a few years ago, he’s quickly carved out a name for himself.
Friedman’s first business endeavor was Bellingham Pet Supply. However, a few years back, he began feeling like it was time for a change. Though he has always loved architecture and design, he didn’t fully consider real estate until two mentors, independent of one another, suggested he would be great at it. After earning his license, he landed at The Muljat Group, where he began to see success. In 2020, he was awarded Top Producer at The Muljat Group and earned the Best of Zillow award.
“As I continued to advance, I started to do research on real estate teams and what it would look like to bring other agents in and train them on my methodology,” he says.
The result was Julian & Company, a boutique agency housed under The Muljat Group.
Friedman now has three agents: Jerry Spraggins, Summer Huntington, and lead buyers agent Peyton Voelker.
“The collaboration with the other agents on my team feels amazing,” he says. “We continue to grow our ethos and culture…we’re loving every minute of it.”
By ethos and culture, he means a focus on building meaningful relationships with clients based on their feelings and desires, and matching these desires to the Bellingham community.
“There’s an aspect of real estate that’s transactional,” he says, “and we do well in that department, but the biggest piece that draws people to us, distinguishes us, is our genuine love and connection for the area.”
The team also operates with heart. During the pandemic, they helped a woman with terminal cancer sell her home without anyone ever stepping foot on her property. Not only did the home sell quickly, but the seller was protected from being exposed to COVID-19.
If you visit their sparkling new office on State Street, you’ll see the space is an extension of the company’s ethos. Every detail is meant to scream Bellingham.
“My primary objective was to create a space for social interaction and community collaboration,” Friedman explains. “It was also really important for me to have a space that’s built out and features local artisans and purveyors.”
The building succeeds in creating a vibe that’s charming, friendly, and energetic, just like Bellingham. As soon as you walk in, you’ll likely be greeted by Friedman’s personal welcoming committee: his adorable French bulldog, Neo.
The main floor, which in past lives was a dog grooming business and Yellow Cab, is open, bright, and spacious. The team’s desks are in one corner, while farther back you’ll find a few modern sofas, along with a refrigerator stocked with local beverages.
Upstairs is Friedman’s office, complete with a full kitchen, which gives the space a feeling more like a friend’s apartment than a real estate office.
On the wall is art by Bellingham-based artist Jax (@FineArtJax), and more local artwork is scattered throughout the building. The furniture is also local. Friedman’s desk, made from sustainably harvested Walnut, was a joint effort by Jeremy Elliott — the guitar player for Polecat — and local woodworker Aiden Brehan. Several other furniture pieces are from Greenhouse.
The building itself is made from insulated concrete forms, designed to last a long time without maintenance. As a result, it’s one of the most energy efficient buildings in Whatcom County. Though the overall aesthetic is modern industrial, the building owner and designer, Blake Hudson of Hewed Design, worked to preserve aspects of the building’s history. On the main floor you’ll see exposed brick from the original structure, built in 1946.
The office building is part of a larger complex connected through a shared courtyard. The idea is to create a collaborative space for the real estate group and surrounding businesses.
“All the tenants are somehow involved in the construction, design industry,” Friedman says. “There’s architects, metal workers, woodworkers … it’s a cool way of getting an influx of people.”
Another gathering place will be a tap house called Time & Materials, likely to open this month.
All in all, Friedman hopes the new office space and surrounding area will serve as a community hub and act as a jumping-off point for newcomers when they first arrive in Bellingham.
“It’s important to me, especially with how many clients are from out of town, that when they land, they land at our space, and we can help set the tone as far as sharing some of our favorite aspects of Bellingham.” 952 N. State St., Bellingham, 360.820.3698, julianandcompany.com
Interior Designer: Julian Friedman [Text Wrapping Break]Photographer: Grayson Glasby – Bay Home Photography
Owner & Designer: Blake Hudson of Hewed Design
Architect: Kerry Garrett in collaboration with Blake Hudson