In 1973, Jim Fitzgerald had an idea that would change his future forever.With a “strong background in economics, I have always been interested in real estate,” said Jim.
Fitzgerald Realty Group, Inc. (FRG) started in business more than 40 years ago on West Patrick Street in Frederick as Fitzgerald and Matan Realty, Inc.
One of Jim’s first big deals was the sale of a large farm along I-270 to a substantial international investor. This piqued Jim’s interest in large land and farm deals, which he still has an interest in today.
He also helped Frederick Memorial Hospital (FMH) purchase an off-market industrial building on 19 acres of land to use for its materials distribution facility. A few years later, with the help of FRG, FMH acquired Rose Hill Plaza, a well-located retail facility that was used by the hospital and other businesses for years and is currently the site for the MD Anderson Cancer Network.
Coincidentally, Rose Hill Plaza was the location of Jim’s son Seamus’ first deal in the business, a lease to Good Feet Orthotics. Seamus joined the team after graduating Magna Cum Laude with a degree in finance with a concentration in real estate from Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Virginia.
Coming home to work with his father was an easy transition for Seamus. He’s been around the real estate business his entire life.
“My first job in the real estate business at age 14 was mowing grass around stormwater management ponds at The Greens, a golf course community near Holly Hills Country Club,” he said. “It was for our family real estate, so it was part of the process.”
His interest in commercial real estate and investment properties combined with a background in finance meshed well with his father’s economic background and years of experience.
“I really like the entrepreneurial aspect of it,” Seamus said.
Seamus wasn’t the only kid working in the family business, though. At one point, all six of the Fitzgerald children worked for FRG.
The family continued to work on projects in the local area, including commercial properties and numerous residential communities, most recently Holly Ridge, a 98-unit subdivision in Frederick.
On the commercial side, FRG has been assisting landlords and tenants find the perfect fit for years. Some recent deals of note include facilitating the conversion of a former car dealership into a state of the art AAA Car Care Center and an indoor youth fun center. FRG converted a burnt-out shopping center to Frederick’s first and only Walgreens.
FRG has been very active in the industrial development and leasing arena since day one. A notable industrial project for FRG is the 210-acre Stanford Industrial Park. The park offers small to medium industrial lots for sale or lease to businesses or investors. The first of which was a long-term ground lease to AT&T for a high-volume network switching station which services the underground transcontinental fiber optic line that runs through the property.
In 2015, the $16 million sale of Highland Technology Center proved to be one of FRG’s most challenging projects to date. The investor who owned the property was looking to make a sale, but the property couldn’t be advertised due to their requirement for confidentiality.
“It’s our secret sauce,” Seamus said. “We have a very good network of buyers in the commercial market. We leveraged our Rolodex and arranged the sale to a New York based investment group.”
In 2017, the company won the Frederick County Real Estate Dealmakers Modern Masterpiece Award in conjunction with Ruppert Properties, LLC for the Monocacy Trading Center in Walkersville. The 210,000-square-foot industrial building was renovated from a long-term vacant, deteriorating warehouse to an award-winning facility.
With a plethora of project experience, FRG relocated in spring 2017 to the heart of Downtown Frederick at the intersection of Second and Market streets.
Through every business change, the company has provided continuous service in commercial and land brokerage, commercial sales and leasing, land development, tenant representation, and real estate consulting in the Maryland community.
With sustained hard work, market knowledge, perseverance, attention to detail, careful analysis, and an entrepreneurial mindset, FRG will continue to provide high quality service to their current and future clients.