At age 64 and after an illustrious career as a Beverly Hills dentist, Brian Sholder found himself with a new career: real estate agent. But his path to eXp Realty was not because he wanted to become a real estate agent; it’s because he was frustrated with the previous brokerages that failed to effectively market his magnificent and historic Montana ranch.
Or, as the old adage goes, “if you want something done right, do it yourself.”
Sholder joined eXp Realty in November 2020 — this after a fortuitous connection with Washington state eXp agent Phil Hahn. Hahn kept noticing a fabulous Montana listing that was popping up on his Instagram feed. He marveled at the high-end quality of it and assumed a high-end Realtor® was behind it. Hahn reached out and soon discovered the beautiful drone footage, images, and listing descriptions were the work of Sholder and his wife, Janet.
“We went with a few listing agents who did not have social media marketing skills,” said Sholder. “My 33-year-old daughter said, ‘Dad, you need to get on Instagram.’ So, I bought myself a drone and started making movies, editing them and putting them on Instagram. In a short period of time, I had 3,300 followers. I focused on agents. If I could get the agents’ attention, I felt I was getting closer (to selling my home).”
With Hahn’s encouragement, Sholder didn’t stop at just marketing his home — he became a real estate agent with eXp so he could market and sell his own home.
“Clearly, you see he’s a doer,” said Hahn. “He has patents on dental implant oral hygiene products. He had a commercial pilot’s license in which he commuted to his Beverly Hills dental practice weekly. He has a background in construction and various trades. Finally, he has fabricated steel furniture and artwork using a CAD-waterjet machine. You can see he doesn’t sit around waiting for someone else to figure it out — he figures it out.”
Sholder bought the property in 2001 when there was nothing on it except for a rundown A-frame. There was no power, so he brought in a generator and remodeled the A-frame. Then he brought in power over four miles to build a garage, guest house and finally the main house.
And what a house it is.
Listed for $4.85 million, Krohn Lake Ranch is a magnificent 5,000+ square foot log and cedar home custom-built in 2011. It’s located on 392+ acres overlooking a 35+ acre lake that is stocked with trout. Wildlife such as elk, moose, deer, bear, wolves, coyotes, geese and turtles are right out the door.
“It’s like dropping a mountain lodge in the middle of wildlife,” says Sholder, who says it’s centrally located about an hour equidistant from Missoula, Helena and Great Falls.
For some historic and celebrity name-dropping, Krohn Lake Ranch is in the Northern Rockies’ Blackfoot Valley, along the route taken by Lewis & Clark during their historic push west more than 200 years ago. Talk-show host David Letterman has a ranch about 90 miles away. Unabomber Ted Kaczynski was pulled from his crude cabin, where he resided just outside the town of Lincoln six miles away.
While the property has been a labor of love for Sholder, he says it’s time to sell and move onto the next adventure. His adult children are out of the nest. He is ready to part ways and especially to dig into his new career in real estate.
“I’m a brand-new, green behind-the-ears-agent with eXp,” said Sholder, who marvels at eXp’s technology and brokerage in the cloud. “I think eXp is one of the best things. You can actually go to classes in your pajamas,” he says with a laugh. “I’m having the time of my life. Once I make up my mind, nothing stops me.”
We’re sure of that, Brian. We are sure of that.
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