Kees preserves Broersma’s identity and continues to innovate
‘We aren’t a marketing label selling our own brand, we are selling your home’, emphasises Kees, who values honesty and expertise above everything else. For a company that works with high-end clients, Kees knows that what Broersma offers cannot be bought. ‘We offer interest, authenticity, and integrity, that’s our added value.’ ‘Many clients are repeat customers, and they tell family and friends about Broersma,’ says Kees. ‘When the client appreciates our services and shares them with others, I know we’ve built a great company.’
Kees studied Construction and Commercial Engineering at vocational college in Gouda. When he came out of the service, he ended up in real estate almost by accident because there was so little work available during the recession. ‘I started from scratch, got my licenses, grew as a person and an entrepreneur, and have been co-owner of Broersma since 1997,’ says Kees, who also facilitates training opportunities for everyone in the company. ‘This is a dynamic industry that’s constantly changing along with the economic situation. After thirty years in the business, there are things that still surprise me sometimes, positively and negatively’, says Kees, who is known around the office as Mr Broersma. His knowledge and experience run counter to the oft-repeated adage that the Amsterdam housing market is overheated: ‘This is nothing new under the sun, is it? At Broersma, we believe in nuance because we have experience and in-depth knowledge, we keep an eye on the trends and market conditions, and we keep innovating.’
He lives on the border of the districts Zuid and West on the River Schinkel in a former butcher’s shop, something that, as the child of a butcher, he thinks is quite fitting. ‘We converted our house with a modern extension added onto the listed property,’ he explains, ‘with a fantastic kitchen where I can enjoy my hobby: cooking.’ The old butcher’s freezer has now become a wine cooler.
Kees says he could never live outside Amsterdam because he needs the drive of the city, the inspiring people, the social diversity, and all the new developments. Kees calls Buiksloterham in Noord the Williamsburg of Amsterdam, a reference to the New York neighbourhood on the East River, just opposite Manhattan. ‘Work and life are intertwined in Noord, that’s going to be the new way of life,’ predicts Kees, who likes to pop into Helling 7 at the KNSM shipyards for lunch, where everything is cooked over coal. ‘I love the Mediterranean cuisine and the restaurant’s interior, which is very bold and was designed using materials from old ships.’
Helling 7, opposite Melissaweg 57, Amsterdam