Dianne Christian can claim six generations in Williamson County. She was born in the Dan German Hospital, just a block over from her Daniel-Christian Real Estate office on Fifth Avenue South in downtown Franklin. In the ‘70s and ‘80s, the young entrepreneur curated a women’s boutique just off the Public Square. It wasn’t until larger retail chains nudged her out of the market that Christian began to reinvent her career—this time as a real estate agent.
That was nearly 30 years ago. Today, Christian owns a real estate company with son Matt Daniel, helping clients find new construction, resale homes and historic properties throughout Middle Tennessee.
Both Christian and Daniel are graduates of Franklin High School and Middle Tennessee State University. She says that having such deep roots in the community isn’t just a source of personal pride; it’s also what helps set her firm apart from others in the area.
“In Franklin we embrace our history, and change is made very thoughtfully and carefully. We reflect that in the way we do our business, too,” Christian said.
Daniel echoes that thought.
“What we offer is not only a love of the area, but a respect for it. We want to see the area continue to embrace its heritage, but also open its arms to the future,” Daniel said.
Just recently, Forbes ranked Nashville and its surrounding communities—Franklin included—as the fourth-best city in which to buy a home in 2014. It also cited a 23 percent three-year growth forecast for the area.
That comes as good, though not surprising, news to the crew at Daniel-Christian.
Since Christian and Daniel left a large firm to form their own, their four-person– including Laurie Williams and Mike Christian—has team has sold more than $100 million of real estate. Christian, who has seen three decades of change within the real estate industry, says that she’s tracked a change in Franklin’s perception that extends into the house market, too.
“When I had the shop in the ‘70s, I had a rep who moved his family here just because he visited it once and loved it so much. Now we see that happen on a daily basis,” she said. “It is phenomenal that we’ve become a destination place, and that people want to move here.”
One of the most exciting parts of the job, and the one that Daniel says keeps him hooked, is the ever-evolving industry and daily challenges that come with the territory.
“We are constantly seeing the changes in the way people live. We embrace change. We love change. But we also incorporate that with the old tradition of realty,” he said. “Whether it’s an old house or a new construction property, we deal with it appropriately. Everyday is something new, good or bad. The draw is the challenge.”
Oftentimes, the Daniel-Christian team is some of the first faces for newcomers to Williamson County. Christian says that they are conscious of that, and they take their role very seriously.
“The cool thing is that we get to see the excitement about downtown Franklin, often firsthand. We’re some of the first people they form relationships with,” Christian said. “That’s an honor.”
To learn more about Daniel-Christian Real Estate and its firm, go to www.Daniel-Christian.com.
“Faces of Franklin” is part of a series on merchants and small business owners in downtown Franklin, Tenn. that runs each Thursday in the Williamson Herald.