Colin Blunden says he loves getting to know his customers, and he has met many Canberrans in his 20 years as a real estate agent. Region Media sits down to find out a little bit more about this relaxed, personable property professional and why he turned his back on a public service job.
In one sentence, who are you and what do you do?
I’m Colin Blunden and I’m a salesperson at McIntyre Property.
What’s a fun fact most people don’t know about you?
At around 16 or 17 years old, I got hooked on Days of Our Lives and I used to go home for lunch and put the telly on, make my cheese on toast and watch it. I’d do it every day. As a kid, I was scared of [television’s] Aunty Jack. When I went to sleep, I’d cover myself up so Aunty Jack didn’t come in and rip my arms off.
Where did you grow up, and what is your earliest memory from there?
I was born in Canberra – I’ve never lived anywhere else. My parents were in Pearce so I grew up in that house until I got married, then Tuggeranong and now Phillip. I love Canberra – it’s always just a nice place to be, except for swooping season.
Where did you go to school, and what is your best memory from there?
I went to Pearce Primary School, Melrose High School and Phillip College. I had a great time at high school. I met a lot more people, and I think I really enjoyed the school and the atmosphere. It was socially fun and a really good time.
Towards the end of primary school and in my first year at high school I played Aussie rules for the Sutherland Bulldogs. They became the Tuggeranong Bulldogs and now they’re part of the Tuggeranong Valley club.
Living in Pearce, Woden Plaza was a 10-15 minute walk so every now and then on a Friday night, I’d walk down to the plaza and look at records in Brashs.
We were always at the nets playing cricket or footy. I didn’t have a skateboard – if I ever went on one I usually didn’t stay upright for long. With me it was footy and cricket. I used to be an accredited cricket umpire, and I umpired my son’s games, but I don’t play anymore.
What was your first job, and how did you get from there to where you are now?
My first job was in the Commonwealth Bank. At the end of high school, I took the public service test and got offered a job in the public service six weeks after I started at the bank. I knocked it back. I was in the lending department, and did all the conveyancing, processing of loans, all the home loan documentation, business lending and all that type of stuff.
I left the Commonwealth Bank to become a mortgage broker and did that for two-and-half years. As part of that, referrals came from real estate agents. I worked with a number of agents in a number of agencies, and my public relations time was spent attending open homes with my contacts in real estate.
One day I got offered a job, and now I’m in my 20th year in real estate, working at McIntyre Property.
What do you like best about your current job?
I enjoy customer contact. You have a situation where people have reached a life achievement by buying a house. It’s really rewarding. I meet a lot of really good people. It’s about helping people, and there’s flexibility in the diary as well.
I remember visiting mum in her public service office and all you could hear was the click of keyboards. Five minutes of that and I’d be asleep.
What do you like doing in your spare time?
I love Aussie rules football. I’m the Molonglo Juggernauts Football Club president at the moment. Both my boys are playing senior footy and I like to watch them play.
I also enjoy watching cricket and listening to music – that’s my other big passion. I grew up listening to punk and all that fuzzy grungy feedback rock’n’roll. But I’m never the one who’s asked to make a playlist for a party!
What is your favourite national institution in Canberra where you take visitors?
The most relaxing and picturesque spot in Canberra is around Regatta Point and Lake Burley Griffin, and the paddle boats. A walk around the lake is great when the hot air balloons are around. That’s an enjoyable place to take someone.