Words by Misty Hall
Although his office is in Ventura, real estate broker Larry Krogh has the Ojai Valley running through his veins. He’s Ojai born and raised, and a Nordhoff High School alum.
A lot of what he loved about the valley as a kid still rings true today — which he finds useful when helping buyers and sellers of ranches and luxury homes in the area.
“Ojai has a certain quaintness to it, and it is a relatively safe community,” said Krogh, partner and managing broker for LIV Sotheby’s International Realty in Ventura. “There’s more of a focus on keeping the integrity of the town, and not over-building. And there’s a real sense of community.”
While he didn’t grow up with real estate in mind as a profession, Krogh had several building blocks to help him along that eventual path — the biggest being his father, who was a contractor. He would go into investment banking, but being raised in the construction industry would give Krogh a boost in one of his next big professional ventures: creating a pilot program on a real estate company in Los Angeles. “After doing that,” he said, “I realized I liked the real estate industry and decided to go into it.”
So he opened his own boutique real estate office. “It did very well,” he said. Nineteen years later, he sold to Sotheby’s. “What’s kept me in the forefront is adding value for my clients,” Krogh said, and Sotheby’s has helped he and his partner, Scott Webber, with that. It’s more than just knowing how to sell real estate, of course. “It’s being able to assess real estate, knowing how to read the market, being able to be connected to a truly international brand where we can reach out to (customers in) 73 countries.”
His real estate firm today is more of a full-service business model, he noted. For his customers today, he’s not only handling the selling of their home. “Maybe we’re helping connect them with someone who can do a remodel, or prepping the property prior to selling, or doing staging or professional photography, or we’re connecting them with people for insurance … whatever the client needs that involves real estate, we are really becoming that conduit for them, to simplify the process.”
But though real estate keeps Krogh plenty busy, family — his daughters, grandchild, and wife, Susan — are still his priority. His parents and sister’s family still live in the Ojai Valley, and their memories of growing up in the valley remain vivid.
Krogh cited his favorite Ojai memories as the Ojai Independence Day activities, like the parade and Optimist Club barbecues, with which his parents were very involved each year. Free time often meant trips to Lake Casitas, hiking to places like Chief Peak and Lady Bug Camp, and rock climbing in the Sespe. “We’d go down to Patagonia, which then was Great Pacific Ironworks, to get climbing gear,” he remembered.
There were also always motorcycles and dirt bikes around for faster adventures. Having two wheels handy brought Krogh another favorite memory: “I remember riding up (in the mountains) to see the Pink Moment, and Bruce Springsteen was up there on a motorcycle!”
He and friends would also ride up to Maricopa Highway to swimming holes in Matilija Canyon, or Pine Mountain Inn, or maybe a bit further north to Ballinger, a popular off-roading spot near Cuyama. “But then we’d go the other way to Ventura and go surfing, or get on a boat and go scuba diving,” Krogh said. “Or we would jump in the car and go to Mammoth to go skiing. And that’s one of the greatest things about this area. You’re in this small community, but in a short period of time you could be in L.A, at the beach, or in the mountains.”
For more on Larry Krogh and to view his listings in the Ojai Valley and beyond, visit larrykrogh.com.