Premier Agent Spotlight Bernstein says Realtor can meet numerous needs of client

Houston Chronicle, December 8, 2017

Many people assume a Realtor is only needed when they are buying or selling a property.

However, when people are rebuilding, or starting new construction, it is good to have a Realtor walking with you every step of the way for a number of reasons.

“After Hurricane Harvey, many homeowners who flooded were confused in what to do regarding their home. Their options were to tear down and rebuild, elevate, renovate, or find a new address. My agents and I have and continue spending time with many of these homeowners, assisting them in considering their options and deciding what will work best for them in the long run,” said Amy Bernstein, broker of Bernstein Realty since 1985.

Many homeowners whose homes flooded, first considered where they could relocate and many then decided to stay in their current location and either renovate or rebuild.

“We work with many of these clients, and are doing analysis of what they could sell their home for in “as is” condition so they know their options. We show them homes they can purchase and are move in ready, and present them the options of staying and remodeling or tearing down and rebuilding,” Bernstein said.

Bernstein and her agents also provide their clients home values in their area so if they consider new construction, they will have a target price, in order to build within the price range of the other homes in their area.

“This is important, so they will not over build for the market, making it more difficult to sell in the future,” Bernstein said.

Bernstein and her agents also recommend to their clients several builders that they know well, have had experiences with or are aware of based on their reputation and style in the market.

“We make the introductions to the builders and facilitate questions, because there are many questions that are very important to ask, which help the client gather much of their information in order to make their decision,” Bernstein said.

It is important for the client to provide a list of what they want in their home, so the builder can price the home according to the buyer specifications.

“When analyzing price per square foot, some builders include items the homeowner may want in the home as part of the square foot cost as standard, while other builders consider some of these options and upgrades to the base price quote. If some questions are not asked, many times the price the builder quotes is different than what the homeowners’ final price is after adding their desired options. This can cause change orders in the construction process that are costly,” Bernstein said. “The final sales price and loan amount can also be different than the amount borrowed for the project if not priced accordingly from the beginning, which many times creates a challenge.”

Realtors can also provide helpful ideas as the plans are being designed, and have input on items based on their knowledge of the market and what is customary in that area.

There are so many features of a home that a Realtor can advise about such as wall finishes, ceiling treatments, lighting, flooring, baseboards, cabinets, electrical, appliances, hardware, counter tops, and many other components of a home.

Realtors are a tremendous asset in this area, due to their experience and knowledge of the market and trends.

Bernstein and her agents are with their clients from the very beginning of the process, during architect and design meetings, throughout the construction, inspections and even after completion.

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