LAKEWOOD, Ohio — Lakewood is a city known for historic, eclectic homes lining the streets and there’s friendly faces walking those streets, too. But if you’ve driven through Lakewood lately, you may have seen another face popping up throughout the city. Howard Hanna Real Estate Agent Marie Nader is on signs throughout dozens of home in the city.
“They call me the face of Lakewood,” she said. “Lakewood is my heart, it’s my home, it’s my big, big thing.”
She and her husband Hani, who is also a real estate agent, have made the city their big project. The two grew up in the city. They met at Lakewood High School.
“I know Lakewood like the back of my hand,” said Hani. “I know every street in Lakewood. I know what every street would sell for.”
It’s that deep knowledge of their hometown, that they partly credit for the nearly 65 homes they sold last year in the city.
“This is one of the strongest markets I’ve seen since ’94,” said Hani.
Though, they’re not selling all the homes to just anyone, they’re finding them for investors.
“We find the property, whether it’s at a foreclosure auction or distressed property from a bank, we would contact the right investor for that particular property,” he said when asked how it all started.
Those investors, then flip the homes with their own money but the Nader’s mentorship.
“We know exactly what the clients are looking for,” said Hani.
Then, they put it on the market.
“It’s just getting bigger and bigger and the clientele is getting bigger, word of mouth is getting bigger,” said Marie.
Another thing that keeps going up, is the price of the homes.
“This property hit the market, first day on the market we had a full price offer and the property sold for $630,000,” Hani said. “After it’s all said and done, the seller of this property will end up pocketing $250,000.”
Marie said it’s not about the profit, though, it’s about the people moving into the houses and making Lakewood a home.
"You’ve got everything you need,” she said. “You have a mix of all the worlds.”