Katy is helping area homebuyers and sellers get moving

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With historically low interest rates, Katy says that now is the perfect time to buy or sell. (Photography by Benjamin Margalit/Margalit Studio)

By Patricia Nugent

For someone who has spent the past 20 years helping people find their dream homes, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that when local Realtor Katy Brahler, of Re/Max, went about creating her own dream home, it would win numerous awards and be featured in local and national design magazines.

Working with architect and fellow Kent State University alum Robert Maschke, they transformed Katy’s quaint 2,100-square-foot Bay Village cottage into a modern marvel with an open floor plan that spans 3,300 square feet and abundant natural light.

Working with a dramatically downward-sloping yard, they decided to add a striking roofline sloping in the opposite direction on the addition. And they covered the roof in colorful grasses.

Bringing in views of the densely wooded landscape, they created glass walls, soaring windows, and skylights, as well as cozy courtyard spaces on both levels.


The effort won Robert a coveted Honorable Mention from the American Institute of Architects in 2011 and 2012, and further validated their collaboration. Katy’s dream-turned-reality home has been featured in magazines such as Forbes, Currents and others.


“The goal with any dream home is to find the perfect balance to someone’s lifestyle with functional spaces that cater to their needs and tastes,” she says.

“As a Realtor, I’ve become adept at finding the best fits for people. Often what they say they want and what they really want are two different things. So I take buyers through several homes to get a feeling for what they really want.”

Hitting HGTV
In 2008, the producers from HGTV’s House Hunters interviewed Katy about doing a show.

“They said they had viewed my website and liked my logo, ‘Katy can, Katy will, Katy did...call Katy.’ I went through a phone interview and then it all started happening,” she recalls.

She found a young couple looking in Bay Village and they toured three homes during the episode. After explaining the pros and cons of each home, Katy helped them make an offer.

It was three long days of shooting in three different locations, but she says they were fortunate to have an outstanding producer, film, and sound crew. This show has aired many times.

In fact, it went so well they came back for another show, which aired this past season. This episode featured east, west, and downtown Cleveland properties and her buyer was a Kent State VIP. To view the episodes, visit her site, KatyBrahler.com.

The Re/Max Difference
Re/Max Realtors operate on a different pay structure than some other agents, paying a fee upfront for all the advertising on a home themselves.

“This means we are highly motivated to sell quicker and sell more efficiently than some other agents,” she says.

“We will not take on a home unless we are confident we can sell it for what the seller wants. The market is quite strong right now, with a shortage of listings. Any homes I list are going in less than a month.”

Katy is immersed in the neighborhoods she works in and is very knowledgeable about the local schools.

“My relocating clients become well versed on area housing and the amenities and exceptional beauty that Northeast Ohio has to offer,” she says.

“My goal with buyers and sellers is to help them make sound decisions and provide knowledge and experience to ensure a positive transaction,” she says.

With historically low interest rates, Katy says that now is the perfect time to buy or sell. For sellers, she offers a complimentary Competitive Market Analysis service designed to help establish a home’s current market value. This is based on comparable sold listings to help you calculate the fair market value of your home.

And for those looking for a new home, she automatically personalizes MLS listings and sends them to you via e-mail.

“Early each morning I will search the local MLS and find the homes that match your criteria and notify you immediately with the latest listing information,” she says.

A Little Free Advice
“It’s surprising how often you hear of people just hiring a Realtor they know or a name they are familiar with and not interviewing other agents,” she says. “I recommend people interview at least three Realtors before deciding on the best fit.”

With the age of online home shopping upon us, she says the power of pictures is huge.

“Sellers should ask each Realtor what kind of camera he or she uses, whether or not it has a wide-angle lens, and how many sites the photos will reach,” Katy suggests.

She also notes that less is more with photos.

“Having 30 photos that are repetitive or mediocre in quality won’t sell your home. Make sure you have a beautiful exterior shot, kitchen, family room, and master bath.”

“If you are going to refurbish a room, make it the kitchen or master bathroom,” she says.

“And don’t gut the kitchen, just paint the cabinetry and put on new hardware. Granite is still king, but you can often find great remnants for replacement.”

Lastly, she points out that buyers are affected by weather.

“The warmer the fall, the better our sales,” she notes.

And, for the record, this fall is forecasted to be a lovely one.

KSU Pride
Katy received her degree in finance and real estate from Kent State University and has kept the college close to her heart. (She met her husband Gary there, after all.)

They both sponsor scholarship and charitable events for the college and Gary chairs the Investments Committee on the Foundation Board of Kent State.

“I sell many homes to faculty and professors moving into the area,” she says.

Re/Max is located at 20006 Detroit Road, #201, in Rocky River. Call 1-800-491-0679, ext. 705. Katy sells homes in neighborhoods all over Cleveland, Akron, and Kent. She is a Multi Million Dollar Producer who has won numerous industry awards and is a distinguished member of the President’s Club and Executive Club of Re/Max. Her direct line is 440-724-4313, or visit KatyBrahler.com.

Categories: Westside Smart Living