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Francesca Brennan

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The Future of Real Estate

 

The New Orleans real estate market is unique compared to other markets its size thanks to the city’s distinct neighborhoods. Here, buyers can find vastly different types of homes in areas such as the Irish Channel, Bayou St John, Gentilly Terrace and the Warehouse District. “There is a style of home for everyone in New Orleans, and the homes are as diverse as the people,” says Francesca Brennan, partner at Entablature Realty. As the new realty division of Entablature Design-Build, a residential builder here in New Orleans, Entablature Realty came about just this past summer.

The story began when Chris Kornman and Scott Logan, who have been close friends for decades, started flipping houses together as a side gig. Their workload became so great that they started Entablature Design-Build in 2011 with a focus on disciplined systems and the customer experience. “We found many of our construction clients were asking us to help them find a home to renovate, or help finding a rental while they were renovating,” Brennan says. “We quickly realized that starting Entablature Realty would be an easy way to capture more business.”

Each of the trio brings something special to the business. “Obviously when you have partners in any venture, everyone brings various skillsets to the table,” Brennan says. “Chris has vast construction knowledge, which is so valuable when dealing with old New Orleans home. He is also a great researcher. Scott handles the legal and financial side of the company, which is of course super important. He’s very detail-oriented and makes the whole operation run smoothly. I prefer to be more client-facing. I really enjoy the networking and social aspects of running a company. I think we all work together well because we support each other’s ideas, value each other’s opinions and honor our differences. Plus we have a shared love of all things New Orleans.”

Brennan, Kornman and Logan strategically chose Oak Street when looking to purchase a location for the new realty company. “We absolutely love the energy on the block, while also recognizing there wasn’t another brokerage on the block,” Brennan says. “For years I had frequented places like the Maple Leaf and Z’otz, and, when the newer places like Simone’s Market and DTB opened, collectively we knew we wanted to be part of the new growth. The West Carrollton neighborhoods are so lively.”

Entablature Realty currently has five residential agents. The company also recently added a property management division with two full-time property managers. In the future, Brennan says they would like to have a few more agents including a commercial agent. “As a general brokerage, we focus on all areas of greater New Orleans from Uptown to the LGD to Holy Cross, Chalmette and the North Shore,” she says. “We’d really like to grow our client-base in the West Carrollton neighborhood where our office is located. There are some really magnificent homes on the market in this area not to mention lots that are ready for new homes. We are seeing a huge revitalization in these areas lately due to the close proximity of the interstate, schools and great restaurants. West Carrollton is easily accessible from Old Jefferson, Metairie and Lakeview, as well as Uptown and Downtown.”

As for trends in today’s local real estate market, Brennan says that the market is still strong. However, she is seeing it move slightly from a seller’s market to a buyer’s market. “I predict we will start seeing prices plateau somewhat and homes sit on the market a little longer than in years past,” she says. “I also think we will continue to see a lot of growth in the smaller neighborhoods like Gert Town, Leonidas, Milneburg, Tulane-Gravier and Gentilly Woods. Overall, it’s still a very strong market compared nationally to many cities our size.”

When it comes to buying or selling a home, Brennan says it is important to hire an agent. “For many people, buying and selling a home isn’t something they do every year, let alone everyday,” she says. “But we as realtors work with buyers and sellers each and every day. Don’t do the heavy lifting on your own. Let a realtor’s expertise make the process smooth and seamless.”

By hiring an agent, buyers and sellers can rest assured that the transaction will be comfortable. An agent is someone who provide information on the nuts and bolts of the transaction, while also helping to navigate the stresses. “An agent should be someone you can trust,” Brennan says, “But let’s be honest — you should also hire someone you like. Buying a house should be a fun experience. A good agent should make even the most difficult transaction appear easy.”

The agents at Entablature Realty come from different backgrounds of real estate, and they are standouts in the field. For example, Brennan has a construction background. There’s also an agent on staff who has preservation background, and another agent with a high-end lease background. “Most of all, we have agents who have a passion for the city of New Orleans,” Brennan says. “You have to love what you do, for sure, but you also have to love where you do it.” 8438 Oak St., Ste. A, (504) 327-5868, entablature-realty.com