One of the nation's top-selling real estate companies opened an office in Upper Arlington last month.
Representatives of Howard Hanna Real Estate Services said they hope establishing an office at 1670 Fishinger Road will help them build on the proud tradition of Realtors who have served the area.
The site formerly housed real estate offices for King Thompson and Coldwell Banker.
"Howard Hanna has always gone into premier communities," managing partner Mary Lou Sochor said.
She and her husband, Robert Sochor, and Stephen Lanker opened the local Howard Hanna office on Oct. 30.
"We specialize in mid- to upper-market homes, and we feel the Upper Arlington market is one of Columbus' premier communities," she said.
"We're very privileged to be in that location," Sochor added. "We really wanted to carry that tradition on and bring our tradition and marry it with the Upper Arlington tradition in real estate."
According to the company, Howard Hanna Real Estate Services is the top-selling real estate company in Ohio and Pennsylvania, and is the fourth-largest real estate company in the United States.
Sochor said the family-owned firm specializes in residential and commercial brokerage service, mortgages, closing and title insurance, land development, appraisal services, insurance services, corporate relocation and property management.
Howard Hanna has 144 offices across Ohio, Michigan, Pennsylvania, New York and West Virginia, with more than 4,700 sales associates, management and staff.
The Upper Arlington office, Howard Hanna RealCom, is the company's fourth to open in the Columbus region. It also operates offices in Delaware, Dublin and Pickerington, Sochor said, and plans to open four to six more offices in the Columbus region over the next 15 months.
As for the Upper Arlington office, Sochor said it currently employs 25 agents; plans are to add 25 more in within the next 12 months.
She also noted Howard Hanna completely renovated its Upper Arlington space prior to opening, putting more than $300,000 into the building's interior.
"Our building in Upper Arlington at Five Points is one of the premier real estate offices in central Ohio," she said. "We've renovated almost 6,000 square feet of office space, and we have state-of-the-art equipment. We have three conference rooms, a training facility and private offices, as well as the new concept of an open-air bullpen.
"We find open space in our facilities generates more ideas and excitement between agents," Sochor said.
She said a unique feature of the local office is that it offers a 100-percent money-back guarantee to customers who aren't completely satisfied with homes they've purchased through Howard Hanna.
Through that program, Howard Hanna will put a home back on the market after six months if the buyer isn't completely satisfied, she said.
If the home doesn't sell within six months of being put back on the market, Howard Hanna will purchase it at 100 percent of the sale price and provide a new home for the customer, according to Sochor.
"The only stipulation is they have to purchase another home that's at least 75 percent of the price of the original home they bought," Sochor said. "Anybody who purchases from us is 100-percent protected.
"No other company in Columbus has that 100 percent money-back guarantee."