Harry, The Bike Realtor

Well, you can’t make this stuff up.  Yesterday we brought you the story of Alex and Kate, who decided this winter to move entirely by bicycle.  This story is also related to bikes and moving, but from a very different angle.

Harry Greenberg is a realtor in the city of Minneapolis but he is also a cycling enthusiast.  Somehow he has managed to merge the two, we had to find out more, so we contacted him for some more information.

CTC: Most people wouldn’t think that house sales and cycling go together, where did you get this idea?

Harry: I moved away from using cars as primary transportation about five years ago and wanted to see how it might change my lifestyle-it did quite a bit but it hasn’t prevented me from doing non-traditional things with my bike that most people do in a car- like selling real estate and of course commuting to other jobs…even in the dead of winter. It is sometime challenging but doable. Especially if you have nothing to fall back on…(except the bus of course!).

I bought my first duplex 15 years ago and at a certain point figured maybe it would be intriguing to buy another-but of course prices were way too high..but eventually I jumped back into the market and began looking at houses. Of course by this time I didn’t have my car anymore…so I always had to meet the realtor by bike….and then I decided that I could, given all the great info provided by MLS…represent myself and get better deals- so I got the real estate license, and still didn’t have a car.

Nothing changed. Except I became the ‘bike realtor’ and naturally thought that I could find people who believed in sustainability and alternative transportation and actually appreciated that I didn’t have to gum up the atmosphere just to show someone a house.

 

CTC: Do you ever get strange looks for riding up to a showing on a bike?

 

Harry: Sometimes, I might get strange looks but I am too busy finding great deals for people-what they really want is a great deal on a house they like-if I show up on a bike-it’s incidental to them if you know what I mean!

CTC: How long have you been the Cycling realtor?

Harry: I started doing this in 2008…so i guess you could say 3 years…it’s not all I do, I am a part time  teacher too, but I do enjoy the business and working with people-so it’s a good outlet for me. I really believe in home ownership and committing oneself to the neighborhood…it is a great feeling to find a fixer upper and see it after the new owner had poured their heart and soul into it!

CTC: Do you cycle to Saint Paul to sell houses as well, or just Minneapolis?

Harry: I mostly sell in Minneapolis and nearby suburbs, and some areas of  Saint Paul, homes right across the river are very accessible…but Lake Phalen…probably not.

 

CTC: In your opinion, what is the best area in the city for a cyclist to buy a home?
Harry: The best area to buy a home would be the closest area they really like that is located near their workplace. If they can work in their own neighborhood that is even better! Of course amenities like bike routes are wonderful if they primarily use their bicycle for transportation. And I know where all the biking routes are since I have been on them at least once!  Finding property near or on bus lines is important too.

 

CTC: Do you have a favorite local bike shop?

Harry: I really spent a lot of time at Sunrise with my good friend Jamie (Bryant and Lake) but stop in a lot of different neighborhood bike shops to introduce myself since they are all so unique. I like the bike shop near 48th and Chicago too…Jamie is a great guy to know…he’ll give you the shirt off his back when he’s not too busy…(go there before it gets warm!)

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Check out more information about Harry on his website, and if you have used him to buy a house before, let us know!

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