REDEFINING an INDUSTRY...
The Broken Sound Country Club June Editorial
“We love bringing our clients’ dreams to fruition regardless of the scale of the project.”
Maher Hanna is the owner of MAG Real Estate, an investor, home builder and state licensed general contractor. MAG renovates and builds custom homes in South Florida and has earned an outstanding reputation among Boca Raton’s most privileged country clubs.
HOW DID YOU START IN THE CUSTOM HOME BUSINESS?
I started a small fence painting business at the age of 16 with a childhood friend in Montreal, Canada, and obtained my general contractor’s license at 18. By the time I completed my structural engineering degree at the age of 23, I was already running commercial construction and multiplex projects through my own general contracting firm. I then evolved in the industry on multiple levels, from owning roofing and kitchen cabinetry manufacturing companies to working for a global engineering firm. In 2012, I moved to Florida full-time and started this soaring company known today as MAG Real Estate.
YOU’VE MADE QUITE A NAME FOR YOURSELF HERE IN SOUTH FLORIDA, WHERE DID YOU START OUT?
The first property I purchased back in 2012 was in Broken Sound Country Club. After renovating it to my own standards, I lived in it for a while and fell in love with Broken Sound’s spectacular environment. My team and I then started purchasing beaten down houses in and around the region and we rebuilt them into luxury homes that sold rapidly. We showcased our work throughout Broken Sound and quickly gained a solid reputation as a value creator for the community. Actually, we have since become the biggest investor in Broken Sound and St. Andrew's Country Clubs.
WHAT MAKES YOU SO SUCCESSFUL IN THIS COMPETITIVE INDUSTRY?
Quality, transparency and assurance.
I have a taste for pure refinement and extreme quality, and I build each project as if I were going to live in it afterwards. It’s that simple, we never cut corners on quality. Our customers can see that firsthand: we offer an online portal called Construction Online, in which clients and the MAG team can interact throughout the process. It completely opens the lines of communication between us and the client and provides a level of transparency that otherwise couldn't be achieved. We post all of our blueprints, designs and any relevant information so that clients can access them easily at their convenience. We also manage the project and cost schedule online, so they are kept well informed at all times. We work with many out-of-state customers who follow their projects via our iPhone app. Also, it is worth noting that 100% of our work is permitted. Aside from having in-house engineers and making our own blueprints, we only hire licensed and insured subcontractors. Of course, MAG is fully licensed, insured and bonded.
WHICH PART OF THE HOME BUILDING/DESIGNING PROCESS IS YOUR FAVORITE?
My favorite part is definitely engaging with our customers, regardless of the scale of the project. From modest kitchen and bathroom renovations, all the way to multi-million dollar custom remodels, we make it comfortable for them to deal with us. We love bringing our clients’ dreams to fruition and knowing that we delivered exactly what they wanted.
WHAT WAS YOUR FAVORITE PROJECT?
All of our projects are rewarding in their own way, whether it’s turning a distressed property into a luxurious home for newlyweds or building a custom room for special needs. My favorite projects are the ones where our clients are closely involved. We pride ourselves in offering an incredibly enjoyable customer experience. Our entire business is designed to remove the most stress off our clients’ shoulders. We have a very knowledgeable team. Each customer is assigned a project manager who oversees the construction and overall project progress. Our in-house designer works directly with our clients in making selections based on their tastes and lifestyle. I am also in direct contact with them to ensure the utmost transparency when it comes to pricing, which is always itemized. The projects we are the most proud of are the ones where our clients are completely astonished by how far we’ve exceeded their expectations.
WHERE DO YOU SEE THE INDUSTRY HEADING FROM A DESIGN STANDPOINT?
Industry trends have been moving towards more modern and contemporary style, with simple square designs and large solid surfaces for a crisp European look. We favor gray and khaki palettes, as well as quartz and porcelain tiles. We actually import many of our materials from Europe.
HOW DO YOU CHOOSE WHAT PROJECTS TO WORK ON – ASIDE FROM SUSAN’S PICKS?
Susan has brought us dozens of investment projects over the last three years. She’s truly amazing at finding high potential properties – that is, low purchase price points and a lot of room for improvements. If we buy low enough, we can sell a high value finished property without it being overpriced. We partner exclusively with Susan to list our renovated properties, and they usually sell pretty fast.
WHAT DO YOU DO WHEN YOU’RE NOT BUILDING HOMES?
I love to go boating, fishing and motorcycling.
WHAT ONE PIECE OF ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE ENTREPRENEURS LOOKING TO GET INTO YOUR INDUSTRY?
Work with integrity, honesty, transparency and always focus on quality.