By Grace Cassidy
Before embarking on a 20-year-plus career in real estate in her adopted home of Houston, Tex., Moni Bohnisch had already established herself as a citizen of the world. Born in Lebanon, Bohnisch moved with her family to the U.S. in 1976. After earning a degree in accounting, she began her career managing foreign financial investments for overseas clients and later founded a production company, which she sold in 2002. Bohnisch, who represented the buyers of Houston’s highest-priced home in 2021, talked with Elliman Insider about building a durable career, the value of international experience and the future of Houston’s luxury real estate market.
Tell me a bit about your background. How did you get into the real estate field, and how long have you been in it?
My family and I were forced to flee war-torn from Lebanon in 1976. We relocated to the United States in hopes of a better life and set our roots in Houston. After honing my expertise in the luxury market by managing foreign financial investments for overseas clients and founding a self-funded production company targeting an ultra-luxury clientele, I set my sights on conquering the luxury real estate market by turning my passion into a thriving 20-year-plus career.
What qualities must a real estate agent have in order to be successful?
It’s very important to know your inventory, keep track of market changes, think outside the box and always follow up. Real estate longevity and success does not happen overnight. It takes persistence, determination, focus and time to create a long career in this industry.
How has working with international clients—and speaking four languages (English, Arabic, French and Spanish) impacted your career?
Being a part of the international community helps me better understand different cultures, languages, personalities and expectations. It enables me to better relate to my international clients and provide them with the kind of service they appreciate and deserve.
Do you have a personal mantra?
Turn obstacles into opportunities.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
I did have the privilege and honor of representing my amazing repeat clients for the most expensive home sold in Houston in 2021.
How has the Houston real estate market changed over the years and where do you see it going?
Houston is an attractive city for people of many different backgrounds. A booming job market combined with low cost of living and plenty of opportunities make it a great choice for building a fulfilling life. The most notable change in the market is the structural and economic growth of Houston—it always seems to endure market fluctuations. We will continue to see positive momentum in the market—I am gearing up for another great year!