The Real Deal New York

New age brokerage applies age-old methods to house hunting

Prana Real Estate zeroes in on clients' spiritual well-being
By Tom DiChristopher | July 01, 2014 08:00AM

Not everyone can afford a condo in the built-for-wellness Delos Living building, where more than 50 facets of the structure’s construction and design are engineered to make tenants healthier.  But one New York City broker is aiming to bring an à la carte approach to the trend of mindfulness and the housing market.

This week, Claudine Arthurs is launching Prana Real Estate, a brokerage that is attempting to integrate life coaching, sustainability and spirituality into the house hunting process. Appropriately, the firm is based out of a yoga studio, Atmananda Yoga, at 67 Irving Place.

The idea for a brokerage with a spiritual and sustainable bent came out of Arthurs’ desire to merge her professional life and personal pursuits. When she was learning the real estate business just over a decade ago, Arthurs was taking workshops in disciplines ranging from hypnosis to neurolinguistics. Over the years, she’s built a network of like-minded practitioners and coaches. Many of them now form the foundation of Prana’s specialists.

“I think of myself sort of like the Oprah of my space, the conduit for the knowledge to come through,” said Arthurs.

Arthurs currently employs nine practitioners to help clients integrate wellness into their new apartments. For those who embrace the belief that spaces carry the energy of past occupants, one of Arthurs’s healers can clear and bless new digs – whether with crystals or gongs or by other means. Those looking for help optimizing design can turn to the resident feng shui specialist, or a practitioner of Vastu Shastra, the Hindu equivalent of the better-known East Asian discipline of geomancy.

Another of Arthurs’s associates, Valerie Greene, offers a program designed to help couples taking the plunge into cohabitation.

“They say death and moving are two of the most stressful things,” said Arthurs. “When you’re creating  a new relationship, especially moving in together, it’s all about communication.”

Prana also brokers private yoga instruction and nutrition coaching.

One session with a practitioner is included in most broker fees. Arthurs will also work with clients to build a menu of options that can be booked through Prana. One hour with a specialist starts at $150, though that cost may be higher in large apartments. Feng shui and Vastu Shastra consultations average $250 per hour.

The brokerage is not all about manipulating energy and dispelling bad vibes, however. A big part of the business model involves leveraging Prana’s specific expertise to help advise clients on increasingly popular wellness amenities, such as air purifiers, vitamin C showerheads and aromatherapy systems. Eventually, Arthurs sees Prana sourcing those products for clients and specializing in brokering units at the city’s LEED certified buildings.

“There’s the energetic piece, but there’s also the more material and physical aspect of it,” said Arthurs. “What things can you implement in your home to make it a healthier environment?”