The New York Minute

Interview Series: Fascinating Engel & Völkers Colleagues from Around the World

Andrea Schlager

Paul & Vince would like to welcome to the conversation Andrea Schlager from Engel & Völkers Vienna, Austria.
I enjoy working in my special area, which is Klosterneuburg [and] also enjoy being able to organize my time and love building the relationships and getting to know all kinds of different people. One day, it could be a blue-collar worker, and the next day a multimillionaire. You realize that people are people, no matter their backgrounds.

Paul & Vince would like to welcome Andrea Schlager, a Private Office Advisor from Vienna, Austria. Since joining E&V in 2017, she has sold over $54 million (€50 million) in real estate. For several years she lived in the United States and worked in perfume marketing for Proctor & Gamble while earning her Executive MBA from Hofstra University in New York. After returning to Austria, she ran her own marketing and PR consultancy before finding rewarding work in real estate.


Paul & Vince: What are the best things about working in your area of the world?

Andrea: What makes Vienna so special is probably the way of living, because the people are very laid back. We call it, Gemütlichkeit, which is valuing time with friends, taking it easy. Not nearly as rushed as many big cities. And there’s a lot of history in Vienna, going back to the Romans. These days, year after year, Vienna has been ranked the most livable city in the world for the past 10 years.

Paul & Vince: We’ve noticed more construction along the river in Vienna, are there more condos and modern housing now than say, ten years ago?

Andrea: Yes, people like the water and those units are very expensive compared to other prices in Vienna. And we always said, “who is going to buy all that?” And you know what? There’s nothing left to buy.

Paul & Vince: Of course, the Viennese Christmas markets are extraordinary…

Andrea: Oh yes, Paris, London and New York don’t have the Christmas markets like Vienna has. Of course, there are stores decorated nicely in those cities, but the markets here are about food and hot beverages and more about spending time together, rather than just shopping for gifts.


Paul & Vince: So, what did you do before coming into real estate?

Andrea: When I was young, I worked in health insurance for a company here in Austria. Then I went to New York where I worked at Proctor & Gamble and went to business school. Then I came back to Vienna, continued as a marketing and PR consultant, but it was challenging because I had been away for years.

Years later when my partner and I were looking for a house – about six years ago – we found this old farmhouse, where we live now. And the real estate agent was so nice, and she seemed to have fun with her job. I said to myself “wow! I can do this.” And one month later, I was her colleague!


Paul & Vince: That’s, your business and marketing experience…it must have come in handy! What’s happening in your real estate market now?

Andrea: It’s very sad, compared to the last few years, it take quite a while to sell something. A lot of sellers still think they’re in a hypermarket so the adjustment is difficult. And we have very strict rules about mortgages: the down payment is high and the monthly payment is capped at 40% of household income.

Paul & Vince: And are all your buyers Austrian or do they come from elsewhere?

Andrea: It’s pretty mixed. I just sold a nice apartment to an American couple but if you’re not a European citizen you have to go through a special approval process, and it takes several months. So, that’s always a little difficult because the approval process delays the closing.


Paul & Vince: Can you tell us what do you like most about your career now?

Andrea: Of course, I enjoy working in my special area, which is Klosterneuburg, on the Danube River, just north of the city. I also enjoy being able to organize my time and love building the relationships and getting to know all kinds of different people. One day, it could be a blue-collar worker, and the next day a multimillionaire. You realize that people are people, no matter their backgrounds. When a sale happens when everyone is together — it can be really joyful. I’m often just as excited as if it was my own home. That is the best moment for me.

…and one more, Just for Fun

Paul & Vince: Great…now for our Just For Fun question. What is the strangest thing a visitor has done at one of your property listings?

Andrea: Well, I had a mother and her grown son, who wanted to buy a house, and they wanted to create a huge garden, like homesteading, so they wouldn’t depend on grocery stores…They asked me how long it takes to grow things. And I thought, “What do I know about growth rates of tomato plants?” [Laughs]

Then he said, we’ll just come back and bring some carrot seeds, and then we can lay them out in the soil, and look in every week to see how they’re doing. And I thought “is this guy joking?” But his mother just nodded and agreed with him.

Paul & Vince: They were trying to plant a miniature farm on a listing that they hadn’t even bought yet? Was this a rustic farmhouse-type place?

No, it wasn’t even in the country, just a large house with a big property. But, yes, sometimes we do get unusual requests! Our office once had a buyer who wanted to see house during each of the four seasons before they bought it! They kept coming back to see it every month, which was a bit annoying. But their research paid off and they live there now, happily. They were very lucky that nobody else bought it in the meantime.

Original artwork by Jolisa Robinson, Gavriani-Falcone Team Marketing

More Like This


Chris Liem


Sonya Clarke


Virginia Pastor


Martin Rouleau


Elena Ionela


Merethe “Siv” Cotton


Magnus Jennemyr


Natalie Leontaraki


Juan Pablo Ruiz


Wieger van der Linden

Be in the know with The New York Minute®

Receive more fascinating stories in your inbox every month