Alison Bernstein is the founder of the The Suburban Jungle, a real estate firm exclusively focused on buyers leaving the city for the suburbs. Recognizing how different neighboring towns can be from one another and how little families learn about a community during the home search, Alison launched Suburban Jungle, helping buyers navigate suburbia, and understand the ins and outs of towns before making their decision. She had personally experienced these challenges while undertaking her own suburban search, and strived to bring that unique expertise to Suburban Jungle families.
Prior to this launch, Alison worked in the industry for more than 15 years, including senior-level roles in sales, leasing, investment banking and corporate strategic work spanning three of the nation’s leading real estate organizations. She has revolutionized the real estate industry by creating this new advisory pre-search component to the home buying process. When she’s not helping families in their suburban explorations, Alison enjoys traveling, skiing and tennis as well as spending time at home with her husband and four young children… and huge dog.
Our founder’s story
The start of Suburban Jungle really began when expecting our first child and simultaneously while graduating from Columbia Business School. We were discussing how we wanted to raise our family… contemplating staying in the city and working through pre school admissions, private school options and finding an apartment ultimately large enough for our growing family (we always knew we wanted 4 kids and a HUGE dog).
So we did the unthinkable — and out of all of our friends, we were the first to head out to see if the grass was really greener.
BUT we had no clue where to go, what to do… and who to ask. We found some real estate agents, some on our own and some through word of mouth. Some of which were better than others, but what they all had in common was that they all wanted to SELL us the town and SELL us a home. Everyone told us we would be happy wherever we looked… but how can we REALLY know? Who can we REALLY ASK?
We couldn’t understand who lived in these towns, why they chose these towns, and ultimately if we were going to fit in. Were these people raising kids similarly to how we envisioned? What did they do over the summer? On weekends? After school? What type of childcare did they have or not have? Did moms work? And the list went on…
SO, we did the best we could… found a town perfect on paper… for us or so we thought. BUT it ended up not being the perfect fit because of the “intangibles… that no one thought to ask. I hated the concept of agents pushing and selling inventory. After all, they get paid when a deal happens… they don’t get a bonus making sure that the client ended up in the right place and looked objectively at every option.
IN NYC as an example and where we launched… there are over 500 towns from which to choose. How? Why? Where ? And especially when…
This was the launch of Suburban Jungle… we have your family’s back! Stress free, hand holding and 98% therapy, 2% real estate… pure and simple — the way your search should be.
Don’t end up in the right house in the wrong town. After all, it is about LIFESTYLE, not just real estate.
Our concept has resonated with thousands of families in NYC and Brooklyn — and client demand (as well as industry need) has taken us to launch in San Francisco, LA, Chicago, Boston, DC, Dallas, Boca and the Hamptons!
Alison Bernstein - Founder & CEO