By Adam Frisch, Managing Principal, Lee & Associates Residential NYC
As we are the residential wing of a commercial brokerage, our brokers are well positioned to adopt some useful tactics from those working on the other side of the real estate business. Much as senior commercial brokers encourage their juniors to become experts in one particular micro-neighborhood or type of building, I advise my brokers to resist the urge to spread themselves too thin in terms of attempting to work in too many different geographic areas or price points. As a result of using this approach, some residential brokers get so specific as to specialize in one particular block and in some New York City neighborhoods, one can make a living from a single building, provided that they are doing close to 80 to 90 percent of the sales in that building.
Getting to know the inventory in which one specializes is essential and there’s no better way to do that than speaking with neighborhood residents about what’s going on with nearby listings and sales. I also advise brokers not to be afraid to cold call building owners in their specialized area in order to keep them updated about new listings or what’s going on in the neighborhood. It’s important to have a well-crafted pitch for such calls that specifically highlights one’s area of expertise rather than just stating that they’re a real estate broker. Knowing one’s specialized geographic area or price point inside and out coupled with courageous cold calling is a great start to what can prove to be a long and rewarding career in residential brokerage.