By Adam Frisch, Managing Principal, Lee & Associates Residential NYC
Finding and keeping top-notch staff for my residential brokerage is difficult but it’s also one of the most necessary tasks in keeping my business thriving. The makings of a standout residential broker are a complex blend of both skills and personality.
I always encourage my brokers to specialize in one area, because having a wealth of market knowledge about one specific neighborhood is much more beneficial to clients, than knowing one or two facts about every area of the city. Knowing a certain market extraordinarily well can help brokers to anticipate what their clients may be looking for in that market. It’s also important for residential brokers to be able to distinguish serious buyers or renters from those who are just looking and may be ultimately wasting both the broker’s time as well as their own.
Residential brokers should be friendly and able to deliver bad news (for instance, when someone else got the apartment that their client really wanted) in an appropriate fashion. Expectation management is also paramount for brokers, so as to eliminate often having to deliver unexpected bad news. Being a good listener and setting aside one’s own desires when listening to a client’s wants and needs are both important factors in being a quality residential broker as the process of finding a home is extremely personal and everyone has different priorities when searching for one.
In the current environment, it can be easy to get caught up in the “broker fame game” thanks to the advent of media such as “Million Dollar Listing.” Brokers should resist the temptation to impress everyone in the industry and instead keep their heads down, focusing on taking care of their clients and conducting themselves in a professional manner. Keeping the mind on balancing both personality and skills can pave the way for success in residential brokerage.