REBNY's Mendik Room, the Real Estate Board of New York's residential broker members came together to hear a panel discussion entitled, "Inside Secrets of Top Brokers - 2013: A Year of Recovery and Product Scarcity," with some of New York City's most notable real estate experts. Panelists included Roger Erickson, senior managing director of Sotheby's International Realty, Jason Haber, co-founder and CEO of Rubicon Property, Jonathan Miller, president and CEO of Miller Samuel Real Estate Appraisal, and Daria Salusbury, SVP of Related Companies. The conversation was moderated by Stephen Kliegerman, president of Halstead Property.
The evening's topic of discussion was the scarcity of New York City's real estate inventory, as well as the financial situation of the city's buyers, renters and sellers.
All four panelists explained that due to the fact that low inventory is the new reality in the current market they must enlist new tactics to get their properties sold. Roger Erickson said that he's gone as far as searching for units that are off the market to satisfy his buyers, while Jason Haber explained the importance of understanding the needs, wants, and fears of your client in order to secure an ideal sale. Daria Salusbury told the audience that her firm is looking more to the rental market, which she feels is strong.
The conversation continued with the panelists stating that in an era where inventory is at such an extreme low, it is important for brokers to reconsider the notion of an ideal apartment for potential buyers and renters. Jonathan Miller explained that "the term location-location-location, has become location-lifestyle-leverage," and that brokers must understand how to personally pre-screen clients in order to deliver an ideal unit.
One of the night's hottest topics was the financial and economic situation, today, and how it relates to those involved in any aspect of the real estate market. After being asked about new ways to bring attention to a unit that isn't getting offers or viewings due to pricing, Roger Erickson drew in audience nods and laughs with his answer, "Try including a wine tasting!" a suggestion he believes will guarantee a turnout for a viewing.
Panelists continued by debating whether or not we are finally on the road to recovery. Miller indicated that we are simply in an "age of better statistics" and that perhaps we are in a state of pre-recovery, or "precovery," while Erickson argued that, as it relates to real estate, "we're in a boom" and said that he encourages buyers and sellers to act now. Haber agreed, referencing the growing activity of BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, and China) buyers in the New York market.
The evening closed with two of the panelists discussing their humanitarian efforts beyond traditional real estate. Salusbury described her firm's dedication to the green movement. She explained that green is a lifestyle that people choose, and her company continues to cater to those of that lifestyle by ensuring that each building they represent is LEED certified. Haber described Rubicon Property's innovative and unique dedication to provide clean water to developing countries by donating to a local charity after each transaction.