What is your typical process for working with a new customer?
The process usually starts with a phone call, in which the business is introduced and the clients and property needs are discussed. After that, usually one site visit is requested before issuing a proposal for property management or listing brokerage services.
What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?
I'm currently working on a Construction Management Certificate from Columbia University School of Continuing Studies. I am trained in bookkeeping and financial analysis, which enables me to analyze current building performance as well as forecast potential performance. I regularly take part in seminars given by New York City as to new and ongoing compliance issues. And I keep up the mandatory 22.5 hour continuing education requirement to renew my license every two years.
Do you have a standard pricing system for your service? If so, please share the details here.
Every property is unique with unique needs, so unfortunately we don't have a standard pricing system.
How did you get started doing this type of work?
I started in 2005, switching careers from sports and intellectual property management. While I started as a licensed sales agent, I became licensed as a broker in 2008 and by 2009 I was also doing property management. Many management companies consider themselves real estate brokers who manage property. I consider myself a property manager who also does real estate brokerage. The fact that I will stick with you and a property after the closing means I'm going to take the time and look at what you are buying and likely will be able to see issues others wouldn't.
What types of customers have you worked with?
In property management our clients range from 1-20 units and include residential (including small co-ops), mixed-use and fully commercial buildings. Building systems range from pre-war to fully modernized with elevator, and remote-monitored sprinkler systems. We can handle small and medium size construction/renovation projects and also act as right hand/liaisons to full time project managers on large scale construction projects.
We are also a full service brokerage agency as well as a management company. In brokerage, we act as the exclusive rental agent for many landlords in Manhattan and Brooklyn. We handle the advertising for the property, advise on rent, whether the property needs upgrading to attract the best tenant, and we also handle showings (we co-broke with all other agencies, regardless of whether they reciprocate) and run credit and help the landlord do the screening of the prospective tenants, as well as coordinate the lease signing.
We also provide sales services for small landlords, homeowners and buyers. We are very experienced in the sales of townhouses and of course we handle co-ops and condos as well. I am particularly good at assessing the best market price for a property based on overall condition and location of the property as well as comparable sales.
What advice would you give a customer looking to hire a provider in your area of work?
Find someone who can point to a specific project that had the same issues as yours and tell you exactly how it was handled and what they might handle differently. For property management, how involved do they get? For brokerage, make sure they get a full comparable report and be realistic about pricing.
What questions should customers think through before talking to professionals about their project?
For property management: what shape is your building in? Are you prepared to share financial details with your property manager if the building needs major work?
For brokerage: Be honest with yourself about the valuation of the property. How much money do you need to get out of the property? Is that realistic? If you need work to achieve a certain valuation, are you willing/able to do that work?