NEW YORK – Oct. 30, 2013 – With rising prices and decreasing inventory in the luxury market, brokers aggressively compete for big listings. Many brokers collect detailed information about upscale homes and affluent homeowners in extensive databases, while others replace the traditional open house with lavish VIP parties.
Luxury broker Jill Hertzberg won a $7.75 million listing on Biscayne Bay in South Florida by demonstrating to the sellers – who had planned to hire a different agent – that she knew more about their house than they did.
Meanwhile, Mauricio Umanksy and Billy Rose, co-founders of the Agency in Beverly Hills, developed a proprietary database that allows them to target their marketing to high-net-worth individuals based on where they work, where their children attend college and even their hobbies.
“In the old days, you could spray and pray,” says Rose. “In today’s world, where potential buyers for a home in L.A. can come as easily from Shanghai as they can from Beverly Hills, you have to use more sophisticated methods.”
The Internet enables buyers and sellers to check brokers’ track records and research properties on their own, so brokers face increasing pressure to prove their value. While some luxury agents spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on advertising, others say building personal relationships is key to sealing deals.
Source: Wall Street Journal (10/18/13) P. M1; Blum, Lauren Schuker
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