A headshot of Raphael DeNiro

Raphael DeNiro

It’s hard to classify 111 Murray Street, an upscale development, as anything but a success — “we were really surprised by how well the project did without even officially putting units on the market; it was incredible,” noted Raphael DeNiro of Douglas Elliman, one of the brokers involved with the development. “There’s not another example I can think of that was similar — an incredible amount of inventory being sold prior to even officially going out to the world and just doing it based on word of mouth and relying on the brokerage community to inform their clients.”

He’ll be telling the full story of 111 Murray Street in a case study panel with the developer, Steve Witkoff, at Global Connect, April 6-7, New York City.

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“In most cases, especially with larger projects, you’re involved from the very beginning, sometimes before the land or building is even acquired,” explained DeNiro. “There is a lot that can go wrong, and that’s the risk with new development. If the market comes apart, a lot of people won’t close on their apartments and you’re pretty much done at that point, the effort you’ve put in is not really compensated.

“That’s the risk. If things work out and you’re able to see through to the final sale, it’s very rewarding.”

DeNiro said that like many other luxury developments on which he’s worked, 111 Murray was “a collaboration between the designers, the developers and us” — the salespeople.

Given that — and given the timeframe during which a development comes to fruition (it can be four to five years or longer before a broker begins selling units) — DeNiro advises agents and brokers to pay close attention to track record and body of work when it comes to working with developers.

“You typically want to be signing on to projects where you know the developers are experienced, you’re not over-leveraged and they’re going to be experienced enough to listen to the brokers they’ve hired,” he said. “People who are more novice in certain situations don’t quite understand how important it is to listen to everyone on the team.”

Hear the rest of the story at “The idea, the architect, the development and the sale: What must go right?” at Global Connect, April 6-7, 2016, New York City.

Register now

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