In these times, double down — on your skills, on your knowledge, on you. Join us Aug. 8-10 at Inman Connect Las Vegas to lean into the shift and learn from the best. Get your ticket now for the best price.
Anthony Marguleas has served as the founder and owner of his brokerage Amalfi Estates since starting the company in 1995 — and before that, Marguleas worked in the mortgage industry for over a decade.
During that time, Marguleas has risen to become the No. 1 Pacific Palisades agent, and Amalfi Estates has become one of the leading independent firms in California, ranking as one of the top 10 teams in the U.S. in 2022 by The Wall Street Journal.
Marguleas has sold over $2 billion in transactions over the course of his career, and in 2021, sold The Hearst Estate at auction for $63.1 million, making it the priciest home to ever sell at auction at the time. (Since then, The One surpassed that price, selling for $126 million at auction in 2022.)
Inman briefly caught up with Marguleas last week, in advance of his appearance at Inman Connect Las Vegas on Aug. 8-10, to talk about what’s happening in his business and the Los Angeles market, as well as what he’s looking forward to at the event.
Here’s what he had to say, edited for brevity and clarity.
Inman: What are you and your agents doing now as we get into the swing of the busiest season for the industry?
Anthony Marguleas: Well, we opened up a Dallas office a couple weeks ago. One of our top agents relocated to Dallas. It’s our first office opening out of state, so that was exciting. A lot of people from L.A. are relocating. Dallas is one of the main cities — Texas and Florida are some of the main states, so we’re excited to be able to have a Dallas presence.
Do you think you’re seeing that migration primarily because of tax issues?
It’s a good question. Part of it’s tax, part of it’s the political climate, part of it is the ULA Tax that went into effect April 1 — they also call it ‘The Mansion Tax.’ What happened is, normally, there are approximately 80 transactions in the city of L.A. that sell every month over $5 million. [After] it went into effect April 1, in the month of April, there were only two [transactions above $5 million], so a lot of people are pretty upset about it.
Do you think that will impact your market for the remainder of this season too?
It’s basically devastating the market. And in the first two weeks of May, there have been zero [transactions above $5 million]. So it had a major, major effect. It’ll start picking up a little bit more, but a lot of people believe that it may get repealed in the next month or two because it’s unconstitutional. Any time [the IRS] can collect $1 billion from just 1,000 people, it doesn’t seem too fair.
It’s affecting the economy too, it’s not just agents. It’s all the developers who hire hundreds, if not thousands, of workers to build the homes, it affects the escrow companies and the mortgage companies and the title companies. They’re collecting less property taxes now — they’re collecting less everything.
So I think it’s going to have a pretty profound effect on the economy. There have been several lawsuits against it.
Wow. Well, as we ramp up for Inman’s Connect Las Vegas event in August, any specific plans or event-related sessions you’re looking forward to?
I love to connect with a lot of the fellow speakers and am looking to learn what’s going on in other parts of the country, especially in the luxury realm. And I’m really excited for the presentation that I’ll be giving. It’s all new content, and I think the attendees will be very excited to hear it, so it should be a really good topic.
Very nice. What will you be speaking about?
Creative ways to market very high-end properties. For example, a lot of the super high-end properties have their own name. So when I sold the Hearst Estate, it wasn’t called the Hearst Estate, it was called Beverly House for 75 years, and they had seven or eight other agents try to sell it. And we went in and rebranded the estate and we were able to get the property sold, and it was the most expensive home to sell at auction at the time.
We’ve also rebranded neighborhoods. So if you have a very high-end property and rename the neighborhood by rebranding the neighborhood, that has been really successful. So it’s just things like that, maybe some people haven’t really thought about doing it from that perspective.
Get Inman’s Luxury Lens Newsletter delivered right to your inbox. A weekly deep dive into the biggest news in the world of high-end real estate delivered every Friday. Click here to subscribe.