The Real Deal New York

Brooklyn’s largest indie brokerage will now fly REBNY’s flag

Fillmore Real Estate will add roughly 400 listings to RLS

January 25, 2016 04:55PM
By Rich Bockmann

From left: Mitchell Feldman, Fillmore Real Estate Manager; REBNY RLS Director Freddy Sarabia; John P. Reinhardt, Fillmore Real Estate President and Chief Executive Officer; John H. Banks, III, REBNY President; Maryann Arbia Executive VP Fillmore Real Estate; Louis Belisario, Fillmore Real Estate Executive Sales Director

From left: Fillmore’s Mitchell Feldman; REBNY RLS director Freddy Sarabia; Fillmore CEO John Reinhardt; REBNY’s John Banks; and Fillmore execs Maryann Arbia and Louis Belisario

Fillmore Real Estate, Brooklyn’s largest independent brokerage, is joining the Real Estate Board of New York, significantly increasing the trade group’s presence as it continues to expand its reach into the outer boroughs.

The Sheepshead Bay-based firm, which will celebrate its 50th anniversary in March, did nearly $500 million worth of sales last year and will add about 400 listings to the REBNY RLS, which now includes some 7,000 listings throughout Brooklyn.

“Being born in Brooklyn, we were not part of the Manhattan REBNY RLS,” said Fillmore President John Reinhardt, who explained that a handful of his offices in North Brooklyn joined REBNY about a year ago. “In order to compete in [that] market our agents wanted to join REBNY, because that’s where most of the listings were shared.” Back in 2011, Reinhardt said he would consider joining REBNY

Fillmore, which counts 335 agents in 14 offices, was previously a member of the National Association of Realtors, which requires that all agents working under an NAR broker must be members of the association.

“That’s called the ‘all-in rule,’’ said Rich Schulhoff, CEO of the Brooklyn Board of Realtors. “That causes a lot of companies to not be members of the National Association.”

In fact, Fillmore’s decision to leave NAR mirrors one REBNY made some 20-plus years ago. REBNY and NAR had long disagreed on how much the board owed the national organization in dues, and with more than half of its members choosing to opt out, the real estate board withdrew its membership in 1994.

REBNY has in recent years been making a push to expand membership in the outer boroughs. In 2014 it launched a Queens residential committee followed by one in Brooklyn last summer.

The industry group launched its inaugural Brooklyn retail report in October, and in December it announced a partnership with Borough President Eric Adams to promote green-energy building improvements.

REBNY President John Banks said bringing Fillmore into the fold was the start of a “long and mutually beneficial relationship” that would help not only the two parties, but consumers as well.

“When we all work together, everyone wins,” he said.

Fillmore plans to open a new office, its 15th, in Williamsburg next week.

Correction: A previous version of this post incorrectly stated that the Brooklyn Board of Realtors operates the Brooklyn MLS. The two are independent of one another.