‘Broker specialists’ start to diversify

By Candace Taylor | September 28, 2010 10:30AM

From the September issue: New York City real estate agents have long vied for the informal but coveted status of “broker specialist” in pricey apartment buildings. The spoils of becoming a go-to broker for a given building include a loyal customer base, inside knowledge of units coming on the market, and familiarity with the co-op board. Becoming a broker specialist takes work, but once achieved, it’s “like a secure nest egg,” explained Elayne Reimer, an executive vice president at Halstead Property who said that over the past eight years, she’s sold some 200 apartments in the Excelsior at 303 East 57th Street. Still, these broker specialists have faced unique challenges during the downturn and its aftermath. When sales — particularly those on the high end — slowed at the end of 2008, many were especially vulnerable because of their dependence on one building. At the same time, they found themselves fending off competition for listings in those buildings from other agents hungry for business. [more]