Urban Compass’ Reffkin on conquering the NYC market: VIDEO

Startup has "much more resources than anyone else," founder says
October 02, 2014 12:00PM

In an interview with CNBC, Urban Compass Founder and CEO Robert Reffkin explained how Urban Compass is navigating the New York City real estate industry.

Reffkin said the company has “invested heavily” in a data team to accomplish its goal of making it both easier and cheaper to rent an apartment in New York.

“We have much more resources than anyone else who ever tried to enter the space,” Reffkin said. The Urban Compass founder added that his firm has more capital, engineering talent and strategic partners than his competitors.

“Salary isn’t the right way to incentivize an agent,” he said. The best way to do that, he opined, is through commissions. Brokers at Urban Compass, he added, now work as independent contractors, as is the case for most in the industry.

Earlier this week, Urban Compass inked a lease to open an office in the Lever House, where the startup will occupy the entire 14th floor.

While New York is the company’s main focus, Reffkin told CNBC that Urban Compass is also moving into Washington D.C. and is working on partnerships with local companies in Boston, Miami, San Francisco and Los Angeles. [CNBC] — Claire Moses