UPDATED on Friday, June 16 at 6:04 p.m.: For the second year in a row, the largest residential firm in Queens by agent count also sold the most real estate in the borough, according to an analysis of Multiple Listing Service of Long Island data by The Real Deal.
Ben Pan’s Winzone Realty, which TRD profiled earlier this month, closed $348 million worth of residential sales in Queens from April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2017, according to MLS data.
It should be noted that because some of the larger sales brokerages in Queens do not participate in the MLS, this ranking does not include firms such as Modern Spaces and the Corcoran Group. For example, Modern Spaces, which sells a lot of condominiums in Long Island City, uses OLR as its listings database. It sold $34 million worth of apartments in Queens in the last 360 days, according to OLR.
But using MLS data does offer a window into some of the lesser-known firms that are closing a high volume of deals further out in the borough.
Winzone was nearly $100,000 ahead of East Coast Realtors Inc., which was in the number two spot with $266 million worth of sales. East Coast Realtors was followed by Keller Williams Landmark II, a franchise of the Texas-based company, which closed $243 million worth of sales.
Keller Williams Landmark II broker Shameer Fazal listed Long Island City, Astoria and Jackson Heights as very popular neighborhoods in Queens where sellers can typically fetch the asking price on their properties.
“You can do slightly higher than what would be recommended at the market price,” he said, “but because of demand, there will be a fast turnaround. The buyers are pretty much looking for many of the western and northeastern sections of Queens.”
Winzone was in the number one spot for closed sales last year as well, and it also topped the list for most number of agents in Queens with 730 as of May 30, according to data from the New York Department of State.
|TOP QUEENS FIRMS BY RESIDENTIAL SALES VOLUME|
|(Transactions from MLS Long Island closed between April 1, 2016 and March 31, 2017)|
|East Coast Realtors||$266,145,875|
|Keller Williams Landmark II||$243,241,820|
|Keller Williams Realty Landmark||$231,760,956|
|Century Homes Realty Group LLC||$188,256,887|
|Charles Rutenberg Realty||$179,961,925|
|Douglas Elliman Real Estate||$159,891,776|
|Realty Executives Today||$150,924,258|
|Exit Realty First Choice||$129,122,506|
|Source: The Real Deal analysis of residential sales closed in Queens between April 1, 2016 and March 31, 2017 that appeared in MLS Long Island data|
Pan told TRD that the firm’s clients are typically Asian buyers who can afford large down payments and have been in the United States for roughly five years. Its biggest residential deal of the year was a $2.5 million sale at 132-46A 41st Avenue in Flushing, according to MLS data.
Although Winzone is a local company based out of an office on Queens Boulevard, several of the other top 10 companies are franchises of international firms, including Re/Max Team, which placed at number seven with $179 million worth of sales, and Exit Realty First Choice, which was number 10 with $129 million worth of sales.
Leah Musheyeva, office manager at Exit Realty First Choice, said the company mainly focuses on sales in farther flung neighborhoods in Queens, such as Fresh Meadows and Jamaica Estates. Although Astoria and Long Island City may be the trendiest spots in the borough, Exit’s clients are generally attracted to quieter haunts with good schools.
“It’s a very homey environment, very safe environment for kids, very clean,” she said. “…The school district, that’s what attracts them.”
One of the more regionally-focused firms on the list was Charles Rutenberg Realty, which placed at number six with $180 million worth of sales. Office Manager and Associate Broker Ruth Pfeffer said the company concentrates on sales in neighborhoods like Forest Hills and College Point, which are currently prime areas for sellers.
“Absolutely it is a seller’s market,” she said. “Properties that are priced accordingly and are well maintained are selling very, very quickly.”
Clarification: The ranking only takes into account closed sales registered on the Long Island Multiple Listing Service between April 1, 2016 and March 31, 2017, meaning firms that use a different listing service, such as OLR or StreetEasy, would not be included in this ranking.