“Crisis management:” James Whelan talks REBNY priorities

The trade group has called on the city and state for relief as the industry grapples with the coronavirus pandemic

Mar.March 26, 2020 07:00 AM

Real Estate Board of New York President James Whelan says the coronavirus has transformed his role into “crisis management seven days a week.”

Whelan spoke with The Real Deal this week about what guidance the trade group is providing its members and how the real estate industry is adapting to new restrictions on business. Due to an executive order signed last week by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, brokers must conduct showings of apartments or commercial space virtually.

Meanwhile, many New Yorkers who have suddenly found themselves out of work are struggling to keep up with rent payments. While the state has called on banks to grant forbearance to homeowners on their mortgage payments, multifamily and commercial landlords have not been given the same break.

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