Born and raised in New York, Matt Lesser has been deeply involved the world of city real estate for 12 years now. He has dedicated his career to date to a brokerage named Leslie J. Garfield Real Estate. To say Lesser has "experience in the field" would be a grave understatement. He has represented over $1 billion in residential, commercial and institutional real estate, and he has sold and leased over 150 properties. "After I graduated, I didn't care for a desk job," Lesser explains. "I needed a go-getter, create-your-own-destiny opportunity."
"There are few teams in our industry that know more about townhouse properties than we do."- Matthew Lesser
These days, especially for young graduates finding their feet in the professional world, a little job hopping seems par for the course. But Lesser's commitment has stood the test of time. "I started working for Leslie Garfield right out of college. I had no interest in working for a large company. I knew that I would learn more and have more opportunity if I worked for a specialist in an industry." In Lesser's opinion, the boutique brokerage has some distinguishing qualities. "We know our craft and our product. Our approach is simple... Know more than our competitors and sell more than our competitors. I can safely say there are few teams in our industry that know more about townhouse properties than we do." It's hard to argue otherwise. Lesser has spent over a decade dealing primarily with townhouses in Gramercy Park, Chelsea, and Central Village.
We asked Lesser about his favorite part of the job. Brokers often say that closing the deal is most exciting, but Lesser has a different view. "The culmination of a deal is satisfying. However, winning a new piece of business is always my 'magic moment.' Beating out another broker and getting the opportunity is fantastic." Lesser also explained what plays into a successful experience for sellers. "A successful outcome is typically about getting the desired price. But not always - sometimes it's about the speed to transact."
So what goes into pricing a home appropriately? "Price is paramount," Lesser insists, "and the market is efficient. A piece of real estate is typically worth what someone pays for it. If a property is priced too high it will likely sit on the market. If it's priced too low it will get bid up." The right price paired with "being able to touch the right audience will lead to a successful sale," according to Lesser.
On the broker's side of the business, technology has begun to play a larger role. "Property information, photographs and videos have boosted our ability to provide information faster. It has helped real estate become more sexy." This is good news for Lesser and his team, driving the process towards market efficiency, however in some ways technology is not as significant as one might expect. "The basics and the core knowledge comes from experience - simple blocking and tackling," Lesser explained. "Picking up the phone or knocking on someone's door to generate business will never disappear."