Keller Williams' growing army of agents eclipses most cities' populations

By Marissa Luck  –  Staff Writer, Austin Business Journal

May 4, 2018

Austin-based Keller Williams Realty is a mammoth in the residential real estate world — and it’s getting bigger. Sales volume swelled in the first quarter and total headcount hit 181,000 associates globally — that’s more than the city of Round Rock’s population, which stands at about 120,000. In fact, it's a pool of people larger than most U.S. cities.

The real estate franchise continues to develop technologies at its Austin tech hub, K-W Labs, such as the artificial intelligence virtual assistant Kelle that acts like a real estate version of Apple’s Siri; and Referrals, an agent-to-agent referral network and transaction tool.

The introduction of new technologies — plus of nearly 4,000 agents in the first quarter — continue to boost sales, according to Keller Williams' first-quarter earnings report. The company is private so it doesn't release a standard earnings report.

In the U.S., total sales volume spiked 10.7 percent year-over-year to hit $62.7 billion, the company reported.

U.S. franchisee owners took home $35.1 million in profits in the first quarter, a 3.4 percent jump from the same time last year. By the end of the first quarter, there were 159,792 agents in the U.S. alone.

Outside the U.S., Keller Williams added offices in Argentina. Now the company has more than 30 countries.

"Once again, we’re excited to report our agents are outperforming the industry, breaking production records originally set in the first quarter of 2017," said John Davis, CEO and president, Keller Williams, in a statement. "Across the globe, our agents continue to grow market share, helping them fund bigger lives and create new opportunities.

In January, T3 Sixty named Keller Williams' co-founder Gary Keller as the most influential person in residential real estate, eclipsing Zillow Group CEO Spencer Rascoff for the No. 1 spot. Rascoff was No. 2, ahead of HomeServices of America’s Ron Peltier.

A big reason why Keller climbed the ranks: For the first time since the list was started five years ago, Keller Williams was named the largest residential real estate brand based on projections of sales volume as of the fourth quarter of 2017, beating out Re/Maxx, according to a T3 Sixty analysis. Davis, Keller Williams' CEO, was number seven on T3 Sixty's list this year, and a total of seven Austin real estate professionals made the list too.

 

Paper City Real Estate Group joins Commercial Division at KW City Views Realty

FORT LEE, NJ <06/10/2018> —Paper City Real Estate Group, a full-service commercial brokerage with several notable transactions in Jersey City, will spearhead the new KW Commercial division at Keller Williams City Views Market Center based in Fort Lee, NJ.

Gardner Rivera, MSRED, Owner and Broker of Record of Paper City Real Estate Group has worked in several capacities in the commercial real estate industry for the past 14 years, including closing several million dollars in just five years doing business in New Jersey. Among his most notable transactions are 2800 Kennedy Blvd., 860 Newark Ave, both in Jersey City and most recently -- 266 East 21st St. in Brooklyn. Mr. Rivera enjoys art collecting, running, and serving on the National Board of Project REAP, an organization committed to increasing diversity in all areas of the commercial real estate industry.

"We are thrilled to have Paper City Real Estate join our team", says Paul Buttenhoff, KW City Views Team Leader. "Keller Williams Realty offers associates unparalleled career growth and lifelong learning opportunities in the real estate industry. The goal of KW Commercial is to bring in the very best in the commercial real estate industry and both Gardner Rivera, and Paper City's newest associate, Jessica Washington meet the KW Commercial standard of excellence."

Gardner explains, "Blending our established commercial real estate expertise at Paper City Real Estate with the new KW Commercial office at City Views will exponentially expand our growing footprint. With the momentum from our recent closing in Brooklyn, Paper City's path to expansion into the NYC boroughs and beyond is unstoppable. With a strategic plan and a great team in place, I feel anything is possible."

 

ABOUT PAPER CITY REAL ESTATE

Paper City Real Estate is a commercial real estate brokerage operating in Jersey City's Journal Square neighborhood. Focused on larger multifamily, mixed-use, commercial leasing, and development projects, Paper City provides a full range of services for clients on any sale, lease, or acquisition of property. The firm specializes in commercial transactions in the Northern NJ/NYC Metro Area.  PCRG emphasizes professionalism, unyielding integrity, ethics, and creative solutions for difficult transactions.  

To learn more about Paper City Real Estate, call Gardner Rivera at 201-878-3422 or visit www.papercityrealestate.com

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Welcome JESSICA WASHINGTON, MBA to Paper City Real Estate!

Jessica Washington is newest member of the team at Paper City Real Estate. She has many years of experience marketing for a diverse array of organizations including Fortune 500 brands, non-profits, government entities, and startups. She has an Bachelor of Arts in Communications from the University of Maryland at College Park and a Master of Business Administration from San Diego State University. She is also a proud member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc., the National Black MBA Association, and Women in Sports and Events (WISE). Jessica has immersed herself into the world of commercial real estate as a broker and investor and stays abreast of the ever-changing trends in the local and macro-level markets. Follow her journey to becoming a mogul real estate investor on her blog.

Her focus will be on commercial real estate transactions and investment for the team as well as coordinating a massive multimedia marketing launch for Paper City. She is welcomed to the PCRG Family with open arms! 

You can reach Jessica directly at 201-366-7074 and jess.washington2@gmail.com.

CNBC Loves Jersey City!

"Jersey City becomes alternative to New York, but without the 'sticker shock' in prices"

·         Jersey City is raising its profile as an alternative to New York City, given its closeness to the Big Apple and more reasonable prices.

·         New buildings like 99 Hudson offer luxury living at a fraction of the cost.

·         Yet some say Jersey City could easily go the way of Brooklyn, which itself was an alternative to Manhattan until everyone began moving there.

Daniel Bukszpan@DanielBukszpan

Published 1:04 PM ET Sat, 7 April 2018CNBC.com

Real estate prices in New York City have cooled but remain astronomically high, so Jennifer Tobias, a senior designer at the Studio Sofield design firm in lower Manhattan, found a nearby refuge.

Located just across the Hudson River from Manhattan's West Side, Jersey City is being touted by some as the latest alternative to New York City's torrid real estate market. It's where Tobias joined a growing number of area residents who find Jersey City more affordable when compared to its more famous neighbor.

"My apartment is a 310 square foot studio in a 28-unit building," Tobias told CNBC recently. Her unit cost $195,000 when she bought it in 2007, and she said that its current value is $312,000.

"A similar apartment in New York City would easily cost twice as much," she added. Her residence faces Van Vorst Park, which has a farmer's market, Shakespeare performances and outdoor movie nights. A wide range of restaurants and bars can be found within an eight-block radius, and the overall cost of living is low.

She isn't only getting a more affordable lifestyle across the river. New York's outer boroughs like Brooklyn and Queens, have traditionally offered lower cost housing. However, prices there have also skyrocketed in recent years, forcing residents of modest means to look elsewhere.

Enter New Jersey, which for years dwelled in the shadow of its larger-than-life counterpart across the Hudson, but has definitively come into its own. Places like Jersey City have emerged as alternatives to the Big Apple for cosmopolitan-minded residents.

'Avoid sticker shock'

According to a real estate report from PricewaterhouseCoopers, Jersey City has established itself as the go-to for people fleeing New York City. Its growth can be attributed to an influx of "highly educated millennials," many of whom work in Manhattan's technology service companies, Pricewaterhouse noted.

"Renters and buyers alike are taking notice and helping to make Jersey City the fastest growing metropolitan area in the state," said Ralph DiBugnara, vice president of retail sales at the New Jersey-based mortgage lender Residential Home Funding.

He cited an average home price of $391,000 and an average rent of $1,500 per month—substantially lower than what Zillow cites as Manhattan's median home price of over $1.3 million, and median rent of $3400.

Agent Gina Castrorao of the New York City-based real estate company Triplemint said that Jersey City's real estate prices depend in large part on proximity to the Hudson River.

"There are rents ranging from $1,200 to $10,000," she said. "Typically, the closer you are to the water, the higher the prices will be."

"It is true that high growth markets like Jersey City do often eventually become victims of their success, and are branded as 'too expensive.'"-John Boyd, president, Boyd Company


Scott Bierbryer, co-founder of the apartment marketplace startup VeryApt.com, said that those who work in Manhattan are well-served by transportation options that offer a short commute into the city.

Those interested in buying luxury property have many options as well. These include 99 Hudson, an 82-story condominium owned by Chinese developers that's currently under construction. When it's complete, the building will offer virtually every amenity residents can get east of the Hudson River, minus the high prices: Unit prices start under $1 million.

"Buyers can avoid sticker shock by saving an average of 10 percent on purchases at 99 Hudson, compared to newer properties in DUMBO, and an average of 38 percent versus Lower Manhattan," said Edwin Blanco, a sales manager with Marketing Directors, who represents the property.


Blanco told CNBC that 99 Hudson has attracted more buyers from Manhattan than any other Jersey City property in his portfolio. They cite the easy commute and spectacular views as the biggest selling points.

David Amsterdam of the global real estate company Colliers International said that Jersey City is also a good deal when it comes to office space. He quoted an overall rent of $72.74 per square foot for Manhattan businesses, as opposed to only $38.98 per square foot in Jersey City.

All of which raises the question of whether Jersey City could soon go the way of formerly reasonably-priced New York neighborhoods like parts of Brooklyn and Long Island City. As soon as the word got out, many of those became trendy, expensive hotspots.

To some extent, that effect is already underway. In nearby Hoboken, median apartment prices are even more expensive than the Big Apple's, data from real estate tracking firm Apartment List shows.

"It is true that high growth markets like Jersey City do often eventually become victims of their success, and are branded as 'too expensive,'" said John Boyd, principal of the Boyd Company, a corporate site selection firm based in Princeton, New Jersey.

"The challenge for developers and politicians in Jersey City is to create a climate where new housing options remain in the pipeline, and incentives are available for re-purposing projects, [such as] converting old industrial and retail into mixed-use housing projects," he said.

However, if Jersey City does eventually become too expensive, Boyd added that new options will always, eventually, present themselves.

"Bayonne, which is getting a new ferry service by the end of this year, is being touted the 'new Jersey City' by many of our clients, because of its lower cost profile and proximity to Manhattan," he said.

 

MINUTEMAN PRESS - WELCOME TO JOURNAL SQUARE!!!

Paper City Real Estate successfully leased a commercial space at 3027 Kennedy Blvd. to Minuteman Press, a full service print and marketing center. The space, formally a holistic medical office, was previously one of the most successful franchise locations in the country before the successful operation out grew their space and relocated to a warehouse facility in Clifton.

The space, is a commercial condo and the Owner, looking to get a little closer to retirement felt that leasing it for passive income was his best bet. He was given several tenant options, both local and regional, and in the end chose the one he felt would fit the best. 

New owner, Adnan Siddiqi is extremely proud of his location and the community wishes him the absolute best. 

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Minuteman Press is a full-service design, print and marketing centers serving the entire business community from small businesses to Fortune 500 companies. Our customers are wide-ranging and include local organizations, government groups, non-profits, professional sports teams, businesses, entrepreneurs, consumers, and more.

Minuteman Press Jersey City

3027 John F Kennedy Blvd

 Jersey City, NJ 07306

jersey-city@minutemanpress.com