Margit Weinberg and the agents of Next Step Realty are making names for themselves in the real estate business and on TV. The company's young brokers are featured in an ABC Family series that focuses on the rental market for young professionals in New York City. Margit, 27, took time out from buying and selling to give International Business Times the scoop on her innovative firm and even provided some sage wisdom for those looking to break into the real estate industry.
— Next Step Realty NYC (@NxtStepRealtyTV) September 22, 2015
According to Margit, the main thing that sets Next Step apart from other firms is the firm's dedication to serving clients. She said the firm goes above and beyond to ensure that clients have to do as little work as possible. From picking them up at the airport to filling out forms -- you name it, Next Step takes care of it. Margit says this "is a different business model" than what many other brokerages use, but, thus far, their innovative techniques are paying off. She added that, not only is Next Step approaching real estate differently, the firm is also hiring much younger brokers. This allows it to better connect with the target clientele.
"This kind of culture of brokerages in New York, it’s like a brutal industry, people don’t treat each other well. We’ve kind of changed the space with that. We really care about our clients. We really take care of them. And we’ve really taken off through word of mouth," she said "I think it’s our level of service and also our brokers are really young -- everyone’s basically under 31 or 32. So you really have a broker that’s your age, that connects with you and you have something in common with. I think that's important. [Clients] in their 20s don’t want a broker who’s 55 -- there’s nothing to connect on."
Connection is key for Margit and the others working at Next Step. In her interview with IBTimes, Margit said one of the innovative brokerage's main goals is to grow with its clients. She said that, because of the firm's dedication to service, people tend to keep them in mind when looking to move from their starter apartment to their next, more permanent home.
"We are working with the up-and-coming New Yorkers who are working all these big jobs, and the goal is to grow with people," she explained. "You help them with their first apartment at 22, and they don’t forget who helped them So when they get to be big executives, they stick with their broker."
Another major difference? Next Step Realty provides over-the-top services to clients at a discounted price. Margit told IBTimes that, for the most part, renters are paying a 15 percent fee to their brokers. Next Step is charging just 12 to 13.5 percent of the annual rent. In addition to being cheaper, Margit said Next Step realtors always have their client's best interest at heart, while other brokers are representing the seller and trying to get the best price possible for them. She said that she and the Next Step team are doing exactly the opposite.
— Business Insider (@businessinsider) August 11, 2015
"People don’t realize if they try and go at it on their own that you end up having to pay 15 percent to a listing broker who doesn’t have your best interest at heart. He or she actually represents the landlord, so brokers are trying to get the best price for their client. Next Step is also discounted," she said. "In New York, the general structure is it’s 15 percent, but at Next Step we do have your best interest at heart; we have your back; we know the landlords; we’ll get you the best price. We also do it in one day, and it’s discounted so it’s 12 or 13.5 percent of the annual rent. It’s a 20% discount and we take care of everything. You don’t have to do a thing."
Most people are aware that real estate is a tough business -- and it's not for everyone. Margit echoed those sentiments, but for those still considering it, she offered some advice: Seek out a strong mentor -- someone who is really interested in sharing a wealth of knowledge and helping you grow. She then suggests that, after finding a mentor, real estate hopefuls jump in with both feet. Lastly, she said, a think skin is key.
" I got one of the best mentors -- I worked with her at Corcoran and I learned most of what I do from her," Magrit said. "So get a good mentor, someone who can kind of put you under their wing. It’s not one of those industries where you can wing it. You can’t," she said. "You have to learn, you have to throw yourself into it. It’s also a tough business, so you have to have a thick skin. If you like the excitement of the deal and love seeing the deal close -- which I do -- then go for it, get a mentor and work your butt off. "
Tune in to "Next Step: NYC" Tuesdays at 9 p.m. EDT on ABC Family.