Today’s high-end real estate buyers are savvier than ever. They keep super-salesman Jon Davis at the top of his game, as he explains when he takes a few questions.
How is the real estate market doing?
It has rebounded from a tough winter, when a snow-covered terrain pushed things back more than a month because it was hard to get out and see homes. By spring the anticipation had built up to create a momentum that hasn’t stopped. We’re finding that newly constructed homes are dominating the sales market, with waterfront property the most sought after. It helps that the Hamptons’ economy in general is strong. It’s hot out there!
Have you spotted any trends?
Many buyers don’t have time to worry about every little detail so they are looking for properties that are “turnkey”—furnished fabulously and move-in ready, sometimes down to the toothbrushes! One of the services we offer is to make arrangements with interior designers and others to facilitate a hassle-free transition. Timing matters. If a buyer moves in July, having everything finished means they can enjoy the rest of the summer. People want it simple and my job is to make it as easy as possible.
What are some amenities people are requesting?
Hamptons buyers always want the best of everything. I’m seeing requests for things like an in-home theater, a first-floor master suite and a complete pool house with a kitchen and half-bath. But savvy buyers are aware that if a property otherwise meets their sweet spot, they might have to scale back.
Are customers changing?
Yes! They’re becoming more educated. There’s a lot of information available to them—how long a property has been on the market, for example, and whether its price has been reduced— and they take advantage of it. They look at websites and know what to expect. They ask probing questions, so I have to be at the top of my game.
How do you differentiate yourself from other firms?
We work to set trends, not just follow them, and we do what other brokers don’t. For instance, we’re exploring innovative ways of advertising our listings. We create videos, of course, but not just videos of the properties. We produce “lifestyle presentations” that, with models and upscale props, make the property come alive to potential buyers. Think of a spectacular house façade facing a circular drive where one of our partners such as Aston Martin has parked a car. We have partnered with top art dealers and such luxury brands as Louis XIII cognac to host private dinners. We’re not just selling homes; we’re selling a lifestyle. Speaking of art, we’ll be at Art Basel Miami Beach again this year.
What does client service mean to you?
Being there for our clients all the time. To be the best, you can’t just be present during a sale. You have to go the extra mile, and keeping in touch is crucial. Clients are important to us; it’s our privilege to serve them.