On the Street with Paul Zweben at Douglas Elliman
Hello, I am Olivia Epstein, the Zweben Team’s intern for the summer. Most of you have probably already seen me in some of Paul’s famous Instagram videos, but for those who have not, let me introduce myself. I am a twenty year old from Tenafly, New Jersey, a small suburb right over the GW Bridge. I have two brothers; a 23-year-old and a 17-year-old. I am a rising junior at Tulane University in New Orleans, studying communications. Later this summer, I will be traveling to Sydney, Australia to spend four months studying abroad, which I am extremely excited about! I spend my free time hanging out with friends, eating, exercising, and of course, Snapchatting!
At a young age I became fascinated with real estate. My parents attempted selling my house in Tenafly multiple times, and whenever an agent would bring clients to my house, I would follow them around to hear their pitch. Furthermore, when my parents revealed their interest in purchasing a second home in Aspen, Colorado, my Zillow obsession began. I was regularly checking Zillow to see what new homes came on the market and if it fit within my parent’s budget, I would e-mail it to them. I wanted to be the one that found my parents a second home, and that desire still stands today. I am also curious about how the real estate market is doing in general, so I am constantly browsing real estate websites to see what new homes are on the market and how they are priced.
This summer, I was lucky enough to land this amazing internship with Paul and his team. I am finally able to see how everything works from a broker’s perspective, which has given me a new angle on this industry – one that has been essential in determining whether or not I want to pursue real estate as a career post grad. Paul has taught me a lot in the last month that I’ve been with his team, but one of the most important things I have learned so far is that it is extremely important to build good relationships with your clients, so they don’t just think you are in it for the money.
From going to several appointments with Paul, I have learned that relationship building is of the utmost importance in this line of work. On the first day of my internship, Paul brought me to an appointment where he was meeting an Upper West Side client for the first time. His apartment was previously listed with another broker, and Paul thought it was slightly overpriced, something Paul knew he would need to bring up. But before Paul started talking prices, he sat down and got to know his client. They played “Jewish geography” and found mutual connections, talked about what they do for a living and talked about their families. I could tell that having this conversation relaxed his client, but also helped his client gain trust in him and see that aside from being a great broker, Paul is genuinely a good guy and is easy to get along with.