Welcome to Ten, CORE founder and CEO Shaun Osher’s rapid-fire interview series with prominent CORE figures. Read on to find out how this week’s subject deals with being on the hot seat.
Born and raised in Alabama, Reggie Grayson’s small-town beginnings have quickly translated to a bustling career in real estate right here in Manhattan. Having lived in the City for almost three decades, his nostalgic love for Manhattan remains one of the driving forces behind his pursuit of a career in the industry. Here are Reggie’s answers to Ten questions:
1. What did you do before you found this career?
I led many lives before beginning my career in real estate, but mostly, I worked in economic development and non-profit management. I was also the co-founder and president of a special events company.
2. What has changed about the industry since you first got into the business?
I’ve lived in New York for 26 years, and the biggest change is that neighborhoods that at one time had been considered marginal, are now very much in demand. Case in point, my partner and I bought a 1-bedroom on West 148th Street in 2010. When selling the apartment in June, we had a bidding war and went into contract within six days for 21% more than what we had paid for the apartment barely three years ago. When the financial industry collapsed five years ago, few people would have guessed that a 1-bedroom on 148th Street would sell for over $700,000 in 2013. I wish we had bought five more in 2010, because we could have sold them all!
3. What is your greatest daily challenge?
Keeping each transaction on track and moving forward. Real estate deals have a rhythm and a pace. I know exactly where each deal should be, but it takes a lot of tact and diplomacy to get all the parties involved – my client, managing agents, co-brokers, lenders, attorneys – to keep the momentum going. It’s exhausting, but that’s what a good agent does.
4. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I will have chosen to retire early and will be living in Barcelona.
5. Where do you find inspiration?
This may sound corny, but I still get inspired by the Manhattan skyline. One of my favorite things to do is run around the Central Park reservoir at dusk, and when I get to the northern end, I look south and see the towers on Central Park South, juxtaposed against the trees and the water. It’s magical. It’s one of those “wow-this-kid-from-Alabama-made-it-in-New York” moments. Read the rest of this entry »