A multifamily firm from the nation’s capital is growing southward, citing a lack of niche, boutique service in Florida.
Prominent Washington, D.C.-area multifamily broker Scott Melnick, who has closed some $25B worth of properties during his career, has opened a Miami office of Melnick Real Estate Advisors in Brickell.
“We already have six deals in the pipeline,” Melnick told Bisnow on a call Thursday.
Melnick cited the hot multifamily market between Orlando and Miami as a reason for expanding and said there is a cross-pollination of investors who operate between Florida and the mid-Atlantic. For example, he has sold about $2B of D.C. properties to and for Wellington, Florida-based Bainbridge Cos.
“There’s some money investors, especially from New York, that want to trade in Florida multifamily because New York rent control’s gotten very rigid,” Melnick said.
He said about half of his business revolves around institutional investment sales and that he represents buyers and sellers on new and value-add projects.
“Cap rates have gotten so competitive and low on value-add deals that people that traditionally were buying older deals are like, ‘Well, I’ll buy new deals,” he said.
Melnick said he isn’t worried about competition in Florida.
“There is room for everybody, and the good news is, every time one of the national firms gets bought up by another national firm, that takes away a competitor,” he said. “… There is room because there’s lots of product. And there’s also room to do it differently, which is what I’m doing. We’re a little more hands-on, with senior people doing every tour. We also have a unique focus of knowing all product types within multifamily and doing a specialty of 1031 exchanges, [which require] a little more hand-holding.”
Melnick led multifamily sales teams at Transwestern, JLL and Berkadia before opening his own boutique firm in July 2018. It has offices in Bethesda, Maryland, Arlington, Virginia, and Austin, Texas, and will soon expand into Dallas, Nashville and Philadelphia.