Gurney's Inn
May 16, 2007

Realty Takes

Bridgehampton Buzzing, More on Teams, Burn Out

What is going on in Bridgehampton?

Well, Prudential Douglas Elliman in Bridgehampton has veteran broker Andrea Ackerman, formerly of Brown Harris Stevens (and Cook Pony Farm). "Andrea and her assistant Liz Phenis have settled in and we are delighted to have them both," writes Jean Marie Ali, a sr. administrative assistant.

And a Bridgehampton noteworthy: The grand opening of Town and Country's Bridgehampton office, with Janet Hummel manager/partner, and John Healey, top Bridgehampton producer, both at that Main Street location.

Then Corcoran has a new top broker/manager in its Bridgehampton office, Ernest Cervi! Says regional senior vice president Rick Hoffman: "We are truly excited to have Ernie on board. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience as a prior agent and broker/owner of his own brokerage."

No matter the weather this summer, Bridgehampton sounds hot, hot, hot!

Back to the teams. From Barbara Weinman and Jan Robinson: Not only a team, but a team that started a new business under Jan Robinson's firm name, Hampton Home Inc. They specialize in rentals and have done many this summer ranging from $20,000 to $250,000.

"We have some great sales exclusives as well, mostly on houses that Jan built over the years when she was doing construction as Hampton Homes. Jan built over 90 houses over the past 10-12 years. When Harold Shepherd closed, Jan and I kept thinking that we were going to go corporate but there was always that question, 'can we do this on our own?'

"We decided to try. I haven't enjoyed real estate as much as I have over these past several months with Jan for at least five years. We are back to the basics and it works. Jan and I are different personalities, but our goals, the commitment to each other and people skills dealings are much the same. We do not let our egos get in the way of decision-making. Partnering is great with the right person."

More cautious team views:

Rick Hoffman, East End Corcoran honcho, says, "We have several brokers that work as teams. Often it works to the brokers' advantage, but many times these relationships fall apart. In order for a team to work well, the members must have complete trust in each other as they must have intimate knowledge of each other's business. Real estate remains a business largely based on contacts and service, therefore team members must fully support each other. A team becomes a marriage of sorts."

(Yeah, right. We all know how tough that is.)

Paul Brennan, Prudential Douglas Elliman East End honcho, writes, "The best way to make a relationship work is to pay an assistant to help. Most brokers are too cheap or can't afford it. Brokers who team up inevitably split up. It's like a marriage. Most go into it with good intentions only to find out their partner is not who they thought they were. Especially when it comes to dividing up money. Sorry to say it usually doesn't work because real estate is an unfair business."

Something different from the Southampton Inn, so take note: "For the summer 2007, the Southampton Inn, 91 Hill Street, is kicking off the season with a new promotion -- Parking Plus Privileges: Family Pool and Tennis Memberships for the entire season. Members will have unrestricted access to the Inn's heated in-ground pool with lifeguard, all-weather tennis court, air- conditioned children's game room, fitness room with towels and changing facilities, and signing privileges for breakfast and lunch at the newly opened Hill Street Café, presided over by award-winning executive chef Peter Dunlop. In addition, hourly shuttle service to Cooper's Beach is included."

From an unhappy camper, without attribution: "The only thing I have to say is that real estate is probably one of the most fickle businesses in the world. Especially the second home market. After all these years I wish I knew what actually makes the market tick. The psychological and emotional factors are the prime factors and both are driven by the herd mentality with regard to this market. There are not many individual thinkers. When your market is driven by spec builders and not individuals you get cookie cutters with no minds of their own."

Which lead us to burnout. The business is so intense, competitive, stressful and all-consuming whether the deal is made or not, that broker burnout is not unusual. Take a break when this occurs. It will cost you less than the alienation of all the things you worked so hard to build up. Do yoga! Tai Chi! (Is that right?) And if you are believers, spend more time worshiping in a sanctuary. I mean the driving alone can make you crazy.

East End real estate is a very strange business. Going into season, take care of yourselves!

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The New Listing of the Week is offered free to brokers on a rotating basis. Please submit a jpeg photo of the property along with a WORD document with the listing information to, attn: Rick. There is no charge for the placement.

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