For These 9 Brokers, Hamptons Real Estate is a Family Affair
An essential talent of any real estate agent is to work with families to find the home of their dreams. So who better to understand the family dynamic than brokers bound by blood? Brothers Cody and Zachary Vichinsky started off at Corcoran Group Real Estate several years ago before founding their firm, Bespoke Real Estate, in 2014. “We’ve always joked that together we make the perfect business person,” says Cody. “I’m a little more extroverted, which helps when dealing with clients, so I work on the buy side a lot. Zach is managerial and works more on the listing side.”
The family dynamic is also central to the successful trio of Ed Petrie, his wife, Julie Wolfe, and their son, James Petrie, who moved from Sotheby’s International Realty to Compass last year. “Our clients feel comfortable with the three of us,” says the elder Petrie, who has been in the business for more than 30 years, “and James has known most of my customers since he was a kid. If I’m not available, Julie or James usually are.”
Sometimes, though, individual family members need to take flight in order to realize their full potential. Both Matthew Breitenbach, who learned the real estate ropes while working at Corcoran with his mom, super-broker Susan Breitenbach, and Jonathan Davis, who helped dad Tim Davis (one of the top ten brokers in the country) make the shift to digital at Corcoran, have left the nest in recent years. The younger Breitenbach, who made the first sale of his real estate career—a large Victorian in Sag Harbor that went for $2.8 million—while his mom was on vacation in 2006, was recruited by Douglas Elliman Real Estate early last year and now heads his own team there. “She was always number one, and I had no problem being the Robin to her Batman for a time,” he says. “But I was ready to blaze my own path.” Jonathan Davis, who moved to Brown Harris Stevens in March after launching the real estate and lifestyle magazine On the Inside, says the lessons he learned from his father—understanding a client’s needs and the ins and outs of running a business—were invaluable. “I’m a little more of a risk-taker,” the younger Davis says. “If I have a good idea, I’ll go with it.” Despite some rumors, both splits were amicable, and both Breitenbachs and Davises continue to refer each other and team up for co-exclusives. And Matthew Breitenbach professes that his relationship with his mother is stronger than ever before. “We’re not always talking about work now,” he says.