Douglas Elliman Realty Plans Expansion to Metro DC


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The Real Deal

Douglas Elliman's Howard Lorber (Getty, Douglas Elliman)

Despite a softening of the residential market, Douglas Elliman Realty continues to expand.

The firm is opening three locations in the Metro D.C. area: Washington, D.C.; Arlington, Virginia.; and Bethesda, Maryland., to go along with new offices opened earlier this year in Nantucket, Massachusetts.; New Canaan, Connecticut; Las Vegas, Houston, Orange County, California.; and Basalt, Colorado.

Elliman, which spun off last year from parent company Vector Group, tapped Ruth Boyer O’Dea and Evan Lacopo, both formerly of TTR Sotheby’s International Realty, to lead an unspecified number of agents in the new Metro D.C. offices.

In an earnings call in October, Elliman chairman Howard Lorber said the brokerage starts small in new markets with local brokers to “not spend a lot of money in opening or buying offices.”

“We’re opening in markets in a slightly different way than those that just go out and buy other companies,” Lorber said.

Both Boyer O’Dea and Lacopo fit within that strategy, as the duo have more than 40 years of combined real estate experience in the region, the release says.

Boyer O’Dea has both undergraduate and master’s degrees from Georgetown University. She began her real estate career in Arlington in 2003. Prior to her career in real estate, she worked as registrar for Georgetown University School of Law and national sales manager for ExamSoft Worldwide.

Lacopo, who grew up in Virginia, has also worked in the Metro D.C. area since 2003. He co-founded and sold a national mortgage company and has grown and managed real estate agent teams that have produced more than $500 million in sales volume annually. He has served on several nonprofit boards and is active in the community.

The firm, which has more than 330 agents nationwide, said in the release that the Metro D.C. locations will provide hubs for international property sales, purchases and investments, and will leverage its partnership with the London-based Knight Frank Residential.

Elliman announced the current expansion despite recently posting a net loss of $4 million in the third quarter.

And the three new markets have not been immune to the recent residential downturn.

The median home sale price in Bethesda was $1.1 million in October…

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