How to work with more developers if you're a residential broker.

Posted by Meghan Doherty on October 11, 2020

We hear the same question all the time from residential brokers.  How do I work with more developers?  I want to crack the code with working with developers.  If I want to work with more developers how do I do that?  These are all great questions and I am going to try and help you get a great start. 

First things first, be an empathetic sales person.  Put yourself in their shoes.  What do developers care about and how can you help them.  Too many times brokers and sales people in general focus on selling.  They start talking about themselves and what they are doing etc.  This is a big mistake.  Once you start talking about yourself you immediately start to lose your audience.  Why?  Because nobody cares about you.  Well, maybe your mom does, but that's it.  Nobody wants to hear how you were the top broker last month and sold the most units the month before etc.  The fact of the matter is that people care about themselves.  Sounds selfish but it's the truth.  So now that we know this, let's use it to our advantage.  

Where do I start you ask?  Start by asking questions and be ready to provide value.  Get the developer talking.  Talk about their project, give them stats on other projects in the area, be a resource.  Ask questions as if you're the developer.


Are you thinking about selling it instead of building it?  It must have cost you X to get this entitled and I see you have a few other projects.  Have you thought of taking money off the table and moving on to the next project?

If so how much do you want per door?  (If they have 50 units approved they might say they want $200k a door.  Multiply the 50 units by $200k and thats their sale price)

What do you want to get per sq ft if you are going to build it?

Whats are you construction costs coming in at?  Most are building between $250sqft -$350sqft and there are GC's who are agressive right now building close to $200 a sq. ft.  (Email us if you want better pricing

What's your pro forma for sellout?  How much a sq ft?

Are you tracking whats going through approvals right now?

Do you have a handle on what's under construction and how is that effecting our pricing?

Whats your digital strategy for marketing these units?

I saw you used this broker last time (Bring up their last project and know the stats on it), are you working with them again?  Why or why not?


   Once you start to establish a baseline of credibility now you can start to talk about some of the things you are doing for other developers you're working with.  How you're helping them.  How you are driving sales for other customers.  If you lead with that, you have a very high chance of turning the developer off.

Beyond themselves, what do developers care about?  $.  Not in a greedy way but in a business way.  They are developing to make money so how can you help them as a broker make more money? 

-Getting them the highest price per sq. foot for their units 

-Providing them research on the market so they can price right.  Get in the conversation with them.

-Introducing them to GC's who are reputable and aggressive with their pricing so they can lower their costs.

-Be prepared to negotiate fees with them

-Have a smart and advanced digital marketing plan that you can bring to the table.  Most developers are not savvy on how to market today, become a digital marketing expert and be the go to source for selling out their buildings.

Below is a video on how you can use BLDUP as a residential broker to level up your multi family business.

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