Welcome to Curbed NY's recaps of Bravo's Million Dollar Listing New York, where three young brokers, Fredrik Eklund, Michael Lorber, and Ryan Serhant, show the world what it takes to sell high-priced New York apartments. Check in each week for recaps by Eater NY's fearless nightlife editor Scott Solish. Episode air date: 3/21/2012.
It's MDL NYC Episode 3?Yeah You Know Me! This week, our tireless trio tries to impress developers with big sales, deals with co-star character drama, and bears down really, really hard to look good in their father's eyes. To the recap!
Crisis 1: Making a Good Impression In Gramercy
Let's start the day with a visit from Ryan's boss Eddie Shapiro, who tells Ryan that developer Maurice Mann is interviewing brokers for a new project in Gramercy Park. Score! Eddie tells Ryan that he better nail it, or else. Damn that Eddie is fierce. That's why he is the boss and Ryan is not.
Ryan heads down to Gramercy Park, which Ryan says is so exclusive that even Julia Roberts has an apartment there. You're so lurned, Ryan. Tell us more about New Amsterdam. The big project is 36 Gramercy Park East, which we all know is slowly going condo as soon as the rentals become available (i.e., when the old folks die). Maurice walks Ryan through the place, and they couldn't be more similar, right?
It's like Devito and Schwarzenegger in Twins. Anyway, the apartment is actually gorgeous, a 3BR, 3BA beauty overlooking the park. Maurice wants Ryan to explain why he should get the listing. Apparently Ryan's big sell is "international buyers," even though he spent a while last episode struggling to communicate with some of them. He wants to put the place on the market for $5 million and gets the listing. Yay.
With that done, Ryan gets his team fired up by telling them that their marketing work sucks. His assistant loves hearing that.
Not! The only reason she puts up with him is because she totes believes that this torture will land her a gig on True Life: I Work For a D Bag! But before that, they have to decide if they will have an open house. Ryan says yes. The team says no. Think, Ryan. Think! OK. Let's have an invitation only open house. GENIUS! They all agree. But on the day of the open house, it's raining, and we all know that brokers tend to melt in the rain. Ryan is bummed but determined to make the best of it. and even created a cocktail, the Gramercy Park Martini! He is on fire this week. The place is a hit, especially with Jasper, who is looking for a place for his uncle in Hong Kong. See, Maurice, Ryan does bring in the foreigners!
The buyer calls back as Ryan is getting acupuncture. This may be the start of an Asian fetish (see below) for Ryan. They are ready to make an offer. Nice. Ryan takes him to Justin Timberlake's Southern Hospitality. How impressive, Ryan.
Jasper's uncle offers $4.6 million in cash and won't budge, but Ryan calls in the offer and an order. Maurice wants more, and Ryan tells his counterpart to go get $4.75 all-cash from Jasper. That's an order! Will it work? It works. They have a deal! You see how brokers work? They make things up to get more money for themselves in commission. So classy! A job well done.
Crisis 2: How To Sell An Idea
Another week and another shot of Fredrik walking out of a shower and rubbing himself down. Enough.
Fredrik also has a meeting with a developer who is working on a site in Tribeca, which turns out to be our old friend 471 Washington. He goes to the construction site and meets Zach Vella, a busy developer, and tells him straight away that he wants to be the broker. Of course he does. And how is he going to land the deal? By wowing him with his knowledge of German glass manufacturers!
Sly dog! Fredrik says he can get all 12 units sold in four months, but Zach wants it done even sooner. Fredrik tells him he can do it with the full Fredrik team behind the project. But bad news?Zach doesn't want to pay full commission. He offers only 2.5 percent to Fredrik and a wee bit more to the buyer's agent. Fredrik is not happy.
But he accepts the offer. Of course he does. Important lesson: NEVER PAY THE FULL COMMISSION. EVER. We have learned that no broker will ever walk away from a deal over a little commission, so hammer them with it every time and dare them to walk away. DARE THEM!
More Fredrik naked time, this time at the gym.
There must be a quota for these shots. Anyway, he keeps working even in the tub and demands that his team get cracking on the materials for the new project. They all meet at the architect's office and again, Fredrik is not happy, telling them that everything is behind schedule. It's time to crack some skulls so they can get to the open house.
It works: they get the materials just in time for the open house. The team goes into high-speed mode, and Fredrik has a brief panic while the rendering is rushed down in a cab. It arrives and Fredrik is happy!
Let's sell! The brokers come and the tour begins. Fredrik is wowing them and making the construction site really sizzle. But uh oh, Ryan shows up and he won't put on a construction hat. We haven't seen drama like this since Brenda and Kelly battled for Dylan! Ryan interrupts Fredrik's tour and tells his fellow brokers that the building is in Chinatown. He also suggests that he would offer General Tso's chicken to all buyers, because uh, he's RAYCESS. Think he would have used that line with Jasper? Of course not.
Anyway, Fredrik explains that this is definitely Tribeca and is ready to murder Ryan. We don't blame him.
But what happens next? You have to wait until next week, but here's a hint. Fredrik sold every unit in the place.
Crisis 3: Desperate For A Deal
It's the world's most feeble broker, who is still at Cipriani working on a deal to sell the entire 1055 Park Avenue. Michael leaves the table and heads into the kitchen to call the listing agent, because when you are a power broker like him, you do what you please. But bad news, two of the units are in contract already, and Michael attempts to calm himself down and show his co-broker how serious he is by pulling out his own hair.
That's it, baby, don't sweat under pressure. Although much more of this and you'll need more than fake teeth! But you know what he must be feeling?he'll never get a deal!
Michael heads back to, where else, Harry Cipriani to break the news to his dad that he can't make a sale. His dad reassures him that he can do this, because, well, watch and learn why.
Knowledge of buildings? This ain't architectural history, Pops. This is Million Dollar Listing! Take your building knowledge and sing it to a grad student. Still, it makes Michael feel ready to get back to work.
And he does! He hops back into his car and heads up to a showing at 1055 Park. In the car, he is floored when his driver Tom says he knows what Namibia is.
Maybe this could be a show: the driver teaches Michael about life while in an oversized car. Call it Driving a Spoiled Broker. Call Andy Cohen. Anyway, Michael is all fired up because he has all of the building facts memorized, just like his Daddy told him to. Will this work?
The buyer's broker is practically asleep on her feet during the showing. Not a good sign. Just tell her the price, dude. We don't have all day. The $6,000,000 ask is more than the buyer wants to spend, but Michael tells her to throw in an offer.
While he waits, he pays a trip to a dermatologist. Why? Because he has hyperhydrosis, also known as excessive sweating. He gets botox shots twice a year to treat it. This is what it looks like.
Fake teeth, the sweats, and most likely a gas condition that will be revealed in Episode 4. We can't believe this guy is still single. Now that he's not sweating so bad, he's ready to hear the offer on 1055 Park. But bad news, they are only willing to offer $5.2 million. Michael almost snaps his pen in half and let's her know that "this isn't a Memorial Day sale at Bloomingdales." AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Good one. She mentions that it would be all cash. Mike decides to call the developer and let him know the offer. They want to counter at $5.5 million, but Michael takes it upon himself to tell her it's at $5.7 million. Will this work? They counter at $5.6 million and Michael takes the deal. What? He did it? No way. So what if it was chopped more than a million dollars. Michael did it.
· Official site: Million Dollar Listing NY [Bravo]
· Million Dollar Listing NY Coverage [Curbed]