Property Grunt

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Pretty Girls in High Places

Growing up, I knew girls like Nicole John. They weren't just pretty, they were flames that drew all the guys. They were also a human tornado of mental and emotional issues. Using their feminine charms and looks, they left path of destruction littered with broken hearts, psychotic ex-boyfriends, bottles of vodka and lots and lots of drugs.

Somehow these girls turn themselves around by collecting an M-R-S degree at the end of their 4 years and marry a doctor or lawyer. There was one girl I knew who got engaged in college, yet treated her college experience like Vegas. What happened at college, stayed at college. Besides having a wild streak, her husband to be was living halfway around the world. Her fiance knew she was screwing around his back, but they still got married and had kids.

Nicole John will never ever be able to turn around.

Even before her demise, Herald Towers did not have the greatest reputation in the world. And it appears it is doing its part to keep it that way.

Ilan Nassimi is the unlucky man in the middle of this hell storm. Go to his Linkedin profile and you will see a list of accomplishments. His academic credentials include attending SUNY Stonybrook and Zicklin School of Business at Baruch. I do find it interesting that there is no mention of when or whether he graduated from these institutions.

He currently works as a Commercial Broker at Metropolitan Property Group and is the President and Owner of Llann Enterprises. What is Llan Enterprises exactly" It appears to be an amalgam of ventures which are the following

Third Degree Jean Company

Venture Capital & Private Equity industry

My take on Nassimi is that, assuming that he did graduate from these esteemed institutions, that he showed up ready to rock the job market. Problem was there were no jobs to rock. Whatever was out there was far and few and were going to the top tier graduates. Don't get me wrong. SUNY Stonybrook is a great school with an outstanding medical program. As far as business schools go, Zicklin is the best deal in New York City. Unfortunately, Manhattan is a brand centric society and with the economy the way it is, Wall Street's standards are higher and tighter.

So Mr. Nassimi decides to put his business skills to use. Gets a real estate license and gets entrepreneurial. And he parties. Parties very hard.

In its simplest form, a real estate broker makes money by taking a piece of the action from a transaction between a buyer and seller. It is the same wherever you go. How a broker acquire these deals is through their networks which can come from church, volunteering or friends. Judging from Mr. Nassimi's extracurricular activities, he was probably searching for deals through the Manhattan night life scene.

Baller Brokers like Mr. Nassimi are not uncommon. They are Type A personalities, who went Greek all through college. They often hit the hottest clubs and restaurants with a fistfuls of business cards and cash. They get an exclusive spot in the VIP section and make friends by dropping rolls of paper for bottle service. As the old adage goes, "You have to spend money to make money." When a baller broker blows an equivalent of one semester of tuition at NYU for one night, it shows that he has it going on. And when people see that he is a high roller, he attracts other high rollers. Bernie Madoff used a similar strategy by using his country club as a way to get new customers. In fact he was a master since everyone came to him in droves.

It is not a foolproof plan, however by using an exclusive social gathering as a way to qualify customers, they can land some pretty sweet deals. It is tantamount to the strategy I described regarding landing rich Chinese customers.

So what was Mr.Nassimi's motivation in inviting Nicole to an after hours party? Was it for a one night stand? Perhaps, but I believe it was purely for social and business purposes. Pretty girls like Nicole bring the boys in droves, particular boys with big bank rolls. There is no doubt she was probably one of many pretty girls invited back his apartment for the after hours party. And it does not hurt a man's reputation to be in the presence of beautiful women. How do you think Raffaello Follieri was so successful?

Just to being able to party on his level indicated that she had her own juice and with her family connections and money, it appeared she had a lot of it. Just a sip from her cup would have made Mr.Nassimi's position in the business world very strong.

As you may notice, I am not ragging on Mr. Nassimi. Professionally speaking, I applaud him for his efforts. He was doing what every young and hungry business man would do. If this accident never happened, there is no doubt that Mr. Nassimi would have made a name for himself.

Of course the future of these two is all speculation at this point.

A combination of unfortunate circumstances and an environment that was not conducive to good judgment has resulted in this horrible accident resulting in a tragic loss for a family. I am not unsympathetic to Mr. Nassimi.He will be hurting for awhile, but he should consider himself fortunate. He's still alive.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Oh Hell No!

As everyone knows, I have issues with Philadelphia. Here is something to add to the list.

Philly requiring bloggers to pay $300 for a business license


If you google Commercial Mortgages, you get a lot of stories, a lot of them bad.

I have heard chatter that it is so very difficult to get a commercial mortgage that I know of one broker who is moonlighting in another industry.

Further signs point to an L shaped recovery.

Yes, it sucks but at least we know what we are dealing with right now. More importantly it indicates where everything stands.

The one thing that stands is Cash is King. If you have enough paper, you have more leverage than most people and have more flexibility. People in that position who are real estate centric are right now looking and taking notes. Recoveries do not happen over night, so they have the luxury of waiting to see what is available at their price point.

The upcoming winter will be quite a show.

Friday, August 20, 2010

To Be The Shepard

When someone commits a social transgression against you. It hurts. It is especially painful when you made the effort to follow societal norms while that person has decided to ignore them. That pain releases in your head a cacophonous set of emotions which include rage and frustration. You feel like kicking ass and taking names. And of course if you are a normal person, which most of us are, you hold back and try to let it go. Until the next time it happens again.

Perhaps it is a sign of old age, but I find this cycle tiring and unnecessary. I desire now to get beyond that. And some recent news has come to my attention that reinforces that position.

It recently came to my attention that a former noisy and obnoxious neighbor recently sold his home and the evidence indicates that he had to engage in a short sale. He either could not hold onto it or the rapid deprecating value of his home was driving him nuts. Or it was a little bit from column A and column B.

A while back, I wrote about the awful tragedy of Annie Le and compared her murderer to an entitled miscreant that used to bully me in high school. It recently came to my attention he has the proud distinction of owning a home in an area where the housing market's prospects of recovery are between zero and negative 10. Due to this and many other factors effecting his finances, it is highly unlikely that we will ever cross paths again which is fine by me.

As much as I want to be the harbinger of justice, I realize that in certain situations it is not my place. Something else is in play that will deal with these cretins. It is also a strong reminder to myself that what has befallen these individuals can take me down too. Especially if I stray from my path.

Which is why any personal satisfaction has dissipated and replaced with a strong sense of humility and compassion.

Besides, life is very short. So why should I waste it on people who really don't matter to me? Why should give into tyranny when I can try for something so much better?

One should always stand up for themselves. But be aware when it is time to walk away and let nature take it's course. And have the fortitude to let go.

I mentioned the following quote in a previous entry. And I think it is more than appropriate to conclude this entry with it.

In the long run, every man will pay the penalty for this own misdeeds. The man who remembers this will be angry with no one, indignant with no one, revile no one, blame no one, offend no one, and hate no one.

-- Epictetus

Thursday, August 19, 2010

For those of you who are drunk

If this does not sober you up.

I have no idea what will.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


It is going to get hot.

Scarsdale has been in the news recently and not for the best of reasons. The link below will give you the rundown.

Honky Trek: Scarsdale?

The biggest development for Scarsdale is the Affordable Housing Plan. Recently there have been new developments for this plan.

Housing Implementation Plan Update

Housing Settlement

According to the August 13, 2010 Scarsdale Inquirer, Bill Ryan, who represents Scarsdale on the Board of Legislators "was disappointed" that the legislators were put out of the loop. In his opinion, the County Executive Office has locked them out and is dealing with the federal government directly.

It is understandable why the County Executive Office is maintaining a tight rein on this issue and making sure there are no nut huggers dragging them down. This is an extremely volatile issue that needs to be handled with kid gloves. The last they want is any more attention upon themselves, especially from the Federal Government.

There is one bit of information that has been brought to my attention which is at best a rumor but can't be ignored.

There is talk there is certain factions creating a work around for affordable housing in Westchester that satisfies the requirements and respects the sensibilities of the communities involved. The workaround is to build affordable housing in Somers.


Somers is not a Scarsdale. Which makes Somers more flexible and in certain minds more appropriate for affordable housing.

A major barrier to entry for this to occur is that there is no direct Metro North Service to Somers. If you want to commute to Somers from Manhattan, you need to either go to Katonah or Goldens Bridge.

Apparently Somers resistance towards an MTA line is due to this rumored plan to consolidate affordable housing in that town.

Whether it is true or not, none of this is going to end well. And those seven years are going to go very fast.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Yes. There will be a new season.

Among the many truths that have been confirmed to me this past year is that time is finite and bad things happen to good people.

Fortunately all is well with me and my family.

However it has made me think very closely about what the next stage of this blog will be.As I have stated before new developments have presented themselves to me which puts this blog on the lower priority list.

I really enjoy working on this blog and I do have plans on elevating it. It is just that there are other issues that I need to deal with at this time.

Monday, August 02, 2010

Where'd You Go?

It's been awhile since I last posted. What's my excuse? I've been busy.

Pretty lame huh?

Seriously. There have been a series of development in my life which I have had to address and which unfortunately has dropped this blog down the list of priorities.

I did promise some news and hear it is. I was recently contacted by a source who has been quite reliable in the past and has pointed me in the right direction with my posts. For last couple of years this source relocated to Shanghai for work. This source was now in China, Shanghai specifically and is now strongly considering pulling up stakes. I inquired why they would do that since China is where it's at?

The source responded with the following statement: China is tapped out.

Now, there have been reports that China is trying to reign itself in.

China Stocks Rise as Slower Economy Spurs Easier Policy Outlook

And there is still a huge demand for jobs in that country.
With Asian Industry Astir, More Job-Seekers Go East

Now this source has never been wrong in the past and I find this source quite knowledgeable.

If China's economy does implode, what will the flight to quality be like? One word.

I'll be back shortly folks. Thank you for your patience.