Up & Coming Agents To Know In Hamptons Real Estate: Mercedes Counihan

There are a lot of competitive industries on the East End, but none so intense as the real estate sector. Entering this world where millions of dollars are at stake may seem daunting and although most brokerages support new agents with mentoring and top-of-the-line marketing tools, it is still very difficult to break into the luxury real estate business. We asked some of the marketing departments of local brokerages if they’re seeing any superstars coming up and here’s who they said were the future rock stars of Hamptons real estate.

In this week’s series of Up & Coming Agents To Know, we featured Mercedes Counihan of Corcoran.

Mercedes Counihan of Corcoran

Mercedes, you’re local and grew up in Southampton. What advantage does that give you as a realtor on the East End? 

I feel very connected to the East End because my story began here and my knowledge of the area and what it has to offer, not to mention how much it’s changed over the years, helps with my insight and how I connect with my clients.

Your background is in education. How and why did you pivot into luxury real estate?

Yes, I have my MS in School Counseling and development and have spent most of my professional career working with children and adults  as a counselor or director. I feel my background in education helps with really understanding and listening to what people need and work really well with all personalities. I have always been interested in real estate and development. I was lucky enough to build my own home  as the general contractor from start to finish in my mid twenties so that hands-on experience made me love the process. I had to dive right into understanding building codes, permits, regulations and even the process of applying for my own variances. All the way down to the finishes and when I went on to building my second project my knowledge and what people would look for in a new home grew with me. I was paying attention to more detail and that made me realize that combining my love for helping people personally I could also integrate my love for real estate. The most important part is connecting with  people, communication and loyalty. Really understanding what people need and want during a transaction. There is so much emotion on both sides of a deal and the satisfaction for  making sure my clients feel supported and make it over the finish line.

Can you tell us about the general contract project that you built out into your own vision? Sounds like a natural progression into real estate as well.

My new construction build was something that I started as an investment. I had an opportunity to purchase some land and it went from there. I worked closely with my architect and a business partner and we began with looking at what styles and ideas worked for the area and the vision started to unfold. At the same time I decided to get my real estate license and so my love or learning and my love of the real estate business combined. I think what really helps me is I like to be connected to each piece of the process. No one really wants to deal with the Health Dept or stay on top of village codes etc and I have the utmost respect for everyone in each division. I make sure to know everyones name, etc.  There are alot of agents in a small area. You have to leave a positive impression. With Other Brokers, Contractors, inspectors and everyone you encounter.

You’re killing it by getting listings and putting them into contract. What’s your advice to sellers and buyers as the world opens up?

I think being a local and known for my work ethic and competitive nature  has given me the upper hand  with locals who have trusted me to get their properties sold.  I have been lucky to be getting deals closed quickly because that’s the way the market has positioned itself. Sellers are seeing such a huge return on homes and buyers who know what they want are willing to get the deals done at numbers that we haven’t seen before. Of course, this doesn’t last forever but it doesn’t leave much space for error. My thing is getting all the knowledge I can about each property and staying proactive with my due diligence so that I can make the deals seamless as possible. I also think referrals have helped me grow because it goes back to the work I’m willing to do and staying as humble as possible.  Being a broker is tougher than people think. I have so much respect for my co-workers and I make sure to learn a little something from every agent I encounter. This job doesn’t  turn itself off. There are sacrifices that I have to make. My family time takes a hit so without their support none of this could happen.

Are there any trends you are seeing post-pandemic that affect buying or selling properties on the East End?

I think the pandemic buying has subsided, but we will continue to see an increase in home sales. Right now mortgage rates have  taken a dip,  and  the lack of inventory keep driving the numbers. So my prediction is that the market will continue to be competitive and the East End will remain one of the most sort after locations

I’m  just came up on my second year as an agent making the 2021 Multi Million Dollar Club and I’m looking forward to a successful 2022!

Click here to learn more about Mercedes Counihan.

Ty Wenzel

Co-Publisher & Contributor

Ty Wenzel started her career as a fashion coordinator for Bloomingdale’s followed by fashion editor for Cosmopolitan Magazine. She was also a writer for countless publications, including having published a memoir and written features for The New York Times. She is an award-winning writer and designer who covers lifestyle, real estate, architecture and interiors for James Lane Post. Wenzel is also a co-founder of the meditation app for kids, DreamyKid, and the social media agency, TWM Hamptons Social Media.

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