Michael Chen

Michael Chen

Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker

Representing sellers and buyers with enthusiasm and pride, Michael has been working with investors from all around the world and helping them make wise buying decisions in New York City.

From assisting buyers looking for a home or investment property to managing a new development on-site sales office. Michael understands the need for hands on attention and service. His team conducts geographical research and analysis to provide his clients with real estate properties that best match their needs. His reputation and professionalism have earned him a steady stream of referrals from clients.

Michael began his real estate career as a commercial broker and he has earned recognition on both local and international levels. In recognition of his contributions to the real estate community, Michael has been interviewed by Crain’s New York, The Real Deal Magazine, The Observer and CNBC’s REALTY CHECK, and he has published numerous Real Estate articles in Chinese periodicals.

Before coming to the United States, Michael spent his youth in Taiwan, Guam and Spain. Prior to joining the Real Estate Industry, Michael was a Residential Mortgage Wholesale Manager.

Whether buying or selling, contact Michael today to fully explore your possibilities in the real estate market. Look to Michael as your Real Estate Resource!

我是 Michael Chen 陳, 來自臺灣, 己在紐約居住了30多年. BOND New York Properties 是美國紐約曼哈頓最大的非加盟式地產公司, 在曼哈頓擁有五處分公司和旗下有四百多位經紀為您服務. 我的服務項目包括紐約住家買賣, 為海外買家出租管理, 投資商業樓, 建地合作及承包銷售, 租售商業店面/辨公室. 歡迎您來咨詢

BOND New York Properties 高效率的房源系統可以在最短時間為您找到適合的地區和房子, 專業的資訊可以為為您提供最好的建議而作出適當的投資. 歡迎您來咨詢.

Sold Listings

Address Type Beds Baths Price Date
350 West 42ND ST., #7l Condo 1 1 $1,275,000 03/2020
229 Edgecombe Avenue, #1 Apartment 2 2 $1,350,000 03/2020
216 East 47th Street, #5A Condo 1 1 $995,000 03/2020
150 West 56th Street, #2094 Condo 1 1 $960,000 03/2020
300 East 64th Street, #14B Apartment 1 1 $980,000 03/2020
148 East 19th Street, #2c Condo 1 1 $675,000 03/2020
101 West 24TH Street, #6H Condo 1 1 $1,635,000 03/2020
216 East 47th Street, #17A Condo 1 1 $770,000 03/2020
200 East 28th Street, #6D Condo 1 1 $468,000 03/2020
188 East 64th Street, #1805 Apartment 1 1 $872,500 03/2020
112 West 56th Street, #PH Condo 2 3 $1,750,000 03/2020
306 E 82ND ST., #1 Condo 3 3 $1,770,000 03/2020
160 East 22nd Street, #6B Condo 1 1 $1,349,000 03/2020
550 Vanderbilt Avenue, #228 Condo Studio 1 $645,000 03/2020
101 West 24TH Street, #8H Condo Studio 1 $1,235,000 03/2020
124 West 23rd Street, #3B Condo 1 1 $1,295,000 03/2020
11-35 45th Avenue, #4H Condo Studio 1 $520,000 03/2020
15 Hudson Yards, #36A Condo 2 2.5 $5,120,000 03/2020
112 West 56th Street, #PH Condo 2 2 $2,000,000 03/2020
1600 Broadway, #6G Apartment 2 2 $1,750,000 03/2020
1600 Broadway, #18F Apartment Studio 1 $680,000 03/2020
1600 Broadway, #11E Apartment 1 1 $830,000 03/2020
550 Vanderbilt Avenue, #503 Condo 1 1 $872,000 03/2020
550 Vanderbilt Avenue, #411 Condo Studio 1 $650,000 03/2020
325 Lexington Avenue, #11 Condo 1 1 $1,275,000 03/2020
322 West 57th Street, #47S Condo Studio 1 $2,100,000 03/2020
261 West 25th Street, #2A Apartment 1 1 $1,225,000 03/2020
261 West 25th Street, #5E Apartment 1 1.5 $1,390,000 03/2020
261 West 25th Street, #5A Apartment 1 1 $1,300,000 03/2020
261 West 25th Street, #4C Apartment 2 2 $2,120,000 03/2020
261 West 25th Street, #3C Apartment 2 2 $2,100,000 03/2020
261 West 28th Street, #PHC Condo 2 2 $3,100,000 03/2020
247 West 46th Street, #304 Apartment Studio 1 $755,000 03/2020
150 West 56th Street, #6405 Condo Studio 1 $1,450,000 03/2020
140 East 56th Street, #3H Condo 1 1 $700,000 03/2020
121 East 22nd Street, #804 Condo 1 1 $1,700,000 03/2020
18 West 48th Street, #14B Apartment 1 1 $1,335,000 03/2020
15 William Street, #27B Apartment 1 1 $1,150,000 03/2020
1 West End Avenue, #8E Apartment 1 1 $1,750,000 03/2020
1 West End Avenue, #9E Apartment 1 1.5 $1,850,000 03/2020
1 West End Avenue, #8L Apartment 1 1.5 $1,595,000 03/2020

Rented Listings

Address Type Beds Baths Price Date
2296 2ND AVE., #3 Apartment 2 1 $2,900 03/2020
217 East 7th Street, #2 Condo 2 1 $3,200 03/2020
468 W 23RD ST., #3F Condo 1 1 $4,000 03/2020
101 West 24TH Street, #8H Condo 1 1 $5,000 03/2020
11-35 45th Avenue, #4H Condo Studio 1 $2,350 03/2020
15 Hudson Yards, #36A Condo 2 2.5 $12,000 03/2020
322 West 57th Street, #55F Condo 2 2.5 $9,500 03/2020
1600 Broadway, #18F Apartment Studio 1 $3,500 03/2020
1600 Broadway, #11E Apartment 1 1 $4,200 03/2020
550 Vanderbilt Avenue, #503 Condo 1 1 $3,450 03/2020
550 Vanderbilt Avenue, #406 Condo 1 1 $3,490 03/2020
325 Lexington Avenue, #11D Condo 1 1 $4,250 03/2020
325 Lexington Avenue, #7A Condo Studio 1 $3,100 03/2020
322 West 57th Street, #47S Condo 2 2 $8,000 03/2020
300 East 64th Street, #14B Apartment 1 1 $3,750 03/2020
261 West 25th Street, #5A Apartment 1 1 $5,150 03/2020
261 West 25th Street, #2A Apartment 1 1 $5,100 03/2020
240 E 46TH ST., #2D Condo 2 1 $3,250 03/2020
200 East 32nd Street, #18B Apartment 3 3 $6,650 03/2020
160 East 22nd Street, #6B Condo 1 1 $5,100 03/2020
150 West 56th Street, #2909 Condo 1 1 $3,350 03/2020
150 West 56th Street, #2904 Condo 1 1 $3,490 03/2020
135 West 52nd Street, #23A Apartment 2 5 $6,900 03/2020
121 East 22nd Street, #804 Condo 1 1 $5,500 03/2020
101 West 24TH Street, #6H Condo 1 1 $5,100 03/2020
99 John Street, #819 Apartment 1 1 $3,350 03/2020
24 W 45TH ST., #8 Condo 2 2 $6,000 03/2020
1 West End Avenue, #8L Apartment 1 1.5 $5,500 03/2020


Published 05/08/2013 - By Sales in the City


The Real Deal

Published 12/01/2012 - By The International Squad

The international squad

A look at go-to NYC brokers specializing in different countries around the world

December 01, 2012 
By Katherine Clarke

Foreign interest in New York real estate is at an all-time high, thanks in part to the continuing debt crisis in Europe and growing wealth in countries such as Brazil. But for foreigners, navigating the New York City market alone can be daunting.

Instead of going it alone, international buyers often enlist New York brokers with ties to their home countries to help in their search for the perfect property. Brokers say many buyers prefer to work with a professional who speaks their language, knows their customs and understands how business is done both at home and in the U.S.

In July, The Real Deal looked at the dos and don’ts of working with some of the most active groups of international buyers. This month, we look at some of the new New York City brokers who have become go-to agents for specific groups from around the globe.



Sherri Xiaolan (Shang) and Michael Chen

When it comes to dealing with Chinese buyers, no broker is better known than the Corcoran Group’s Carrie Chiang.

Chiang, a Shanghai native fluent in all major Chinese dialects, famously arranged the $100 million financing with a Hong Kong consortium that enabled Donald Trump to purchase the land for his Trump Riverside South project.

But several other brokers have been looking to follow Chiang’s example, including Douglas Elliman’s Sherri Xiaolan and Bond New York’s Michael Chen. They are both carving out a niche among Chinese buyers, who reportedly spend $9 billion on residential real estate in the U.S. each year.

Sherri Xiaolan Shang

Xiaolan first came to New York to become an opera singer 18 years ago after studying at the Chinese Conservatory of Music in Beijing. “I had the dream of singing opera at the Metropolitan Opera House,” she told TRD, but found that “there was too much competition.”

Xiaolan, who is fluent in Mandarin and Cantonese, started as a rental agent and commercial broker at Dwelling Quest, the brokerage that merged with Century 21 New York Metro in 2006, but soon began concentrating on residential sales. She joined Elliman three years ago. Today, over 90 percent of her clients are Chinese.

Xiaolan said she has connections to some wealthy Chinese buyers. Her former music school classmate is Peng Liyuan, the wife of Xi Jinping, who took over as China’s new leader last month. Her buyers often purchase apartments in bulk, she said.

She has done deals with Chinese buyers at the Setai Fifth Avenue at 400 Fifth Avenue and at the Sheffield on West 57th Street, where some of her clients have purchased several units.

A lot of the buyers she’s represented are investors who don’t even show up for the closing.

“I take a picture and send them the floor plan,” she said. After the purchase, Xiaolan procures a tenant to rent the unit. “I am a full-time nanny,” she joked.

Michael Chen

Meanwhile, Taiwan-born Chen has been busy developing Bond’s connections to Asian buyers. Last year, he spearheaded the launch of a Chinese-language section on the brokerage’s website and embarked on a campaign to introduce the brokerage and the New York market to Chinese-speaking buyers overseas.

As a result, Chen said 70 percent of his business now comes from Asian clients, the majority of whom are Chinese.

Chen came to the U.S. in the 1980s when he was in his early twenties. For six years, he packaged mortgages on behalf of housing lender IndyMac to sell to small-size banks and mortgage brokers.

Then he was approached by a friend who runs a real estate firm in the city and “was looking for a bilingual Asian to work with him to capture the Asian market,” Chen said. But in 2008, Chen moved to Coldwell Banker Commercial, and roughly two years ago he switched to the residential side of the business.

These days, he travels to Asia regularly and hosts groups of Asian apartment hunters in New York to drum up business. He recently closed a deal for a two-bedroom apartment at 322 West 57th Street on behalf of a Chinese buyer for slightly over $2 million.

Co Star Group

Published 03/14/2012 - By Kunskapsskolan USA Leases 15,000 SF in NYC


Kunskapsskolan USA Leases 15,000 SF in NYC

Swedish School Signs 10 Year Deal on Delancey
March 14, 2012
Sweden’s Kunskapsskolan Schools leased 15,000 square feet at 38 Delancey St. in New York City. Innovate Manhattan, a charter middle school that includes grades 5 through 8, is the company’s first leased school in the U.S. 

The building on Delancey is a 16-story, mixed-use building constructed in 2005 on the Lower East Side in the Soho submarket. 

Michael Chen of Bond New York represented the landlord in the deal. Peter Braus of Lee & Associates NYC represented the tenant.

National Real Estate Investor

Published 03/07/2012 - By Lee & Associates Negotiates 10-Year Lease for School


Lee & Associates Negotiates 10-Year Lease for School

NEW YORK CITY—Lee & Associates NYC, representing Sweden’s Kunskapsskolan schools, negotiated a 10-year lease for 15,000 sq. ft. on the third floor at 38 Delancey Street on the Lower East Side. Innovate Manhattan, a charter middle school, which includes grades 5 through 8, is the company’s first leased school in the U.S.

According to Peter Braus, managing principal of Lee NYC, who brokered the deal for Kunskapsskolan, the Stockholm-based company operates 34 schools in Sweden and in the United Kingdom.

In September of last year, Innovate Manhattan Charter School opened in New York City Community School District 2 in Manhattan. The school initially served 132 students in 6th and 7th grades, where it now serves approximately 198 students in 6th through 8th grades. Innovate Manhattan provides a unique program for personalized education aligned to New York State standards and best practices, based on the Kunskapsskolan Education (KED) program. In November of 2010, the State University of New York Board of Trustees voted to approve the application to establish the Innovate Manhattan Charter School.

Michael Chen of Bond New York represented the landlord.

New York Observer

Published 11/29/2011 - By All of New York Becomes Chinatown for Luxury Buyers

All of New York Becomes Chinatown for Luxury Buyers

Good light, good views, good numbers. (Eileen Hsu)

An attractive young woman in a dark pantsuit is pacing the edges of demolished urban lot, chanting quietly and gently tossing grains of vodka-soaked rice while development executives looked on appreciatively, smiling beneath their ceremonial hard hats as an ancient ritual is performed on the site of their newest project.

If the scene sounds bizarre, it is also almost surely a glimpse into the future of New York City real estate

“Everyone can benefit from good energy,” said Eric Benaim, President of Modern Spaces, whose company has enlisted the services of “Certified Feng Shui Consultant” Laura Cerrano of Feng Shui Long Island to advise them on every facet of the design and construction of Vista Court, a 15-story residential building on Purves Street just south of Northern Boulevard. But while Mr. Benaim might very well be correct, every trend in city real estate would point to the fact that Modern Space’s decision to feng shui its newest project is being made with explicit intent to attract the most sought after buyer in today’s market; the Chinese.

Roughly $30 billion was invested in New York City real estate during the last year alone, making it the premier city in the world in that category, outpacing London, Tokyo, Paris and Hong Kong. A vast amount of that investment capital came from overseas, with European, Pacific Rim and South American investors, but Chinese investors are widely believed to be leading the way.

According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, since 2001 the relative value of the Chinese Yuan to the US dollar posted an increase of almost 23%, a figure that demonstrates both the plummeting buying power of the U.S. economy and the surging power of Chinese consumers. Simply put, New York City has never come cheaper to a foreign investor like it does now to the Chinese.

“International buyers keep our market alive,” says Amy Williamson, Vice President of sales for Prodigy Network, an international real estate company. “Whether it’s welcomed locally or not, it’s a fact of this global economy.”

What has become important is the skill set required to attract, understand and better serve the potential Chinese buyers that are in the market, flocking to New York in droves. Those skills are especially important in a market as deep and convoluted as New York City’s, where even lifelong locals have found themselves lost in the sheer volume of geographic choices and uniquely local, bureaucratic minutiae.

“New York City has always been a favorite of Asian Investors, like the Japanese in the 80’s and so forth,” explains Michael Chen, an Asian market specialist at real estate firm BOND New York.

Mr. Chen is referring to the boom of Japanese investment into New York City real estate during the 1980s and early 90s that was characterized by the 1989 purchase of a 51 percent interest in Rockefeller Center for $846 million (in cash) by the Tokyo-based Mitsubishi Estate Company, a deal that set off a mini-panic for those in fear of Japan’s growing comparative power.

Although that era of anxiety dissipated as the American economy rebounded (Rockefeller Center was re-acquired in 1995 by a partnership led by David Rockefeller and Goldman Sachs), the New York City real estate market continued to rely rather heavily on investment from foreign buyers, especially from Europe, where the climbing value of the newly-minted Euro made Big Apple pied-a-terres a “must have” for wealthy jetsetters

“International buyers have been an enormous part of the New York real estate for decades,” agrees Ms. Williamson who pointed to the positive sustaining force that European buyers have had on SoHo since the late 1980’s.

The spotlight that formerly shone brightest on the European purchaser of pied-a-terres has been filled by the Chinese buyer—buyers who have not so much stepped forward to steal attention and sale but rather who have had that spotlight thrust upon them as the European actor stepped back from the spotlight in the face of financial collapses in Greece, Spain, Ireland and other members of the “Eurozone.”

“These Asian investors aren’t suddenly buying that much more, the global economy just changed the numbers to show a dramatically greater amount of them,” Mr. Chen said.

But whether it is an illusion by comparison, or a full-scale stepping up of investment activity, the hard reality is that Chinese buyers are a dominant force in the New York City real estate market. Brokers throughout the city are learning daily what Chinese buyers want most and doing everything they can to offer it, putting the most appealing bow on that most au courant Chinese status symbol—a Manhattan luxury condo.

“People in China can’t buy financial products, so when the people who make money there look immediately to real estate outside China,” he explains. “There just aren’t a lot of other things for them to buy.

And both Mr. Chen and Ms. Williamson agree that the ability to understand the needs of Chinese buyers is a tool that they need in their metaphorical toolboxes to succeed in this new market where these particular buyers will need a broker that understands both their needs and the often-bizarre realities of New York City real estate.

“Neighborhoods and new construction are universal to foreign buyers from any continent,” says Ms. Williamson. “Apart from buyers looking for something specific like a townhouse, most international buyers are looking for newer construction. Especially branded real estate like W Residences or anything Trump.”

But while Chinese buyers will probably love ‘Trump SoHo,’ they also have distinctive needs from a stereotypical European buyer.

“Chinese buyers are often interested in feng shui, and there can be issues with numbers,” explains Ms. Williamson, alluding to Chinese belief system that there are “auspicious” (or lucky) and “inauspicious” (or unlucky) numbers, which can dictate which floor of a high-rise that they would chose to by into.

And that need to understand the needs of clients goes both ways according to Mr. Chen who has developed a system of working with potential Chinese buyers that relies heavily on spending an unusual amount of time with clients discussing their desires and matching them up best with specific neighborhoods and buildings they might not have been aware of as foreigners.

“I showed a property to potential Chinese buyer looking to be a landlord for long-term gain,” says Mr. Chen citing a recent example of his own experience. “He was very specific about what he wanted and where he wanted it. The guy had done his homework, I was very impressed.”

But, this being New York City, nothing is that easy and Mr. Chen taught his prepared client that lesson the hard way.

“I had to spend hours explaining rent control,” say Mr. Chen with a weary laugh.

So, standing in that Long Island City lot, watching Ms. Cerrano burn sage, bury red silk pouches and toss Smirnoff-soaked rice, one sees not just the modern embodiment of an ancient ritual, but a calculated prayer for the future of the most crucial real estate market in the world today

New York Observer

Published 11/15/2011 - By YUE 2011 Book

New York Observer

Published 11/15/2011 - By YUE 2011 Book - AD

New York Observer

Published 11/15/2011 - By YUE 2011 Book

The New York Times

Published 08/12/2011 - By A Second Home For Affluent Chinese

A Second Home for Affluent Chinese

Marilynn K. Yee/The New York Times

The boxy glass 15 Union Square West appeals to Chinese buyers, brokers say.


    WEALTHY buyers from mainland China, a rapidly expanding economy of 1.3 billion people, are increasingly turning to Manhattan for their luxury real estate purchases, brokers say.
Marilynn K. Yee/The New York Times

The building at 57 Reade Street will be marketed to Chinese buyers this fall.

In about two years, what was at first a trickle of inquiries has grown to a stream of  freshly minted high-net-worth Chinese businesspeople hunting for condominiums for $500,000 to $10 million and up.  The average purchase is a one-bedroom apartment for about $1.45 million, said Pamela Liebman, the chief executive of the Corcoran Group.

Most of these buyers are seeking apartments for personal use, either as pieds-à-terre or as housing for children studying in New York. The majority of the sales fall at the lower end of the luxury spectrum, but in one case a parent spent $20 million on an apartment for a daughter at college in  Manhattan, Ms. Liebman said.

In general, Chinese buyers prefer condos to co-ops. “It’s a fair challenge getting them to understand the co-op system,” said Neil Palmer, the chief executive of Christie’s International Real Estate, which last month opened an office in Hong Kong, adjacent to its auction house.

Most new buyers are not interested in properties as trophies, he said. “They focus on yes, I might want it for my own occupation, but they always ask where the investment rationale is for buying the property,” Mr. Palmer said.

Prices in New York are a draw, especially when compared with those in other cities where wealthy Asians might otherwise have invested. Luxury properties here are about $1,500 per square foot, while a comparable London flat is more than twice that, $3,600 per square foot, according to the Knight Frank/Citi Private Bank 2010 Wealth Report.  Comparable real estate in Hong Kong costs $2,000 per square foot; in Monaco, $4,300. Current exchange rates also work in favor of Chinese buyers. China’s rapid development means there is more money than ever to invest in the United States.  And newly relaxed banking regulations in mainland China make it easier for investors to move money out of the country, Mr. Palmer said.

“Foreign exchange restrictions have not been entirely lifted but loosened,” he said. “There is more ability to move funds offshore effectively and perfectly legally.”

The new Chinese buyers tend to prefer sleek glass boxes, like the Time Warner Center, that remind them of the gleaming new cities from which many of them come. Shlomi Reuveni, a senior managing director of Brown Harris Stevens Select, markets two such properties to Chinese buyers: the Laureate on the Upper West Side, and 15 Union Square West. A new building, 57 Reade, at Broadway and Reade Street in Lower Manhattan, will be pitched to the same customers when it goes on the market this fall.

According to Mr. Reuveni, these buildings have the amenities that wealthy Chinese are looking for, like swimming pools, fitness centers, concierge services, parking, pet spas and music rooms, along with high design and high-end finishes. The Laureate also has a 421A tax abatement that keeps common charges reasonable and enhances the perceived value.

“They gravitate toward high-end quality,” Mr. Reuveni said, “and the collective attributes of the buildings, aesthetics, design and the commitment to quality, give an image of everlasting value.”

Cash is the coin of the realm.  Brokers estimate that 50 percent to 75 percent of  transactions by Chinese in New York do not involve mortgages. Culturally, Asians are loan-averse, thinking that coming to the table with less than the asking price will reflect negatively on them, said Wei Min Tan, a principal of Castle Avenue Partners.

Some brokers are working to change that. The Corcoran Group plans to host a conference for prospective buyers in New York at which it will introduce them to bankers and initiate them into the process of obtaining a mortgage in the United States. Corcoran is owned by Realogy, which has a network of 24,000 agents in China under various companies — including ERA, Century 21, Sotheby’s and Coldwell Banker — who can refer clients to Corcoran agents in New York.

To circumvent the language barrier, the companies interviewed for this article have staff members who are Chinese speakers. Mr. Tan of the Castle Avenue Group speaks Cantonese, Mandarin and the Hokkien dialect. Bond New York recently added a Chinese language page to its Web site.

Feng shui and other cultural preferences are a consideration. Michael Chen, the director of Asian market development for Bond New York, noted, for example, that Asian buyers do not want to live on the fourth floor (associated with death because in some dialects the word rhymes with death) and prefer the eighth floor (associated with luck and prosperity).

Beyond New York’s financial advantage, the appeal to Asian buyers includes a large Chinese-speaking  community in Manhattan and in the outer boroughs, as well as a lack of suffocating pollution.

“The quality of life is better,” Mr. Tan said. “Work hours are better, and there is a better family and work/life balance.”

And for many newly wealthy buyers, Manhattan real estate also represents security.

“Socially, economically and politically,” said Mr. Reuveni of Brown Harris Stevens Select, “it is a safe haven that is a solid place to invest your money.”


Crains New York

Published 06/10/2011 - By Brokerage Seeks Chinese-Speaking Buyers


Brokerage seeks Chinese-speaking buyers

Bond New York launches a Chinese-language page on its website as it seeks to grow its brand in Asia; rivals opt to emphasize number of different tongues spoken.

June 10, 2011 1:30 p.m.

Founded in 2000, Bond is one of the few brokerages in the city to have content on their site in a foreign language. To help visitors quickly find their way to the page, a tab with Chinese characters has been added to the brokerage's home page. In Chinese, the page on Bond New York's site introduces the brokerage and its services, as well as the New York City real estate market.

“There are lots of Asian investors looking for property information who prefer to use their own language,” said Michael Chen, Bond's director of Asian market development, who suggested creating the page after hearing from his Asian clients about the need for it. “We have to put a message out there that tells them that we have the capability to serve them.”

Additionally, Bond said it is launching a Web marketing campaign in Chinese-speaking countries to connect folks overseas to the brokerage firm and the New York real estate market in general.

“We launched a Chinese-language section to better service this community, and we understand the importance of growing our brand within China, Taiwan, and other parts of the Pacific Rim,” said Noah Freedman, co-founder of Bond, which currently has 450 agents in six offices across the city. He notes that the Chinese population accounts for 5.4% of the city's population.

Bond is not the only brokerage to provide Web content in a foreign language. Prodigy Network, a marketing firm, has an option on its website that lets visitors switch the site to Spanish from English. Meanwhile, most brokerage firms have a feature on their website that allows visitors to find agents at the firm who are fluent in specific languages. The Corcoran Group's site, for example, allows clients to search for agents who speak a total of 29 foreign languages, ranging from Farsi to Norwegian. Halstead, meanwhile, lists speakers of 19 languages.

Some New York brokers warn that advertising in specific languages may be risky. Instead, they believe that being multi-lingual is useful enough to cater to clients overseas.

“We found by advertising in foreign languages you can unconsciously alienate certain cultures,” said Frances Katzen, a managing director at Prudential Douglas Elliman, who considered using that approach for one of her new developments in the past. She never launched a foreign language campaign for the project because she figured that by using Chinese or Japanese in ads she may be deterring other overseas buyers from purchasing units in a building.

“Languages are helpful when speaking to clients, but you have to stay open,” said Ms. Katzen, who has several European, Asian and Latin American clients currently looking for apartments in the city.


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