If I walk into a new development building with a buyer in today's market, we will be treated like royalty. It's pretty much standard practice to be offered refreshments and the occasional bite to eat.
To set their development apart from the rest, the developers at 211 E 51st St are offering a hosted complimentary, personalized luncheon for small groups of buyers' brokers. The developer is inviting groups of brokers over for a catered lunch in the model apartment at the building. One of the reasons why the developer has chosen this method of promotion rather than just the typical open house set up is that this format requires the buyer's broker to take a little more initiative to RSVP to the event. I'm assuming this effort to RSVP and the actual luncheon will create a lasting memory of the building and will keep it at the top of the buyer's broker's minds when they are speaking to prospective buyers.
The luncheons have been lucrative as they have created more potential leads for the developer.
Buying in a new development has become increasingly tricky in the past six months. Financing guidelines have made it much harder for buyers to qualify for loans. A new development has to do everything they can to set their development apart from the crowd. Luncheons will attract the hungry broker looking to kill two birds with one stone, previewing a new property and also getting something to eat along the way. But buyers are worried about prices right now and if that development is still holding tightly to the peak pricing of 2007 and 2008 it is going to make it very difficult for them to get any buyers in regardless of what they are doing to entice brokers.