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Viewpoints: Ben Moss, Managing Broker/Principal, The Campins Company, Miami Beach

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Every week, we ask a Miami real estate professional for their thoughts on the top stories in Miami real estate.

This week, we talked with Ben Moss, the managing broker and principal of The Campins Company, a boutique real estate brokerage in Miami Beach. Moss began his real estate career investing in properties while he was a student at the University of Miami (where he graduated magna cum laude). Since co-founding The Campins Company, he has closed or overseen more than $500 million in sales and represented more than 325 professional athletes and entertainers with their residential real estate brokerage needs throughout the United States.
Miami Agent (MA): You specialize in the luxury market. This year, what is the most important quality luxury home buyers are looking for in a home? And has this changed from last year?

Ben Moss (BM): More than anything, what I find on the luxury side, whether it’s waterfront or not, is just to be in the right location within a certain neighborhood. If you’re on North Bay road on Miami Beach, you want to be in the part of North Bay road that has the water views. If you’re in Pinecrest, a more suburban area, you’d rather be in North Pinecrest, because it’s a little more prestigious than South Pinecrest with the configuration of the lots, the privacy and the proximity to other parts of Miami.
So whether it’s an island community, waterfront road or suburban community, I would say the “theme” is to have the best location in the best area.

There’s more competition this year, because the luxury market has continued to heat up, and there is more competition within that space – it’s all about prestige. Buyers before could get what they want a few years ago, but now you have buyers that feel like they should be able to get whatever they want for a certain price and it’s not necessarily there. I think people are more focused on that this year.
HA: Do you think agents can live without the MLS in Miami’s real estate market, or are the services it provides simply too important?

BM: I don’t think agents can survive without the MLS. It’s certainly the most important tool that we have to provide clients with market data. It has the lion share of closed sales – most deals are done through the MLS, so that’s a great resource for providing comparables to clients, but it’s not the only one. I will say that because of the seller’s market that we’re in, I think there are a lot more pocket deals, pocket listings and off-MLS sales that are happening.
The MLS is certainly the most important resource, but not the only resource. If you’re an agent in this market, and you’re only working deals through the MLS, then you’re probably missing some good opportunities for clients, especially buyers that you represent.

HA: The Campins Company is featured on the reality TV show, “Hot Listings Miami.” In what ways has the show been helpful toward your business?
BM: I see the show as a marketing tool. We may not have editorial control and we may not tell producers how to put certain things on air (they will use film and edit it, sometimes to their own advantage, not to my advantage or the people on the show), but the main thing, overall, is that we can paint a picture of the type of clients we deal with and the types of real estate that we deal with.

I think it’s just a marketing tool for our properties and our listings, and it generates more hits on our website, therefore more people are viewing our listings. It’s free advertising for our services as well, so it’s been a good thing overall.
People recognize the Campins name more, and we’ve received direct leads from people that saw the show and called us directly, whether to help them list their house for sale (which we’ve signed up several listings that way), and also from buyers who would like us to help represent them on the purchase of the new house as well. It’s been a nice benefit.