Paul Brennan has seen it all in his 40 years in the business. A Hamptons native, Brennan was mentored by legendary broker Allan Schneiderman; he then co-founded Braverman Newbold Brennan, later sold to Sotheby’s. In 1999, the year Brennan joined Douglas Elliman, he was instrumental in establishing the Peconic Bay Region Community Preservation Fund in 1999, which has collected more than $1 billion in revenue to preserve land in the five East End towns.
Where did you grow up? How long had your family lived there?
I’m a Bridgehampton local. My mom’s side has been here since 1640. My dad’s, relative newcomers, have been here since 1910.
How did you wind up in the Hamptons?
I’m the son of a potato farmer, and my maternal roots can be traced all the way back to the founding of Southampton in 1640. It’s in my DNA!
What did you do before you were an agent?
I attended Mercy High School in Riverhead, and then went to Assumption College in Massachusetts. After college, I ventured out to Sydney, Australia, to play professional basketball with the Bankstown Bruins for two seasons. Otherwise, I’ve spent most of my life living and working here in my beloved hometown.
What do you like to do in your spare time?
I’m fortunate enough to be doing it! Real estate and showing up for my two children and the people I love.
If you weren’t an agent, what would be your dream job?
Wouldn’t it be wonderful to be a farmer who made money?
What are some of the best things about being an agent in the Hamptons?
It’s a real pleasure to be in a position to develop mutually beneficial relationships with wonderful people whom I otherwise would perhaps never get to meet.
What are some of the drawbacks of being an agent?
Unsatisfactorily attempting to build relationships with difficult people I wish I would never have to meet! Seriously, it’s a great life and I’m blessed to be able to work with the best people in the business.
What’s the best advice you ever got, personally or professionally?
Getting to the top is hard work, and 90 percent of a successful life is just showing up for it.
What do you think of the Hamptons real estate market right now?
Currently the real estate market is in a paradoxical state. The economic forecast has been positive and yet the buyers appear hesitant to forge ahead with confidence. Time will tell, but the Hamptons have historically been a strong market and I’m confident.
Do you think 2019 will be a good year in real estate? Why or why not?
I do think 2019 will be a good year. I feel there is a great deal of unrealized demand to coincide with more realistically adjusted prices. I’m sure there will come a point where the buyers will return with renewed vigor.