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National Multifamily Corp. is one of the newer players in New York City metro area commercial real estate market. Headquartered in Rye Brook, New York, the company recently celebrated its first anniversary in business, promoting itself as “your go-to source for buying and selling multifamily and mixed-use properties in New York and Connecticut.”

Matt Cawley, National Multifamily’s founder and president, launched the company after working for roughly eight years as a commercial broker dealing with multifamily and mixed-use properties.

“I was working for a company that was Boston-based and I was the whole New York and Connecticut operations for them,” he recalled. “Geographically, we were very different – and it made sense to go off on my own at that time. It’s worked out very well ever since.”

Becoming an entrepreneur was a new experience for Cawley and he admitted the launch period “certainly had ups and downs to it.” But he acknowledged that having “a great client base and a great following to begin with” helped to make the switch to being his own boss so much easier to achieve.

“We broker any five-plus multifamily are mixed-use in Connecticut, or New York City and Westchester County and above,” he said about the properties in his focus. In this region, multifamily properties – either as a standalone apartment building or a mixed-use property with a ground-level retail capacity – are very popular.

“I’d say it is a seller’s market because of an extreme lack of inventory that’s on the market,” he continued. “Anything that is well priced goes immediately, often in all-cash deals – which was not the case in the preceding five years.”

However, elevated interest rates have resulted in some properties experiencing a dilution in value.

“On the flip side, it’s also a buyers’ market because they’re able to get buildings at a discount of what their peak was last year,” he said, adding the buyers in this market.

Unlike many brokers focused on Connecticut’s “Gold Coast” of wealthy towns along the shoreline, Cawley is striking his own gold in the state’s grittier urban markets including Bridgeport, New Britain and New Haven. From his experience, Cawley has plumbed investor interest in properties within these cities.

“Number one is they see the growth potential,” he said. “For example, Bridgeport is an area where I’ve been working for a very long time and I’ve seen those investments in the city itself just continue to grow, both in value and how the city is evolving and developing and building out the downtown.”

Cawley is planning to place a greater focus on Connecticut in the coming months – he’s already expanding to the center of the state with deals in the works within Hartford County.

“New York has a lot of legislative risk at the moment with the potential Good Cause Eviction bill that is currently in the state assembly,” he said. “And so, Connecticut is sort of a safe haven for a lot of New Yorkers to come to and seek out investments in property.”

An earlier version of this article appeared in the Westchester and Fairfield County Business Journal.