Corcoran associate broker Paulette Koch got hooked on real estate early—her father worked in the business and piqued her interest with his tales of acquiring brownstones and interacting with his colorful clients. Koch eventually followed in his footsteps in Florida, where 25 years ago she launched her own firm in Palm Beach.
With single-minded determination, Koch became known as the go-to agent for some of the region’s most affluent denizens—including Jones Apparel Group founder and philanthropist Sidney Kimmel, whose estate she sold for more than $80 million.
Her success inspired Corcoran to acquire her firm in 2003. Today, the award-winning and top-selling Koch Team includes her son, Dana, who has worked with his mother for the past 14 years, and daughter, Candice, a luxury marketing specialist who recently relocated from Manhattan to Palm Beach to join the “family business.”
Koch talks to INHABIT about the synergy of working with family, the keys to marketing estate properties and her love of living in Palm Beach.
INHABIT: What attracted you to real estate and how did you get your start?
Koch: I started my practice in 1981 and was serious about learning the business and honing my skills from the beginning. It is an ongoing process as every transaction is different and I carefully listen and learn daily. It is a stimulating business that never gets old!
INHABIT: What is it like to work with your son?
Koch: There is an exceptional synergy between my son and me. We both have so much knowledge about our market and care so much about what we do. We value each other’s judgment and really care about our clients. We want our clients to come away saying that this is the best real estate experience they have ever had. We have a great team supporting us, so we can spend the proper time with our buyers and sellers. We have a true passion for what we do.
INHABIT: What are your favorite kinds of properties to show and why?
Koch: I love the challenge of selling large estate properties. These are the biggest personal investments for many, and they look for a broker who is fully equipped to handle that type of transaction. There are so many strategy details, facts, figures, keen negotiation skills and nuances necessary to accomplish these kinds of transactions which I find most challenging.
INHABIT: As an expert in this area, what tips would you give for both buyers and sellers of notable properties?
Koch: I emphasize to sellers that “correct pricing” is the most important element in the marketing process in order to maximize an asset. For buyers, I like to educate them about the nuances in the marketplace, so they are ready to make an informed decision when we find the “right” property to purchase. I ask them to keep an open mind and let me guide them through the process.
INHABIT: What’s one thing you’ve learned that’s changed your perspective on life?
Koch: Never love anything too much that can’t love you back.
INHABIT: Your home wouldn’t be your home without…
Koch: …it being filled with the love of my children, grandchildren and friends. I live in the estate area of Palm Beach and love it. I own a Wyeth Regency-style home that is crisp, clean and transitional in design. I love that it is so comfortable and warm and surrounded by beautiful gardens by Mario Nievera and only two houses away from the ocean to enjoy the sunrise and walks along the beach.