About Designated Broker Solutions
Most states require that commercial and multifamily property management firms obtain a real estate broker's license in each state where it manages property. Even if your firm or an affiliate owns the properties, it likely needs to be licensed. How does your firm become licensed? It must have a licensed real estate broker become its Designated Broker, Broker of Record, Managing Broker, Qualifying Broker or Broker-in-Charge of your firm.
Unless an employee of your organization happens to already be licensed as a broker in the state where you manage, becoming licensed can require years of experience, hundreds of hours of education, and passing a difficult exam. Subsequently, your employee-broker must take continuing education courses and ensure the properties are following all real estate laws and regulations, on top of their normal every day duties!
Hiring an existing broker to “hang their shingle” with your company is an option, and they may represent that this alone will bring you into compliance. However, broker supervision requirements are state- specific and change constantly. If your Broker of Record is not providing adequate supervision to ensure you are in compliance, you can be found to be in violation of real estate licensing laws. Penalties can include fines, criminal charges and the suspension or revocation of your corporate license. If audited by the real estate commission, your ability to operate your business could be in jeopardy.
At Designated Broker Solutions, our goal is to bring you into compliance by affiliating your real estate firm with one of our licensed brokers, at an affordable rate. Your firm will become properly licensed and compliant in every state in which you operate. If a broker's license is the only thing keeping you from managing your own assets, this is your solution, and you'll be surprised at how affordable it is. We take the burden from your shoulders by becoming the Broker of Record on the property, allowing you to simply focus on your business.
If you are a commercial transactional broker, we can facilitate closing transactions in states you are not licensed. As your co-broker, we don't compete for your business, you remain the primary contact for your client, and you keep the majority of your commission. Our extensive license coverage and competitive rates make us the ideal partner to close your next deal.
Designated Broker Solutions was founded in 2018 by Kristen Zimmerman after she was faced with the daunting task of obtaining firm licenses for her former company’s rapidly expanding property management division. The task proved incredibly time consuming, expensive and required a great deal of ongoing oversight. Once a broker of record was found, much to her surprise and disappointment, these hired brokers were doing nothing more than hanging their shingle and collecting a check. It was clear they cared little about the business, its compliance, or its ability to continue operating legally. After leaving the company, Kristen decided to pursue her licensure in every state, offering clients a path to true real estate compliance. By partnering with Designated Broker Solutions, our clients become licensed quickly, achieve compliance with state rules and regulations, and can get back to running their business while Designated Broker Solutions ensures they are compliant.
Kristen Zimmerman has been active in commercial real estate for 20 years; representing owners, buyers, sellers, tenants, landlords, property managers, lenders and borrowers in markets throughout the U.S. Kristen has extensive experience in all aspects of commercial real estate transactions, and specializes in multifamily property management, asset management and investments.
The majority of her career was spent with Oakwood Worldwide, as its Vice President of Investments. Kristen also founded Sunset Bay Investments LLC, a private real estate investment and consulting firm. Sunset Bay Investments offered value-add multifamily investment opportunities to select high net worth investors and provided consulting services to its national and international real estate clients. Consulting assignments included sourcing and closing multiple U.S. property acquisitions by a Singapore-based pension fund, and recruiting and training acquisition and asset management teams to oversee a U.S. portfolio across key target markets.
Real Estate Sales and Financing Experience
Throughout her extensive career, Kristen has negotiated and closed in excess of $4 billion in real estate transactions. Highlights of her career include the 2006 $1.6 billion sale of Oakwood's real estate portfolio in an UPREIT transaction, its 2014 joint venture with an international investor and the 2017 sale of the 50+ year old company to a foreign buyer.
Asset Management Experience
As Asset Manager for Oakwood’s U.S. portfolio of more than 50 multifamily and office properties located across the country, she was responsible for the performance and compliance of the company’s diversified portfolio.
As a licensed broker in multiple states, Kristen has in-depth knowledge of national and state-specific real estate rules, regulations and ordinances. She is continuously pursuing obtaining her broker’s license in new states.
Kristen is currently a licensed real estate broker in 25 states and the District of Columbia: Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, Washington and West Virginia.
Kristen earned her bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Humboldt State University and her master’s degree in Business Administration from California State University, Northridge.
Jon Nesbitt has been in the commercial real estate field for 25 years. His affiliations include Cushman & Wakefield, Jones Lang LaSalle, Cushman Realty Corporation, Grubb & Ellis, and Ten-x (formerly Auction.com).
Leasing Brokerage Experience
As an office leasing broker in Los Angeles, he represented tenants and landlords in 89 transactions for clients including Avis, Disney, Maxicare, Mutual of Omaha, NBC, Pacific Bell, Public Storage, R&T Development, Warner Bros., and Texaco. The two signature agency assignments of which he was a part were 801 Tower at 801 S. Figueroa in downtown Los Angeles and 10 Universal City Plaza in Universal City. The 801 Tower assignment included pre-leasing the building during ground-up development through completion of the project, while 10 Universal City Plaza saw the successful subleasing of 350,000 square feet of surplus office space at Getty Oil’s world HQ on behalf of Texaco (resulting from Texaco’s acquisition of Getty Oil).
University of Southern California - Bachelor of Science, Business Administration , Real Estate & Finance
Pepperdine University - Masters in Business Administration, Investments
Jon is licensed as a real estate broker in 17 states: Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and Wisconsin.
Investment Sales Brokerage Experience
In his career, Jon has sold over 200 commercial properties and notes with an aggregate value in excess of $2.7 billion across the United States, including disposition of 11.2 million square feet of office space, 5.8 million square feet of industrial space, and 3,800 residential units. Clients represented include Aetna, Archon, Arden Realty, AT&T, Bank of America, Bank of the West, Blackstone, Chevron, CIGNA, Colony Capital, Cornerstone Advisors, CW Capital, Equity Office Properties, Garrison Investment Group, GE Capital, Gramercy Capital, JP Morgan Chase, Kimco, LBA Realty, Lend Lease, LNR, MetLife, Prudential, R&B Realty Group, Rialto Capital, Sabal Financial, Starwood Capital Group, TIAA-CREF, Torchlight, Vornado, Union Bank, Zions Bank.