Neil Lyon, a broker with Sotheby’s International Realty in Santa Fe, was recently chosen by Haute Residence as its exclusive luxury representative in New Mexico. “With just one representative in a market, the Haute portal unites a distinguished collective of leading real-estate agents and brokers, showcasing their most beautiful properties in those markets to affluent buyers, sellers, and real estate enthusiasts around the globe,” according to a press release from the Miami-based company.

The new partnership connects the readers of Haute Residence.com and Haute Residence Magazine to the Neil Lyon Group: Neil and Cindy Lyon and Roberta Lowe. Lyon has a bachelor’s degree in real-estate finance forom the University of Oregon and has worked in real estate since 1975. He was president of the Real Estate Brokerage Managers Council in 1992 and chairman of the Realtors National Marketing Institute in 1995. His professional designations include Certified Real Estate Brokerage Manager (CRB), Certified Residential Specialist (CRS) and Graduate, Realtors Institute (GRI).

Except for one year when he had a brokerage in Connecticut, Lyon has been with Sotheby’s since 1984. He was a senior vice president for Sotheby’s and served as managing broker of Sotheby’s International Realty in Santa Fe until 2002. Home met with Lyon at Sotheby’s office at 326 Grant Avenue.

It is a collection of high-end brokers scattered around the world for the sole purpose of creating a marketplace amongst the brokers and the buyers that we work with. It’s obviously a piggyback on Sotheby’s. My referral allegiance is to Sotheby’s International Realty, in all cases, given that I’ve been with that firm, our firm, since 1984.

Yes, and it’s primarily online. They do publish a magazine every six months, but from my perspective the value is the online traffic that the website (hauteresidence.com) commands.

For many years, you’ve been working in Las Campanas, which has seen a switch from large versions of the Santa Fe Style house to contemporary design.

Santa Fe Style has evolved dramatically and there’s no doubt that contemporary architecture is where it’s at now. I’ve been hearing for 10 years how pervasive contemporary architecture is in Santa Fe, but I think it has only been the last three or four years that I think it’s taken hold and really redefined the market. My clients bought the 2017 Parade of Homes Grand Hacienda Award-winning house by Tierra Concepts. I think it’s one of the most important houses that’s ever been built in Santa Fe, really indicative of what great Santa Fe style and taste is today. And we have always had a higher standard in details and the quality of construction compared to most other high-end markets in the country.

I think every affluent market has stepped up its game dramatically in the last five or 10 years. What is shocking is what someone gets in Santa Fe for $1.5 million to 2.5 million relative to what that buys you elsewhere. And part of it is the ease of living here. Traffic is not a problem. We’re small, we’re boutique, we don’t appeal to everybody, and that’s part of the beauty. Where I go that has mass appeal doesn’t appeal to me. No matter where I travel, when I come back to Santa Fe, I’m glad to be home, and I never felt that way any place I lived before I moved here in 1993.

We’re a small-volume market and we have had our Santa Fe version of the recovery, which is so different than what you hear about explosive growth in Seattle and Denver and New York and Austin, for example. Last year was the first year that felt robust here since the recession, but it wasn’t about rampant appreciation: there was tremendous competition for the best properties — and many of those didn’t sell, which is indicative of how small our market is.

Do you know which state generated the most buyers of homes at $750,000 and up in New Mexico in 2017? New Mexico. To me that supports the fact that we’re a great value and people have seen the opportunity to upgrade. I have to mention Linda Varela from our office. She’s one of the great real-estate resources in Santa Fe. She is constantly providing us with reports that help us really understand the market. The other thing I’ve done in the last few months that I’ve never done before is hire a marketing specialist for the Neil Lyon Group. We want to utilize more tools so that we do a better job of selling our sellers’ properties and attracting more business.

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