Adam Miller isn’t just an attorney. Rather, he’s one of a handful of highly specialized real-estate wizards who knows the ins and outs of real-estate law, including the red tape-laden eccentricities out east. Alongside a whip smart team, The Adam Miller Group has flourished, and here, we’ve got the inside scoop.
You specialize in real estate law. How did you find your niche?
I actually have always been fascinated by real estate. I went to law school knowing I wanted to be a real-estate attorney. I am very interested in the way people relate to the spaces around them.
Your company’s tag line is, “Top-tier Manhattan experience. Hamptons expertise.” Tell us about that first chapter of experience in Manhattan.
I was fortunate to work for one of the most prestigious law firms in NYC —Proskauer Rose LLP. It was there that I learned a strong work ethic and the mental makeup it takes to be a tireless advocate. I had typical “big firm” hours with most days beginning at 9 and ending after 9 PM.
What prompted your move from Manhattan to the Hamptons?
I spent summers in the Hamptons for a few years and remember that gut-sinking feeling of boarding the train from Montauk to Manhattan to return. I always thought that one day I could take what I learned in Manhattan and apply it out east, and it would be a successful formula. When I observed myself having the live beach camera in the corner of my computer while I worked from NYC and I said, “It’s time.”
Would you consider real estate law in the Hamptons to be different from other locations? Any idiosyncrasies that home buyers and sellers can keep in mind?
Very much so. There are a tremendous amount of intricacies involved in local/Hamptons practice. Often, this is a relationship-based environment. I do think it’s critical to make sure you have a top-notch, well-established team to handle every aspect of a transaction. Think about it — the investments people make in real estate out here are often very substantial. Clients want and expect the Hamptons to be their “happy place.” Working with a local, experienced firm can help minimize the errors and make transactions much smoother.
Tell us about zoning. How has it evolved over time?
I acted as the zoning board attorney for the Town of East Hampton in 2004. That was a good way to get my feet wet. Then, once Brian Desesa joined our firm in 2016, our zoning practice exploded. Brian is the vice chair of the Southampton Zoning Board. His knowledge is not something that you gain in a textbook. It’s been acquired over time and continually evolves based on law changes and trends.
Are there any rising trends seen throughout your cases?
I rarely unplug, and one of the trends I see (in all areas of our life) is the inability to unplug. In this fast paced-real estate market, I sometimes remind my client that sometimes we need to pause and give thought to issues rather than proving how quickly we can respond. Another trend I see is that more and more of my clients are spending more time here. They say that it has become increasingly easy for them to work remotely so the choice becomes easy.