Real Realty: The fine art of deal making, with Compass agent RC Atlee

The ‘Blue Zone’ Whisperer

RC Atlee. Independent/Ursula McNamara

Princeton School of Real Estate alum, RC Atlee, calls the natural beauty and exquisite homes of the Hamptons his personal “blue zone,” and considers real estate a form of fine art dealing. Jumping to Compass after representing Sotheby’s International Realty, the Philly native uses digital and print marketing techniques, including maintaining a healthy social media profile and blog. He joins us to explain why he is the salesperson to represent buyers and sellers of the East End.

You’re from Philly. How did you end up on the East End?

There is a healthy minority of Philadelphia-to-Hamptons summer folk, going back generations. But it was my work in real estate that attracted me to the Hamptons as an adult. I knew I wanted to work in “the golden triangle” but not in Manhattan or Palm Beach. So here we are!

You are part of the Bill Williams team. Do you always work exclusively as part of a team?

As a team, we have a sort of symbiosis. We all represent independent clients, but we have each other’s support. It’s a great way to pool our experience and expertise, and also just to have enough manpower to juggle our clients’ varying needs at any given time.

Can you elaborate on why you refer to the East End as “The Blue Zone?”

Dan Buettner wrote a book about “blue zones,” where people live healthier and longer lives on average. Among the places are Nicoya in Costa Rica, and Sardinia in Italy . . . places where lifestyle, custom, climate, and diet combine to foster longevity. While the East End of Long Island is not included in his studies, I do think it (at its best) shares some of the qualities that let us “live long and prosper.”

Do you have a favorite hamlet? If so, why?

I live in Bridgehampton. It’s very “me.” It has it all, but it’s not too big . . . easy to get everywhere, sort of in between everything. I could never decide whether I like living in Sagaponack or Sag Harbor best, so Bridgehampton wins.

Do you have a favorite East End building/house? If so, why?

I could never pick one. I want them all.

How does NOT being a local help your real estate career?

I think being a transplant means I have more in common with most of my buyers and sellers. I’ve made this my home, but it will always be a second home . . . And that is true of a majority of our clients.

You have a great social media presence. Do you manage that yourself or do you have a team that handles your marketing efforts?

Thank you! That’s my job (well, a part of it). Follow me @rcatlee and our team @thehamptonsbest! (Shameless!)

What drew you to Compass?

Clean branding, the agility of a young company, a kick-ass team.

What kind of marketing tools do you use to attract clientele?

More and more, we are using targeted marketing through the Internet and apps. We continue to invest in print marketing, and we also have recurring events to reach our clients and encourage a sense of community among them.

Have you noticed any interesting trends, whether it’s in the building, location, or interior design of real estate recently? 

Things are changing. In terms of design and construction, smarter and smaller are beginning to have more traction.

Do you work in partnership with any particular builders?

I work with anybody who has something to sell!

What’s your elevator pitch to a prospect once you get them in for a meeting? Why should they sign with you and/or your team?

I am dedicated to my clients and I’m passionate about the business, and our team has really exceptional resources in terms of local market knowledge and sales and marketing acumen. I do believe there is such a thing as a “good fit,” so I try not to give people a hard sell. I’d rather build a relationship and quietly reminded them that I know what I’m doing by showing them results.

One of the beautiful things about the region is that there is a big philanthropic scene. Are you involved with any of them?

There was a time that I would “go to the opening of an envelope.” That time is over, I am someone’s Dad! However, I do love the Madoo Conservancy, the South Fork Natural History Museum, and the Watermill Center. I support any organization that encourages arts in education, preservation, or conservation.

When you’re not working, what do you like to do for fun? 

I’m a real estate agent with a five-year-old! When am I not working?!? Seriously though, I do enjoy painting and occasionally curating an art show or two. Being on the water when I can.

To contact RC Atlee, call 610-742-4080 or visit