Talking Hamptons Real Estate with Douglas Elliman’s Terry Thompson

Terry Thompson
Courtesy Terry Thompson

With a strong background in finance and her unique approach to understanding clients and their needs, Terry Thompson has earned a reputation for being one of the best real estate agents in the business. I recently had the good fortune to get to know a little more about one of Douglas Elliman’s finest.

Tell us how you got started in real estate.

I’ve always loved the real estate industry because each property and client is unique, affording me the opportunity to approach each relationship creatively. Regardless of market fluctuations, real property never goes away. You can see, feel and mold it to create an environment unique to each client’s lifestyle. Having spent 15 years in the financial industry, I was always frustrated that we couldn’t control the investments we recommended to our clients. After retiring from UBS Southampton in 2000, I enjoyed renovating and selling several of my own properties. In 2009 I joined Douglas Elliman Real Estate, and made the conscious decision to surround myself with a positive, pro-active and honest group of professionals that compliments my vision of changing the face of the Real Estate Agent.

What personal advice do you offer your clients?

As technology continues to replace our “human touch” it’s more important than ever that clients are educated, understanding how today’s new real estate environment affects their ability to purchase or sell their home. For buyers, I suggest that they interview several agents, and choose one that they can relate to, who has their best interests in mind. For sellers, I recommend that they imagine that they’re not selling their home, but rather that they’re buyers shopping for a home. Visit open houses. Ask: “How does my property compare to the competition? Is it updated? Does it have curb appeal? Is it uncluttered, clean and depersonalized?”

What makes Douglas Elliman such a strong firm, specifically in the Hamptons?

What I find unique about Douglas Elliman is our connection with each other as agents, not only in the Hamptons, but with all of our colleagues throughout Manhattan, Long Island, Westchester and Miami. Our new “DE” marketing, and our “Ask Elliman” campaign, complements the vision to build and maintain relationships with our clients, often referring them to colleagues outside the Hamptons where they may want to purchase or sell their home. Our strength starts at the top, with our CEO Dottie Herman’s vision to stay ahead of the curve by embracing new technology, by building a cohesive brand, and by providing superior service throughout the Elliman family.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not working?

Funny enough, my hobbies usually revolve around my work. I’m fortunate to have developed many wonderful friendships with professional women throughout the Hamptons. Together we love the occasional get-a-way, where we decompress and recharge. Is shopping a hobby? Don’t laugh. I’m known to be a professional shopper, which is why I enjoy working with buyers. Give me 15 minutes to get to know you, your family, and your lifestyle, and I will find “your” home. I also hold the American Heart Association “close to my heart” since my father survived a heart attack. I enjoy chairing the Auction Committee for our annual American Heart Gala, with the goal of raising $500,000 each year.

Why do you think the East End is such an amazing place to live, work and play?

The first time I visited the Hamptons in 1987, I knew it would become my home. Since I moved here in 1993, I have always been grateful that I “live on vacation!”

I love the combination of small town and cosmopolitan living. Unlike many other second home locations, the Hamptons has maintained the integrity and original beauty of years past. Each village offers its own personality, wonderful shops and family-owned restaurants. Our world renowned beaches, coupled with the many summer events draw visitors from all over the world. Whether you are a salty dog or a socialite, there’s something for everyone in the Hamptons.

Where do you see yourself 10 years from now?

I hope nothing changes. I enjoy my life and my career, and I’m fortunate to live and work in the place I love.

For more information and listings Douglas Elliman has to offer, please visit or to contact Terry Thompson, call 631-871-7844 or 631-283-4343

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