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Why these Houston land brokers decided to launch a new brokerage

Tim Dosch, David Marshall and Tom Dosch always knew they wanted to launch their own firm one day.

When Apartment Realty Advisors was acquired by Newmark Grubb Knight Frank in 2014, the three Houston land brokers — then with ARA — strongly considered forming their own land brokerage. Ultimately, the team decided to stick with ARA Newmark, but they never stopped thinking about their dream to start their own company.

“We’ve always had an itch to do it,” said Tim Dosch, who started the land division at ARA in 2007.

Earlier this month, the Dosch brothers and Marshall left the commercial real estate giant and launched a new land brokerage called Dosch Marshall Real Estate. The principals were joined by their land team at ARA Newmark, including broker associates Clark Dalton, Becky Hand, Dillon Mills and Tripp Rich. The new Houston-based brokerage plans to represent land sellers and buyers, including many residential developers, homebuilders and multifamily developers in the Bayou City.

The Houston Business Journal caught up with the new principals of Dosch Marshall Real Estate to talk about their new venture.

Why did you decide to start your own firm?

Tim Dosch: It’s something we’ve always wanted to do. We’re all young guys thinking about the next 30 years of our careers. We always knew in the back of minds that we would do this, so we asked ourselves, “Why are we waiting?”

Houston is still recovering from the oil slump. Why launch a new company now?

David Marshall: We think the timing is right. We been through some slow times before, and we believe now is a good time to get things up and running.

Tim Dosch: We think we’re still early in a new cycle, so this is a good time to get established. Houston came out of the recession fast. We’ve had the oil issue for the last couple of years, but we believe Houston is rebounding while other markets are slowing. We see a lot of opportunity in Houston.

You left ARA Newmark, one of the largest multifamily investment brokerages, to start your company. How did you feel doing that, especially when you have young families?

Tim Dosch: There’s a lot of security in being with a large, global company, so it’s a scary thing when you step out on your own. It’s definitely a different feel, but it’s been incredible. All of our wives were supportive of us. It’s hard to predict how much we’d bring in while we’re setting up our business, and it will probably take up to a year to fully know that. But six months ago when we began thinking about this conceptually, it was more scary. It’s gotten more and more comfortable now.

Are you planning to expand your business to other markets and other disciplines?

Tom Dosch: Right now we’re focusing on land in Houston, but we’d like to eventually cover 20 markets across the country. So many residential developers have their base here, and many have asked us, “Would you go here or there?” We want to be a one-stop shop for them. We’re looking to hire a few more research analysts to help us do that.

David Marshall: Houston will always be our bread and butter, but we also want to grow into other markets in Texas and across the country. We will be strategic and selective, however. It’ll be a client-driven strategy.

Do you have any new business yet?

Tim Dosch: We’re talking to several clients, but right now we’re finishing transacting our ARA Newmark deals. We probably won’t close our first Dosch Marshall deal until six months from now since a lot of our deals take up to a year to close.

What do you think about the Houston land market right now?

David Marshall: There was too much uncertainty in Houston between 2015 and 2016. No one knew how far down oil would go. Since we’ve hit bottom, people understand what we’re dealing with.

Tim Dosch: Last year was a challenging year for land. We had low transaction volume. Apartment rents were hurt, but not devastatingly so. Jobs are still growing. Adversity made Houston look a lot more impressive to investors. I believe this year, we’ll have our best year ever. We know population is going to go up. All of these people will have to live somewhere. That’s not going to change.


Jul 27, 2017
Paul Takahashi, Reporter
Houston Business Journal


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