Four years after Josh Feldman and Ian Ruel left national brokerage firm Marcus & Millichap to launch their own D.C.-area investment sales shop, they have lured away another top local broker from their former company.

Bethesda-based Feldman Ruel Urban Property Advisors last month hired Chris Chadwick, who spent 18 years with Marcus & Millichap and most recently led a team there as first vice president, the brokers tell Bisnow.

Chadwick will serve as managing director at Feldman Ruel, making him the firm's highest-level broker beyond the two co-founders and managing principals. He will help the firm grow its presence in Virginia and the multifamily sector.

Feldman Ruel has focused on commercial investment sales, with multifamily deals making up about 10% of its transaction volume. But multifamily was Chadwick's focus at Marcus & Millichap, where he closed around 300 deals totaling over $1B in the sector.

His deals stretched down to the Richmond area, a market where Feldman Ruel is looking to expand.

"I've known Chris a long time, he's a friend, but candidly one of the best analytical multifamily agents I've seen," Feldman said. "It was a great opportunity to bring somebody on board to help train multifamily agents, lead that side of our business, while at the same time having the geographic experience to cover all the areas that we're looking at."

Chadwick said he has followed the growth of Feldman Ruel and stayed in touch with the co-founders over the last four years before deciding to join forces.

"It was really impressive what they had done and the plans they had for the future," he said.

He also said he values Feldman Ruel's collaborative approach, with all of its brokers working together on deals. At Marcus & Millichap, brokers work on individual teams that compete with each other for clients and deals.

"It's really challenging. There are siloed teams, people work within geographic areas and then want to expand, and you end up bumping into people," Chadwick said of Marcus & Millichap. "I personally don't think it's a great look to have brokers from the same firm competing for the same inventory."

Marcus & Millichap Mid-Atlantic Division Manager Brian Hosey provided an emailed statement to Bisnow following publication of this story.

"We are proud of our firm’s collaborative culture and brokerage model and wish Mr. Chadwick the best in his future endeavors," he said. "Although we pioneered the industry's most collaborative approach decades ago, we have a more sophisticated salesforce than ever before that is supported by an advanced set of tools that most of our competitors don't have."

Feldman and Ruel worked at Marcus & Millichap for 16 and six years, respectively, before leaving in February 2020 to start their firm. The company launched with seven employees and now has 25, including 13 brokers.

The co-founders are recruiting more brokers and are looking to expand into new service lines in the coming months, Ruel said.

The firm closed 47 deals in 2022 and 30 deals in 2023, as higher interest rates slowed the investment sales market.

The brokers expect to see an increase in deal volume this year as interest rates are expected to come down and owners become more willing to sell.

"When rates went up, a lot of things changed," Feldman said. "You saw a lot of owners that potentially wanted to sell before but would tell us, 'I'm going to wait for things to go back to where they were.' It always takes a little bit of time for these owners ... to see where things are, let the idea soak in that it's a new normal. But once that happens, things pick back up, and we're starting to see that now."