SMJ Development (SMJ) was founded in 2014 by Juan Barahona. Juan began his career at the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development’s Division of New Construction. It was there that he received broad exposure to the intersection of housing policy and real estate development. After several years Juan joined the team at BFC Partners where he spent over a decade managing a large portfolio of affordable housing deals from inception to completion.
SMJ’s approach is to apply a broad set of technical skills toward development and seek out opportunities that are overlooked because they are perceived as too time consuming or having too many complexities. SMJ has the temperament and tenacity necessary to undertake these projects and provide leadership that yields a successful outcome. SMJ’s nuanced understanding of zoning and experience with federal, state, and local housing programs is also useful in unlocking development potential that might not seem apparent at first pass.
Juan holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Government and Master of Public Administration Degree from Cornell University. He currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Fifth Avenue Committee and Settlement Housing Fund. SMJ is also an active member of the New York State Association for Affordable Housing (NYSAFAH).
SMJ is a Certified Minority Owned Business Enterprise with the City of New York. As a native Spanish speaking professional Juan doesn’t fit the mold of a typical real estate developer. Consequently, SMJ shares much in common with the neighborhoods that the company serves and brings that shared experience to the planning, development, and construction process.