About John Lasala
John Lasala is a New York-based business development manager for Citi Alternative Investments. With an extensive background in finance and law, John wears many hats and exercises his entrepreneurial spirit to revitalize local communities through his work in real estate structured finance.
John’s passion for real estate began at an early age. While historically his parents owned property, John became involved in the industry as a young man alongside his brothers in New York City. The more he learned about real estate, the more he understood the industry as a means to build bridges between people and neighborhoods. Armed with this understanding, John began to utilize real estate to give back and add value to New York communities.
Incorporating philosophies from the growing trend in NOAH, or Naturally Occurring Affordable Housing, John Lasala repurposes underutilized buildings into apartments that are affordable for low- to moderate-income households. In a traditional home, 90% of living space is only used 10% of the time. In the process of re-envisioning a building. Recognizing this in his process for reinventing a building, John champions functional, intelligently-designed spaces for his apartments. Especially in a state such as New York, where living space proves sparse, John stresses the importance of creating suitable and livable apartments through the use of a conscious design plan.
In addition to creating apartment designs that ensure useful spaces, John also draws building inspiration from the German model Passivhaus. Also known as passive housing, these buildings incorporate technology such as improved insulation, solar panels, heat-recovery ventilators, and airtight seals to create a style of living that is more productive and affordable. Reducing energy consumption by utilizing these methods equates to a bottom line energy savings of up to 75% on end-user energy costs in New York. While the perfect Passivhaus is fully self-sustained and requires zero electricity or heat to reach equilibrium, John works to incorporate sustainable elements wherever possible. He believes in the power of these innovations to protect both the earth and his tenants by providing cheap and accessible utilities.
These repurposed buildings not only capitalize on reconfigured space, they also enhance location livability. With these innovations, the cost-efficient apartments prove desirable, which draws new people into areas that had previously not seen active engagement. John Lasala is extremely passionate about this aspect, as his efforts to provide housing come in turn to rejuvenate neighborhoods. He enjoys seeing a pigeon-infested building transform into homes where neighbors stop to chat with each other in the hallways, and desolate streets begin to bustle with new faces. Through this revitalization, John seeks to not only strengthen local bonds but also to contribute to broader networks worldwide. The momentum of urban renewal momentum is palpable, lifting others with it as values double or triple for everyone on the block.
Through his work in NYC housing, John Lasala also works with Columbia University’s off-campus housing program. Columbia’s work to welcoming incoming students into communities aligns with John’s passion for fostering neighborhoods. As a result of his partnership with the university, John helps immigrant and international students settle into new neighborhoods in housing built to their unique needs. He takes pride in watching the students find a home and become active members of their community.
While John Lasala’s work in real estate is certainly a labor of love, he routinely witnesses the power of the industry as it reinvigorates neighborhoods. He seeks to pursue his passion for real estate and structured finance as a means of cultivating community and actively contributing to the world around him.
- JD, MBA
- Dually Licensed Attorney in USA / UK
- Member of State Bar in New York, Connecticut, Massachusets, D.C