Category: Buyers

Monday Market: Co-op Sales Hit New Low Due to Scarce Inventory

Monday Market: Co-op Sales Hit New Low Due to Scarce Inventory 891 Park Avenue, 3rd Floor sold for a record price in 2015, however, downtown condos sell for more per Square Foot. Photo: Rich Caplan

In 2015, a confluence of micro-market trends led to one of Manhattan’s most successful – and competitive – real estate years on record. My team and I have been digging through the numbers to better understand how 2015’s trends will impact sales in 2016.

Average Sales Prices Up 12% in 2015, Re-Sale Up 15%, Lofts Up 13%

Overall, average sales prices increased by 12 percent. New developments and re-sale prices increased 8 and 15 percent respectively, according to Jonathan Miller’s quarterly report. Average price-per-square-foot skyrocketed 28 percent over 2014. Median prices rose a strong 15 percent, thanks to multiple new luxury development units closing during Q4 2015 that went to contract during 2013 and 2014.

Co-op sales volume Read more…

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New York Luxury Real Estate Update | From “Versailles” to Jeff Koons’ New Studio

New York Luxury Real Estate Update |  From “Versailles” to Jeff Koons’ New Studio The High Line District has transformed in 1 year | Photo from Sept 28, 2014 by Tony Sargent

As all New Yorkers know, if you’re not moving forward, you’re behind, and real estate is no exception. Summer saw some of the island’s most influential denizens make real estate moves and news in keeping with the city’s exhilarating pace.

Some noted developments:

Alert to all aspiring Upper East Side trophy property holders and investors: there was a drop in the asking price for the “Versailles in Manhattan” and the listing moved over to Compass. Kenneth D. Laub’s spectacular East 64th Street townhome, dubbed “Versailles in Manhattan” for its rococo Louis XIV layout and interiors can now be yours for a cool $25 million. Over on Fifth Avenue Read more…

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Chinese Buyers Purchase $28.6 Billion in US Property, Find Safe Haven in New York Real Estate

Chinese Buyers Purchase $28.6 Billion in US Property, Find Safe Haven in New York Real Estate

This summer, a luxury family home in Scarsdale, NY sold for $1.75 million. On the surface, such a sale is hardly remarkable. In fact, perhaps the most unremarkable part of the sale is that the buyer’s Chinese nationality drew little attention. Even a year or two ago, the sale of a non-Manhattan luxury home to a foreign investor would have been unusual. Today, it’s increasingly commonplace. The Shanghai-based investor who purchased the Scarsdale home (and immediately rented it out to a local family) is one of hundreds of Chinese investors who are increasingly investing in real estate not just in Manhattan, but also in New York’s boroughs and suburbs.

In the last year, Chinese buyers have replaced Russian buyers as the primary real estate buyers in New York– and this trend is expected to continue throughout 2015. Given current international market fluctuations and Russia’s continued economic struggles, this news may come as little surprise to many of you.

Since last year, Ukrainian turmoil, economic sanctions against Russia and a progressively worsening economy have slowed down Russian purchases in New York real estate, said Marlen Kruzhkov, an attorney with Gusrae Kaplan Nusbaum who advises many investors from former Soviet Union countries.

Chinese buyers, on the other hand, are eagerly pulling savings from their home country and investing overseas, and New York real estate has been a prime target for these investments. The recent stock market crash, including the late August drop of 8.46% in a single day for the Chinese exchange – capping off a 32% drop between June and July, according to Bloomberg data – has only enhanced the trend.

In the year ending in March 2015, for the first time, Chinese buyers exceeded all other buyers in terms of unit purchases and dollar volume, purchasing $28.6 billion worth of U.S. property, according to National Association of Realtors. In particular, they have been finding their safe heaven in New York real estate.

“New York is an international market. They feel that the market is very transparent, very conservative and they feel very comfortable in coming to the U.S. and to buy real estate in New York,” said Emily Zhu, director of marketing for Advantage America EB-5 Group, who works with many Chinese developers and investors in the U.S.

As the Scarsdale purchase reflects, Manhattan is no longer the only target for foreign investors, who have been seeking better prices and yields in the other boroughs. “A lot of Chinese buyers are starting to accept places others than Manhattan,” Ms. Zhu said.

For instance, Chinese developer New Empire Real Estate (NERE) is currently building on Park Slope’s Fourth Avenue and “there are a float of Chinese buyers that buy even before the development is constructed; there are a lot of pre-sales,” said Ms. Zhu, who represents the developer.

After the stock market turmoil, “some Chinese investors will want even more to diversify their assets in order to own something that is tangible rather that intangible,” Ms. Zhu said.

Things have changed for Russian buyers. “The economy is contracting terribly and the situation is getting progressively worse,” said Mr. Kruzhkov. As a result, he added, “The nature of purchasers has changed. There are less people buying.”

In particular, small and medium-sized Russian investors seem to have disappeared altogether from the New York City real estate market.

Only the wealthiest are still around, but they have changed their targets.

“In the last 6 months, they have been investing in different things, they are not necessarily buying apartments. They are investing more in development projects or pre-existing income producing buildings, more commercial or mixed-use,” properties said Mr. Kruzhkov.

For example, one of his Russian clients recently sold a Manhattan apartment for almost $25 million. He immediately re-invested in a development project.

A major flow of foreign capital into New York’s development market – especially as Chinese markets continue to cool – is a trend to watch in the coming months.

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New York’s Fall Real Estate Luxury Market Starts Strong

New York’s Fall Real Estate Luxury Market Starts Strong Downtown Manhattan as seen from the Empire State Building - Photo by Tony Sargent (C) 2014

The Manhattan real estate market is picking up again in the luxury sector. While there was a slight lull in the summer between mid-June and July by August properties that had been on the market for a month or two started going to contract.  While I was in in San Francisco in July at Inman Connect’s real estate conference speaking on a luxury panel, I heard that the mid-luxury levels in San Francisco and Los Angeles had also been slow for a month or more. Was the market turning?

Traditionally the Fall market in New York is our secondary market – Buyers who did not have a chance to secure a property in the robust spring market re-enter market again in the Fall after a summer off.

I believe the Fall market started early this year – in August. The intense seller’s market for the first six months of the year lead to a slower June and July because of buyer fatigue. Added to that, listing inventory while having climbed somewhat in the 2nd quarter of 2014 over the 1st quarter was still well below the 5-year averages making it more challenging for buyers to find the properties they hoped for – rather than continuing a seemingly futile effort they stopped. (Read Streeteasy’s July Condo Report here)

As a result, in my view the level of pent-up demand is still extremely high. The buyers who are willing to step up and make a quick decision and not sweat the small stuff with regards to negotiations will buy properties this fall. Those buyers who are choosy and question every aspect of the deal or contract will be a disadvantage in negotiations.

For the buyers who’ve decided to stay put in their current homes until ‘the right one’ shows up some will (like many before them) choose instead to stay put and to invest in a country or Hamptons home to provide the escape from Manhattan.

What I’m seeing in the first two weeks of September is that the mid to high-end luxury market is very strong and contracts are getting signed on new properties and those which had seen showings but no contracts. Listings that I have been following as well as new developments also reported signed contracts in the first 19 days of September. For me August was very busy with properties that went to contract including 30 Bond, Penthouse and 200 Eleventh Avenue after multiple bids.

In the luxury development market new properties have started to be announced for the fall market. The face of New York’s residential real estate is changing, as is the design and height limits. With super tall sky-scrapers coming to the city, it will be interesting to see what the future holds for the world’s global elite in terms of luxury offerings in the future. It’s an exciting period in residential design.

 

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Michael Stern Discusses New York’s Stella Tower & New Real Estate Developments

An interview with Michael Stern, one of the key developers behind the now renown super-luxury Chelsea development, Walker Tower, which broke price records and paved the way for even more high-end developments downtown. His newest luxury development, Stella Tower has been selling extremely fast in Hell’s Kitchen. CURBED published the floor plans for the yet to be released $14 million Penthouses a week ago. Stella Tower is being marketed by Douglas Elliman. To me, the rapid transformation of fringe neighborhoods into luxury enclaves like West Chelsea and the continued development of Hell’s Kitchen is truly an incredible New York real estate story. While some lament the past, I lived in Hell’s Kitchen in the early 1990’s and one certainly had to watch one’s back walking home at night. Not any more. New York continues to transform as it always has. – NYS Disclosure

 

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Bond Street and the Allure of Noho’s Luxury Real Estate

Bond Street and the Allure of Noho’s Luxury Real Estate Noho Views | Photos by Tony Sargent (C) 2014

One of the most exclusive streets in Noho, Bond Street is receiving a few new luxury neighbors. Currently under construction is Annabelle Selldorf’s 10 Bond Street, which is selling well and receiving praise for its design. Prices start at $4.55 Million (Exclusive is with Corcoran Sunshine). BuzzBuzzHome wrote that 31 Bond Street, a six story cast-iron beauty built in the 1880’s which sold in late 2013 in an off-market deal to Josh Gurwitz’s Good Properties, has just filed its plans for residential conversion; an additional story will be added to the building and it will of course house a trio of luxurious apartments and services to match.

Over the last 20 years Noho, (generally the area between Houston and 8th Street, Broadway and Third Avenue) has evolved into one of the most exclusive residential and bohemian-chic areas of Manhattan. Read more…

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Asia “On The Move” – Who’s In & Who’s Out In Stocks & Why?

Goldman Sachs’ Hong Kong-based Strategist, Timothy Moe Talks Stocks & Investment Strategy – Video

I found this video interview between Bloomberg TV’s Rishad Salamat and Timothy Moe on the state of the Asian stock markets extremely informative. With unique insight and perspective, Timothy provides his and Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s predictions for the 2nd Quarter.  New York luxury real estate is increasingly attractive to international investors providing strong returns and increasing profits so I find as a luxury real estate broker, being aware of what’s happening around the world is key to potentially predicting trends in Manhattan’s own market. (Source: Bloomberg – April 4th)

After a robust market in the 1st quarter, inventory continues to be tight and prices are showing upward pressure. I will provide a more detailed update this week, however, I hope you find this video informative to your understanding of Asia and its stock markets. – Tony Sargent

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Monday Market Video: Average Manhattan Home Now Costs $2M

Posted on April 4, 2016

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