Archive for UES

May
10

How’s the Market – April 2014

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While Quarterly Sales Reports show closed activity for the previous quarter, monthly Contract Signed reports are the ‘crystal ball’ of closed sales to come.  Granted, all contracts signed for any given month may not close in the next month, and some may not close at all but most (over 95%) will become closed sales which will become part of the next Quarterly Sales Report.

In the following charts and graphs you can see how the market stacks up against last month and this month last year.

 

AV_MED_SP_DOM_04-2014

Disc_AP_04-2014

Sales_by_Region_04-2014

Manhattan_Sales_Q4_2013Douglas Elliman released the Fourth Quarter report for Manhattan Residential Co-op and Condo sales market.  The Manhattan Sales Quarterly Survey of Co-op & Condo Sales for 4Q-2013 reported  here and summarized below was prepared by Miller Samuel for Douglas Elliman.

“The market was characterized by record fourth quarter sales volume, record low inventory and record condo prices.”

  • There were 3,297 sales, up 26.9% from the prior year period, to the highest fourth quarter sales total in 25 years.
  • With the surge in sales in the fourth quarter, inventory could not enter the market fast enough to meet demand, causing inventory to fall 12.3% to a record low of 4,164 from the prior year quarter.
  • The individual co-op and condo markets indicated that record low inventory and record high sales were finally pressing prices higher. Co-op price indicators showed robust price gains in the lower half of the market and the condo median sales price set a 25-year record high of $1,320,000.
  • Listing discount, the percentage difference between the list price at time of sale and the sales price, slipped to 3.6% from 3.7% in the prior year quarter.
  • Days on market, the number of days from the last price change to the contract date, dropped by nearly half to 95 days from 177 days in the prior year quarter as supply evaporated.

Nov
12

How’s the Market – October 2013

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While Quarterly Sales Reports show closed activity for the previous quarter, monthly Contract Signed reports are the ‘crystal ball’ of closed sales to come.  Granted, all contracts signed for any given month may not close in the next month, and some may not close at all but most (over 95%) will become closed sales which will become part of the next Quarterly Sales Report.

In the following charts and graphs you can see how the market stacks up against last month and this month last year.

AV&Med_SP_DOM_10-2013

DISC_AP_10-2013

 

Sales_-by_region_10-2013

 

 

 

 

The proposed 91st Street Marine Transfer Station continues to draw protests as neighbors fear noxious fumes and dangerous heavy traffic through their neighborhood.  Pledge2Protect produced this video describing some of the dangers facing the neighbors of this transfer station.

 

Excerpted from Curbed NY article

 

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Jan
17

How’s the Market? December 2012

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While Quarterly Sales Reports show closed activity for the previous quarter, monthly Contract Signed reports are the ‘crystal ball’ of closed sales to come.  Granted all contracts signed for any given month may not close in the next month, and some may not close at all but most (over 95%) will become closed sales which will become part of the next Quarterly Sales Report.

In the following charts and graphs you can see how the market stacks up against last month and this month last year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jan
15

Upper East Side Year Ahead

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2012 finished with a bang.   Thanks to talk about the ‘fiscal cliff’, Manhattan had the busiest 4th Quarter sales in 25 years.

Sales inventory has dropped to a 12-year low.

Studio & one bedroom apartment inventory, already low, is falling as available units are snapped up.  According to Miller Samuel and Douglas Elliman reports, smaller apartments are in short supply and prices will rise.  It’s important, when listing apartments, to make sure the unit is ready, priced right, staged and in perfect condition.

Rental prices remain high with falling inventory. 
Higher rents generally drive sales in our neighborhood, except when credit is tight.  Those who  can’t buy are forced to continue to rent, keeping rental prices high. 

… The exception is the Second Avenue Subway construction corridor where median rents are down by 1.7%.  Unsurprisingly, median rents are on the rise outside the subway corridor east of First Avenue and west of Third.  According to Jonathan Miller of The Matrix  the was a 3.2% increase to the west and 2% increase of median rent prices to the east of the Second Ave Subway zone.  It stands to reason that the rental inventory rose 9% in the Subway zone, and fell by 5.1% to the west and 2% to the east for the same period.

 Some renters are not grousing about the rent around the construction.  In fact they are grateful for the break in rent, and the construction disturbance seems to pale in comparison to higher rents elsewhere in the city according to this New York Times article.

Tight lending restrictions are bringing out Cash Buyers.  Most new developments are being funded by Hedge Funds.  Since banks are more averse than ever to taking risks, they aren’t making as many loans.  According to the Business Insider, even though mortgage interest rates are at historic lows, one mortgage insider predicts that new mortgages funded will hit an all-time low in 2013.  

The price is what the Appraiser says it is.  Appraisers are not always local so I make it a practice to meet with appraisers and present them with comparables, information about the neighborhood and specifics of the building.  It’s also important to make sure everything in the apartment is in working condition, clean, bright and tidy and have information available about changes made that enhance the value of the apartment.  For more great tips, see this article from the Brick Underground on how to Ace your Appraisal.

Second Avenue Subway Update – Muck Houses at 69th St and 72nd St are on target to be removed by Fall 2013 and Spring 2013 respectively.  The construction continues and they’re getting ready to start on the 72nd street Station structure.  The contract has been awarded and according to MTA the contract completion date is December 2013.  The first phase of the project from 96th to 63rd is scheduled to be operational in December 2016.
The MTA is holding a 5th Quarterly public workshop on Jan 30.  To receive an email invitation to this workshop, send an email to outreach@2AveSubway.com.   For more up-to-date information from the Second Avenue Subway project, check out their newsletters.  

A new Cornell campus on Roosevelt Island will give rise to an F-train tech corridor.   Our neighborhood will benefit from the desire of faculty and students to live in areas that are convenient by train in Manhattan.

 

 

Oct
26

Sorry says the Board: The Price isn’t Right

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Manhattan buyers and sellers have known for years that the real estate market has its share of challenges.  Co-op boards, who can reject applications for many reasons, are now rejecting sales if they think the price is too low in order to protect the property values in the building.

Buyers undergo intense scrutiny during the co-op application process, including providing volumes of financial and personal history, even references for their pets.  Co-op boards can reject an application for almost any reason, and they are not required to state the reason.

Some boards are determined to maintain the value of the building even if it means rejecting serious buyers.  Sellers want to sell their apartments, and buyers are determined to get a good deal or not overpay for the apartment.   Lawyers are fielding phone calls from boards and purchasers seeking legal advice.

For those outside the New York City area, this is astonishing since co-ops are rare.  But in New York City, where co-ops make up about 75% of the housing stock in Manhattan, this is a way of life.  Brokers are becoming accustomed to brokering deals where the contract price would be acceptable to a board, but the seller gives concessions like splitting the flip tax or paying for renovations as part of the contract.

Sometimes the board will reach out to the broker or individuals involved and let them know what the sticking point before flat out rejecting the application.  However, when a board is unwilling to approve based on low price, they run the risk of being considered a difficult board causing people to shy away from the building; or miss the clues that a seller might be in distress and default on the maintenance charges if unable to sell, putting the building in a tough financial situation.

A good broker will be able to negotiate the ins and outs of a board package, explain the pitfalls and advantages, and advise you on what position you should take.  Manhattan real estate is unlike real estate any other place in the world.  Having a broker by your side who knows their market is an asset to your team.

 

Inspired by New York Times article

Oct
08

In the News – October 7, 2012

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9/27/12 City Awards Contract for Controversial E 91st Street Trash Station:  Swedish construction giant Skanska has won a $181 million contract to build the controversial East 91st Street marine transfer station.   The city’s Department of Design and Construction selected Skanska and a company called Trevcon to work jointly on building the new 10-story garbage facility, the city confirmed.  Read the full story at DNAInfo.com 

10/02/12 Second Avenue Subway Newsletter:  72nd Street Station plans.  See the full newsletter at MTA.info 

10/02/12:  Forget Restaurants!  Locals are eating in:  The 2013 New York City Zagat restaurant guide reveals that for the first time in more than three decades, New Yorkers are cooking more dinners and lunches at home than dining out or ordering take-out.  See the full article at Crain’s New York Business 

10/2/12:  Manhattan Apartment supply hits 7-year low:  Despite tight inventory of apartments and co-ops in Manhattan, there is little sign of any pickup in prices.  The time it takes to sell an apartment drops to a five-year low.  See full article at Crain’s New York Business

 

 

Sep
16

In the News – September 16, 2012

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8/26/12 Trendy new Eateries hit the Upper East Side:  A crop of trendy restaurants and bakeries have opened on the upper East Side in recent months, bringing with them gourmet doughnuts, handcrafted cocktails and Indian staples.  See the reviews at  article at NY Daily News. 

9/10/12  CUNY and Sloan-Kettering Build Cancer Center and Nursing School on UES:  The City University of New York and Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center are teaming up to build a new, state-of-the-art cancer center and nursing school on the Upper East Side, officials announced Monday.  See the full article at DNAinfo.com New York 

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Aug
20

In the News – August 19, 2012

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08/15/12  In Manhattan Home Search, Some choose to Go Big:  There are a small, but growing group of New Yorkers with deep pockets and the stomach for renovations, some are creating single-family homes out of an apartment building.  Behold the return of the urban mansion.  See the full article in the Wall Street Journal 

08/16/12  Refinancing a Vacation Home:   Homeowners who want to take advantage of historically low mortgage rates and refinance a vacation home should be prepared for stricter loan requirement especially if they rent out the property.  See the full article in the New York Times

08/17/12  Rent or Buy?  Blanching at their rent bills, more New Yorkers are being forced to confront that age-old question, should I rent or does buying make more sense?  See the full article in the New York Times 

08/19/12 Upper East Side  fourth-grader Samuel Wohabe is cooking up quite a career in food: White House ‘State Dinner’ is next for the 9-year-old upper East Sider and co-winner of national Healthy Lunchtime Challenge  See the article in the New York Daily News

Jul
22

East River Transfer Station One Step Closer

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Despite intense opposition, the plan to build a garbage transfer station on the East River at 91st Streetnear the Asphalt Green Recreation area  has received final federal regulatory approval from the US Army Corps of Engineers.  Construction is slated to begin before the end of this year.

The Bloomberg Administration developed a waste-manage plan in 2006, in part to rely more on barges to transport trash and decrease the amount of trucks used.  Each borough would also have to handle its own waste.  Currently Manhattan is the only borough without a waste-transfer station, making the East River transfer station a key part of the plan.

Opposition to the plan includes several unsuccessful lawsuits to stop the construction, and a current lawsuit brought by Assemblyman Micah Kellner of Manhattan which charges two other key parts of the plan have yet to be implemented:  building a recycling center on Gansevoort Street in Greenwich Village; and modifying the 59th  Street Recycling center to receive commercial waste; as well as the greater than estimated volume of waste coming to the 91st Street station.  The Bloomberg administration states the Gansevoort Street recycling center would be operational by 2016 with the W 59th Street station would be modified at that time to receive the commercial waste.

Other opposition is concerned about air quality and marine life in the East River and the proximity to Asphalt Green Recreation center.  

With a budget of $240 million, the construction contract will be forthcoming.  The waste station could be operational by 2015, according to city sources.

 Inspired by New York Times Article.  Map courtesy Google Maps

Jul
16

In the News

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06/26/12:  Let them all eat a $1,000 dessert:  A crown prince of Dubai and his party arrived at the Serendipity 3 for one of their Golden Opulence Sundaes recently.  Read the full article at the New York Post   

7/13/12:  Geffen gets super Rich pad:  David Geffen buys Upper East Side Penthouse apartment of Denise Rich for $54 million.  See the full article in the New York Post

Jun
13

How’s the Market – May 2012

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While Quarterly Sales Reports show closed activity for the previous quarter, monthly Contract Signed reports are the ‘crystal ball’ of closed sales to come.  Granted all contracts signed for any given month may not close in the next month,  and some may not close at all but most (over 95%) will become closed sales which will become part of the next Quarterly Sales Report.

In the following charts and graphs you can see how the market stacks up against last month and this month last year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Apr
10

Where to Eat on the Upper East Side

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View Michael Lomonaco in a larger map

Michael Lomonaco shares some of his Upper East Side Favorites

Pizza by the Slice:  Italian Village 

Pizza by the Pie:  John’s Pizzeria

Cheap Burger:    J.G. Melon 

Fancy Burger:  Jones Wood Foundry  

Sandwich:  2nd Ave Deli

Coffee:  Oren’s Daily Roast

Bagels:  Tal Bagels 

Chinese:  Pig Heaven 

Breakfast:  E.A.T 

Bar:  Bemelmans Bar at the Carlyle

Ice Cream/Gelato:  Sant Ambroeus

Falafel:  Melange Food Fair

Late Night Eats:  Cascabel Taqueria 

Date night:  Crown 

Can’t-miss Neighborhood Spot:  Sandoro’s   


From Serious Eats NY