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New York’s ‘Insane’ Real Estate Market

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View of Manhattan's skyline from the 7 train. (Photo by Bruno J. Navarro.)

Activity in New York’s real estate market has increased since the first quarter of 2012. (Photo by Bruno J. Navarro.)

NEW YORK — The real estate market in Manhattan, as well as in Brooklyn, is now firing on all cylinders and nearing pre-recession levels, according to a couple of recent reports.

“It’s really remarkable because January and February was just really crazy,” Streeteasy Vice President of Research  Sofia Song told New York Magazine’s S. Jhoanna Robledo. “That’s insane. This is the highest number of contracts in the first quarter and the second highest of any quarter since the meltdown of 2008.”

Properties that went into contract in the first quarter of 2013 jumped by 15 percent compared to the same period last year, according to Streeteasy.

Song called 2013 the “Year of the Frustrated Buyer.”

Anyone who has attended an open house in Manhattan, Brooklyn and parts of Queens would likely agree.

Also gone are the days of the low-ball offer.

One real estate agent told The Real Deal that bidding also had gotten “absolutely insane,” with three buyers making offers within the same open house.

A fellow agent at my firm, Bill Bone of BOND New York, was also quoted saying that his buyer lost out on a Williamsburg condo. “We had to compete with 45 other offers.”

(That’s why it pays, more than ever, for buyers to use an experienced real estate agent.)

Meanwhile, the median price of a Manhattan apartment rose 5.9 percent from the first quarter of 2012 to $820,555. The average price rose to $1.354 million, according to real estate appraisal firm Miller Samuel.

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NYC Real Estate ‘Can’t Get Cheaper,’ Former Trump VP Says

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Owning a Home Regains Appeal (Photo by Bruno J. Navarro)

Owning a Home Regains Appeal (Photo by Bruno J. Navarro)

NEW YORK — Buying a home within 100 miles of the metropolitan New York area stands to be a strong investment that “can’t get cheaper,” a former apprentice of Donald Trump and real estate mogul Billy Procida said this week on CNBC.

“At the end of the day, all of the country’s wealth was made through homeownership. Now, of course, we have fallen as far as you can fall. It can’t get cheaper because we’re way below replacement costs,” he said in a televised interview. (Watch: Billy Procida Says Owning a Home Regains Appeal.)

Founder of Procida Advisors and Procida Funding, Procida has been called Trump’s “original apprentice” due to his 10-year letter-writing campaign for a job with the famous developer and reality-television star. He worked his way from an unpaid position to vice president with the Trump organization.

Procida had advice for those thinking about buying real estate.

“If I’m talking to a consumer, a first-time homebuyer, a couple looking to move, I say if you have 5 percent or 10 percent of the value of the home you’re looking to buy, you should be buying because you’re going to look back 10 years from now and go, ‘Thank god I did.’ When liquidity returns to the market you will see things shoot up, and that will happen in two or three years,” he said.

The developer and mogul also urged staying within one’s means when buying.

“Would I be trying to reach today? No,” he said. “Would I be going out to middle of nowhere to buy? No. If you are buying a house because it is near where you work and you are going to stay there for a while, there is nothing like homeownership to build wealth. That’s a fact.”

For those who don’t have a down payment, Procida advised renting something cheap to build up savings. “Too many young people, I see, graduating from college go for their lungs and get no savings and they will never be able to buy anything. If you can get the deposit, interest rates are at all-time lows.”

This week, the average rate for a 30-year mortgage rate was 3.59 percent, just slightly above its all-time low.

Based in the New York metropolitan area, Procida also said he had a new investment vehicle: “Our new fund is called the 100-Mile Fund because I want to be investing 100 miles from right here because there’s no more land. Everything’s built out.”

For the big picture, Procida struck an optimistic note.

“The good news about America and our banks is sooner or later they will flood the market with liquidity and things will go crazy again, and you will go, ‘You know what? I’m not going to refinance this time and take everything out of my house and go on vacation.’ That’s where everybody got in trouble. It wasn’t that the house is not a wealth creator. It is,” he said. “They have nowhere to go in my opinion but up from here.”

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It Takes Know-How to Win a Bidding War

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It Takes Know-How to Win a Bidding War

It Takes Know-How to Win a Bidding War

NEW YORK — The 2012 Olympics are in full swing in London and the frenzied pitch of the New York City market brings to mind its competitive spirit (not including badminton).

Buyers are feeling a sense of urgency as multiple bids and bidding wars are becoming increasingly common. Inventory is dwindling as the number of reported transactions soar.

Although mortgage rates remain at historic lows, home prices are beginning to rise.

In a heated market such as we currently find ourselves in, the slightest error can mean the difference between gold and going home. Using an experienced sales agent is more important than ever, and having all your paperwork in order may help catapult you to the top of the buyer’s line when putting in an offer.

There is no instant replay, do-over, or second chances when it comes to negotiating for that perfect home. Be smart and make sure you have the best representation there is.

A true Olympian never stops training for the gold and seasoned real estate professionals never stop perfecting their negotiating skills. The link below will give you a list of negotiating errors that buyers and their inexperienced brokers make.

Don’t let this happen to you.

When you are ready to buy or sell a property in the New York area, reach out to me and we can win gold together.

BrickUnderground: Top negotiating mistakes of buyers, and their brokers

Brooklyn Brownstones Drawing More Buyers

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Park Slope Brownstones (Photo by Bruno J. Navarro)

Park Slope Brownstones (Photo by Bruno J. Navarro)

NEW YORK — Along with the overall return of the real estate market throughout the New York metropolitan area, brownstones in Brooklyn have had a particularly strong recovery as buyers put an ever-increasing premium on square footage.

“It is amazing,” says one real estate broker quoted in the New York Times story, titled “Brooklyn’s Gold Rush.”

“It is a level of activity I have not seen since 2006-2007,” she adds. “There are so many people looking for brownstone buildings, and there is just no supply.”

Many brownstones are being purchased to be used as single-family residences, as well as multi-family homes, which have been on the rise in recent months.

The top Brooklyn neighborhoods, according to the article, were:

  • Boerum Hill, with a median price of $1.7 million, up 60 percent from last year.
  • Park Slope, with a median price at $1.45 million, almost 20 percent higher.
  • Red Hook, with a median price of $825,000, up 73 percent, although only a few properties were for sale.

As always, if you’re looking to buy, sell or rent a home in New York, especially in ManhattanBrooklyn or Queens, please let me know.

Hot NYC Area Condos: Gone In One Hour

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Hot Condos: Gone In One Hour (Photo by Bruno J. Navarro)

Hot Condos: Gone In One Hour (Photo by Bruno J. Navarro)

NEW YORK — Condo sales are heating up across the metropolitan area, so much so that pausing for lunch might mean missing out on a dream home.

A couple who mulled two condominium apartments for sale in a Hoboken, N.J., development while grabbing a bite to eat returned an hour later to find both of their options already in contract.

“People feel like now is the time to buy and they aren’t isolated to one building in Hoboken,” Toll Brothers CEO Douglas Yearley said in a May 23 conference call with analysts. “Confidence is up. The interest rates are there and they’ve been waiting so long to move on with their lives that they came out this spring.”

The Pennsylvania-based luxury homebuilder a 47 percent increase in quarterly orders for new homes. (Sales of existing homes recently neared a 2-year high, as well.)

The story, reported by Bloomberg Businessweek and other news organizations, stands out because it reflects the turnaround made in the New York real estate market.

While Hoboken is still on the other side of the Hudson River, as far as I know, it resembles what has been happening in ManhattanBrooklyn and Queens over the past couple of months with increasing regularity.

And it isn’t idle talk.

Bloomberg Businessweek reports: “In Hoboken, Toll Brothers increased prices six times since it began selling apartments last spring in the 157-unit 1450 Washington at Hudson Tea, where prices now range from $450,000 to $1 million, said Todd Dumaresq, marketing manager for Toll’s City Living division. The company has sold 108 units in the building and is now selling about 12 homes a month, he said.”

Toll Brothers offers such developments as The Touraine in Manhattan, 2 Northside Piers in Williamsburg and 205 Water Street in DUMBO, as well as three condo buildings in Hoboken. (Anecdotally, buyers I’ve worked with have been interested in a couple of these condos, only to find that they were sold before we’d had a chance to view them — one reason to pursue apartments aggressively.)

For those paying attention, the signs are adding up.

Recently, Time magazine took note of another feature of a strong sales market: Bidding wars.

As always, if you’re looking to buy, sell or rent a home in New York, please let me know.

Bidding Wars Make a Comeback

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Bidding Wars Make a Comeback (Photo by Bruno J. Navarro)

Bidding Wars Make a Comeback (Photo by Bruno J. Navarro)

NEW YORK — Signs of a rebound in the real estate market were plentiful this week, but another element spoke volumes about how real it was: The return of the bidding war.

It was this detail in a Time magazine story, titled “Why This May Be the Ideal Time to Buy Real Estate,” that led me to reblog it almost immediately after reading it.

The blog entry covered much of the same ground I addressed in recent posts.

“If you were thinking about making a move on a piece of property, right now is possibly the best time. You can still take advantage of low prices in most places around the country, and mortgage rates are at once-in-a-lifetime record lows: 30- and 15-year fixed mortgages are around 4% and 3%, respectively,” wrote Martha C. White.

What caught my attention, however, is to see reporting on something that has been happening with increasing regularity.

“Many would-be homebuyers are surprised to find that one fixture of the bubble era is back: the bidding war,” according to White.

In Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens, my colleagues and I have been seeing this often enough in condo and co-op sales — so much so that it isn’t surprising anymore.

Sales of investment properties and vacation homes have also been on the rise, which correspond to more affordable mortgage rates and a sense of confidence in the economy.

“For Americans who either have cash to buy or a credit score good enough to obtain a mortgage, there’s still time to get a killer deal on real estate, but that window may be closing,” the article concludes. “If your finances can support it, now appears to be a great time to buy.”

As always, if you’re looking to buy, sell or rent a home in New York, please let me know.

Written by Bruno

2012.05.23 at 23:35

Why This May Be the Ideal Time to Buy Real Estate

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NEW YORK — Several important signs point to renewed strength in the real estate market across the United States, but this article addresses something we’ve been seeing in locally for the past couple of months now: “Many would-be homebuyers are surprised to find that one fixture of the bubble era is back: the bidding war.”

Read more: http://moneyland.time.com/2012/05/21/why-this-may-be-the-ideal-time-to-buy-real-estate/?iid=pf-article-mostpop1#ixzz1virbnyya

Written by Bruno

2012.05.23 at 15:26

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