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East Side
West Side
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Market Trends - Quarter 2, 2014
   EAST SIDE
Current
Median Prices
Studios
$435K Coops $645K Condos
1 Bedrooms
$675K Coops $900K Condos
2 Bedrooms
$1.55M Coops $1.85M Condos
3 Bedrooms
$3.10M Coops $4.5M Condos

This wasnít the case less than two years ago. We arenít seeing a lot of new listings coming up right now but we expect to see an increase in inventory in the upcoming year. Typically, the end of the year is not a strong time for new listings but the number of closings on Christmas Eve and New Yearís Eve in 2013 tell the tale. Banks are taking longer than ever to sign off on mortgages, so cash buyers are still greatly favored. Sellers are accepting less in many cases, in order to have a deal without a mortgage. Boards continue to be a little particular, adopting the attitude that it is easy to get another buyer if there is a rejection.

Overall the Upper East Side market hasnít drastically changed between the third and fourth quarters. Prices are moving up and next year looks promising. Sellers can expect strong prices and buyers can expect a slightly broader choice as more properties appear for sale

   WEST SIDE
Current
Median Prices
Studios
$364K Coops $674K Condos
1 Bedrooms
$585K Coops $912K Condos
2 Bedrooms
$1.16M Coops $1.49M Condos
3 Bedrooms
$2.02M Coops $3.07M Condos

The "lucky" ones who already own their piece of Manhattan real estate frequently find that they canít move up into a larger apartment because there isnít enough inventory to purchase. And those who have to sell their current apartments in order to obtain the funds for their next homes often find themselves in a bind: their competition in the bidding wars are to a large degree all-cash offers. Sellers of apartments understand that the use of cash is the best strategy to circumvent the difficult mortgage process. The "no-mortgage contingency" being used in many offers is one way to compete if you donít have cash. All of these factors have created an environment of frustration, upward pressure on prices and buyers who are simply losing deal after deal. We are waiting for additional inventory and a stable market. New construction is gearing up but these units are not projected to be market-ready until 2015.

   BROADWAY
Current
Median Prices
Studios
$525K Coops $83K Condos
1 Bedrooms
$702K Coops $937K Condos
2 Bedrooms
$1.49M Coops $2.16M Condos
3 Bedrooms
$3.1M Coops $3.59M Condos

Bidding wars were commonplace. Gramercy, Chelsea and the downtown market have a lower supply of housing than uptown, and therefore felt the change in the marketplace much earlier. Lofts and condos were especially popular in 2013 due to very limited supply and huge demand. Prices increased more significantly in those sectors. Brokers had to become even more creative during 2013. Hitting upon just the right apartment for a customer required more than a simple computer search. Negotiations on hot properties were not for the faint of heart. And getting a contract signed had to be done swiftly since higher and better bids could come at any time and knock you out of the box. All in all, it was a great year to be a seller and a frustrating one if you were a buyer. However, the buyers who did get to a closing table in 2013 have already made money. Finally, a year that brings great optimism for the next.

   MIDTOWN
Current
Median Prices
Studios
$371K Coops $579K Condos
1 Bedrooms
$638K Coops $835K Condos
2 Bedrooms
$1.18M Coops $1.63M Condos
3 Bedrooms
$2.12M Coops $3.27M Condos

The West 40s and 50s saw the most strength, with luxury condominium units being snapped up by move-up buyers. Demand was strong from the overseas clientele, with the majority being drawn from the Asian region. The East 50s had diminished overall demand, which was balanced out by the tight supply. Midtown East neighborhoods, such as Murray Hill, Turtle Bay, Gramercy, etc.., remained firm, with just a moderate amount of activity. Unlike earlier in the year, the smaller units ó studios and one bedroom apartments ó were strong. However, the large multi-bedroom units appeared to have slowed down in both price and number of sales. The increases in interest rates have been mitigated by the slowly advancing economic recovery. The dirth of new construction and the reasonable demand for existing properties are setting up the new year to be "steady as she goes" for the midtown market.

   DOWNTOWN
Current
Median Prices
Studios
$530K Coops $630K Condos
1 Bedrooms
$827K Coops $984K Condos
2 Bedrooms
$1.61M Coops $2.14M Condos
3 Bedrooms
$4.53M Coops $5.52M Condos
 

For both condos and coops, a tightening inventory continues to impair the negotiability factor which buyers normally expect when assessing prices. The absorption rate (how many months it takes to sell a given property compared to all listings on the market) continues to be shorter when compared to last year. The average number of days on the market has dropped nearly 54%, from 187 to 86 days. While most seg-ments of the market stayed on trend with increasing prices per square foot, it was the 3+ bedroom coop category that saw the largest increase, with a gain over 25% since early fall 2013. The one-bedroom category showed a decrease of about -2% for coops and -5% for condos in terms of the original listing prices, thus triggering multiple offers for what buyerís perceived as a good deal. Mind you, at times it was a good deal over asking, as demonstrated by the slight tick upward in overall sales.