May 20, 2013
View of a Hamilton Heights from top floor of a nicely renovated 4,400-sf townhouse that is offered for $2.695 million.
For buyers accustomed to neighborhoods farther south, Hamilton Heights may represent challenges with respect to convenience, amenities and street life.
Yet on a recent tour of an even dozen open houses, I was struck anew with how vibrant the area is and how great is the value of properties in contrast to more popular parts of Manhattan.
As the New York Times has noted, the massive Columbia University development now rising to the south suggests that Hamilton Heights is on the verge of a boomlet:
. . . Hamilton Heights, largely unknown to those who have never cracked the 100s on the No. 1 train, is preparing for an influx of teachers, students and support workers. It is also anticipating the higher real estate prices that usually come with proximity to an Ivy League institution.
The Heights Read the rest of this entry »
May 15, 2013
Few topics relating to real estate are less scintillating or more critical than homeowners insurance. Remember Sandy?
Even if a terrible storm doesn’t ruin your home or its contents, anyone who has experienced a loss will vouch for the importance of homeowners or renters insurance.
If your eyes haven’t already glazed over, here in a nutshell are items in a homeowners policy that merit attention:
May 14, 2013
Squash anyone? Kitchen of brownstone listed for $10 million.
They closed on the brownstone on Aug. 20, 2008 for $7.85 million.
It happens that Lehman brothers collapsed less than a month later, causing our housing markets to swoon.
While the markets in Manhattan and Brooklyn in particular have made great progress since then, we still have a way to go before reaching the peaks of days gone by.
Unfortunately, the sellers — I’m sure, a very nice family — have overestimated the demand for properties that can accommodate a big family easily. Read the rest of this entry »
May 13, 2013
Two houses in Manhattan also are available to bidders
If security is paramount, the happiness will be hard to contain of whoever is the winning bidder at the auction of a property in Northern Adirondack Park this summer.
On 27.3 acres in the hamlet of Lyon Mountain in Dannemora, the property includes several acres of undeveloped land and 23 buildings totaling 90,676 square feet.
New York State is selling the former minimum-security correctional facility as surplus property on July 10, and the minimum bid is a mere $140,000.
(If a second prison might prove to be of interest, the former Arthur Kill Correctional Facility on the southern tip of Staten Island is for sale as well, but not at auction.) Read the rest of this entry »
May 9, 2013
Sellers often fail to ask a vital question when interviewing potential listing brokers. (Flickr photo by David Davies)
When interviewing brokers to list their apartments for sale, prospective clients ask a lot of questions.
In many instances, the question that property sellers often want answered is how much of a fee the broker will demand. (Many a listing presentation and meeting could be spared if sellers with commission as their sole criterion simply asked for the percentage before a meeting is scheduled.)
Among the other bits of information that sellers may seek relate to a broker’s track record — for example, how many sales the agent achieved in what amount of time and in which neighborhood or apartment building.
But the most critical query centers on Read the rest of this entry »