Out and About: The allure of Hamilton Heights

View of a Hamilton Heights from top floor of nicely renovated townhouse offered for $2.695 million.

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 Continue reading

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Out and About: FSBO will get what he deserves

View from balcony of a condo owner who “doesn’t have to sell.”

The owner of a one-bedroom condo on a corner of Broadway in the mid 90s was telling me how he had carefully done his research before setting the asking price for his pied-à-terre in a post-war building with a health club and other amenities.

Jeff had looked at comparable prices online, checked sales in his building and decided on $669,000 for the apartment, which has maintenance of $735 and real estate taxes of $375 a month.

“But,” he volunteered, “I don’t know the condition of the other apartments. What do you think?” Continue reading

Out and About: Harlem on my mind

Please note:  This weekly feature will return on Jan. 7, by which time everyone should have recovered from the holidays, including me most of all.

It has been many months since I looked at property in Harlem. However, I showed several apartments to an international buyer there last month and came away impressed.

We concentrated on the area of South Harlem near Morningside Park, and I was swept away by the value, ambiance and even convenience of the area bordered by 110th Street, Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvd. (Seventh Avenue), Morningside Avenue and around 123rd Street. View Map

As my buyer and I ambled along 125th Street west from Lexington Avenue, even that thoroughfare engaged me.

I marveled again at Continue reading