Weekly Roundup: Broker titles, celebs on the move, growing supply, reverse mortgages, the American Dream, boarding houses, and more

Next week’s Weekly Roundup will be the last until Sept. 6

Offering plans afford glimpse into pluses, minuses of lavish lifestyle in luxe buildings

Buyers snapping up Manhattan apartments 38 percent faster than last year, with UWS tightest market

Brokers still wrestling with new state rules on titles

Prices of Williamsburg condos plummeted in spring

First-half volume of investment properties leaps 41.3 percent over same time last year

One Picasso forsaking his walls

Lord of the Rings actor drops $1.075 million for gingerbread Victorian in Texas

Former NBA player lists California home for $2.795 million

Onetime TV detective, also actor who originated role of Continue reading

Out and About: Love thy neighbor but not thy neighbor who is trying to sell a similar property

One of the brownstone gardens among many.

The listing sounds pretty tempting:

“. . . [A] den/dining/sunroom with skylights and large windows to the lush garden, a true Eden.”

This one seems just as nice:

“In a historic townhouse, this apartment has three levels, a beautiful, private garden, and 2 or 3 bedrooms with 2 renovated baths.”

And there’s this one:

“The living room opens to the verdant garden of approximately 500 square feet, with attractive hardwood decking surrounded by lush plantings.”

This too (albeit grammatically erratic):

“Cute Garden with grill, quiet with lots of plants and lovely brick walkway connecting kitchen Garden.”

And another.

Here’s another:

“Beautiful brownstone triplex with large landscaped garden, three bedrooms and three and a half baths, steps from Central Park.”

And the last:

“Large bright parlor floor 2 bedroom with 12-foot ceilings and classic hardwood detail  . . .  Eight-foot windows look out on a well maintained private garden.”

Although you may have surmised with some justification that I’m fixated on gardens again, my point Continue reading

Out and About: How does your garden grow?

One of the houses with virtues that Barbara Corcoran extolled recently on the Today Show.

The one-bedroom, two-bath duplex I was checking out during a Sunday open house recently has two assets and many liabilities.

On the minus side are its entry almost directly into the small kitchen (in which an ancient dishwasher caught my eye), cramped living room, a spiral staircase so narrow that I had to hunch my shoulders, its bedroom (albeit one that fits the legal definition) in the basement and baths that I’d classify as ordinary.

On the plus side is its location in a Central Park block of the high 60s, a stone’s throw from Lincoln Center.  (To digress, when you see “steps from” in a listing, consider the Fair Housing Act, which bars discrimination against persons with disabilities.)

Also on the plus side — and the only conceivable explanation for the co-op’s inflated asking price of Continue reading