After a slight drop in prices at the beginning of the year, the Manhattan real estate market has stabilized in the last three months, with prices rising slightly and sales volume increasing with an expected spring surge in home buying.
Today’s second-quarter sales reports released by the city’s largest brokerage firms show that the increase in the average sale price was largely attributable to more robust sales of larger and more expensive apartments, while studio and one-bedroom sales lagged slightly.
Still, with question marks on employment and the limited availability of credit to homebuyers, there were few predictions of a major upturn in the Manhattan market.
The big sore spot in the market was the median sales price of new developments, which plunged 15.7 percent from last quarter and 19 percent from the year before, to $1.13 million.
Appraisal executive Jonathan Miller said the result was consistent the average sale in a new development being approximately 15 percent smaller in physical size than previous quarters. Because the smaller units require buyers to borrow less and have price points that qualify for special loans, they dominated the market, according to Miller.
Not a strong trend, but buyers are plunking down deposits based only on floor plans in new buildings
When the real estate market was booming, buyers routinely signed contracts for apartments in yet-to-be-built buildings, making their decisions based on little more than an artist’s rendering and a miniature model of their new home.
That changed once the market crashed, the New York Times observes.
Off-site showrooms disappeared, and buyers became deeply skeptical about floor plans and fancy brochures. Developers realized that buyers would no longer buy a home without first running a hand along a kitchen counter and standing by a window to take in the views.
In recent months, though, Continue reading
Here’s your chance to catch up with news included to inform, enlighten and perhaps even entertain you. To read about The Big Apple, check out the other of today’s posts and look for Out and About early next week.
The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) says it will pump up its activities to combat housing discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender individuals and families (LGBT).
New guidance treats gender identity discrimination most often faced by transgender persons as gender discrimination under the Fair Housing Act and instructs HUD staff to inform individuals filing complaints about state and local agencies that have LGBT-inclusive discrimination laws. Continue reading
Do you want the good news or the bad news first?
The good news is that reduced confidence leads to reduced inventory, and Lord Keynes was right about the correlation between supply and demand.
Additional good news comes from HUD, which documents promising increases in housing starts and permit issuance.
The bad news is that decreased building means fewer jobs and a sluggish economic recovery. Continue reading