Weekly Roundup: Buyer woes, singer’s many purchases, U.S. price gains, mortgage brokers’ profits, soulful kitchens, millennials’ optimism

Manhattan a tale of two markets

Real Estate Brokers Predict a Tough Time for Buyers

Buyers ask, brokers try to answer

Tight inventory leads buyers to risk their down payments

Popular keywords enable listing agents to sell fast

Booming Hamptons market pushes renters east

And Fire Island fights Sandy’s effects on housing market as summer approaches

For trophy properties, $100 million is the new $50 million

Short supply of Brooklyn brownstones, leads to whopping price tags as more Manhattanites switch boroughs

For fixer-uppers, go east

City official says two, three more micro-unit developments in the offing

Sanitation Department schedules disposal events for hazardous products in five boroughs

Social media bigwig accused of trashing apartment in Chelsea and purchases big Greenwich Village loft for $8.15 million

Noted artist lists for $3.13 million Fort Greene townhouse purchased for nearly $2 million less in 2007 and renovated

Network TV anchor Continue reading

90% of consumers hunt for new home digitally

(Via Inman News)

A joint study by Google and the National Association of Realtors (NAR) has found that consumers’ online experiences increasingly influence their homebuying activities activity offline.

Called “The Digital house Hunt: Consumer and market Trends in Real Estate,” the report produced the following observations, among others:

  • 90 percent of  buyers searched online when looking for a new home;
  • Real estate related searches on Google have grown Continue reading

Agents reveal the qualities to seek in your broker

The National Association of Realtors (NAR), a membership organization of brokers and agents that has little presence here, wants you to know how to select the right person to sell your home or represent you as a buyer.

On its Web site, the NAR headlines its advice with the hardly surprising admonition to “Hire a Real Estate Agent with the Power to Succeed.”  Undermining its credibility, the organization then predictably continues:

It’s the best time to buy a home in years, but the worst time to move without a professional on the payroll.

Despite its unsurprising beginning, which I suspect rarely changes, the site does, in fact, go on to provide some useful counsel from agents themselves, to wit: Continue reading

Realtors’ group makes surprising admissions

Ron Phipps

Not everyone should own a home?

Lenders need to have strict standards?

House prices can go down as well as up?

These are not the usual positions of an organization that describes its “core mission” as Continue reading

Appraiser: It’s very hard to judge property values


In a dense but revealing blog post of the National Association of Realtors (NAR), Jerome Nagy writes about the difficulty of establishing the value of a property in today’s market.

It is, he says, a common misconception that the price on which a seller and buyer agree is the value of an apartment, townhouse or single-family dwelling.  He declares:

It has always been a challenge for appraisers to identify value and support their opinions of market trends where neighborhood prices are in a state of flux. Today, this challenge is more widespread than perhaps any other time in history as neighborhoods and markets that were previously declining are now stable if not recovering.

Difficulties arise when a market “bounces,” Nagy writes in his NAR blog post, going on to say that it can be impossible to Continue reading

Weekly Roundup: Wallstreeters retreat, actor is defiant, affordability spreads, predictions vary

Financial services sector is producing fewer buyers and renters

Some neighborhoods are much tighter than others

Not much relief anticipated for renters in tough market

You have options for a neighbor who drives you nuts

Foreclosures fall citywide, despite more co-ops for 4th straight month

Long Island City way past the tipping point

Grammy winner and wife buy Greenwich Village penthouse

Presidential relationship hardly helps sale of former Avedon townhouse

Actor makes no friends Continue reading

Weekly Roundup: Rising condo taxes, foreclosure woes, price declines, ‘typical’ buyer, much more

Next week, I’ll have just one or two posts and hope that my readers have a very happy Thanksgiving.

Library is great resource for the history of your building

For $1,000 a month, an UWS apartment — uh, room or closet — can be yours!

Yesterday’s buyers in tax-abated buildings come to grips with tomorrow’s escalating costs

More folks moved to the city last year than left it for the first time in decades

A Times columnist tries out Airbnb in the city

City’s wealthy suburbs among nation’s hardest hit by foreclosures

Condos in unbuilt UES development boom as in times gone by

Pre-foreclosure filings in October down 20% from September and 39% from one year earlier

Brooklyn is friendliest borough to (wo)man’s best friend

What is the definition of ‘market value’

Nemo and Mickey join Department of Housing Preservation and Development

WestSideRag posts funny, cutting rant about broker babble

Unemployment rate ticks up, concerning at least one economist

He sees rich people for this Sun Valley listing

Fashion designer Continue reading

Weekly Roundup: New mortgage caps irk sellers

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.

Actor seeks to trade visual poetry for pied-à-terre and pâté de foie gras

Live buyer catches mystery writer’s lair on W. 67th St. for $745,000

Celebrity photographer who was a Warhol protégée sells his two-bedroom apartment

He puts Telluride spread on the market for $18.3 million, not that there’s anything wrong with that

Average effective rent rises $23 to $997/month, but NYC at $2,826

New Zestimates give rise to Continue reading

NAR sees promise, but hold off on fireworks for now

Pending home sales in the U.S. rose again in November, with the broad trend over the past five months indicating a gradual recovery into 2011, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR).

The Pending Home Sales Index rose 3.5 percent to 92.2 based on contracts signed in November from 89.1 in October, the NAR said.

The index is 5.0 percent below a reading of 97.0 in November 2009.  The data reflect contracts and not closings, which normally occur with a lag time of one or two months.  (That’s why the NAR mis-characterizes the index as “forward looking.”)  Commented NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun:

In addition to exceptional affordability conditions, steady improvements in the economy are helping bring buyers into the market.  But further gains are needed to reach normal levels of sales activity.

If we add 2 million jobs as expected in 2011, and mortgage rates rise only moderately, we should see existing-home sales rise to a higher, sustainable volume

If, if. . .  If, indeed!

Let’s hope he’s right and expect that he’s not.

I’d rather be pleasantly surprised than depressingly disappointed.  Wouldn’t you?

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Malcolm Carter
Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker
Senior Vice President
Charles Rutenberg Realty
127 E. 56th Street
New York, NY 10022

M: 347-886-0248
F: 347-438-3201

Web site

Number of signed contracts falls in June

Pending home sales edged down in June, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), which forecast near-term sales in the U.S. notably lower than during the months that approached expiration of the homebuyer tax credit.

The Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator, declined 2.6 percent to 75.7 based on contracts signed in June from an upwardly revised level of 77.7 in May.  It was 18.6 percent below June 2009. Commented Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist: Continue reading