The Manhattan market had a solid performance during First Quarter 2011. The number of sales was improved both versus last year (up 6%) and last quarter (up 7%).
Prices continued their steady course. Market-wide for all apartments the average price was up 2%, median price was down 2% and average price per square foot was down 1% versus First Quarter 2010, all negligible changes. Listed inventory is virtually unchanged from First Quarter 2010 at approximately 9,000 units available for sale.
However, nuances in supply and demand are having different effects between various neighborhoods, product types and market segments. For example, resale condominium median price is up 11% versus a year ago and average price per square foot is up 5%.
But new development median price is down 5% and average price per square foot is down 6%. Why the difference? The supply of new developments is decreasing, as the lack of construction financing for developers means there are very few new properties coming online now.
This is particularly true at the high-end of the market, where most luxury new developments are completely or nearly sold out. As a result, the new development sales that do occur are in lower-priced properties, bringing the average down. Demand for condominiums is therefore shifting to the resale market, driving prices there higher.