May 24, 2016

Welcome Fleet Week NYC | Happy Memorial Day Week

Photo courtesy of  ©Mitchell Hall
USS New York (made of steel from the World Trade Center ruins) sailing up the Hudson River
Hosted every year Memorial Day week, Fleet Week NYC now in its 28th year, is the city's time-honored celebration of the sea services. It is an unparalleled opportunity for the citizens of New York and the surrounding tri-state area to meet Sailors, Marines and Coast Guardsmen, as well as witness firsthand the latest capabilities of today's maritime services. Nearly 1,800 Sailors, Marines and Coast Guardsmen are participating this year.
Fleet Week includes dozens of military demonstrations and displays throughout the week, as well as public visitation of the participating ships.
The Parade of Ships is only the beginning of the week long celebration. Sailors, Marines and Coast Guardsmen get the chance to explore New York City and participate in special events and parades, including multiple Memorial Day events.
(Photo credit: U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Abe McNatt/Released)
The amphibious transport dock ship USS San Antonio (LPD 17) enters New York harbor  to start Fleet Week New York 2015.

The ships can be seen along the Hudson River from Battery Park to just south of the George Washington Bridge, starting at noon tomorrow 5/25/2016

Watch Top Gun on the deck of the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum

Welcome and Have a Great Week! To all the Sailors, Marines, and Coast Guardsman participating in Fleet Week in NYC.
Hope you all enjoy experiencing all the sights and sounds and hospitality of "the city that never sleeps."
For up-to-date information on ship locations, hours and visitation information, visit the official Fleet Week New York website at
Like on Facebook
or Follow on Twitter

May 20, 2016

nyc BLOG estate 10th Anniversary | My first Blog post

Next month nyc BLOG estate will be celebrating it's 10th anniversary. To celebrate 10 years of blogging, I will be re-posting some of my original blog posts. Below is my first blog. Fortunately my blogging style has evolved. 
In 2006 I predicted a buyer's market and long term buying opportunity due to a short term inventory glut. I remember an agent telling me at the time that I couldn't predict a buyer's market only the NY Times could. HA! LOL! 
Today and during the past few years, Manhattan has been experiencing an inventory shortage. Will we have a glut again? When? As I said back in 2006 "real estate markets go in cycles.

I hate to say...I told You So.

Short term glut. Long term opportunity.

Buyers Market

There are (roughly) 800,000 housing units in Manhattan. 600,000 are rental units, 200,000 are condo and coop units. About 4% of condo and coops turn over yearly. The absorption rate is 4%.

Basic Rule of Markets: Supply and Demand. Supply and Demand determine price and the direction of the market.

What is Manhattan Absorption? According to Miller Samuel 82,801 units over the past 10 years, 8,200 units yearly, last year about 7,780.

Supply is determined by conversions of rentals to coop or condos, re-sales of existing units and new construction. Miller Samuel says: Inventory is up 60% to 7000 units from new construction on the market. Days on market is up 48% and listing to sale discount is up 2.8% from 1.3%

Inventory might keep rising, prices might level or drop, sales will take longer. A Buyer's market. Best opportunity to buy since 1991. In the mid to late 80's there was a construction boom and coop conversion that led to a glut of apartments in the early 90's. It was a buyers market. Any one who bought back then and held for 10 years or still own made huge profits or accumulated huge equity.

While the best time to buy a home is when you have the money and you need a place to live, as markets go the best time to buy is when everyone else isn't. Markets are driven by fundamentals. Many fundamentals support the NYC market.

The Manhattan market is less interest rate sensitive since half the Manhattan buyers pay all cash or no contingencies. Many coops only allow 50% to 75% financing, the best buildings on 5th Ave and Park Avenue are all cash.

The NYC market is a classic over supply situation, after "inventory adjustment" fundamentals will reassert themselves. 15 year cycle asserting itself.

New York City will always be a world class city and one of the greatest cities in the world to live.

Immigration is responsible for 42% of first time home buyers replacing baby boomers and unlocking the lower end of market. Immigrants save more, have larger down payments and are better qualified than average non homeowners in the USA and they support the boom in the cities outer boroughs.

Demographics reversed in the 80's, population is growing, not just immigrants coming to NYC, boomers moving to retire, empty nesters moving to the city from the suburbs, echo boomers love urban living, second homes are up 41% over 1990, up 50% more in 2004 over 2000.

Higher oil prices helps cities with good transit systems. Life is livable without a car, 2 hours commutation is unsustainable. The dollars decline is NYC's gain. NYC is cheap internationally, NYC is much cheaper than other international cities, huge support for the market from international buyers.

The glut will be gone. Markets go up and down but over the long term there is no better investment than real estate. Real estate is the only investment with a tax free gain of $250,000 to $500,000 every 2 years. Real Estate is a place to live and enjoy.

The short term glut is a buyers market right now with long term opportunity, the best time to buy since 1991.

David Michonski, CIPS CEO CBHK
Miller Samuel
Fannie Mae
US Census

May 13, 2016

Manhattan Monthly Market Report | April 2016

Manhattan Monthly Market Report | April 2016

Market Wide Summary 

Overall sales were down 14% year-over-year, with declines in both the condo and co-op markets. Compared with April 2015, there was 10% more inventory listed in April 2016. Pricing was also down year-over-year across the market, with average sale price for condos down 7% and average sale price for co-ops down 19%.

Total inventory is up 10% from April 2015, with condo listings making up the majority of that inventory at 52%. Average price per square foot across both condos and co-ops decreased 5% year-over year, with the greatest year-over-year average price per square foot decrease occurring in three+ bedrooms in the condo market.

Further, the market is continuing to see a rising percentage of contracts signed below asking price, indicating that more buyers are finding the opportunity to negotiate

Condominium Market Snapshot

 The condominium market experienced an overall decrease in contract activity year-over-year. Average sale price for condos was down 7% since April of the prior year, but increased modestly versus March 2016. Median sales price grew from last month at 4% while remaining steady year-over-year. Average price per square foot throughout the condo market dropped 4% versus April 2015. Average price per square foot decreased for studios and three+ bedrooms, where the figure dropped 16% year-over-year for sales in both categories.

Average price per square foot for both one bedrooms and two bedrooms, on the other hand, increased 12% and 8%, respectively. Days on market held steady year-over-year, as listings remained on the market for an average of 99 days in April of both 2016 and 2015. Listed inventory rose 17% from last April, continuing an upward trend, while overall contracts signed in the condo market has decreased by 8% versus April of the prior year.

 Cooperative Market Snapshot 

Across almost all metrics, the co-op market declined year-over-year. Average sale price for co-ops experienced double-digit decreases versus both last year and last month while median sale price decreased by 9% compared to April 2015.

Average price per square foot in the co-op market also decreased 9% year-over-year, with the greatest decrease in the two bedroom market. Difference from last ask to sale remained relatively stable year-over-year at -1.6%, signifying minimal negotiability. While most metrics reflected a decline in the overall market, sales velocity for co-ops actually increased with days on market 14% lower than the prior year and 19% lower than last month. Listed inventory was up 4% versus April 2015 and 6% month-over-month. Overall contracts signed fell 16% versus last year and 5% month-over-month.

Manhattan Total Listings 

Total listings continued to increase year-over-year for the fourth consecutive month. Townhouse and co-op inventory each rose 4% year-over-year, while condo inventory increased 17% compared to April 2015. In line with previous months, the condo market continued to comprise over half of total listings, hovering at 52% for the second month in a row. April saw the highest number of total listings since October 2012.

Manhattan Total Inventory 

Market Share by Price Point In April 2016, listings under $1M made up 28% of market share versus 35% in April 2015. Following small month-over-month increases in February and March, the market share of inventory under $1M decreased versus last month. Listings above $3M comprised 34% of total inventory this month compared with 31% in April 2015. Listings priced at $1M-$3M expanded their market share year-over year to 38% of the total inventory, which can be partially attributed to the year-over-year increase in co-op inventory since April 2015 outlined in the co-op snapshot above.

May 10, 2016

272 W 86th Street - Upper West Side Luxury Condos

272-276 West 86th Street Gilbert townhouses (Photo: Mitchell Hall)
Three West 86th Street Gilbert townhouses built in the French Neo-Renaissance style with delightful details worked into their stone facades are being converted to luxury condo apartments. The landmark facade will remain. The interior will be gut renovated into modern three to six bedroom modern apartments.

272, 274, 276 West 86th Street (Photo: Mitchell Hall)
The building has rounded bays running up three stories of the buildings, petite balconies, intricate floral swags atop the tall windows and mirror-image placement with respect to one another. 

272 West 86th Street Interior (Photo: Christian Ericsson/Redundant Pixel)
The gutted renovated building interior will have seven condo units ranging from 2,283 square feet to 3,700 square feet, and the 4,319-square-foot penthouse has 2,575 square feet of outdoor space. Kitchens designed by GD Cucine, master baths feature marble floors, chrome features and deep soaking tub. Two of the residences include 30' wide private gardens, the penthouse features 2,575 of outdoor space. The building will have a 24 hour doorman.

The project is being developed by East River Partners and marketed by Stribling Associates.
Expected sales launch May 2016. Anticipated prices range from $4.75 million to $7.45 million +.
West 86th Street was once all townhouses from Central Park West to Riverside Drive.

NYC New Developments

May 3, 2016

Spring Selling | Clean is King


The First Impression

Did you know that within 15 seconds a buyer has already developed an opinion of your property? This is why establishing the right first impression is critical to achieving a successful sale. Following is a list of elements which create the overall first impression, including suggestions on how to make sure the buyer reacts favorably.

A fresh coat of paint can be one of the best investments you can make to increase the value of your apartment. If you do not want to spend the money to paint the entire apartment, consider just the entry at least.


Attractive windows can help increase appeal.

* Replace any cracked or broken glass.
* Make sure the windows are sparkling clean.
* Apply touch-up paint where needed.


The doorway is a focal point of your home.

* Repaint the door.
* Apply new door hardware.
* Install a brass kick plate.
* Replace apartment numbers.
* Install a new front light fixture.

Appeal to the Senses

There are many ways to create a more exciting and saleable interior, at surprisingly little cost.


People react more favorably to property shown under bright light than dark.

* Keep windows clean.
* Use adequate wattage in light bulbs.
* Consider replacing older fluorescent lamps, which darken with use.
* Use mirrors to magnify the feeling of light and space.
* Use track lights to create a high-tech look.
* Use light wall colors.
* Open drapes and blinds and turn on lights prior to showings.


Keep colors neutral and light.

* Shades of white, off-white and very light pastels are the safest choices for the interior.
* Avoid highly patterned wallpaper whenever possible.
* Try to limit bright colors to accents like fresh flowers, towels, area rugs and shower curtains.


The sounds of peace and quiet are some of the best sounds to have when your home is being shown to a prospective buyer. But there are other sound considerations you should also be aware of.

* Avoid barking dogs and noisy children, if possible.
* Also avoid sounds of work like vacuums, dishwashers and lawn mowers.
* Make sure there are no sounds of mechanical problems like banging pipes or faulty appliances.
* Light classical or instrumental music can be effective in creating a pleasing atmosphere.


Smell has more impact than you might expect. It can work for or against you.

* The smell of newness is positive. This scent can be achieved by applying a fresh coat of polyurethane to natural wood or latex paint to walls.
* The smell of cleanliness is important to the selling environment of your house. Beyond actually cleaning, lemon oil or lemon wax can help create a lasting scent of freshness. Fresh flowers can also be effective.
* For a real heart-warming touch, place a dish of vanilla in a warm oven to create the aroma of fresh-baked cookies or bread.
* Sweeten the refrigerator with a box of baking soda.
* Smells to avoid include strong pet odors, tobacco, and cooking oil or gas.

Packaging the Interior


The entry is where the first impression of the interior is created. Here you have the opportunity to make a big statement in a small area.

* Repaint the entry using light, neutral colors.
* Move a prized antique or attractive furnishing to the entry, where it will have maximum impact.
* Install simple chair rail molding on the wall.
* Apply a fresh coat of polyurethane to a wood floor.
* Tile or linoleum flooring should shine.
* Replace plastic switch plate covers with brass or porcelain.
* A new hall light fixture can make a great impression.
* Make sure the room is well lit.


The kitchen is an important room in the apartment. Here is a list of ideas to increase the appeal of your kitchen without spending a great deal of money.

* Make sure the room is virtually spotless and smells fresh. Try putting a quarter section of a lemon in the disposal and grinding it up.
* Consider replacing outdated light fixtures with new track lighting.
* If your appliances are dated by colors like harvest gold or avocado, consider having them professionally refinished in a new color like almond or plain white. This will make appliances look new at a fraction of the cost of actually replacing them.
* Spruce up kitchen cabinets by installing new knobs or hardware.
* If your cabinets look especially old, you can have a professional replace the doors or door fronts.
* Organize your kitchen cabinets to demonstrate how much room you have. Cabinet organizers are a good investment for this.
* Remove small kitchen appliances and gadgets from countertops to create an uncluttered look.
* Chipped or damaged countertops should be repaired or replaced.
* If your floor is badly worn, replace it with neutral no-wax flooring or tile.
* A freshly painted kitchen may be well worth the investment.


The bathroom has become an important selling feature in today's home. It is a room that has moved from the utilitarian to the exciting. There are many ways you can improve deficiencies and create interest through various levels of enhancement.

* Place a vase of fresh flowers on the vanity.
* Install a wall telephone for a high-tech look.
* Replace an old toilet seat.
* Replace an old light fixture with a new style light strip or make-up light.
* Refinish an old porcelain tub using a porcelain finishing service.
* Place all personal care articles out of sight.
* Freshen the air with lemon scented products.
* Replace an old towel rack with one of brass or oak.
* Add color and richness with new towels and shower curtain.

Living Room

The living room is a major selling point of an apartment. Buyers look for elegant and impressive living rooms to make the right statements to their friends and relatives.

* Use mirrors whenever possible to enhance the perception of size.
* A fireplace is one feature that everyone can appreciate - show it off to its best advantage. Sweep it clean and make sure the screen is in good condition
* Use inexpensive free-standing "can" lights to create dramatic visual effects behind large plants or pieces of furniture.
* Use chair rail or cornice molding to create a feeling of elegance.
* Professionally clean wall-to-wall carpet or large area rugs.
* Sand and refinish stained hardwood floors.
* Clean windows and light fixtures.
* Make sure all cosmetic plaster cracks are repaired. (This applies to every room in the house.)
* Use lemon oil on hardwood furniture to create the right look and aroma.
* Liberal use of fresh flowers and plants will enhance the environment.


The bedrooms can do as much to sell your house as they can to turn off a buyer.

* Make sure the bedrooms are absolutely spotless.
* Rugs should be cleaned, windows washed and fresh smells from flowers or lemon oil should be in the air.
* Organize closets to increase their perceived size.
* Rubberized wire closet organizers do a great job of helping fully utilize space.
* Mirrored closet doors can add dramatically to the feeling of size in any bedroom.
* Bedrooms should be well lit. You may want to add track lights in the master bedroom.
* A ceiling fan can be an attractive and practical accent to any bedroom.

By showing attention to detail and understanding the buyer's needs to visualize your home against a neutral backdrop, you can dramatically increase the salability of your property.

Click here to find out how much your home is worth in today's market?.

Ready to List Your Home?

Apr 29, 2016

REBNY Residential Sales Report for 1Q of 2016

1Q2016 Residential Sales Report Recap
The REBNY Residential Sales Report for the first quarter of 2016 was released earlier this week. Some of the highlights include increases in total consideration for citywide residential sales and the number of home sales in the city. 

Total consideration in NYC in the first quarter was $10,771,285,122, a seven percent increase from the first quarter of last year. The total number of citywide sales recorded was 11,827, a five percent increase when compared to the first quarter in 2015. The following tables also include the breakdown of these statistics by borough.

Source: Mike Slattery, 
REBNY Research 

Apr 28, 2016

Riverside South Park Expansion Planned

Riverside Park South that runs from 59th to 72nd Street along the Hudson River is undergoing an expansion plan. NYC plans to add new bike paths, fields, bathrooms, picnic tables and basketball courts by 2018.
The park is being designed by the New York firm Thomas Balsley Associates and has been under construction since 2001. The plan for the park has six phases, four were completed before 2008. 

The first four phases of the project cost $43.7 million and the engineering firm predicts that the last two phases will cost an additional $49.6 million.
Construction for phase five of the plan is set to start in June 2016 and will continue until the winter of 2018.

Apr 24, 2016

Belnord Upper West Side Condo Conversion


 Belnord | 225 West 86th Street
The Belnord – the handsome, century-old landmark residential complex in the heart of the Upper West Side at 225 West 86th Street is officially going condo with a total price tag of $1.3 billion according to the Real Deal.  The Belnord conversion may become one of Manhattan's most expensive condo buildings. Apartments are expected to average in price around $6million.

The Belnord, a limestone-and-brick structure that stretches the entire square block between 86th Street and 87th Street between Broadway and Amsterdam Avenue, was built in 1908 by the Astor family. The building is on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places. It was designed so that carriages could drive around the entire courtyard, which has canopied entrances at the four angled corners.
The Astor courtyard buildings (Apthorp Apartments) (The Astor) were built in conjunction with the IRT subway expansion to lure wealthy Manhattanites into apartment living from their elegant single family brownstone townhouses. 

They've increased enormously in value since they were built in the early 20th-century. John Jacob Astor on his deathbed in 1848 was asked if he had any regrets he replied: "
If I could live all over again, I would buy every square inch of Manhattan."

Photos ©Mitchell J Hall
The price came out to roughly $1,000 per square foot or $2.64 million for each of the 218 units, many of which contain original moldings and overlook the building’s central courtyard.
According to the offering plan, the condominium will have 213 residential units. The developer’s plans for rent-regulated units are unclear. Parking is not included in the plan.
The Belnord’s 213 condo apartments will average in price range to around $6.1 million.
Prewar condo apartments can command a premium since there are so few compared to new construction. 

Anticipated sales target date Q2-2017. Anticipated Occupancy planned for Q1 2018

Apr 22, 2016

Happy Earth Day: Earth Photos by Astronaut Sunita Williams


Apr 20, 2016

2015 NYC Residential Sales $113.4 billion

All Real Estate Sales in 2015 compared to 2014
In 2015, the total consideration for all real estate transactions was $113.4 billion, a 33 percent increase in total consideration compared to $85.2 billion in 2014. ­­­­­­­­­­­­In 2015, there were 53,904 real property sales, a 10 percent increase over the 49,099 in 2014.

The information for the citywide residential home sales is taken from the REBNY Residential Sales Reports. These properties include 1-3 family homes, condominiums, and cooperatives. 

The information for the citywide investment property sales is sourced from the REBNY Investment Sales Report. Investment properties include commercial, manufacturing and multifamily rental properties. "Consideration" is the sum or total monetary value for completed transactions. "Real Estate" transactions do not include air rights and ground leases.

source REBNY

This blog site is designed and published as a consumer service by local real estate broker to help Manhattan, New York City buyers, sellers and renters make informed real estate decisions. This site and its feeds are owned and operated by Mitchell J Hall, a NY State licensed real estate associate broker associated with The Corcoran Group and member of the Real Estate Board of New York.

Legal Disclaimer - The opinions expressed here are those of the authors and do not neccessarily reflect the opinions or policy of The Corcoran Group. This site is not the official website of The Corcoran Group or its affiliated companies, and neither The Corcoran Group nor its affiliated companies in any way warrant the accuracy of any information contained herein. Any product and/or services offered for sale on this website shall not be considered an offer to sell such goods and/or services in any state other than New York.

Legal Disclaimer - Information on this site is not intended as legal or financial advice. - All material herein is intended for information purposes only and has been complied from sources deemed reliable. Though information is believed to be correct, it is presented subject to errors, omissions, changes or withdrawal without notice. I operate a business that supports Fair Housing.“We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the nation. We encourage and support an affirmative advertising and marketing program which there are no barriers to obtain housing because of race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familiar status or national origin.”

© Copyright 2006 -2014 © © Al l Rights Reserved