News

Good Morning New York Real Estate

Voice AmericaJuly 29, 2014

Episode Description

 

 

Special Guest: Chad Carroll – Miami Broker 



Chad Carroll has just joined the cast of the new franchise show Million Dollar Listing Miami. At 29 years old and only being in the business since 2009, Chad is an Executive Vice President at Douglas Elliman in Miami, and extremely successful. Chad will talk about his successful real estate career and being selected as a cast member of the new Bravo TV show.

CORE Adds Some Flavor to Real Estate Marketing

Luxury DailyJuly 28, 2014

Campaign still for 15 Renwick property created by March IF Studies

 

Real estate brokerage firm CORE is taking an unorthodox approach to marketing a new building in the Hudson Square neighborhood of New York.

 

Although real estate purchases are arguably the most important commercial choices a consumer can make, real estate marketing tends to follow a dry and formulaic approach. CORE sought to break away from this format by creating a campaign that resembles something closer to what a fashion brand might produce.

 

“I wanted to capture the attention and imagination of our buyer and set the appropriate creative tone for the project,” said Shaun Osher, founder and CEO of CORE, New York.

 

“There are a number of generic projects on the market right now, but this one is particularly unique, so I wanted to send a message that was aligned with 15 Renwick,” he said.

 

“This is a neighborhood filled with creative people, thanks to companies like Saatchi & Saatchi, Weinstein, Miramax, Tribeca Film Institute, New York Magazine, Splashlight Studios, Adidas and others who are based in the area.”


Finding history


Core was tasked with generating interest for a new building, developed by IGI-USA, in Hudson Square that enters the market in the fall. Fifteen Renwick is a 31-unit building that includes townhomes, penthouses and 2- and 3-bedroom apartments.

 

Other features of the building include 8-foot windows, walnut flooring, Bosh washer and dryers, HVAC and more. Amenities include a fitness center, 24-hour butler, roofdeck, “zen” garden and onsite storage.

 

Normally, a brokerage firm would post images and videos of the property’s many perks and call it a day. CORE, however, decided to go beyond the basics, and dug around in the location’s history.

 

The architect James Renwick, who designed St. Patrick’s Cathedral and many other structures, lived on the street that now bears his name with his family in the late 1700s.

 

CORE then enlisted portrait photographer Henry Leutwyler to interpret this fact. The photographer came up with a series of 15 portraits that suffuse stuffy aristocracy with a bright and visceral contemporary feel to create a jarring mix.

 

Print ads for the campaign will run in Vogue, Vanity Fair, Glamour, New York magazine, Beach magazine, Women’s Wear Daily, Surface, The Hollywood Reporter and others.

 

Real estate trades will carry digital versions, along with The New York Times, Monocole, Fast Company, Wallpaper and Cool Hunting.

 

Shifting priorities


Neighborhoods throughout New York that have traditionally remained less visible are now gaining attention.

 

For instance, new luxury development projects in the NoMad, north of Madison Square Park, district of Manhattan indicate that the once-overlooked neighborhood is on the rise as other areas become squeezed.

 

Real estate firm CORE recently closed sales for the residential condo 241 Fifth, commanding prices ranging from $820,000 to $10 million. Not to diminish the potential of other neighborhoods in the city, CORE also wrapped up sales further up Fifth Avenue for the property One Museum Mile on the same day (see story).

 

“As a company, we consistently take the approach that no two buildings, buyers, or projects are ever the same, so we work on our marketing strategies tailored for the specific project,” Mr. Osher said.

 

“We work towards creating a campaign that feels natural to the building and its future owners,” he said.

 

 

House of the Day: 130 Fort Greene Place

BrownstonerJuly 28, 2014

This four-story brick house has beautiful Greek Revival features but is in need of a top-to-bottom overhaul. Built in 1856, according to the listing, the landmarked house has a classical pediment over the front door, ear moldings around openings on the parlor floor, marble mantels with arches or flattened neoclassical columns, and original pocket doors.

 

The two-family house is 20 feet wide by 40 feet deep with an extension on the two lower floors. No kitchens or bathrooms are shown, and the listing says the property “will need complete updating.”

 

Think it’s worth the $2,395,000 ask?

15 Renwick's Steampunk Marketing is Up and Running

CurbedJuly 26, 2014

The weird marketing campaign at 15 Renwick is officially off the ground, now that signage has gone up around the construction site. The campaign—which seems to center around some weird reimagining of The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen and targets the coveted steampunk millionairedemographic—was designed by IF Studio and MARCH, with portraits taken by photographer Henry Leutwyler.

 

 

The 11-story, 31-unit buildling is being developed by Eldad Braunstein of IGI-USA, a subsidiary of Israel-based Izaki Group Investments. Shaun Osher and Doron Zwickel of CORE are handling sales, which will launch in September.

The Week’s Notable Renderings: 15 Renwick, 515 West 29th

The Real DealJuly 25, 2014

15 Renwick Street

 

Developer Eldad Blaustein's long-gestating Soho condominium project might be back in action. ODA's Eran Chen is handling the redesign of the 11-story, 31-unit property.

$1.8M Greenpoint Apartment Boasts Incredible 16-Foot High Exposed Ceilings

6SqFtJuly 25, 2014

When you hear about a Greenpoint apartment for sale, “loft” might not be what first pops into your head.  But apartment 8 at 190 West Street, currently listed for $1.825 million through CORE, will make you a believer in Brooklyn loft living.

 

 

The 1,364-square-foot, one-bedroom apartment has all of the loft-like charms you’d hope for–steel support columns, nine-inch oak plank flooring, and exposed wood ceiling beams, duct work, and pipes.  It also feels twice its size thanks to 16-foot ceilings, 40 feet of street-facing frontage, eight-foot-high windows, a large skylight, and an open layout that can easily accommodate a two-bedroom conversion.

 

The chef’s kitchen will definitely stop you in your tracks.  It’s outfitted with stainless steel appliances, open shelving made of reclaimed beech wood, custom hand-made wood cabinetry, and stone flooring.  The room’s current movable furniture will leave a great deal of room for creativity within the space.

 

 

Throughout the loft are big expanses of white walls, perfect for displaying large-scale artwork.  There are three closets, one of which is a utility closet with a washer/dryer hookup.  The modern bathroom is lined with crisp ceramic tiles, and also has a deep soaking tub and a wall-mounted porcelain sink.  Amenities include a shared roof deck with full Manhattan views, a private deeded parking space, and basement storage.  We should probably stop now–the old-school Tribeca lofts are getting jealous.

 

 

Tracking 350 Years of Changing Brooklyn Boundaries

CurbedJuly 25, 2014

1) Soho: Long-stalled condo development 15 Renwick is making a comeback, under new ownership. The building has a brand new design, and, more interestingly, a brand new marketing campaign that features four semi-Victorian-era characters inserted unsubtly into the renderings. It's pretty weird, but kind of cool.

Sales to Launch at Long-Delayed 15 Renwick in September

The Real DealJuly 24, 2014

Following a stall in work during the recession and a change of hands, sales are expected to launch at the condo project at 15 Renwick in September.

 

Residential brokerage Core will market the apartment, as The Real Deal previously reported. The 11-story, Eran Chen-designed building is slated for completion next year and will feature 24 luxury condos, four duplex apartments and three townhouses, according to the New York Observer.

 

Prices for two- and three-bedroom units range from about $2 million to $5 million, according to the news site. CORE will market townhouses at $3.9 million to $7.5 million. The penthouse duplexes are priced between $7.85 million and $10.5 million.

 

Design features include windows with wood trim and aluminum casings, stainless steel countertops and herringbone-pattern marble tiles in the bathroom, the Observer reported.

 

 

Izaki Group Investments secured development rights for the site following a foreclosure auction in 2012, The Real Deal previously reported. The original developer was Harch Group founder Harry Jeremias.

15 Renwick Seems to Be Catering to Steampunk Millionaires

CurbedJuly 24, 2014

Soho's long-stalled The Renwick is back from the dead, and much improved. Developer Eldad Blaustein purchased the development, now known as 15 Renwick, for a mere $11 million after it was foreclosed on, and he has tapped architect Eran Chen of ODA for the redesign. The result, from the limited looks we get from the initial renderings, appears to be a big upgrade (not that that's saying much, as the original Ismael Leyva design started and ended with a flat glass wall.) Even better than the redesign is 15 Renwick's new marketing campaign, which features, for reasons that are not entirely clear and not in the slightest bit important, four Steampunk-ish scalie characters. The scalies, an astronomer (seen in the above rendering astronomer-ing off his private terrace), a boxer, and two aristocratic ladies, are meant to appeal to "people who are creative, different," according to Blaustein. He continues, "We always joke that it might be a Wall Street trader, but he's writing songs, he's writing poems at night." We can only hope that the buyer that these renderings appeal to gets up to some weirder stuff at night than writing poems.

 

So who came up with these people? Brokerage CORE is leading the marketing, and they teamed up with March and IF Studio to create these fictional, modern aristocrats that will hopefully lure buyers to the building.

 

 

The 11-story, 31-unit building is slated for completion in 2015. It will include 24 two- and three-bedroom asking between $2 million and $5 million, as well as three adjoining townhouses ($3.9 million to $7.5 million) and four duplex penthouses ($7.85 million to $10.5 million). Sales will launch in September.

More Are Taking Shape in the Flatiron District

The Wall Street JournalJuly 24, 2014

Once a center of fashion during the Gilded Age and now part of the Ladies' Mile Historic District where elegant department stores once stood, the area between Madison Square Park and Union Square has become a booming fitness enclave for exercise classes and retailers selling workout apparel.

 

Looking east or west on Fifth Avenue between 14th and 23rd streets, there are now about 40 fitness-related businesses, many of them "boutique" studios where exercise routines—often led by a charismatic instructor—aim to transform the mind and body. Boutique classes have proven particularly popular with professionals in the 20-to-45 age range.

 

Elizabeth Cutler, co-chief executive and co-founder of SoulCycle, which offers intense spin classes, said the company's decision to locate two studios just minutes away from each other was rather simple: the added space was needed to keep up with demand.

 

SoulCycle's Union Square studio, at 18th Street between Fifth and Broadway, has been packed since opening in 2011. The clientele skews toward a younger crowd, with students, artists, and models attending classes.

 

Its second area location, which opened in December on 19th Street near Fifth, is mostly filled with workers from the Flatiron District and Chelsea, as well as parents who come in for a workout after dropping off their children at school.

 

"It's not unusual to see tenants looking to double down [with more locations] as the area became the epicenter for fitness," said Jackie Totolo, a senior director at RKF, a real-estate firm that is active in leasing retail space in the area. "There's demand during the day and at night because of the technology and creative companies that have offices here, as well as the youthful residential population that now live on the side streets."

 

The fitness world has evolved from just hitting the gym to lift weights and take an aerobics class. Boutique fitness studios with locations in the Flatiron area, including Flywheel Sports (spin and barre), Circuit of Change (cardio, martial arts, yoga and meditation rolled into one) and Om Factory (aerial yoga), are attractive for those who want to be part of a community while getting fit.

 

Taking a fitness class has increasingly become part of the social scene for affluent young adults (each class is usually in the $20-$40 range), where a few enthusiasts are known to run from studio to studio to take back-to-back classes, or take a class with friends and then head out for a bite to eat together.

 

Annbeth Eschbach, chief executive and founder of exhale, a boutique spa and fitness studio, opened her sixth New York City location on 21st Street in early June. She said 80% of the classes offered at the new location in its first month—including a high intensity interval training class called Core Fusion Extreme—were sold out.

 

"We chose the location because of its proximity to active, trendsetting, youthful individuals that value well-being and quality boutique fitness classes," she said.

 

Beside ideal demographics, the boom in fitness outlets in the Flatiron area has been fostered by the availability of large loft spaces, especially on the upper floors of the historic buildings that were occupied decades ago by manufacturing companies, said Ms. Totolo.

 

Large-scale fitness retailers have taken note of the activity. Reebok FitHub on Union Square West opened this month, joining neighboring Lululemon Athletica and a host of Fifth Avenue retail tenants, including Nike Running, New Balance and Athleta.

 

"We're looking for FitHub to become a global brand so the area intersected a good mix of community residents, office workers, students and tourists," said Jason Smith, director of retail at Reebok. "It seems right for us to be there."

 

The 11,600-square-foot FitHub offers free classes and stocks Reebok apparel on the ground floor, while a CrossFit gym occupies the basement.

 

There are also numerous healthy-eating options in the area, including juice bars Liquiteria on 17th Street between Fifth and Broadway and Juice Press on 22nd Street and Fifth.

 

 

Anchored by the four-times-a-week Union Square Greenmarket and Paragon Sports, the granddaddy of sports retailers in the area, the Ladies' Mile Historic District is now a "one-stop shop for our active lifestyle community," said SoulCycle's Ms. Cutler.

15 Renwick Street Reawakens: Stalled Development Site Plans September Sales Launch

New York ObserverJuly 23, 2014

In many corners of Manhattan, the recession was as much about what didn’t happen as what did. Apartments went unsold, deals undone, condo projects unbuilt—among them 15 Renwick Street, a 4,523-square foot site in Hudson Square where developer Harry Jeremias planned to erect a 12-story Ismael Leyva-designed tower.

 

But in the years since the housing crash, even the most stubborn traces of the recession have vanished from the Manhattan real estate market, lost in the effervescence of so many $10 million, $20 million, $40 million and now $70 million closings. And Hudson Square, which was just last year rezoned for more residential development, is more than poised for a condo boom, positioned as it is between Tribeca, Soho and the West Village. So it is only fitting that 15 Renwick would be preparing for a market push, albeit this time under the aegis of a different developer and architect: Eldad Blaustein of IGI-USA (a subsidiary of major Israeli firm Izaki Group Investments) and Eran Chen of ODA. (Mr. Blaustein said he paid $11 million for the site, a steal given the $56 million that the previous developer had put into the site and planning.)

 

A September sales launch with CORE is expected for the new project, an 11-story, 31-unit luxury condo that will include three adjoining townhouses and four duplex penthouses, according to Mr. Blaustein.

  

“In the original plans, it was a glass building, a curtain wall from bottom to top, and we changed the façade, added more industrial elements, consistent with the cast iron architecture of the neighborhood,” Mr. Blaustein said. “It has a more industrial finish and the apartments will all have more exposed columns.”

 

The core of the building will include 24 two- and three-bedroom units priced, roughly from $2 million to $5 million, with the townhouses priced at $3.9 million to $7.5 million and the penthouse duplexes from $7.85 million to $10.5 million. The building is slated for completion in 2015.

 

But just because IGA-USA has decided to go in a different direction with its design does not mean a complete break with the past. Or if not the past, at least a past. In this case, a mostly fictional one. The building’s marketing campaign will feature historically-inspired fictional characters that date—sort-of—to the era of the street’s namesake, James Renwick, born in 1790. In the words of the press materials,”The imagery integrates the historical, Victorian era of the Renwick legacy with the creative persona of today’s Hudson Square resident. The provocative images include a shirtless boxer sporting contemporary tattoos, complemented by an aristocratic-styled woman with modern-day nail-art.”

 

IGI-USA is so confident that the characters will appeal to the right kind of buyer—via Mr. Blaustein: “Our target market is people who are creative, different. We always joke that it might be a Wall Street trader, but he’s writing songs, he’s writing poems at night”—that the initial marketing campaign is not slated to include any renderings of the building’s interiors or exteriors, though the developer did share a select few with the Observer.

 

Among the interior and exterior details that can be expected: windows lined with wood trim and encased in aluminum, aged copper panels, walnut wide plank floors, stainless steel countertops and bathrooms with statuary marble tile in a herringbone pattern. Not included: the historical characters who can be seen enjoying the apartments in all the renderings.

 

“Sure there will be some criticism, some jokes, but I don’t care,” said Mr. Blaustein of the unorthodox campaign. “Aesthetically I think it’s beautiful and it will appeal to the clients we want.”

 

 

Or, as the marketing literature puts it: “Through an artistic mash up of culture, design and history that challenges today’s linear real estate marketing campaigns, 15 Renwick is, simply put, not for everyone.”

CORE Hires Douglas Heddings, Absorbs His Brokerage

The Real DealJuly 22, 2014

CORE has absorbed the Hedding Property Group as part of its hiring of Douglas Heddings as the new executive vice president of sales, the brokerage announced today.

 

Heddings, a veteran broker, had founded the residential brokerage Heddings Property Group in 2010 after leaving Rutenberg Realty. HPG opened an office at 119 West 23rd Street in Chelsea last year following the closure of several suburban outposts. 

 

“In this new role, he will oversee our growing sales division, which has more than doubled over the last two years, recruit and mentor our team of agents and lead the way in the implementation of our growth plan and strategy,” CORE CEO Shaun Osher said in a statement.

 

 

Heddings’ firm shared a seventh-floor Chelsea space with commercial firm Jonathan Barry Associates. The office opened last year following the closure of several suburban outposts, as previously reported.

Home on the Range: Historic Tribeca Townhouse Sells for $5.5M

New York ObserverJuly 22, 2014

In the mid-1970s, Norman and Eugenia Wiener, a painter and a sculptor who were living in Manhattan on 20th Street, struck a bargain whose tremendous long-term value no one could have predicted, when they bought from the city for just $55,000 a diminutive three-bedroom townhouse in a quiet alcove of Tribeca at 37 Harrison Street. Built on Washington Street in 1828 by Wilson Hunt, who operated a prosperous dry goods concern nearby, the home was subsequently landmarked and constructed afresh on Harrison Street during a period of urban renewal. ”My husband and I liked to walk down to this area,” Ms. Wiener once said of the formerly-bustling market neighborhood. “We used to dream about what it had been like.”

 

Alas, perhaps some wistful soul of the future will say the same about the neighborhood during the period that Mr. and Ms. Wiener, who are deceased, lived there. Which is to say, an egalitarian heyday when family-sized homes could be had for just $5.5 million, the price for which the Wieners’ estate just sold the property, according to Mickey Conlon and Tom Postilio, who had the listing at CORE.

 

“When we were first introduced to the property, it was in estate condition,” Mr. Conlon told the Observer. “It had the finishes that the previous owners installed in 1975, not to mention some broken windows and a lot of clutter. The appraisal had been for $3.8 million, but we thought that if you emptied it out and cleaned it up a bit, you could probably do better than that. We priced it at $3.75 million, thinking we’d probably get over $4 million.”

 

With its quaint Federal styling, three full sun-flooded floors, stone-walled English basement and six (!) wood burning fireplaces, the house offers an environment for family living available practically nowhere else in New York. There are 13.5-foot ceilings with exposed beams, arched original dormers and a private garden that adjoins a row of similar attached houses. Much to the relief of the buyers—who declined to be identified, at least for the time being—is no-doubt the fact that plumbing and electrical systems are very definitely not original. The kitchen and bathrooms, fixtures and finishes will doubtless get amped into the 21st century, but the property did not fail to charm, attracting some 100 shoppers through the doors and, ultimately, 14 bids. (The traffic allegedly included Jake Gyllenhaal.)

 

Still, Mr. Conlon said, “There were no fistfights. We’ve seen people get mildly hysterical at these kinds of things.” The sellers, Mr. Postilio added, “were beside themselves with joy.” No surprise there. We only wonder whether perhaps the city doesn’t have a townhouse or two for we at the Observer to take a look at. Perhaps something in the $55,000 range?

Forget Rentals, Downtown Brooklyn Condos Booming

New York PostJuly 16, 2014

“The first two weeks were a gold rush.”

 

That’s how William Ross of Halstead described the pace of sales at 388 Bridge St., the 53-story rental/condo tower in Downtown Brooklyn that put its condos on the market in June.

 

Since then, 42 of the 60 units on the market have contracts out. (The building will have a total of 144 condo units when all are released, alongside 240 rentals, which are about 75 percent occupied.) The condos have been moving at around $1,150 to $1,200 per square foot — with the unreleased penthouses expected to go for $1,600 to $2,100 per square foot.

 

“We’re thinking of raising prices again,” says Ross. “We’ve raised prices twice already.”

 

These condos have attracted young and old; families and singles — everybody who wants one elusive thing: To buy in Downtown Brooklyn, where rentals have reigned supreme in recent years.

 

“There’s very little to buy,” says Michelle Lipchin, who, while living at the Brooklyner, a 491-unit rental, decided she wanted to purchase something in the area. She looked at a few lackluster resales until she found a roughly 700-square-foot one-bedroom unit at 388 Bridge that she’s now in contract for.

 

“Downtown Brooklyn was largely rental-driven since Lehman Brothers fell,” says Doug Bowen of Core. Prior to that, condos like Toren and 110 Livingston took root, but when the market crashed, developers stuck with the safer investment. “Most of the development — especially anything of size like the Brooklyner, or [the upcoming] Avalon Bay — was rental.”

 

But perhaps 388 Bridge signals a change — are developers in Downtown Brooklyn going to start turning once again to condos?

 

According to a report released this week from the Downtown Brooklyn Partnership, there are 7,800 housing units in the development pipeline; the Partnership told NYP Home that 2,000 of them will be market-rate condos.

 

 

Even Downtown Brooklyn’s handful of pre-Lehman condos have seen a resurgence of interest and activity. 

Single Women Are Taking the Plunge — Buying Their Own New York City Apartments

New York Daily NewsJuly 16, 2014

All these single ladies liked it so much, they put a mortgage on it.

 

Unmarried women in the U.S. aren’t waiting to say “I do” before jumping into homeownership — doing so at twice the rate of single men. In New York, that means ponying up to buy a pad in the priciest real-estate market in the country — with just one household income and no support from a significant other.

 

That’s no mean feat, since women still earn significantly less than men.

 

 

“There’s a psychological shift going on,” said Paul Purcell, managing director at brokerage William Raveis New York, who sees more and more single women focusing on homes as part of their investment portfolios.

New Listings: 233 East 17th Street, PH

Real Estate WeeklyJuly 16, 2014

Crowned bya  private 1,521 s/f roof terrace, this Gramercy penthouse is listed with CORE's Tom Postilio and Mickey Conlon at $5.395 million. The three-bedroom, 3-bath apartment at 233 east 17th Street is perched atop an 1877 Gothic Revival landmark in the Stuyvesant Square Historic District. The 2,200 s/f home has a great room with wood-burning fireplace, laundry, 13-foot ceilings and a 20-foot atrium. Each bedroom is en-suite with custom-fitted closets. A private wing is separated by a formal gallery. Connected to the interior by a floating staircase is a landscaped private terrace which has an integrated audio system, irrigation, lighting, a gas barbecue, and an outdoor shower. 

The Prettiest Private Outdoor Oases For Sale Right Now in NYC

CurbedJuly 15, 2014

Sometimes, the city's most popular parks are crowded. Sometimes, visiting great, off-the-beaten-path ones might be too inconvenient. Sometimes, you have a couple of million dollars lying around. The only solution? Buy an amazing New York City apartment with beautiful, lush outdoor space. Luckily, the real estate market has those in spaces, and we've rounded up a few of the loveliest. From a Spanish Revival-style courtyard in the Bronx to an infinity pool in Brooklyn, it's time to gawk at someone else's sweet roof deck. Note: This roundup is by no means exhaustive, so look for more coverage of apartments with covetable al fresco amenities soon.

Gallery

Real Estate WeeklyJuly 09, 2014

Pictured right, CORE recently teamed up with online shelter publication Lonny Magazine. To celebrate the relaunch of the brand's new site, the Lonny team held a launch event at the penthouse at 111 Mercer Street currently listed by CORE's Emily Beare and Christian Rogers.

The Real Deal Teams up with Find An Architect

The Real DealJuly 08, 2014

The Real Deal is excited to announce its strategic partnership with Find An Architect, a service that connects real estate developers and owners with the most qualified architects for upcoming projects. Find An Architect is powered by Architizer, the largest online platform for architecture with over 40,000 firms across the globe.

 

 

The Real Deal joins partners such as The Wall Street Journal, CORE Group Marketing, and Dwell in the Find An Architect initiative.

Good Morning New York Real Estate

Voice AmericaJuly 08, 2014

The Hamptons are booming. Real estate is back to breaking records for both summer seasonal rentals and sales. Prices are up and the Hampton's top residential brokerages are making sure they are along for the ride. Pleasure seekers and residents are getting acquainted with the new hotspots born during the off season from upscale apparel pop-up shops to new restaurants to trendy hotels and hangouts. Don't miss this all about Hamptons' show. 

Luxury Through Musical Artistry

Residency NYJuly 07, 2014

The top selling stars of CORE, a boutique firm in NYC, are known for more than just their million dollar sales. Like most brokers, this partnership thrives on selling a particular lifestyle -- only in this case, the foundations for a luxurious lifestyle can be attributed to the arts. Former Broadway producer, Mickey Conlon has won multiple TONY awards nominations, while his partner Tom Postilio, founding member of CORE, boasts an 18-month run with the hit Off-Broadway musical "Our Sinatra." And sometimes, their collaborative passion for musical theater can transcend the state into the spontaneous world of real estate.

Sales in the City

Residency NYJuly 07, 2014

All signs point to a strong summer market as the fundamentals remain in place: low inventory, strong demand, low mortgage rates, and a stable local economy. Despite some hiccups in the equity market as of late, other economic indicators are strong, including unemployment which was down over half a percent in February from the prior year.

On the Market in New York City

The New York TimesJuly 04, 2014

Soho Duplex Co-op $1,650,000

 

MANHATTAN 196 Sixth avenue, #4/5B

 

A one-bedroom one-and-a-half bath with an office space and a fireplace in a pre-war elevator building.

 

Patrick Lilly (212) 612-9681, Adie Kriegstein (917) 921-6929, CORE

 

 

 

Everyone Loves LLCs! Foreigners Aren’t the Only Fans of Limited Liability Corps.

New York ObserverJuly 03, 2014

You don’t have to be a foreigner to see the appeal in purchasing a piece of real estate under a limited liability corporation: as the Observer and many other publications have documented in the past, high-end buyers have increasingly embraced LLCs, largely for reasons of privacy—at least to the extent that they have been able to do so with many co-ops continuing to insist on real names. With city property records now widely available online, the urge to disguise one’s identity from the prying eyes of the press is a fairly common one for buyers of any renown, a category that many fall into at the upper reaches of the residential real estate market.

 

So we were surprised to find, in Andrew Rice’s otherwise fascinating and exhaustively reported New York magazine article about the use of New York real estate as a stash box for overseas buyers, an assertion that the practice was almost entirely limited to foreigners.

 

Mr. Rice writes that “According to date compiled by the firm PropertyShark, since 2008, roughly 30 percent of condo sales in large-scale Manhattan developments have been to purchasers who either listed an overseas address or bought through an entity like a limited-liability corporation, a tactic rarely employed by local homebuyers but favored by foreign investors.”

 

But real estate professionals say that isn’t the case at all.

 

While 30 percent might be a fair estimate of foreign buyers in new, high-end construction—Corcoran Sunshine told New York that it estimates that 35 percent of its sales since 2013 have been to foreign buyers, a statistic that the company also quoted to the Observer for a story this March on Chinese investors, it’s hardly fair to assume that foreigners and LLCs are one and the same.

 

“LLCs are used, in my experience, by both domestic buyers and foreign buyers,” CORE broker Christian Rogers told the Observer. In fact, Mr. Rogers said that at this point, roughly 85 to 90 percent of his buyers use LLCs and that the split between foreign and domestic buyers is roughly 50/50. At 93 Worth, which CORE is marketing, he’s seen more contracts going out with the rights assigned to LLCs than not.

 

“I actually would have said that 18 months ago, it was weighted slightly on the domestic side,” Mr. Rogers added. “But it’s just become very popular with all buyers. People are being better advised and understanding the advantages of it.”

 

Advantages include not only privacy, but also liability, which can protect an individual’s assets in the event of a lawsuit, a not small consideration for any investor—domestic or otherwise—who plans to rent a property.

 

Kathy Korte, the CEO of Sotheby’s International Realty, Inc., wrote in an email to the Observer that “purchasing real estate through a corporate entity has become increasingly popular with both domestic and international buyers seeking privacy.”

 

For condo transactions over $10 million in Manhattan this year—a total of 69 sales—65 percent of the buyers purchased through a corporate entity. For condo sales over $20 million, 89 percent of buyers purchased through an LLC, according to Sotheby’s data.

 

“When luxury real estate is purchased through a corporate entity, it is a complete gamble to guess whether the buyer is domestic or international,” Ms. Korte wrote. “You can be certain, however, that they’re trying to avoid the gossip pages.”

 

Indeed, 15 CPW is packed with press-averse domestic buyers who tried to hide their identities behind LLCs. In 2007, for example, NASCAR driver Jeff Gordon bought his three-bedroom spread as Carolina Real Property LLC., and Sandy Weill, of $88 million sale fame, bought his penthouse under the JW Revocable Trust. Meanwhile, at other Manhattan addresses, both Oprah and Jennifer Aniston bought apartments with LLCs named after their dogs.

 

“Frankly, privacy concerns have become more important, especially to people of great wealth, though it isn’t limited to people of great wealth,” said Eva Talel, a partner at Stroock, Stroock and Lavan who heads the law firm’s co-op and condo representation group. “I do think it’s accelerated in the last couple of years and it’s certainly not limited to foreign buyers, there are a lot of domestic buyers who chose to use it as well. It can be anyone who doesn’t want their name in public records.”

 

Ms. Talel pointed to the recent uproar over the city’s decision to exclude LLC-owned properties from eligibility for primary residence tax abatements as evidence that many a local has availed himself of the privacy afforded by an LLC.

 

 

“This is really the only form I’m familiar with that would be an acceptable form of ownership that protects the identity of buyers,” Ms. Talel said.

CORE Partners with Lonny Magazine

Real Estate WeeklyJuly 02, 2014

CORE recently teamed up with online shelter publication Lonny Magazine. To celebrate the relaunch of the brand’s new site http://www.lonny.com/, the Lonny team held a launch event at the penthouse at 111 Mercer Street currently listed by Core’s Emily Beare and Christian Rogers.

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