News

Ask an Expert: Buying a Dead Neighbor's Digs?

AM New YorkJuly 29, 2015

A neighbor in our building recently died, and another neighbor and I are interested in potentially splitting the apartment to renovate and add on to each of our own individual units. What's the appropriate way to approach her children, who are handling the estate? And how soon is too soon?

 

While you're right to think you should tread lightly here, if you approach the situation the proper way, there's no reason you and your neighbor can't put in a polite offer for the apartment in question,  say our experts.

 

"When it comes to New York real estate, it is difficult to ever be too early," says real estate attorney Dean Roberts of Norris, McLaughlin & Marcus. While you might want to feel out the timing based on common courtesy, says Roberts, "It is best to let the family and, if possible, the designated executor know as quickly as possible about your interest in the apartment. Simple and polite expression of interest early would not be deemed offensive if done tactfully."

 

If, understandably,  you would rather not bother your neighbor's grieving family with the request,  CORE NYC broker Douglas Heddings recommends a phone call or letter to the attorney for the estate, instead. "The doorman or super may be able to help you find out more information," about who to contact, he notes. Failing that, says Heddings, "Perhaps a sympathy card slid under the door gently mentioning your interest in the apartment would be less intrusive."

 

In fact, it's very possible your neighbor's estate will be happy to hear from you. "Frankly, it may be to the estate's benefit to know there's an interested purchaser early in the process so that they don't have to bother with showing the apartment and hiring a broker," says Roberts. "In some ways, the offer could be helpful and well-received."

Manhattan’s Top Agents Benefit from Fame, Rising Prices and Personal Branding

The Real DealJuly 01, 2015

In the high-stakes world of Manhattan real estate, agents tend to fall into two camps — those brokering sales in glitzy new condo buildings and those dealing in resale units, including the trophy pads that trade for top dollar.

 

As in the past few years, agents who’ve associated themselves with new developments made clear gains on The Real Deal’s annual ranking of Manhattan’s Top 75 residential listing agents. But in the ever-competitive residential market, the upper echelon of the ranking saw a considerable reshuffling.

 

Of course, the emphasis on new development is not new, nor is it a surprise given the recent condo boom — 2015 has been called the year of the condo, after all. And there is still plenty of money to be made selling new condos for the foreseeable future, with some 6,500 new condos expected to hit the market in Manhattan this year alone, compared with about 2,500 last year.

 

TRD’s ranking — which is based on listings culled from the listings portal On-Line Residential on May 31 — includes exclusives and properties that went into contract on or after January 1. Needless to say, the ranking is not designed to capture every facet of an agent’s business — closed deals and buy-side transactions, for example, are not part of this tally. Instead it is meant to be an across-the-board snapshot of who is marketing what.

 

For the second year in a row, Douglas Elliman’s Fredrik Eklund and John Gomes dominated the ranking, buoyed by their new development prowess and Eklund’s star power, courtesy of his role on Bravo’s reality real estate TV show “Million Dollar Listing New York.” Their team, which moved to Elliman from CORE in 2010, racked up an impressive $542 million in listings this year, up from $535.5 million last year and $92 million in 2013. And their dominance illustrates a larger trend.

 

“Multi-agent teams again dominated the list of the top-producing agents in Manhattan,” said Jonathan Greenspan, president of OLR. “Most of these teams gross the bulk of their income from new developments.”

 

Not missing a beat

 

In the No. 2 spot, power broker Dolly Lenz, who left Elliman in 2013 to start her own firm, had more than $491 million in listings, up from last year’s $476 million, according to OLR. She did not respond to a request for comment, but in the past she’s contented that her numbers are low because she does not input data into OLR.

 

Still, her current listings include the Dome Penthouse at the Plaza Hotel, asking $75 million, as well as a six-unit new development at 22 Bond Street, where prices range from $9.8 million to $19.9 million.

 

The rest of the top 10 on the ranking are: Elliman’s Raphael De Niro; Sotheby’s International Realty’s Serena Boardman and Brown Harris Stevens’ John Burger. They were followed by Compass President Leonard Steinberg and business partner Hervé Senequier at No. 6; BHS’ Paula Del Nunzio at No. 7; Stribling’s Alexa Lambert at No. 8, and Corcoran Group agents Carrie Chiang and Deborah Grubman at No. 9, and No. 10, respectively.

 

Overall, the number of listings represented by the Top 75 agents inched up marginally this year, though the dollar value of the listings made bigger gains. Collectively, the top agents had 1,386 listings, up 4.8 percent from 1,322 last year. The value of those listings, however, was $12.26 billion — a 13 percent increase from last year.

 

In addition, Elliman agents had the biggest presence on the list with 26 brokers making the cut with a combined $4.1 billion in listings. Corcoran had the second highest tally with 13 agents and $2 billion, followed by Stribling with eight agents and $1.2 billion.

 

Interestingly, despite their June 2014 jump to Compass from Elliman, Steinberg and Senequier did not miss a beat. That move seems to illustrate the importance of an agent’s own brand over that of their firm. At Compass, the pair racked up an impressive $340 million in listings, compared with nearly $332 million last year. Steinberg estimated that he left about $1 billion worth of new development work at Elliman.

 

“It’s the price you pay when you make a break,” he admitted. But, he said, his business quickly recovered. “Dollar-wise, we’ve recouped that and then some.”

 

Rising fortunes

 

For agents landing new development deals, it’s not just the astronomical price tags for new condos that are boosting their fortunes; it’s also their cachet.

 

Eklund and Gomes apparently have a lot of that cachet.

 

They are currently marketing HFZ Capital’s 11 Beach Street, a 27-unit building with a sellout total of $228.5 million, and they have more than 1,000 new units in the development pipeline, Eklund said.

 

Meanwhile, Elliman’s De Niro jumped to No. 3 (from No. 8) with $474.2 million in listings.

 

He’s currently marketing the Ralph Walker Tribeca, a condo conversion by Magnum Real Estate and CIM Group at 100 Barclay Street, where he has more than $116 million in listings.

 

“We’re in a new development boom right now. All the top agents are experiencing the same thing,” De Niro said.

 

Nest Seekers International’s Ryan Serhant, Eklund’s co-star on MDLNY, also shot up on the ranking, catapulting to No. 12 from No. 36 with $246.7 million in listings, including the Justin, a five-unit condo at 225 East 81st Street that has a $22 million sellout.

 

Serhant’s team is currently working on 20 new development projects, up from just two in 2013, he said. He also noted that his team sold $100 million worth of real estate — including development sites, multi-family buildings and investment properties — to developers and others.

 

“In this day in age, you have to be a real estate concierge. You can’t just think a developer will call you and sign you onto a project,” he said. “You have to bring the site to the developer, you have to coordinate the financing.”

 

He added: “It doesn’t matter what firm you’re with. There are too many real estate brokers in the city, it all comes down to your personal brand.”

 

Steinberg agreed. Agents today, he said, create their own brands and then affiliate with a firm that can provide the resources and tools they need.

 

With few exceptions, that’s certainly the case among the brokers specializing in new development. And when it comes to those assignments, just one plum job can make a huge difference in a broker’s bottom line.

 

Sotheby’s Nikki Field, for example, soared to No. 14 (from No. 68) with nearly $231 million in listings, up from $82 million last year. That jump was largely driven by one new development project that she’s marketing: Jared Kushner’s Puck Penthouses, which accounted for $123 million of her listings. The six penthouses atop the famed Soho building incorporate original details like barrel-vaulted ceilings with ultra high-end finishes, and prices range from $22 million to $66 million.

 

Meanwhile, Elliman’s Michael Graves, who did his first real estate deal in 2010, clocked in at No. 31, up from No. 71 last year. Graves, who worked for his family’s Minnesota-based hospitality business before turning to New York real estate, had more than $150 million in listings, according to OLR.

 

This spring, Graves listed three units on the 18th and 19th floors of Walker Tower in Chelsea that were together asking $60 million. The units are owned by developers Elliott Joseph and Kevin Maloney of Property Markets Group, who converted the building into condos with Michael Stern’s JDS Development Group. (Graves put one of those units, 18C, which was asking $10.5 million, into contract last month.)

 

More than half of his listings are new development condos. At Stella Tower, another PMG and JDS condominium at 425 West 50th Street, Graves has six listings worth $31.5 million.

 

Of course, not every new development condo lists for eight figures.

 

Eklund and Gomes — who have been working together for eight years and employ two drivers and two assistants for their 10-agent team — consider their bread-and-butter the $2 million to $7 million sector.

 

“It’s what the buyers want, and there’s a lack of inventory,” Eklund said.

 

The duo is also growing their resale business. “We’re trying to have a foot in each world. They are connected,” Eklund said.

 

Gomes added that new development buyers look to sell every few years. “We want to represent them when they sell and then help them buy in another new development,” he said.

 

Resale redux

 

Top agents with a long-term view aren’t just focusing on new development, however.

 

For example, Sotheby’s Boardman — No. 4 on this year’s list with nearly $443 million in properties — is mostly listing trophy resales, including the $80 million Duke Semans Mansion at 1009 Fifth. The seller, Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim, bought the Beaux Arts mansion for $44 million five years ago.

 

Meanwhile, BHS’ Burger clocked in at No. 5 with $363 million in listings, including a $42 million neo-Federal townhouse at 684 Park that is currently being used by the Queen Sofía Spanish Institute, but is categorized as a single-family home by OLR. He’s also marketing a pair of co-op units at the Beresford, at 211 Central Park West, for a combined $32.5 million.

 

Late last month Burger placed No. 2 among the top 1,000 agents nationwide on a ranking by research firm REALTrends and the Wall Street Journal with closed deals totaling $638 million in 2014. The ranking is based on surveys with brokers and backed up by data from multiple listing services and other sources.

 

He and other top resale brokers are clearly doing just fine.

 

Adam Modlin, president and founder of the Modlin Group, jumped to No. 15 with listings that topped $225 million, including the actress Demi Moore’s $75 million penthouse at the San Remo.

 

In the highest end of the market, which Modlin described as properties $25 million and up, he said there is little product. However, at the same time, he’s wary that too much is being built along Billionaire’s Row.

“Inevitably, it’s going to be a very competitive space to fight for those customers,” he said.

 

Shifting places

 

As in years past, several high-profile agents dropped off the list.

 

Top agent Kyle Blackmon, who ranked No. 14 last year with $198 million in listings, did not appear on this year’s list, for example.

 

Blackmon defected to Compass from BHS in late 2014. His drop-off from the ranking runs counter to the success that Steinberg and Senequier had moving between firms.

 

Blackmon has just three listings, according to OLR, including a five-bedroom co-op at 740 Park asking $27 million, a three-bedroom condo at 151 East 58th Street asking $9.6 million and a two-bedroom co-op at 870 Fifth asking $7.39 million.

 

Blackmon, through a Compass spokesperson, declined to comment.

 

Two heavy-hitters at Leslie J. Garfield, the boutique brokerage focusing on the townhouse market, also fell off this year’s list. President Jed Garfield and agent Matthew Pravda ranked No. 27 and No. 23 last year, respectively.

 

Pravda said he’s had a number of big recent sales, including a $19.3 million double-wide townhouse at 138-40 West 11th Street. “A lot of my inventory I’ve sold,” he said. “In this market, well-priced real estate flies off the shelf, period.”

 

Meanwhile, Corcoran’s Deborah Kern, No. 17 on last year’s list with $186 million in listings, also fell off the list. She is the senior sales director for Vornado Realty Trust’s 220 Central Park South and has “no personal sales listings at [this] particular moment,” she told TRD.

 

That move will likely pay off in spades. As of early May, the last time Vornado reported its earnings, it had already sold one-third of the building’s 118 units. In all, 220 CPS has a $2.8 billion sellout, with prices ranging from $12.25 million to $150 million. Already, there’s been a reported sale of two penthouses for a combined — and record-shattering — $250 million.

 

Keeping it quiet

 

Whisper listings have always played a big role in the top reaches of Manhattan’s luxury market. But several top agents said they are quietly representing more of these off-market listings as sellers increasingly seek a modicum of privacy.

 

BHS’ Del Nunzio — who had $322.5 million in listings this year, compared to $503 million last year — has several mega listings in her official tally. They include a $60 million penthouse at the Time Warner Center and the $48 million Charles Ogden mansion at 12 East 79th Street.

 

But Del Nunzio said she has another $178 million worth of off-market exclusives. “They can be an important part of my business,” she said, noting that in 2014, one of her off-market listings, a brick-and-limestone home at 113-115 East 70th Street, sold for $51 million. The seller was fashion designer Reed Krakoff.

 

Meanwhile, Modlin is also quietly marketing a townhouse off of Fifth Avenue. He said off-market sellers are typically motivated more by the desire to stay anonymous than by fetching the highest price.

 

“If you’re doing something quietly, you may not attract the biggest net of buyers, you may not get the highest bidder,” he said. “But you preserve your privacy.”

 

Foreign connection

 

While TRD does not tally buy-side deals into its totals for this ranking, they are an increasingly important part of many brokers’ business models. That’s especially true given the force that foreign buyers have become.

 

Sotheby’s Field, for one, has been riding the wave of Chinese buyers. Field said her business is “consultant-centric,” meaning she is spending time advising clients on their global residential portfolios.

 

“As more high-net-worth and ultra-high-net-worth individuals continue to diversify their liquid assets, I am advising my clients on focused and targeted worldwide residential purchases,” she said.

 

Field said teammate Kevin Brown has locked in 13 contracts at the Baccarat andthe Four Seasons — all from foreign buyers. “The brand, New York City, is number one on every international buyer’s wish list,” Field said.

 

Janet Wang, who works with Corcoran’s Carrie Chiang, is also a go-to broker for Chinese buyers. Chiang’s team ranked No. 9 on TRD’s list this year, with nearly $277 million in listings, including a limestone mansion at 54 East 81st Street that hit the market at $36 million, but has since been reduced to $32 million.

 

Meanwhile, Elliman’s Graves said he’s traveled to Shanghai, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Barcelona and London in the last five months alone. Overall, he closed upwards of $85 million in buy-side business last year, he said.

 

“It’s very important for someone selling luxury properties to have connections that are international,” he said. He said international buyers see New York as a bargain compared to London and Hong Kong.

 

Sotheby’s Elizabeth Sample and Brenda Powers, whose team ranked No. 34 with $144.5 million in listings, said they are also continuing to see interest from overseas.

 

“There is a tremendous amount of wealth in the world that is seeking a solid investment like New York City,” they told TRD in an email. 

Emily Beare + David Beare | CORE 74 Washington Place

Modern NYCJune 29, 2015

$25,000,000

 

With the "spirit of nature" as the inspiration 74 Washington Place, originally an 1853 Greek Revival style multi-family dwelling, has been transformed into a 6-story state-of-the-art single-family residence. With unparalleled views of Washington Square Park, The Empire State Building and the new One World Trade, this magnificent home redefines townhouse living by inviting the outdoors inside. The home boasts 6-bedrooms, 6-full baths, 4-half baths and over 1,300 square feet of outdoor living space.

 

Including the finished cellar with a skylight, the home spans 9,125 square feet with an elevator, glass walls allowing the home to fill with natural light and dramatic double-height spaces. The home's finishes include a Henrybuilt kitchen, wardrobe, and vanities, Siberian oak floors, two gas fireplaces and tailor-made marble and tile work. Additional amenities include a gym, wine cellar, radiant floor heating throughout, dumbwaiter, Savant Systems home automation and an audio/visual security system. 74 Washington Place was developed by Good Property and designed in collaboration with Turett Collaborative Architects. Furnishings by Good Property and BDDW.

 

These Luxury Storage Units Cost More Than a Starter Home

Bloomberg BusinessJune 29, 2015

The condominiums at 93 Worth St. in Manhattan's Tribeca neighborhood are appointed with high ceilings, bathtubs deep enough to drown a small horse, and rich shared amenities: a rooftop kitchen, children's playroom, and fitness facility.

 

Those extras help sell apartments in the former bank building, where a penthouse is listed for $9.9 million. The building perks that convert most readily to cold, hard cash, however, are in the basement: 4-foot-by-8-foot steel storage cages into which residents pile the accumulated stuff that doesn't fit into their apartments. Developer Eldad Blaustein, chief executive officer of IGI-USA, said he recently sold one such box for $65,000. That works out to about $2,000 a square foot—a higher rate than he has gotten on some of the building's apartments.

 

“I mean, the rationale behind it, it’s hard to justify,” said Blaustein. “We all still live in a space which is smaller than we want to. That extra space is always the most valuable.”

 

Irrational or not, such hard bargains for basement storage units have cropped up more and more in Manhattan’s luxury real estate market. In 2011, reports surfaced of a $200,000 basement storage unit in a luxury building near Central Park. Two years later, a buyer paid $300,000 for a 200-square-foot storage cage in a residential tower in Tribeca.

 

Six Basement Storage Units You Can't Afford to Live In

 


  1. 56 Leonard St.: $300,000, or $1,500 per square foot, according to the New York Post

  2. 157 W. 57th St.: $216,000, or $4,000 per square foot

  3. 432 Park Ave.: $190,000, or $2,500 per square foot

  4. 252 E. 57th St.: $155,000, or $1,220 per square foot

  5. 520 Park Ave.: $95,000, or $2,065 per square foot

  6. 93 Worth St.: $65,000, or $2,031 per square foot, according to Blaustein


 

The rise of basement storage units priced in the ballpark of Blaustein's steel cages reflects two converging long-term trends: the soaring prices of Manhattan condos and the self-storage boom.

 

Wealthy buyers have poured assets into new luxury abodes while developers have vied to build the tallest, most expensive towers. As land gets more expensive, builders have become motivated to think of new ways to get a return on their investments.

 

“There's been a shift over the last 15 years or so to maximize every square inch of a building,” said Jonathan Miller, co-president of the appraisal firm Miller Samuel and a contributor to Bloomberg View. That includes hallways, rooftops, and even unused dumbwaiters, to name some spaces that Miller has appraised in recent years. At some buildings, basement storage is included in the cost of the apartment, or offered at a nominal charge—a strategy that probably leaves money on the table. “If you’re selling a $5 [million] to $10 million apartment, a 25-square-foot storage room gets lost in the shuffle. It’s more of a revenue opportunity to sell it separately,” said Miller.

 

Storage prices have risen apace with residential prices in recent years. The chart below, based on data from real estate website StreetEasy, shows the median price per square foot by year. StreetEasy recorded 96 storage sales in 2006, the most for any year in the survey. The residential data describes the average price per square foot on a quarterly basis and was furnished by Miller Samuel.

 

Across the U.S., meanwhile, the number of self-storage warehouses has more than doubled in the last 15 years as Americans have inched closer to grasping our manifest destiny to fill every inch with last year’s styles. There are 48,500 storage facilities in the U.S., making it physically possible, in the somewhat creepy formulation of an industry trade group, for "every American [to] stand—all at the same time—under the total canopy of self-storage roofing."

 

As with Manhattan's residential real estate, demand for storage is outpacing supply and prices are rising as a result. Thanks largely to a lull in construction during the recent recession, self-storage occupancy rates are at 90 percent nationally, according to John Egan, editor-in-chief at SpareFoot, a storage industry website. "There’s no secret that we’re a consumer society; people acquire various things,” Egan said. “As more people are moving to the urban core, there’s a good chance they’re not going to have as much space to keep stuff.”

 

Of course, expensive is a relative term. Some people spend more for a single flight on a charter jet than a young professional makes in a year. The monthly rent for a horse stable or a marina berth can cost more than the mortgage on a starter home.

 

Looked at one way, the storage units sold in tandem with luxury condos can actually be a good deal. A 50-square-foot storage unit at Gotham Mini Storage—the closest facility to 93 Worth St., according to SpareFoot—costs $269 a month. At those rates, 30 years would cost more than $96,000—more than enough to pay for one of Blaustein's storage units.

Is it Rude to Offer to Buy a Dead Neighbor's Apartment?

Brick UndergroundJune 29, 2015

Q: A neighbor in our building recently died, and another neighbor and I are interested in potentially splitting the apartment to renovate and add on to each of our own individual units. What's the appropriate way to approach her children, who are handling the estate? And how soon is too soon? 

 

A: While you're right to think you should tread lightly here, if you approach the situation the proper way, there's no reason you and your neighbor can't put in a polite offer for the apartment in question,  say our experts.

 

"When it comes to New York real estate, it is difficult to ever be too early," says real estate attorney Dean Roberts of Norris, McLaughlin & Marcus. While you might want to feel out the timing based on common courtesy, says Roberts, "It is best to let the family and, if possible, the designated executor know as quickly as possible about your interest in the apartment. Simple and polite expression of interest early would not be deemed offensive if done tactfully."

 

If, understandably, you would rather not bother your neighbor's grieving family with the request,  CORE NYC broker Douglas Heddings recommends a phone call or letter to the attorney for the estate, instead. "The doorman or super may be able to help you find out more information," about who to contact, he notes. Failing that, says Heddings, "Perhaps a sympathy card slid under the door gently mentioning your interest in the apartment would be less intrusive."

 

 In fact, it's very possible your neighbor's estate will be happy to hear from you. "Frankly, it may be to the estate's benefit to know there's an interested purchaser early in the process so that they don't have to bother with showing the apartment and hiring a broker," says Roberts. "In some ways, the offer could be helpful and well-received."

Hudson Square Emerging

The New York TimesJune 26, 2015

Building amenities include a private courtyard with a wall of plants, birch tee arbor, boxwood garden and water feature. There will also be a 60-foot indoor saltwater swimming pool, a fitness center, an outdoor sports court, a steam room, a lounge with a catering kitchen and a children’s playroom, as well as a 24-hour doorman and concierge, a package room with a refrigerator, and bicycle and other storage spaces.

 

The condos will have appliances from Miele and Sub-Zero, washers and dryers, and finishes that include oak hardwood flooring and hardwood baseboards, doors and trim. Kitchens are offered with cabinetry in white lacquer or stained oak, Caesarstone counters and glass backsplashes. Master bathrooms have marble walls, floors, and countertops, among other high-end finishes.

 

The building is working toward a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, or LEED, certification from the United States Green Building Council. It will also have 22 permanently affordable rental apartments reserved for those who earn no more than 60 percent of the area’s median income, Mr. Mannarino said. Those apartments mean that 70 Charlton is eligible for a 20-year tax abatement, so residents will have “exceedingly low taxes for the first 12 years or so,” he added. “And they phase in over time, which is a very attractive feature for buyers.”

 

Several other residential projects are in various phases of development in the neighborhood, which extends roughly from Canal Street to West Houston and from Avenue of the Americas to West Street. It was once a manufacturing area known as the printing district and is now primarily offices.

 

Trinity Real Estate, the property arm of the Episcopal Church, which oversees about 5.5 million square feet of office space in Hudson Square, announced last year that it might develop as many as four residential towers there. But work on the first proposed building, a tower at Juan Pablo Duarte Square in an area bounded by Avenue of the Americas, Canal Street, Varick Street and Grand Street, has not yet begun.

 

Other developers are moving forward with a building of about 200 rental units at 261 Hudson Street and have applied for permits for a building at 100 Varick Street, with about 115 units, and a 49-unit building at 111 Varick Street. The 122-room Hotel Hugo recently opened, with others in development.

 

While most of these buildings aren’t yet occupied, a handful of residential developments finished before or just after the 2013 rezoning include the Renwick Modern, at 22 Renwick Street, and the Arman Building, at 482 Greenwhich Street. And ground-floor retail spaces in the new buildings are beginning to fill with restaurants and shops, said Jeremy V. Stein, a real estate agent with Sotheby’s International Realty who lives in Hudson Square.

 

“It feels like things are on the cusp of significant change- there are more people walking about,” Mr. Stein said. “Once closings take place, we will really see it.”

Why TriBeCa is Still Downtown’s Nabe to Know

New York PostJune 24, 2015

Decades after TriBeCa first emerged as one of Lower Manhattan’s most desirable enclaves, the district finds itself once again in the spotlight. Its prime location — a stone’s throw from buzzing downtown construction — has upped TriBeCa’s commercial offerings, helping give the sleepy nabe a 24-hour vibe.

 

Most of all, available neighborhood development sites are attracting world-class architecture, with prices on the rise and builders placing bets that deep-pocketed buyers will want to be part of the action — in luxury settings, no less.

 

Need proof? There’s the 13-unit 12 Warren launching sales this fall. There’s also the 24-unit 19 Park Place, where a handful of apartments have already entered contract in off-market deals.

 

But take a look at TriBeCa on a macro level to view the neighborhood’s continuing rise. Roughly 526 condominium units will come to market south of 14th Street in 2015, with 60 percent of them — some 316 — slated for TriBeCa alone, according to data compiled by agents, the Marketing Directors. In 2016, roughly 823 condo units are projected to come online in this zone, with 35 percent of them — or 288 — in TriBeCa. It would be an understatement to say that neighborhood builders have never been busier.

 

“[Developers] saw TriBeCa growing tremendously and decided to do more,” says Corcoran Group broker Tamir Shemesh, who’s handling sales and marketing at 52 Lispenard St. — a seven-unit condo that came to market in March. “They found deals that make sense because there’s a major upside to their investment.”

 

More supply means more luxury product, which ultimately means higher prices. Median asking prices in the neighborhood jumped 39 percent year-over-year to $4.27 million in 2014, according to StreetEasy. And on June 15 of this year, TriBeCa’s median ask hit $4.58 million, over three times higher than the overall Manhattan figure recorded through the same date.

 

What’s arriving in TriBeCa is a mix of ground-up projects and conversions. Of the new-construction builds, the most recent is 111 Murray St. — a 157-unit tower that launched sales this week, which is developed by Fisher Brothers, Witkoff and New Valley. The building, which will house one-bedrooms to penthouses with prices from $2 million to over $17.5 million (penthouse pricing is not available), comes designed by an all-star cast. Kohn Pedersen Fox’s A. Eugene Kohn is the architect, while MR Architecture + Decor’s David Mann is designing the units. Rockwell Group’s David Rockwell will lend his touch to the lobby and amenity spaces and Edmund Hollander will handle the outdoor green spaces.

 

While examining the site before purchasing it for $223 million in 2013, the project’s developers knew they’d benefit from commercial development at the World Trade Center.

 

“As we began to hear the roster of tenants that had signed up, we began to say to ourselves, ‘Wow, look what’s happening down here!’ ” recounts Witkoff honcho Steve Witkoff of the visit he took with Winston Fisher of Fisher Brothers. He adds that the Fulton Center and Santiago Calatrava’s WTC transportation hubs, plus all the retail they’d bring, would only lure more potential purchasers.

 

Indeed, TriBeCa is also a beneficiary of buzzing FiDi development activity. But the hype also extends to Battery Park City’s Brookfield Place, which offers upscale shops and eateries.

 

Other ground-up projects include the Robert A.M. Stern-designed 30 Park Place, which topped out in January. Colonnade Group is also bringing a nine-story condo, whose unit sales are anticipated to exceed $25 million, to 403 Greenwich St.

 

There’s also Related’s 268 West St. This 46-unit project, where pricing is not yet available, is also by Robert A.M. Stern and will be completed in 2017.

 

“Not everybody wants to drive a Maybach; there needs to be product that is beautiful and affordable, but not egregiously priced,” says Rob Gross, a Douglas Elliman broker who handles deals in TriBeCa.

 

It’s already possible to pay less to live large in TriBeCa, though prices are hardly modest. One of the nabe’s conversion projects, the CetraRuddy-designed 15 Hubert, launched sales in April with units largely priced under $1,500 per square foot, StreetEasy shows. Its three penthouses priced from $5.7 million to $6.22 million — the only apartments in the 12-unit building that have not entered contract — break $2,000 per square foot.

 

“This served a niche of the market in a price point that didn’t exist,” says Louise Phillips Forbes, who’s leading sales and marketing here for Halstead Property Development Marketing.

 

Other conversions include the eight-unit 60 White St., developed by Veronica Mainetti’s Sorgente Group of America, where prices now start at $4.58 million. There’s also the four-unit Obsidian House at 93 Reade St., where prices now begin at $3.05 million. The conversion at 93 Worth St. made a splash with the addition of seven penthouses up top; the 91-unit project is now 95 percent sold. The 27-unit 11 Beach will be completed next summer.

 

The benefit of a conversion project is its historical charm, which brought Arran Patel to buy a two-bedroom, 1,800-square-foot unit at Ralph Walker Tribeca two months ago.

 

Patel, a salesperson for Douglas Elliman’s Vickey Barron — who’s leading sales and marketing at this 159-unit project — will get custom cabinetry and over 10-foot ceilings once occupancy starts in the fourth quarter.

 

“I like things that can’t be replicated,” he says.

How Much Demand Actually Exists for Uber-Luxury Demand?

The Real DealJune 23, 2015

In 1691, British philosopher John Locke proposed that “the price of any commodity rises or falls by the proportion of the number of buyers and sellers.” His statement became the first commandment in the bible of modern business: Supply and demand drives everything. But at least in New York’s ultra-luxury condo market, Locke’s words are tough to come to terms with. 

 

“The price of any commodity rises or falls by the proportion of the number of buyers and sellers.” — John Locke

 

It’s easy enough to count supply, or number of listings. But quantifying demand becomes very tricky when faced with an increasingly global buyer pool. This creates a serious challenge for developers, who need to know how much they can sell individual units for to decide if doing a project is worthwhile. When the buyer pool was largely local, this was easy enough. But who today knows how many people around the world can afford an ultra-luxury apartment, and how many of them would be willing to buy one in New York?

 

This dilemma doesn’t just concern luxury developers but the whole industry. If developers are overestimating global demand for high-end New York product, they could be inflating a luxury bubble that could drag down the entire market. If they are underestimating it, the industry may well be misdirecting its resources.

 

With this much at stake, The Real Deal dove into the available data on supply and demand in the luxury sector.  Be warned: The numbers come with several caveats, but they do provide a sense of where the market could go.

 

 Fuzzy math

 

There are at least 99 single-residence listings priced at $30 million or more in Manhattan, according to New York real estate appraiser Jonathan Miller, a staggeringly high number by historical standards. And how many potential buyers for these pads are out there? “If they’re going to spend $30 million on a single asset, you’re really looking at someone who is a demi-billionaire,” said David Friedman, the president of Wealth-X, the global wealth data aggregator.

 

Wealth-X estimates there are 367 people worth half a billion dollars or more who own a primary residence in New York City, and 8,410 of these individuals across the globe (see chart below). Meaning, there is a potential buyer pool of up to 8,410 individuals for the 99 listings mentioned above. For developers to sell all these listings at or near asking price, at least 1.18 percent of the world’s demi-billionaires would have to be in the market for a $30-million apartment right now.

 

That’s a tall order, especially compared with the $10 million-plus price range.

 

 According to Friedman, ultra-high-net-worth individuals (people with a net worth of $30 million or more) generally hold 13 percent of their net assets in owner-occupied luxury real estate.

 

By that reckoning, most buyers of units that cost $10 million or more likely have a net worth of at least $100 million. About 3,600 of these UHNWIs with a net worth of more than $100 million have a primary residence in New York City, while the global total stands at 57,300, according to Wealth-X. There are currently 455 listings at or above $10 million in Manhattan.

 

“If they’re going to spend $30 million on a single asset, you’re really looking at someone who is a demi-billionaire.” — David Friedman, Wealth-X

 

This would mean around 0.8 percent of the world’s population of individuals worth $100 million or more would have to be apartment hunting in the Big Apple for supply in the $10 million-plus range to be met. That’s a more favorable ratio than for the $30 million-plus range. In other words, the data seems to indicate that developers would be better served building apartments at the lower end of the ultra-luxury market.

 

“Two million square feet, potentially, in the next few years is a little daunting,” HFZ Capital Group’s Ziel Feldman said at The Real Deal New Development Showcase and Forum in May, speaking of the volume of new ultra-luxury units being built on 57th Street. Feldman is shying away from the highest price points, and is instead offering what he calls “affordable luxury.” At his latest High Line development, the Bjarke Ingels-designed 518 West 18th Street, Feldman is keeping apartments small, so that prices stay below $10 million despite a high rate per square foot.

 

Emily Beare, a top-producing luxury broker at CORE who currently has four listings above $20 million, said she sees continued strong demand for uber-luxury units. But she also argued that the demand-to-supply ratio may be more favorable for sellers at lower price points. “I think the $5 million and below range is where we’re seeing a little bit of a [listings] void,” she said.

 

 Rules may not apply

 

There are several caveats to our analysis. Perhaps the most glaring one is this: Just because people can afford an apartment doesn’t mean they want to buy one. And according to Leonard Steinberg, president of Compass, buyers often break the rule that they shouldn’t invest too much of their wealth in a single asset.

 

“I would have been the first person to believe that,” he said, “but I was proven very wrong on many occasions. I’ve seen people whose financial statements were closer to $50 million spend half of that on a home.”

 

Steinberg offered other examples, such as individuals who aren’t UHNWIs but who receive an inheritance of $65 million and put as much of half of that into a single home.

 

And as for the number of people who qualify as UHNWIs, Steinberg thinks that number is probably much higher than Wealth-X’s estimate. The real question, he said, is who is actually interested in buying an ultra-pricey pad to begin with, and “no one knows the exact response to that.”

 

See and be seen

 

Why do people pay so much for apartments? One could imagine that many buyers with effectively bottomless pockets might feel perfectly at home in a middle-class millionaire apartment priced in the high seven or low eight figures (and Steinberg says many are). At the same time, both Steinberg and Friedman see steady demand for penthouse-in-the-clouds trophy homes in New York City.

 

“It’s almost as if there’s a new class of billionaires emerging in Manhattan. These are the uber-billionaires.” — Andrew Heiberger

 

 “They love this asset class,” Friedman said of the UHNWIs. “It’s part of their DNA to have unique, luxury, owner-occupied residences.” And with every month, the limits of luxury seem to be shifting. In January a penthouse at Extell’s condo tower One57 sold for $100.5 million – the highest price ever recorded in the city. Vornado’s nearby development 220 Central Park South could easily shatter that record. As The Real Deal recently reported, a Qatari buyer is looking to combine several units into a single $250 million mega penthouse.

 

“It’s almost as if there’s a new class of billionaires emerging in Manhattan,” said Town Residential’s co-founder and CEO Andrew Heiberger.  “These are the uber-billionaires.”

 

“This is the second luxury asset class where we are seeing this trend, the first being the mega yachts,” he added. “The main difference is uber-luxury penthouses do not depreciate.”

 

And planting a stake in the most expensive apartment in your surrounding square mile may just be part of the natural trajectory of self-expression for the wealthy, with its final destination at the nearest benefit gala.

 

“The general wealth display starts by first going out to fancy dinners, then buying fancy clothing, renting a fancy apartment, then buying a fancy apartment, then buying artwork, and then, getting into charity.” — Leonard Steinberg

 

“The general wealth display starts by first going out to fancy dinners,” said Steinberg, “then buying fancy clothing, renting a fancy apartment, then buying a fancy apartment, then buying artwork, and then, getting into charity.”

 

But generalizations only go so far, as the buyer pool includes “a huge variety of cultures and a huge variety of levels of wealth and age of wealth,” he said. Additionally, buyers of ultra-luxury units can sometimes be a group of investors, such as at One 57’s $91.5 million “winter garden” penthouse.

 

In other words, data may help paint a better picture of the luxury market, but precisely quantifying demand remains out of reach. Despite its flaws though, the numbers conform with the observations of some market insiders: there appears to be too much supply in the uber-luxury segment compared to lower price ranges.

 

 “I don’t think I have ever in my career seen such a disconnect between what is desperately needed built and what is being built,” Miller said. He argued that while demand for the most expensive units is strong, developers are “over-enthusiastically” building too many of them. Meanwhile, lower price points are being neglected, in part because the high cost of land often makes them unfeasible. The oversupply in the super-luxury market is “probably the world’s worst kept secret,” Miller added.

NYC Real Estate with History

New York SpacesJune 17, 2015

New York City is full of real estate, some with a very unique history.

 

1 Centre Market Place: Currently listed for $7,500,000, this 18-foot wide townhouse was built in 1900. Back in the 1800s, Centre Market Place was situated at the top of a high hill and for more than 100 years, was the knife's edge of weather, corruption, poverty and crime. The townhome neighbors Onieal's restaurant that once served as a speakeasy during the Prohibition. Currently, the townhome is beautifully renovated, holding magnificent views of the Old Police Headquarters.

 

344 West 11th Street, 4W: Circa the early 1900's, this historic walk-up is currently listed for $1,250,000. Situated in a coveted 'backhouse', this listing is part of a charming five-building cooperative that surrounds a very special interior 'secret garden' a serene, furnished courtyard (image below).

 

374 Broome Street, PHS: Currently listed for $8,995,000 this 3-bedroom, 3-bath penthouse at the old Brewster Carriage House is exactly where Soho, Chinatown, Little Italy, the lower East Side and Nolita intersect. Originally built in 1856, the old Brewster & Co. carriage factory resurrected an American industry. Restored in 2010, the carriage house now houses nine units yet still embodies original detailing throughout—such as the Queen Anne lobby desk, dating back to the 1700s.

Ask an Expert: Does a New Lobby Increase Property Value?

AM New YorkJune 16, 2015

I live in a 72-unit co-op building, and the board is considering a renovation of the lobby and upper hallways. They're consulting with a designer on a new paint scheme, but another option is a complete renovation of the upper halls from walls to ceiling, including new fixtures. Would this kind of renovation bring appreciable or equal value to our apartment, or is there a wiser capital improvement that would bring greater value to our apartments?

 

Giving your building's common areas a facelift will almost certainly have a positive effect on values in your building, but you and your board should plan carefully and manage expectations, say our experts.

 

"The lobby, hallways and common areas are synonymous with 'curb appeal' in the suburbs," says CORE NYC broker Douglas Heddings. "A pristine and aesthetically appealing first impression will absolutely influence a buyer as they make their way to your front door."

 

Indeed, contractor Jeff Streich of Prime Renovations notes that buildings frequently undertake these kinds of upgrades in hopes of boosting value. Unless they're diving into pricier work like adding a gym or roof deck, "Most buildings just do the hallway or lobby," he says. (Unsurprisingly, the kinds of upgrades that will have a significant effect on values, like the addition of a gym, will also cost your board serious cash.)

 

This in mind, your board needs to do its homework before deciding exactly what, if any, kind of upgrade is right for your building. Given that part of its job is to ensure your building's financial stability, the board should take a careful look at its budget before making any plans, advises Thomas Usztoke of Douglas Elliman Property Management. "Choosing a repainting of public areas is a fraction of the cost of a 100% redecorating, including fixtures, of public space and still provides a noticeable improvement while reflecting an emphasis on fiscal management."

 

While lobbies and common areas do influence a buyer's first impressions of a building, "it doesn't necessarily follow that newly-renovated common areas will automatically increase the market value of an apartment," adds Sotheby's International Realty agent Gordon T. Roberts. "There are great apartments in buildings with bland lobbies and nondescript hallways, and vice versa. It's more important that there is a consistent level of quality in all common areas, preferably sending a message that the building is exceedingly well-maintained."

 

If you and your board are still on the fence, Roberts recommend chatting up brokers who've recently sold in the building and have up-to-the-minute insight into what buyers are -- and aren't -- responding to. "Ask what feedback they've been hearing from potential buyers," he says. "Their input might help you decide how to allocate funds."

Ask an Expert: Will a Sleek New Lobby Boost Our Building's Property Values?

BrickUndergroundJune 16, 2015

Q: I live in a 72-unit co-op building, and the board is considering a renovation of the lobby and upper hallways. They're consulting with a designer on a new paint scheme, but another option is a complete renovation of the upper halls from walls to ceiling, including new fixtures. Would this kind of renovation bring appreciable or equal value to our apartment, or is there a wiser capital improvement that would bring greater value to our apartments?

 

A: Giving your building's common areas a facelift will almost certainly have a positive effect on values in your building, but you and your board should plan carefully and manage expectations, say our experts.

"The lobby, hallways and common areas are synonymous with 'curb appeal' in the suburbs," says CORE NYC broker Douglas Heddings. "A pristine and aesthetically appealing first impression will absolutely influence a buyer as they make their way to your front door." Indeed, contractor Jeff Streich of Prime Renovations notes that buildings frequently undertake these kinds of upgrades in hopes of boosting value. Unless they're diving into pricier work like adding a gym or roof deck, "Most buildings just do the hallway or lobby," he says. (Unsurprisingly, the kinds of upgrades that will have a significant effect on values, like the addition of a gym, will also cost your board serious cash.)

 

This in mind, your board needs to do its homework before deciding exactly what, if any, kind of upgrade is right for your building. Given that part of its job is to ensure your building's financial stability, the board should take a careful look at its budget before making any plans, advises Thomas Usztoke of Douglas Elliman Property Management."Choosing a repainting of public areas is a fraction of the cost of a 100 percent redecorating, including fixtures, of public space and still provides a noticeable improvement while reflecting an emphasis on fiscal management."

 

While lobbies and common areas do influence a buyer's first impressions of a building, "it doesn't necessarily follow that newly-renovated common areas will automatically increase the market value of an apartment," adds Sotheby's International Realty agent Gordon T. Roberts."There are great apartments in buildings with bland lobbies and nondescript hallways, and vice versa. It's more important that there is a consistent level of quality in all common areas, preferably sending a message that the building is exceedingly well-maintained."

 

If you and your board are still on the fence, Roberts recommend chatting up brokers who've recently sold in the building and have up-to-the-minute insight into what buyers are—and aren't—responding to. "Ask what feedback they've been hearing from potential buyers," he says. "Their input might help you decide how to allocate funds."

Chloe Sevigny's Former East Village Digs Return For $2.2M

CurbedJune 15, 2015

The garden-level co-op once owned by East Village defector Chloe Sevigny is looking for a new owner, 6sqft reports. The sellers, noted tech power couple Halle Tecco and Jeffrey Hammerbacher, are attempting to unload the apartment at 119 East 10th Street for $2.2 million. Tecco and Hammerbacher purchased the cozy one-bedroom, once described by Sevigny as "womb-like" because of its low ceilings and wood-burning fireplaces, for $1.76 million from the actress in 2011. The couple saw through a nine month renovation that enlarged the kitchen into part of the backyard, turned a hallway closet into a laundry room, and added a new shower to the hallway bathroom, all detailed in a fawning feature on Apartment Therapy.

 

Sevigny says she left the East Village behind for a "classic six" bordering Prospect Park in search of a living arrangement less governed by co-op bureaucracy, but not too long after selling expressed to The Daily Beast that she missed all of the East Village's "weirdos."

 

Tecco and Hammerbacher haven't expressed why they're movin' on, but it's probably not for the same reasons as the actress; everyone knows the East Village that Sevigny is sentimental for is dead anyway.

Chloe Sevigny’s Former East Village Pad Is Back on the Market with a New Look

6sqftJune 15, 2015

The former home of indie film star and “Big Love” actress Chloë Sevigny is back on the market. Sevigny sold the garden-level abode located at 119 East 10th Street back in 2013 for $1.76 million to tech power couple Halle Tecco and Jeffrey Hammerbacher. The couple then turned around and gave the 1,250-square-foot pad a nine-month overhaul that was featured in Apartment Therapy. Now, it’s back on the market, sporting a modern new look, a slightly modified floor plan, and a $2.2 million price tag.

 

The East Village one-bedroom, formerly described as “womb-like” by Sevigny, has ditched its earthy, bucolic vibe for a crisper, fashion-forward aesthetic. A front patio and vestibule lead you to an entry hallway where a touch of antiques dealer/designer David Cafiero’s design remains in the bold, white and green wallpaper. One of the three hall closets has been converted into a laundry room directly across from the master bedroom.

 

The master bedroom overlooks the front garden, and features a wood-burning fireplace, a walk in closet, and an en-suite bath with a cast iron tub and a second entrance back into the hallway. The powder room has a new shower, and the home office has a new pocket door entrance from the hall rather than the kitchen, giving the kitchen some extra wall space for appliances.

 

The living room has built-in bookshelves and whitewashed exposed brick surrounding a second wood-burning fireplace. A full wall of antique mirrors reflect the light from the adjacent dining room. This dining room features casement windows overlooking the private rear garden, terra-cotta flooring, and a custom built-in home office. There’s also a Dutch door leading to the patio.

 

The renovated kitchen is fashion-forward with sleek new black cabinets, a hint of exposed brick, custom butcher-block counters, a boldly designed backsplash featuring hand-painted Urban Archeology tiles, a farmhouse sink and retro appliances. There’s also additional counter space and cabinet space thanks to the new wall created by moving the door to the home office.

 

119 East 10th Street is one of 29 residences in six 19th century townhouses that make up the landmark St. Mark’s Historic District. The home features such prewar details as original beamed ceilings, base moldings, and wide-plank pine flooring. Residents also enjoy access to a large common garden, a live-in super, basement storage lockers, and bike storage.

Townhouse Renovation by Good Property

Home AdoreJune 12, 2015

This six-story single family house was recently renovated by Good Property and Turett Collaborative Architects. It’s situated in Greenwich Village, New York, United States.

 

Description by Good Property

 

This six-story single family house was recently renovated by Good Property and Turett Collaborative Architects. It’s situated in Greenwich Village, New York, United States.

 

Designed and inspired by the “spirit of nature”, the original 1853 Greek Revival style multi-family dwelling, has been transformed into a 6-story state-of-the-art single-family residence. With unparalleled views of Washington Square Park, The Empire State Building and the new One World Trade, this magnificent home redefines townhouse living by inviting the outdoors inside.

 

The home boasts 6-bedrooms, 6-full baths, 4-half baths and over 1,300 square feet of outdoor living space. Including the finished cellar with a skylight, the home spans 9,125 square feet with an elevator, glass walls allowing the home to fill with natural light and dramatic double-height spaces. The homes finishes include custom millwork by Henrybuilt, Siberian oak floors, two gas fireplaces and tailor-made marble and tile work. Additional amenities include a gym, wine cellar, radiant floor heating throughout, dumbwaiter, Savant Systems home automation and an audio/visual security system. 74 Washington Place was developed by Good Property and designed in collaboration with Turett Collaborative Architects. Furnishings by Good Property and BDDW.

Inside Related Companies' Top-Selling Condos

Multi-Housing NewsJune 08, 2015

New York—Fewer than 60 days after the tower’s 100th sale, Related Companies’ Carnegie Park has reached the half-sold milestone. That makes it Manhattan’s top-selling building in terms of units sold in the first half of this year.

 

With an address at 200 East 94th Street, the 297-residence Carnegie Park is one of the few full-service high-rise condominiums in the elegant Upper East Side residential neighborhood known as Carnegie Hill. Stylish and sophisticated, the 31-story building provides panoramic city and river perspectives, as well as a re-imagined lobby and amenities suite conceived by Robert A.M. Stern Architects. Carnegie Park offers residences ranging from studios to five-bedroom homes.

 

“With ultra luxury condominiums setting record prices all over the city, there is a large market segment whose needs have not been addressed,” Sherry Tobak, senior vice president of Related Sales, told MHN. “Carnegie Park offers buyers the opportunity to live the same luxurious lifestyle at accessible pricing, without sacrificing first class services and amenities.”

 

Residents of Carnegie Park will be able to partake of Five Star Living by Related. This dynamic concept melds exceptional locations, awesome views, world-class architecture and design, unmatched amenities and superior services.

 

The Robert A.M. Stern Architects-designed amenities spread across two floors. The first offers an expansive entertainment lounge, sunny children’s playroom and custom-designed multi-lane swimming pool overlooking an outdoor patio and half-acre, private, foliage-filled park featuring an outdoor playground.

 

A state-of-the-art fitness and yoga center is found on the lower level, while the tower‘s roof features a landscaped terrace equipped with barbecue grill and seating and showcasing dynamic panoramas of Central Park, the East River and legendary Midtown skyline. A 24-hour-attended lobby and concierge round out the extras.

 

“The entire suite of amenities, re-imagined by Robert A.M. Stern, has been a remarkable draw,” Tobak said. “From our stunning 50-foot pool, imaginative children’s playroom and half-acre private park to our magnificent resident’s lounge and fully-equipped gym and yoga studio, there are ample amenities to appeal to all buyers.”

 

Conveniently located, Carnegie Park is within walking distance of local boutiques, upscale shops, winsome cafes and Michelin-starred restaurants.

 

Also nearby are Whole Foods, gourmet markets, some of Manhattan’s best schools and recreational venues ranging from Central Park and Carl Schurz Park to Asphalt Green and the East River Esplanade.

 

 “The Upper East Side has long had the reputation of being the most sophisticated neighborhood in Manhattan, with the best cultural institutions, the finest schools and the most expensive real estate,” Tobak said. “Carnegie Park Condominium gives purchasers who do not wish to spend UES prices the chance to live in this historic neighborhood.”

404 Park Avenue South, 10D

Modernnyc.comJune 08, 2015

$4,500,000

 

Price improvement and staged. Ready to sell. In the heart of NoMad sits Huys, a 17-story luxury condo building that exudes sophistication and elegant design. This 3-bedroom, 2.5-bath home is the first resale offered in this special boutique building. Inside you will find 11.5-foot ceilings, three exposures, 8-inch brushed oak floors, a 16-foot window seat, integrated window shades and beautifully detailed millwork and hardware. You’ll be sure to enjoy the chef’s kitchen featuring Chambolle countertops, Miele appliances and a wine refrigerator. The spacious master bathroom includes a double vanity, radiant heated floors and a luxurious soaking tub. The second and third bedrooms share a Jack and Jill windowed bathroom. A beautiful roof terrace garden, state-of-the-art gym and private lounge are just a few of the white glove amenities that Huys has to offer.

On The Market in New York City

The New York TimesJune 05, 2015

Homes for Sale in Brooklyn and Manhattan

 

·    In Alphabet City, a two-bedroom one-bath with a washer/dryer in a prewar walk-up.

 

·    In the Financial District, a one-bedroom one-bath in a condominium with a gym, a Zen garden and a rooftop deck.

 

·    In Kensington, Brooklyn, a one-bedroom one-bath with an eat-in kitchen in a 1959 elevator building with 145 units,      a laundry and parking.

 

Financial District Condo $949,000

 

Manhattan 99 John Street, #1209

 

A one-bedroom one-bath in a condominium with a gym, a Zen garden and a rooftop deck.

 

Matthew Cohen, CORE (201) 410-5496; corenyc.com

 

COMMON CHARGES $446 a month; taxes: $684 a month

 

PROS This quiet unit has beamed ceilings over 13 feet high, a roomy bedroom and three large closets, including a walk-in.

 

CONS The windows look directly at another apartment building across the street.

Wild Orchids

L'Officiel ThailandJune 01, 2015

Tim Crowley and Emily Beare's listing at 224 Mulberry Street was featured in the Weddings Issue of fashion magazine, L'Officiel Thailand. 

Mixology moves into Manhattan, Drybar's Brookfield Place lease, Perk Kafe's new location

Crain's New YorkMay 29, 2015

NEW IN TOWN

Calliope
349 W. 12th St.
Husband and wife Caroline and Michael Ventura opened the West Village boutique. The store offers contemporary and midcentury home design pieces including lighting, furniture, collectibles and art.

 

Hudson + Lawrence
355 Atlantic Ave., Brooklyn
The designer boutique opened in Boerum Hill. It offers a collection of small to medium designer brands of women’s clothing and accessories. The style is inspired by the fashion of cities such as New York, Montreal and Athens.

 

Claw & Co.
101 Delancey St.
New York City graffiti artist, fashion designer and author Claw Money opened a boutique on the Lower East Side. It offers items from Ms. Money’s current collection as well as rare vintage items.

COMPANY MOVES

Mixology

1467 Third Ave.
The Long Island retailer opened its first Manhattan location, on the Upper East Side. The boutique features an array of trendy and affordable fashion brands.

BANKRUPTCIES 

KLM Optical Inc. d/b/a Pearle Vision
1085 Northern Blvd., Roslyn, L.I.
Filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on May 15. The filing cites estimated assets of $100,001 to $500,000 and estimated liabilities of $1,000,001 to $10 million. The creditors with the largest unsecured claims are American Express Bank FSB, owed $386,534; American Express, owed $37,518.50; and ABB Optical Group, owed $37,039.

 

Nguyen Custom Woodworking
90 Courter Ave., Yonkers
Filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on May 26. The filing cites estimated assets of $100,001 to $500,000 and estimated liabilities of $500,001 to $1 million. The creditors with the largest unsecured claims are John Nguyen, owed $169,729.60; Trustees of the New York District Council of Carpenters Benefit Funds, owed $125,000; and New York District Council Carpenters Pension Fund, owed $115,261.90.

 

Prime Six Inc. d/b/a Woodland, d/b/a Foxgrove
1723 E. 12th St., Brooklyn
Filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on May 20. The filing cites estimated assets of $50,001 to $100,000 and estimated liabilities of $1,000,001 to $10 million. The creditors with the largest unsecured claims are Internal Revenue Service, owed $341,469.68; New York State Department of Taxation and Finance, owed $287,694.80; and ISG Capital Inc., owed $245,000.

 

12 Dorn Place, Centereach, L.I.
Filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection on May 14. The filing cites estimated assets of $100,001 to $500,000 and estimated liabilities of $1,000,001 to $10 million. The creditors with the largest unsecured claims are New York City Department of Finance, owed $927,234.66; and GE Capital Small Business, owed $180,000.

GOVERNMENT CONTRACT OPPORTUNITIES, CONSTRUCTION SERVICES

Department of Parks and Recreation
Requests competitive sealed bids by 10:30 a.m. on June 16 for in-kind reconstruction of site utility plumbing systems in connection with comfort stations and facilities at various Parks and Recreation locations citywide. Bid documents are available between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. in the Blueprint Room, Room 64, Olmsted Center, Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Queens, for a $25 fee payable by company check or money order to City of New York, Parks and Recreation. To make inquiries, contact Michael Shipman at (718) 760-6705 or michael.shipman@parks.nyc.gov.

 

Department of Environmental Protection
Requests proposals by 4 p.m. on June 23 for construction management services for the installation of water meters on several unmetered developments operated by the New York City Housing Authority. A preproposal conference is scheduled for 1 p.m. on June 5 at NYC DEP, 59-17 Junction Blvd., third-floor cafeteria, Flushing, Queens. To make inquiries, contact Jeanne Schreiber at (718) 595-3456 or rfp@dep.nyc.gov.

 

GOODS AND SERVICES

Department of Citywide Administrative Services
Seeks competitive sealed bids for heavy-duty liners, polyethylene and rodent repellent, and for paper table napkins, both by 10:30 a.m. on June 30. To download either bid, visit http://a856-internet.nyc.gov/nycvendoronline/home.asp. Enrollment is free. Vendors can also request either bid by contacting vendor relations at dcasdmssbids@dcas.nyc.gov or (212) 386-0044. To make inquiries, contact Yuriy Reznik at (212) 386-0458 or yreznik@dcas .nyc.gov.

 

Taxi and Limousine Commission
Seeks competitive sealed proposals by 2 p.m. on July 8 for a dispatch program for wheelchair-accessible medallion taxicabs and street-hail liveries. To make inquiries, contact Jeremy Halperin at (212) 676-1031 or halperinj@tlc.nyc.gov.

REAL ESTATE DEALS

COMMERCIAL

Accounting firm Schulman Lobel signed a lease for 12,017 square feet at 1001 Sixth Ave., a 24-story, 240,000-square-foot building. ABS Partners' Jay Caseley represented both the tenant and the landlord in the deal. The asking rent was $52 per square foot.

 

Real estate investment and management firm R.A. Cohen & Associates inked a 15-year lease for 8,100 square feet on the 19th floor at 250 Park Ave. Benjamin N. Blumenthal and Norman Bobrow of Norman Bobrow and Co. represented the tenant. Robert Billingsley, David Hoffman Jr. and Whitnee Williams of DTZ represented the landlord, AEW Capital Management. Asking rents were in the $60s per square foot.

 

Residential real estate firm Core signed a 10-year lease for 5,500 square feet at 149 Fifth Ave. Shaun Osher, Core's founder and chief executive, represented his company in-house. Jason Greenstein of Newmark Grubb Knight Frank represented the landlord, William Colavito Inc. The asking rent was not disclosed.

 

Regulatory body the National Mah Jongg League signed a seven-year deal for 2,600 square feet at 450 Seventh Ave. The tenant was represented by Michael Heaner of the Kaufman Organization, the building's owner. The landlord was represented in-house by Barbara Raskob. The asking rent was $55 per square foot.

 

RETAIL

Medical facility Total Urology of New York inked a 15-year deal for 3,207 square feet at 7 W. 51 St. The tenant was represented by Stanley Plesh of Prime Manhattan Realty. The landlord, listed on property records as PREF 7 West 51st Street LLC, was represented by Josh Augenbaum of Augenbaum Realty Corp. The asking rent was $65 per square foot.

 

Blowout specialist Drybar signed a 10-year lease for 1,498 feet on the second floor at 250 Vesey St., a 1.8-million-square-foot space in the Brookfield Place complex. Steven Greenberg of the Greenberg Group represented the tenant. Mark Kostic of Brookfield Office Properties represented the landlord in-house, along with Stephen Plourde of the McDevitt Group. The asking rent was about $120 per square foot.

 

Coffee-brewer Perk Kafe signed a 10-year lease for 1,000 square feet on the ground floor of 1867 Second Ave. The landlord, Ogrin Associates, was represented by Joshua Gettler and Joshua Kaufman of New Street Realty Advisors and dealt with the tenant directly. The asking rent was $110 per square foot.

STOCK TRANSACTIONS

Following are recent insider transactions at New York's largest publicly held companies filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission by executives and major shareholders. Listings are in order of transaction value. The information was obtained from Thomson Reuters.

 

Ralph Lauren Corp. (RL)
Ralph Lauren, chief executive and chairman, exercised options on 250,000 shares of common stock between May 20 and May 21 at prices ranging from $43.04 to $57.76 per share, in a transaction worth $12,230,750. On the same days, he sold 250,000 shares at prices ranging from $131.45 to $131.79 per share, in a transaction worth $32,889,548. He now directly owns 511,036 shares.

 

Becton Dickinson and Co. (BDX)
William A. Kozy, chief operating officer and executive vice president, exercised options on 42,079 shares of common stock between May 18 and May 20 at prices ranging from $62.50 to $84.33 per share, in a transaction worth $3,026,305. On the same days, he sold 20,761 shares at prices ranging from $142 to $142.01, in a transaction worth $2,948,137. He now directly owns 129,953 shares.

 

Jeffrey Sherman, senior vice president and general counsel, exercised options on 12,380 shares of common stock on May 13 at a price of $84.33 per share, in a transaction worth $1,044,005. On the same day, he sold 10,983 shares at a price of $138.40 per share, in a transaction worth $1,520,047. He now directly owns 26,454 shares.

 

Linda M. Tharby, executive vice president and president of life-sciences segment, exercised options on 13,459 shares of common stock between May 20 and May 21 at prices ranging from $75.63 to $84.33 per share, in a transaction worth $1,049,268. On the same days, she sold 6,069 shares at prices ranging from $142.00 to $142.02 per share, in a transaction worth $861,894. She now directly owns 8,280 shares.

 

Cambrex Corp. (CBM)
Ilan Kaufthal, director, sold 50,000 shares of common stock on May 21 at a price of $41.31 per share, in a transaction worth $2,065,380. He now directly owns 112,315 shares.

 

Moody's Corp. (MCO)
Lisa Westlake, chief human-resources officer and senior vice president, sold 13,675 shares of common stock on May 20 at a price of $109.69 per share, in a transaction worth $1,500,011. She now directly owns 23,971 shares.

MAP: 11 New Developments Blossoming Around Spring Street

DNAinfoMay 29, 2015

GREENWICH VILLAGE — New real estate is sprouting up all around Spring Street, from a recently-opened hotel that' hosted  clientele like Jude Law and Heather Graham, to some of the area's first new "affordable" apartments.

 

There's 15 Renwick, the steampunk-themed luxury condo building catering to the "rich hipsters" of Hudson Square's burgeoning creative and tech industries. The 11-story building includes swanky penthouses and luxe "townhomes" with private yards.

 

Townhouses are also part of the development at 10 Sullivan St. by Madison Equities and Property Markets Group:

 

The 16-story, Flatiron-shaped tower was originally intended to have four adjoining 25-foot-wide townhouses. But the developers of the 20-unit condo opted to leave two of the townhouses unfinished and attached, to be sold as an "empty shell," according to the Daily News.

 

The penthouse at 10 Sullivan St. was listed for $45 million and features a private swimming pool, the Daily News reported.

 

At nearby 476 Broome St., the penthouse of the six-story L-shaped building has its own outdoor lap pool, according to the News. The development also goes by 62 Wooster St.

 

That building, owned by billionaire Jeff Greene, has two ground-floor retail spaces being marketed to fashion companies that could capitalize on the SoHo shopping scene.

Co-op Board Asked to Interview Homebuyer's Child, Mom Says

DNAinfoMay 26, 2015

MIDTOWN EAST — They’re not kidding around.

 

A co-op board at a fancy Tudor City apartment building doesn’t just grill prospective buyers to see if they would make suitable neighbors — it also wants to interview their children.

 

In what could be a first for the city — even in one with such a cutthroat and capricious real estate market — co-op board members at Woodstock Tower have instructed buyers to bring along their kids to interviews that determine whether they get apartments.

 

That’s what one buyer, Joyce Kacin, said in a complaint she sent last year to state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Mayor Bill de Blasio, claiming the co-op board made the unusual request to her — and that it was discriminatory.

 

“I was invited to a Coop Board interview,” Kacin, 53, wrote in her two-page complaint. “However, the invitation included the need to bring my minor child! Why, in Heavens Name, would a minor child be required to participate in this?? Why would a child be required to go through such an ominous meeting? What could the child add to the interview that anyone has any right to question or expect?”

 

Kacin, a publishing executive, said in the Aug. 30 complaint that she reached out to Schneiderman and de Blasio because “discrimination is a blight [they] have vowed to defend” and believed this was affecting co-op buyers and their children around the city. She fumed that the Woodstock board’s request to bring her “minor” son to the interview violated the city’s Human Rights Law, which makes it illegal to reject a purchaser for having a kid.

 

 “Questions and requirements in these areas are illegal,” she wrote in her complaint. “But, the slippery slope of empowered Board Members took undue license in my case, and I dare say, I’m not alone. If even the ‘existence of children’ cannot be questioned, then how can it be legal to require their participation in a Coop Board interview?”

 

Kacin said not only is interviewing kids discriminatory — it could leave them scarred.

 

“Should the applicant be denied, what would the effect on the child be? Children would feel only one thing: responsible,” she wrote. “That is just how children are built. The child would assume the burden of having lost the home that was the hope of the family. That is wrong, unfair, and even abusive.”

 

Kacin said the board president, Susan Isaacs, only dropped the request to meet her son after she wrote a long letter to the board explaining her reasons for not wanting to bring him along. Even then Kacin wondered whether Isaacs, 71, backed off on the request because she realized it was discriminatory and left the building open to legal action.

 

“Did she recognize that if she persisted she might be faced with a lawsuit and that is why she relented?” Kacin wrote in her complaint.

 

A co-op board interview is perhaps the most dreaded step for any apartment hunter looking to buy a unit in a cooperative building.

 

The board chooses who lives in its building by either rejecting or approving the apartment sale after meeting the prospective buyer. Adding to the unnerving experience is that the board doesn’t have to explain its decision.

 

Doug Heddings, an executive vice president at real estate brokerage firm CORE, said that prospective buyers shouldn’t panic about a co-op board interviews, but they often do because of “the private and almost secretive atmosphere” surrounding them.

 

“No two boards are alike and it is like interviewing for a private club,” he said. “Boards are also dynamic so it is difficult to ever know precisely what is being sought in a prospective shareholder at any given time.”

 

Heddings and other real estate experts told DNAinfo New York that some co-op boards make unusual requests like wanting to meet a buyer’s significant other or a pet dog before deciding, but asking to speak to a child was unusual.

 

“I have never in my 23 years in this business heard of a co-op board interviewing a child,” Heddings said. “I can’t fathom why they would want to interview children unless they had some sort of difficulty with other shareholders’ children in the building.”

 

Kacin, who splits her time between New York and Connecticut, told DNAinfo she bristled when the Woodstock co-op board asked her to bring her son to her interview over her potential purchase of a $250,000 pied-a-terre at the 32-story landmarked building on East 42nd Street.

 

“I nearly walked away from the apartment,” she said, declining to give the age of her son at the time. “I didn’t want my son to be there. I didn’t want to him to deal with this.”

 

Kacin said that, in her case, she feared if she refused the board’s request, its members would reject the sale and she would lose a $25,000 deposit.

 

There were also non-financial factors that made walking away tough.

 

“It’s daunting to consider backing away from the investment of time, the relinquishing of privacy, financial information, and the swallowing of pride to begin all over again at another location,” she wrote in her complaint.

 

Kacin initially told her broker she wouldn’t bring her son to the interview, but he advised her to comply with the board’s wishes.  When she stood firm, the broker called the seller’s broker, who also said she should follow the board’s request.

 

Kacin’s broker suggested she contact her lawyer, who said, after looking over her application, that he “felt confident” he could fight and win her deposit back if it were forfeited. But that didn’t assuage Kacin because a fight would mean lawyer fees.

 

Kacin, who describes herself as a “mature and educated woman” in her complaint, said she decided to take a different tack — by writing the board a note.

 

“I wrote a letter to the Coop Board and gently, sweetly, and diplomatically asked them to interview me alone, without my child,” she said in her complaint. “To ‘apologize’ for my request, I went into descriptions of my child and my life circumstances which, in hindsight, were an invasion of my privacy and should have been unnecessary.”

 

The letter swayed Isaacs, the board president, to drop the request to meet Kacin’s son. After interviewing only Kacin, the board approved the sale in April 2014.

 

When Kacin moved in, she cleared the air with Isaacs over a cup of coffee.

 

Kacin told DNAinfo that Isaacs said she always asked to meet any buyer’s kids. But Kacin said she believes the board president was not intentionally trying to discriminate and didn’t know that it could be violating the city’s Human Rights Law.

 

“My point in the [complaint] was to show the ill-preparedness, the lack of training that co-op boards have and real estate agents have,” she said. “They don’t know that this is not legal. It’s completely unethical, but it’s also illegal.”

 

While most real estate experts told DNAinfo that the Woodstock board’s request to meet her child seemed unique, Kacin believes this practice is going on around the city.

 

She said boards have become too empowered, making decisions with impunity.

 

“It’s so discriminatory,” she said. “They could not like the freaking shirt you’re wearing and you could not get in.”

 

That’s why, even though Kacin said the Woodstock board "saw the light" and believes it is no longer interviewing prospective buyers’ children, she wrote a complaint to Schneiderman and de Blasio in hopes that they’ll crack down on this practice citywide.

 

The attorney general’s real estate finance bureau enforces rules and regulations governing the sale of real estate, including cooperatives. It also looks into complaints of wrongdoing about developers or sponsors of condominium and cooperatives.

 

DNAinfo New York obtained Kacin’s complaint from Schneiderman’s office through a Freedom of Information Law request.

 

A Schneiderman spokesman declined to say whether his office is or had investigated the complaint. However, Kacin said she received a letter from the attorney general’s office telling her it was not pursuing an investigation but that she could take her own action against the board.

 

Mayor de Blasio’s office did not respond to requests for comment.

 

Isaacs and Orsid Realty, Woodstock’s property manager, declined to comment for the story, or say if the board’s practice of interviewing children is continuing.

 

One real estate law expert, Adam Leitman Bailey, said he believed the board was legally allowed to interview children, so long as the parents accompany the child and it doesn’t reject the potential buyer solely on the basis of having a kid.

 

He noted that under New York law “there are no limits on a cooperative’s power to want to meet with a family member, whether it be a child or a dog.”

 

Bailey also said buyers shouldn’t be surprised their kids are getting grilled considering they’re looking for a home in Manhattan.

 

“Remember that this is New York City where 5 year olds are interviewed to get into kindergarten,” he said. 

Top residential agents of the week

The Real DealMay 26, 2015

John Burger and 3 East 80th Street on the Upper East Side

 

Price: $19,750,000

Listing broker: John Burger of Brown Harris Stevens

Address: 3 East 80th Street

 

John Gadsaka, Jonathan Conlon, Patricia Cliff and 145 Hudson Street in Tribeca

 

Price: $11,800,000

Listing brokers: John Gasdaska, Jonathan Conlon and Patricia Cliff of the Corcoran Group

Address: 145 Hudson Street

 

Tim Crowley and 224 Mulberry Street in Nolita

 

Price: $11,200,750

Listing broker: Tim Crowley, previously of Flank, now at CORE

Address: 224 Mulberry Street

 

Paula Del Nunzio and 182 East 75th Street on the Upper East Side

 

Price: $9,280,000

Listing broker: Paula del Nunzio of Brown Harris Stevens

Address: 182 East 75th Street

 

Daren Herzberg, Julie Pham, Brian Babst and 30 Crosby Street in Soho

 

Price: $7,990,000

Listing brokers: Daren Herzberg, Julie Pham and Brian Babst of the Corcoran Group

Address: 30 Crosby Street

 

Sources: StreetEasy and The Real Deal. Footnotes: Data is for closed deals filed with the city this week through Friday. The chart only includes sellers’ brokers, because buyers’ brokers’ names are not available in city data or listings. The data does not include deals in contract. To obtain broker information, listing information was compared with sales records filed with the city. Only deals where an individual broker and address can be identified are included. As a result, private sales, listings where an address has not been provided and new development sales by a sales center are not included.

Open House Agenda: 3 Apartments to See This Weekend

DNAinfoMay 22, 2015

Few buyers set out to find the perfect cookie-cutter apartment when looking for a new home. Instead, they hope to find something special - whatever that might mean for them. Here are three apartments with open houses this Memorial Day weekend that we feel qualify.

 

796 Dekalb Ave., Apt. B2, Bedford-Stuyvesant
Studio/3 Baths
Condo
Approximately 1,838 square feet
$895,000
Common Charges: $516 per month
Real Estate Taxes: $50 per month (abated)
Open House: Friday, May 22, 4-4:30 p.m.

 

Lowdown: If you look at the floorplan, you might be fooled into thinking there are just two terraces for this Bed-Stuy duplex loft, but there's a third sandwiched between two rooms on the upper level.

 

"It's really a giant apartment," said Nadine Adamson of Brown Harris Stevens, explaining that the three outdoor spaces offer "a lot of options."

 

"We've had people come through and say, 'This one will be the herb garden, this one will be the flower garden,'" she said.

 

The sellers purchased from the sponsor five years ago and kept the loft open, making the below-grade lower level into a bedroom and office space. Because of that, the unit is officially a studio even though it's close to 2,000 square feet in size and has three bathrooms.

 

They also built in a significant amount of storage space and created giant his-and-her closets, Adamson noted, adding that the lower level has heated floor tiles.

 

The two larger terraces are off the kitchen on the upper level and the lower sleeping area. The unit has a washer/dryer and its own boiler.

 

Location: This eastern side of Bed-Stuy is seeing more activity in the area, from a loft conversion around the corner, to a new backyard beer garden opening this month. Herbert Von King Park is two blocks away, and a Home Depot is three blocks down on Dekalb Avenue.

 

The Myrtle-Willoughby G train station is the closest subway at about half a mile; the J/M/Z Myrtle station is just under a mile away. Several new CitiBike stations are being added to the neighborhood by the end of 2015.

 

Why put it on your open house calendar? "Based on a per square feet basis, it's one of the best values in Bed-Stuy," Adamson said. "And it has three outdoor spaces. It's a luxury to be able to spread out."

 

NOTE: This open house is for Friday evening.

 

874 Broadway, Apt. 807, Flatiron
Studio/1 Bathroom
Co-op
Approximately 1,000 square feet
$1.75 million
Maintenance: $2,091 per month
Open House: Sunday, May 24, noon to 1:30 p.m.

 

Lowdown: This unit, too, though listed as studio, has enough room to convert the space into a one- or even two-bedroom apartment. The current owner took down the walls and made it an open space when he purchased it nearly 12 years ago, said Win Brown of Core.

 

"It's really a unique loft. It's in the back of a L-shaped building and really has no neighbors," Brown said of the eighth-floor unit. "There are 13 windows facing east, north and west, and 12-foot ceilings. You don't really see open spaces like that anymore."

 

Formerly an office space, the MacIntyre Building has its original black-and-white mosaic tile floor throughout the common hallways, and for this unit it runs all the way into the apartment to the kitchen. The hardwood floors are also original.

 

The prior owner updated the kitchen and bathroom before selling.

 

The maintenance of this elevator building - which has a full-time super but no doorman - is on the high side because the building does not own the commercial space, so it doesn't have that revenue coming in, Brown noted.

 

Location: The building, at the corner of 18th Street, is convenient to Chelsea, just a block west. Union Square, with its famous farmers' market, is steps away. Design-lovers' favorite ABC Carpet & Home - with Jean-Georges Vongerichten's ABC Kitchen - is on the block. An AMC Loews is at 19th Street.

 

The 4/5/6/l/N/Q/R trains are at 17th and Broadway.

 

Why put it on your open house calendar? "If you're looking for an authentic loft in the Flatiron District, this is it," Brown said. "The challenge is to find someone who appreciates the open space."

 

250 103rd St., Apt. 2C, Upper West Side
3 Bedrooms/2 Baths
Co-op
Approximately 1,250 square feet
$1.795 million
Maintenance: $1,753 per month
Open House: Sunday, May 24, 1:30-3:30 p.m.

 

Lowdown: The terrace for this three-bedroom is large enough to feel "like an outdoor living room," said Greg Kammerer of Corcoran Group.

 

"It's really the pièce de résistance," he said of the 260-square-foot space that gets good southern light and has a pergola. "The apartment has a brownstone feel, so someone looking for that with a garden might be interested. But what [differentiates it from brownstones] is it's on the second floor, so it's brighter, you get three bedrooms instead of the usual two, and it's a doorman building."

 

The seller did light updates to the kitchen and bath, "where they were already in good shape" when purchasing seven years ago. The washer/dryer is new and vented. The building recently installed new windows.

 

The 75-unit Alexandria House also has a common roof deck and basement storage.

 

Location: There are nearly half a dozen new restaurants under construction nearby, said Kammerer, who lives in the neighborhood. The 1 train at 103rd Street is half a block from the building.

 

Why put it on your open house calendar? "There are only a few apartments with appreciable outdoor space that's more than a balcony, and the penthouse units are pricey," Kammerer said. "Because you're on the second floor, you can get a really nice outdoor space without paying multiple millions of dollars."

Brokers Click with Tech Talkers

Real Estate WeeklyMay 22, 2015

REBNY’s latest Breakfast Club seminar, “Using Technology to Maximize Your Database,” drew a huge crowd, filling the Mendik Education Center.

 

The panel, sponsored by Citibank US, was moderated by Eric Barron, CEO of Keller Williams and featured speakers Erin Wheelock of Keller Williams, Patrick Lilly of CORE Real Estate, and Zvi Band, co-founder and CEO of Contactually.

 

Band shared the importance of enterprise software like Contactually, stressing how crucial it is to one’s business to be as organized as possible. By remaining organized, the panel agreed, your business will not only be more efficient, it will also be easier to manage and less strain on your memory and time.

 

“In terms of how we approach this topic,” Band explained, “there are a lot of people who you think you want to stay in touch with, but the truth is that not everyone is equally important as the other. There are people you take to the movies, people you take out to eat, people you buy a new set of steak knives, etc.

 

“You should take your entire network and separate it out into different groups of people based on who brings what to your business. Contactually can help you identify those people and help you keep in touch with them.”

 

“If there’s one thing you can do for yourself today, it would definitely be starting to clean up your database,” added Barron. “I know people who’ve spent between 90 and 120 days just cleaning their databases, and their lives are easier because of it.”

 

The panelists also discussed not only which clients to keep in touch with, but how to keep in touch with them. At one point, a member of the audience inquired as to how to avoid harassing clients with useless information, and Patrick Lilly offered his advice on the subject:

 

“When I think about what I’m going to send to whom,” he said, “I don’t do things that I feel would annoy me if I were the recipient. Ask yourself, ‘What would be of real value of this person?’ Then focus on that. When you know that what you’re sending someone will provide real value, it’s a lot easier to sell it and it’s a lot easier to go forward with it.”

 

“Remember, technology is only good if there’s that personal connection attached to it,” he added. “That’s why some of the old-school methods of sending someone a hand-written card or taking them to dinner are still the best ways to do business.”

 

Wheelock urged the audience to learn the values of time management, saying that many people allow outside variables to dictate their days.

 

“I’m not the best at it myself,” she admitted, “But learning how to manage your time, such as when you’re going to cultivate your contacts, when you’re open to show houses, when you’re going to follow-up with clients, and so on, is an important part of maximizing your business.”

 

To learn more about REBNY’s Breakfast Club and other upcoming seminars, contact Jeanne Oliver-Taylor at JTaylor@rebny.com.

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