News

Houses of the Week: 200 Mercer Street, 4E

New York PostFebruary 05, 2014
Greenwich Village | $2.45 million

Bedrooms: 2 | Bathrooms: 1
Square feet: 2,350 | Maintenance: $2,333

Space is rare in Manhattan, and rarer is the chance to take a “sprawling” loft space, like this one in a co-op on Mercer Street overlooking Broadway, and do with it as you see fit. Already in place is a newly renovated, eat-in kitchen, plenty of exposed brick, hardwood flooring and a woodburning fireplace in the master bedroom. Agent: Patrick Mills, CORE, 917-657-5607

Living Large: 23 Downing

CBSFebruary 04, 2014

David Beare takes “Living Large” host Emily Smith on a tour of this Greenwich Village townhouse.

NY Real Estate: 419 East 57th Street, PHAB

Modern NYCFebruary 01, 2014
Be the first to live in this spectacular, one-of-a-kind penthouse, complete with an expansive 1,900-square-foot terrace. Meticulously renovated, this sun-filled, 5.5-room home, perfect as a full-time residence or pied-a-terre, offers exceptional ceiling heights, three working fireplaces, detailed plaster moldings and panoramic city views. Just beyond the dramatic entrance gallery, the home's living room offers open southern exposure, dramatic entertaining space and a wood-burning fireplace. The master bedroom features two French door entrances to the terrace and a walk-in closet. The bedroom's luxurious, en suite marble bathroom has a soaking tub with window views, stall shower, double sinks, heated floors and abundant storage. The second bedroom suite has a statuary marble bathroom with Waterworks fixtures. The spacious eat-in kitchen, outfitted with St. Charles custom cabinetry, features top-of-the-line appliances, marble countertops and backsplashes, and a generous walk-in pantry. A five-zone central air conditioning system, outdoor storage area and river-to-river views from the oversized terrace complete the home. No board approval required.

NY Real Estate: 241 Fifth, PH20

Modern NYCFebruary 01, 2014
Live in the center of NoMad, Manhattan's hottest new neighborhood, which boasts a bustling restaurant and hotel scene set against the lush, green landscape of Madison Square Park. Merging the best of old and new, the classic New York-style of this area includes Beaux-Arts architecture and iconic cast-iron buildings. 241 Fifth stands out as a new boutique residence designed with modern simplicity.

Penthouse 20 is a full-floor, 3-bedroom, 3.5-bathroom residence offering 3,080-square feet of interior space and stairway access to a private 958-square foot rooftop terrace boasting a full kitchen, hot tub, and views of the Flatiron district. The modern design influence features an open flow living room and a neutral palette that can be seen through the use of stained white oak flooring and white-finished fixtures from the Zuchetti-Kos Faraway Collection. The master bathroom is designed with a deep soaking tub, glass-enclosed shower, solid teak wall detailing and honed stone tile floor. Additionally, this residence offers entrance through a key locked elevator, a Miele washer and dryer and oversized windows throughout.

241 Fifth's lobby boasts wire-brushed, white oak walls and a polished concrete floor, conveying the modern simplicity of this boutique condominium. In addition to a 24/7 concierge, 241 Fifth's amenities include a rooftop terrace, a fitness center equipped with state-of-the-art cardio and weightlifting equipment, a Zen tranquility room for yoga, Pilates or meditation, a residence lounge and private wellness treatment room, which offers a serene space for massage or beauty treatments.

These photos may represent the unit or similar units in the building.

Manhattan's Top Agents

The Real DealFebruary 01, 2014
In the battle for broker supremacy, John Burger of Brown Harris Stevens held on to the top spot again this past year after finishing at the top in 2012. The white-glove broker had more than $410 million in listing at the time of the survey in mid-2013. Serena Boeardman of Sotheby's, meanwhile, jumped to the second place spot from the number five slot in the ranking the prior year. And Deborah Grubman on the Corcoran Group finished third, a big leap from 11th place the previous year.

Top Mid-Size Brokerages

The Real DealFebruary 01, 2014

Call them the in-betweeners. They're too small to be gigantic firms and too large to be boutiques. They're New York City's mid-size residential firms. And in 2013, for the first time, The Real Deal compiled a list ranking these firms by dollar volume of listings (in addition to looking at brokerage behemoths and boutiques as in years past). CORE finished first, followed by Warburg Realty.

Top Residential Brokerage Firms by Closed Manhattan Deals

The Real DealFebruary 01, 2014
In addition to ranking Manhattan's biggest brokerage firms by listings (see charts on adjacent pages) as it had done in years past, The Real Deal ran its first-ever ranking of Manhattan firms by closed deals (encompassing only sales above $1 million) in its May 2013 issue. The ability to rank firms based on closed sales rather than on a snapshot of listings was the result of improved data-gathering methods as well as better transparency in the industry. Data was provided by the website StreetEasy with additional research by The Real Deal.

Top Rental Deals of the Year

The Real DealFebruary 01, 2014
Deals at the very tippy top of the rental market got even pricier in 2013. There were 13 rental deals in Manhattan that got signed for $100,000 a month or more during the course of the year, up from just one such deal last year. The Towers of the Waldorf-Astoria and the Pierre saw three of the top deals each, the most of any building, and 15 Central Park West saw two deals that made the list.

NYRS Begins 2014 With new Executive Members Martin, Sargent, and Caponergo

NYREJFebruary 01, 2014
New York Residential Specialists (NYRS), the REBNY-certified program that recognizes top New York City residential real estate agents with the highest professional credential, is pleased to begin 2014 with new sponsors and executive committee members. The announcement comes following two sold-out semesters in 2013, bringing the number of NYRS graduates to 296.

New executive committee members include: Trish Martin, executive director of sales for Halstead Property's Brooklyn division; Tony Sargent, associate broker with CORE; and Tom Caponegro, associate broker with Brown Harris Stevens. They join the now 14-member committee.

Rent Forecast

SCENE MagazineFebruary 01, 2014
There’s snow in the forecast, and not a single day in the next month is expected to reach 32 degrees or higher, so when’s a better time to move? As brutal as New York’s winter is, the real estate market depresses its prices during the cold months. “The New York City residential rental market is seasonal, with the highest rents of the year coming every August and the lowest every February,” said Jeffrey Schleider, managing director of Miron Properties. “Renters in the market now can expect the best deals of the year with many landlords offering to cover the brokers fee and/or give a free month's rent.” Landlords do not need to be the ones to offer, either. Prospective renters have just as much of a right to bring their own terms to the negotiation table.

Lucrative Super Bowl Listings Tempt Brokers — Despite Risks

The Real DealJanuary 31, 2014
The number of short-term rental listings – and their prices – have skyrocketed ahead of Super Bowl XLVIII, and not even New York City real estate brokers are immune to the siren call of potential cash.

Airbnb, arguably the most popular site for short-term rental wheeling and dealing these days, still has more than a 1,000 listings available for this weekend only two days before the big game. The site has seen a 46 percent week-over-week increase in bookings on listings near MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, a spokesman for the company told The Real Deal. Bookings in the surrounding area – including the five boroughs – are expected to double from their volume at the same time last year.

The boom has prompted users to dramatically lift their rates, much as the city’s hotels commonly do during especially busy periods. Some hosts are charging as much as $1,000 per night for their pads over the weekend and are pointedly courting gridiron junkies.

“Perfect party space for Super Bowl weekend,” reads one StuyTown offering asking $6,500 for six nights. Even famous faces are getting in on the action, with Kevin Jonas, eldest of the eponymous brothers, renting out his Denville, New Jersey home (near the game site in East Rutherford) for $20,000 per night. The five-figure tab does include tickets to the game, at least.

Brokers are tempted by the potential windfall as much as anyone else. Several told The Real Deal that they have been approached by past or long-term clients seeking help marketing their property as a Super Bowl outpost.

“I had a client ask me to deal with her Staten Island lease for the weekend for $20,000,” said Jonathan Tager, managing director of MNS Real Estate. He didn’t wind up taking her up on the offer, he said, but was intrigued enough by the possibilities to list his own Brooklyn apartment for $6,500 per night after the inquiry. (As of press time he hadn’t snagged any takers.)

He isn’t the only one. Morgan Graham, a broker with Miron Properties, said that the Super Bowl isn’t on his radar but that he “sure as H-E-double hockey sticks” would rent via Airbnb if he had the space. “I live in Hell’s Kitchen and this neighborhood is very Airbnb-friendly. During the summer I meet several random Europeans in my building who are staying for the week [because of the] convenience of Midtown.”

Though it’s quicker and cheaper to list an offering themselves on a site like Airbnb, Roomorama or HomeAway, going through a broker may ease worries of party destruction over a beer and buffalo wing-filled weekend. The peace of mind, some brokers said, is what often makes a broker’s involvement, and commission, worth it.

“The reason I think they would use a broker is because they want the tenant vetted,” said Emily Beare, a broker with the CORE Group. “Most people do post it themselves, but I think that is the reason.”

The rush to cash in on the weekend’s potentially pricey rentals flies in the face of New York City’s 2010 illegal hotel law, which bars residential apartment rentals for fewer than 30 days. New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman is currently on the march against Airbnb to this end, having subpoenaed data on the site’s 15,000 hosts in October. Most brokerages and individual agents are aware of the risks, and quite a few told The Real Deal that they are steering clear of short-term Super Bowl listings to avoid any potential legal fallout.

Others, however, appeared unfazed by the potential dangers.

“I would totally do it regardless of the risks,” Graham said. “And landlords seem to be okay with it because their rent is still getting paid, if not being paid quicker and in full.”

Ismael Leyva Snaps Up 57th Street Pad in Building He Designed

The Real DealJanuary 30, 2014
Ismael Leyva, the architect behind notable Manhattan buildings such as the Yves Chelsea, has nabbed an apartment at a Midtown building he designed.

The Mexican-American design guru paid $3.91 million for a three-bedroom, three-bathroom pad at Place 57, the same 36-story story tower at 207 East 57th Street in which chat show host Oprah Winfrey previously owned an apartment, according to public records filed with the city today.

Blu Kokin of residential brokerage CORE represented Levya in the deal. The sellers, Brian and Kathryn Ballard, were represented by Mark Schoenfeld and Brandon Cohen of the Corcoran Group.

As the architect of the building, Levya knew the property well prior to the deal, Schoenfeld said.

“There was very little due diligence to do,” he said.

Neither Kokin nor Levya were immediately available for comment.

The 30th floor apartment has a triangular living room, mahogany floors and views reaching as far north as the George Washington Bridge, according to the listing. The building has a 24-hour concierge, a fitness center, a conference room and garden.

The deal follows the sale of Levya’s former home at 353 Central Park West in August, for $7.55 million. He had owned that property since 2007.

Levya’s more recent projects include the Charles Condominium at 1355 First Avenue. He was also recently tapped to design the new School of Visual Arts dormitory at 407 First Avenue on 24th street on behalf of developer Magnum Real Estate Group.

Oprah’s penthouse at Place 57 sold to London-based hedge fund partner Mark Hillery and his wife Melissa for $7.9 million in 2012.

Record $1.98 Million Sale in Windsor Terrace

BrownstonerJanuary 29, 2014
A house at 107 Terrace Place set a record when it sold for $1,980,000 this month, according to The New York Daily News. The previous record was set by 18 Sherman Place, which traded for $1,900,000 in 2007, said the story.

The 1960s house at 107 Terrace Place was extensively renovated and came with a garage. The floor plan is unusual, with the kitchen and dining room on the same floor as the bedrooms, but the living room is on the ground floor. The five-bedroom home has 3,500 square feet of space and a top-floor rental unit.

The story asked if Windsor Terrace could be “the next Park Slope” and noted soaring multi-million-dollar prices there are pushing up prices in Windsor Terrace and elsewhere throughout Brooklyn.

Very Suburban $2M Windsor Terrace House Sets Record

CurbedJanuary 29, 2014
A two-car garage, a big back yard, wall-to-wall carpeting—everything about the stand-alone house at 107 Terrace Place screams "suburbia"—except for the fact that it's located in Brooklyn. Though some might scoff at the suburban-ness of it, it's those characteristics that led to the house setting a price record for Windsor Terrace when it sold for $1.98 million earlier this month. The Daily News reports that the previous neighborhood record was held by a much more New York-esque limestone house at 18 Sherman Street, which sold for $1.9M in 2007. The sellers of the two-family house on Terrace Place bought it in 2011 for $1.2M, and they fully renovated it to create a three-bedroom rental on the top floor and a 3,500-square-foot owners' unit on the lower two floors.

The Next Park Slope? Unique Windsor Terrace Home Sells For Record $1.98 Million

New York Daily NewsJanuary 28, 2014
The new, most expensive home in Windsor Terrace is not some glorious rowhouse facing Prospect Park or a wood-framed, 200-year-old beauty.

But the home at 107 Terrace Place, which just sold for $1.98 million, boasts a feature the competition is missing, something even more valuable than original molding or parquet floors a two-car garage.

It also comes with the neighborhood’s quickly increasing cachet.

“Windsor Terrace always had this suburban feel, but now it’s getting much cooler, too, and I think this house, which is two blocks from the park and the cafes, is the perfect marriage of the two Windsor Terraces,” said CORE broker Doug Bowen, who had the listing.

The five-bedroom detached home was actually built in 1960 by a bridge contractor as his own residence, which accounts for its unique layout.

The current owners, who purchased the property for $1.12 million in 2011, undertook a full renovation to open up the lower floors, creating a grand 3,500-square-foot home of modern proportions, with two bedrooms and a kitchen, dining and living rooms that sharing an open space. A den and game room are on the floor below, alongside the garage.

The previous record in Windsor Terrace was for a traditional limestone townhouse at 18 Sherman Place, which sold for $1.9 million in 2007, during the last boom.

As prices continue to rise to the north, buyers who want to stay in Brooklyn, rather than following their parents to the suburbs, are bidding up prices all over.

“When a typical brownstone is going for $3 million and even $4 million now, it’s going to push people to Windsor Terrace, and it’s going to push up the prices in Windsor Terrace,” Bowen said.

The sellers are actually bucking this trend. They just had their second child and have decided to relocate more upstate to Rhinebeck, since the husband splits his work in the high-end summer camp sector between Manhattan and upstate.

The buyers, meanwhile, are leaving behind a rental in Park Slope. They were among a number of bidders for the home, which was originally listed at $1.95 million.

And even though they will be waving goodbye to their beloved Slope, Bowen said his family will be gaining so much more.

“The joy of never having to fight for a parking space again,” he said. “Can you imagine?”

A Look at the Swankiest Bathrooms on the Market

The Real DealJanuary 25, 2014
Luxury homebuilders often tempt buyers with massive and spectacular bathrooms. But these gorgeous en suites from around the country go far beyond the high-end status quo.

Here is a look at the swankiest bathrooms on the market, according to Bloomberg News.

Homes for Sale with Spectacular Bathrooms

BloombergJanuary 24, 2014
Manhattan, New York
For sale: $8,995,000

23 Downing Street is a 3,700-square-foot, single-family residence located in Greenwich Village. The five-floor home boasts a large master suite, three additional bedrooms, four full baths and two half-baths, spacious living areas and 900 exterior square free, including a private garden and rooftop terrace.

Money Talker

Fox BusinessJanuary 17, 2014
Certified Career and Life-Purpose Coach Maggie Mistal, luxury real estate developer Jarrod Guy Randolph and Marie Claire Features and Special Projects Director Lea Goldman offer tips for boosting your salary.

Artsy Condo Projects Take Advantage of Museum Proximity

The Real DealJanuary 17, 2014
Sales are booming in buildings clustered around New York City’s public art destinations, as evidenced by the success of buildings near the Museum of Modern Art and the New Museum.

1280 Fifth Avenue, which is anchored by the Museum of African Art, wasn’t doing so hot in 2011, according to the New York Daily News. Only 16 of its 90 units had sold when brokerage firm CORE took over and rebranded the building as One Museum Mile. But things took off in 2013; a $3.6 million property sold there last year set the record for home sale price in East Harlem, as The Real Deal reported.

“Now we’ve only got eight left,” CORE broker Tom Postilio told the News.

250 Bowery’s developer, VE Equities, is also taking advantage of its artsy neighbor the New Museum — actress Scarlett Johansson checked out the property, for instance, according to the News. A penthouse there for $2,500 per square foot – the highest price per square foot ever on the Bowery — in 2013, in a sale brokered by Douglas Elliman’s Fredrik Eklund.

Other museum-friendly buildings include 1001 Fifth Avenue near the Metropolitan Museum of Art and a $1 billion tower called Torre Verre near MoMa by Jean Nouvel in the works.

Condos That Are Close to Arts Institutions like MoMA, The Met and The New Museum Get a Big Lift

New York Daily NewsJanuary 17, 2014
The Whitney isn’t the only condo development capitalizing on its proximity to a top arts institution. Being next door to — or in some case on top of — a museum can provide a project with serious cachet.

MoMA practically pioneered the practice when it developed Museum Tower in the 1980s, which poured millions into the institution’s endowment.

Here are some recent examples:

One Museum Mile

When brokerage Core took over 1280 Fifth Ave. two years ago, only 16 of the 90 units were sold. But after the building’s name was changed to One Museum Mile — a hat tip to the Museum of African Art downstairs — sales started booming.

“Now, we’ve only got eight left,” says Core broker Tom Postilio.


250 Bowery

The New Museum capped the Bowery’s transformation from skid row to high brow. As a result, 250 Bowery has attracted the likes of apartment shoppers Scarlett Johansson and other celebs.


1001 Fifth Ave.

Since it opened in 1902, the Met has been giving brokers something to crow about — as if park views weren’t enough.

“Savor the quintessential view of what New York City has to offer by waking up to one of the world’s most famous museums, the Metropolitan Museum of Art,” writes Kristen Magnani in her listing for a $2.8 million two-bedroom.


Torre Verre

The Museum of Modern Art quite literally has the most obvious museum-driven development in the works: Jean Nouvel’s $1 billion Torre Verre, which will rise 1,050 feet, as high as the Chrysler Building and with views of Central Park.

The Aging Ingenue of Neighborhoods: Long Island City Has Been on the Cusp for 30 Years

New York ObserverJanuary 13, 2014
All neighborhoods are somewhat in thrall to Manhattan, but Long Island City is haunted by it. By day, it’s noisy with the squeal and clatter of elevated trains, the rumble of delivery trucks on the 59th Street Bridge and the hum of subways beneath the sidewalks—a cacophony of people and paraphernalia, all shuttling across the East River. In the evening, the neighborhood is illuminated by the pale glow of Midtown skyscrapers and the streets hue yellow with the tide of returning taxis.

That Long Island City should be the next up-and-coming neighborhood has seemed obvious for decades; New York magazine christened it the next hot neighborhood in 1980, an imprimatur it would not give to Williamsburg for 12 more years. “Plainly, something is happening in Long Island City,” the magazine wrote and plainly, something was. Condos and chic restaurants were in the works, giddy developers were throwing around phrases like “Soho-plus” and “oil field,” and Robert Redford and Dustin Hoffman were zipping over to play afternoon games at Tennisport. Its vast stretches of sparsely populated land were so obviously ripe for redevelopment that its ascendance seemed all but inevitable—a fait accompli that for reasons no one ever quite seems able to account for has always fallen just short of accompli.

In the decades since, it has been called the next Williamsburg, the next Dumbo, the next Bushwick, Astoria-lite and, most inelegantly, “Fort Greene 10 years ago”—its arrival just as inevitable and just as elusive as it has always been, a thing that must be and yet is not.
To walk Long Island City’s wide sidewalks is to find evidence that the neighborhood has, at long last, arrived. There are haute comfort-food purveyors and classic cocktails cooled by hand-cut ice, a climbing gym and a weekend flea market, coffee shops, gourmet groceries, wine bars, breweries, art galleries, waterfront parks and an ever-multiplying number of luxury towers. Murakami has a studio there; so does David Byrne. M. Wells, the adventurous Quebecois steakhouse, recently reopened in an old garage by Court Square.

There’s even a rooftop farm and a pop-up ramen bar. On a Saturday afternoon this fall, hordes of canvas-bag-toting twenty-somethings emerged from the G train, setting off for either P.S. 1 or 5Pointz.

And yet, while it would be easy to fashion so many pieces into an argument for the place’s vitality, the truth is that they do not cohere. The spaces between the wine bars and art galleries are desolate, darkened expanses of low-lying warehouses, parked waste-oil trucks, taxi lots and auto body repair shops.

It is a neighborhood at odds with itself, a place that can neither shake its potential Manhattanness nor its pervasive otherness, the vague loneliness that comes with being on the edge of a great metropolis, beyond the crowds and the busy cheer and the all-night cafés. It has the kind of unsettled quality that makes some people a little uneasy, like the late-middle-aged couple I passed on the street one night not long ago. They were standing, watching a young man fumble with the front-door lock of a begrimed apartment building on Jackson Avenue. The couple wore the apprehensive expression of parents seeing the grim New York apartment their adult child now calls home.

Sensing their discomfort, the man turned, gesturing Manhattanward with his chin. “Look,” he said. “You can see the Empire State Building.”

A Scarcity of New One-Bedrooms

The New York TimesJanuary 10, 2014
For decades, one-bedroom apartments have been a fixture of New York. But finding one going forward, at least in new developments, may become as hard as hailing a cab in a downpour.
Developers convinced that buyers want extra legroom — and often seeking to recoup their own sky-high investments in land — are phasing one-bedrooms out of new buildings in favor of much more spacious units.

“I don’t know that one-bedrooms will ever become extinct,” said Charles R. Bendit, a chief executive at Taconic Investment Partners, “but I think the nature of the city is changing. Young kids aren’t leaving as quickly as they once did, and people who are making an investment are investing in a family home.”

Mr. Bendit is putting his analysis to the test as he develops Sterling Mason, a once-stalled condo at 71 Laight Street in TriBeCa. When conceived during the last real estate boom, by a different developer, the project was to have offered five one-bedrooms out of 36 units, in a complex made up of a new building and a renovated one, side by side.

But after buying the building for $65 million in 2012, Taconic decided that bigger would be better, and it reconfigured the interiors to allow for larger apartments, a process that involved removing two elevator banks and stairways. Today there are no one-bedrooms at Sterling Mason, which has 32 units, 14 of them three-bedrooms.

And the bet may have been a smart one. Since last summer, when sales began, eight of the units have sold, at an average of $2,700 a square foot, according to Streeteasy.com. And “no one is coming in to say, ‘Gee whiz, I wish you had one-bedrooms,’ ” Mr. Bendit added.

Whether to be family-friendlier, or for reasons affecting the bottom line, developers generally appear to be decreasing the supply of new one-bedrooms.

At the start of this month, there were 104 for sale in new condos in Manhattan, out of 654 units in total, or a 16 percent share, according to research from the Corcoran Sunshine Marketing Group.

Over the same time last year, there were 194 one-bedrooms for sale out of 718 units, or a 27 percent share, the data show. Similarly, at the beginning of 2010, there were 463 one-bedrooms on the market, out of 1,798 units, or a 26 percent share.

Even when resale units are taken into account, the one-bedroom market seems a shade of its former self — though of course the shortage bodes well for anyone with a one-bedroom to sell.

Last week, there were 1,227 one-bedrooms for sale in Manhattan, according to Streeteasy.com.
The units, mostly south of 110th Street, were listed at a median price of $745,000, or about $1,130 a square foot, the data show. At their peak in December 2008, by contrast, the number of one-bedrooms in Manhattan reached 3,257, according to Streeteasy.

As the recession roiled the market, one-bedrooms encountered strong headwinds; many of the first-time buyers drawn to these starter apartments were unable to get loans, which caused units to linger and dip in price. Since then, in the last couple of years, as the housing and lending markets have improved, one-bedrooms have practically flown off the shelves. Sales, in fact, made up about 41 percent of all deals in the fourth quarter of 2013, according to the Miller Samuel appraisal firm; the quarterly showing was the strongest since 1997, when they represented about 43 percent off all deals.

Given that one-bedrooms constitute such a large portion of the market, one might think developers would want to build more of them. But many developers have had to shell out more for land purchases — in Manhattan, prime lots can cost around $850 a square foot — so there is often pressure to build the larger, more expensive units, said Jonathan J. Miller, the president of Miller Samuel.

“It’s not that there is no demand for one-bedrooms,” he said. “It’s that there is no demand for one-bedrooms at $4,000 a foot, which would make some of these sites feasible.”

The market share of one-bedroom sales is expected to drop further in 2014 as new multi-bedroom products begin to work their way through the system.

The list of condominiums with few one-bedrooms is long and splashy. Walker Tower, the conversion of a former telephone building in Chelsea, on West 18th Street, had just three one-bedrooms out of 53 units. Closings there began in November.

There are only eight one-bedrooms, out of 145 units, at 56 Leonard in TriBeCa, according to a spokeswoman for the Alexico Group, a developer in the project. At One57, the skyscraping condominium from the Extell Development Company on West 57th Street, just eight of 94 units are one-bedrooms, according to a company spokeswoman. Brokers say that one-bedrooms are often used for nannies. But at Walker Tower, which ended up with a total of 47 units in the building, some of the scarce one-bedrooms were combined, according to Michael Stern, the managing partner of the JDS Development Group, which developed the building, along with Property Markets Group.

Even smaller projects are supersizing: the Schumacher, a condo conversion at 36 Bleecker Street in Greenwich Village, has no one-bedrooms among its 20 units, according to its website, though it does have several four-bedrooms.

Still, even though one-bedrooms seem to be fading in importance in the sales market, they are plentiful as rentals, brokers point out. Nor are all Manhattan developers eschewing one-bedrooms, which make sense for some projects’ economics. When they are offered alongside larger units, they can prove more popular, as at 530 Park Avenue, a 109-unit condo conversion on the Upper East Side, at 61st Street. Since last spring, 60 units have sold, 22 of them one-bedrooms, according to Aby J. Rosen, a principal of RFR Holding, its developer. Only three one-bedrooms are left, he added.

In less affluent areas, where land prices are lower, one-bedrooms may be a better fit.

At Edgecombe Parc Condominium, a project underway at 456 West 167th Street in Washington Heights, more than half the units, or 27 out of 49, are one-bedrooms. Seventeen have sold since marketing began in November, according to Ilan Bracha, a broker with Keller Williams New York City, which is handling sales. Prices at the building, which is being developed by Gleam Realty, have averaged $700 a square foot, Mr. Bracha said.

Large units in areas like TriBeCa attract families in part because of the top-rated public schools. But in neighborhoods like 530 Park’s, where the schools are not as much of an attraction, family-size units can be a harder sell, said Mr. Rosen, adding that many one-bedroom buyers have said they will use them as pieds-à-terre.

“Everybody is chasing the $50 million buyer,” he said, “but I would rather focus on the $7 million to $10 million buyer.”

Sometimes the sites themselves determine the sizes of units. “You don’t want to bastardize the shape of a building; if it dictates larger apartments, it’s better not to create tiny units,” said Doron Zwickel, a Core Group broker in charge of sales at 93 Worth Street, a 91-unit project in a former textile factory in TriBeCa. “But this was not a very deep building, with lots of windows, so it was very efficient to do.”

At 93 Worth, there are 16 one-bedrooms, or 18 percent of the total, as well as 22 studios; eight units remain for sale after a little over a year of marketing, Mr. Zwickel said. Average sale prices have been $1,850 a square foot.

At a new condo that Mr. Zwickel is marketing at 241 Fifth Avenue, the one-bedroom count is even higher: 35 percent of the listings, or 16 out of 46 units. Only one of the units remains.

“I believe that most of the product in the works is still geared toward the high end and the mega-rich,” he said. “I think it would be wise to create more variety.”

CORE Duo Singing Their Way to Success

Brokers WeeklyJanuary 09, 2014
At a past showing on East 83rd Street, Tom Postilio decided to go with his gut. The tour of the apartment was almost over and he felt the interested couple needed a final nudge. So Postilio stopped in his track and started singing Frank Sinatra’s “All the Way” – the couple’s wedding song.

What would be weird coming from any other broker worked for Postilio, who had spent years singing Sinatra on stage. “That sealed the deal,” he said.

With college and graduate degrees in real estate mushrooming across the country, more and more people are entering the field as fully trained professionals. But Tom Postilio and his partner Mickey Conlon at CORE are living proof that an unconventional background can still be a big advantage.
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