Market Conditions in Hoboken>Question Details

Dave, Home Buyer in 07054

Why don't more people talk about the real issue with Real Estate?

Asked by Dave, 07054 Wed Mar 26, 2008

I don't think NYC or the surrounding areas are immune to R/E issues, but its very different from others - the places where overbuilding occurred because, frankly, there was excess room to expand the 'burbs for cheap (like FL, NV, AZ, CA) is where there real problem is. The metro-NYC area has such limited space for building that most efforts are "re-building", tearing down or gutting out old buildings. Plus, there has always been the mentality here that housing will cost a large percentage of your income...this is nothing new as it was to other areas of the country. For a long time, people here have used housing as a form of retirement - the country got into trouble when the rest starting to think the same way.

Plus, the problem with those areas listed above (FL, NV, AZ, CA) is that there is no real "downtown" area to make location important. Even a city like LA doesn't have that same important of being near a specific part of the city like NYC does. Its much easier to simply expand

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BEST ANSWER
John -

To call this the bottom in NYC is, quite frankly, stupid. Rents are off upwards 10%, OPEX is up, way up, like 20%+. Lenders won't put money out so projects are going sideways. Did you see the news about MSG this AM? The railyard project just died. Brooklyn is about to blow - the largest project there has already delayed and is now talking about 20 years to complete. As for illiquidity - the point is not whether people need to access the equity; the point is that people will wait to lock up their cash if they think prices are coming down. Let's face it, it's not the media that's driving the bursting bubble - it's regression to the mean. We will get there and your haphazard rush to put other people's money into questionable real estate today is inappropriate and unprofessional. But, I do understand that your business depends upon selling buyers to the close. Irony is that brokers will actually fare much better once sellers resistant to price reductions get real. You make money on volume and that will occur when prices come down to meet the market. You should be excited to see values come down, once you clean the egg off of your face of course.....
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 28, 2008
Hey guys - real estate values never go down, especially in NEW YORK! Buy now before you’re priced out forever, dude, because NOW is a great time to buy!
4 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
Fred - Just like you know how long a batch of fries need to stay down in the oil and what ingredients are on a Big Mac. You know your job, I know mine.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
You have no dea what I sell and have sold. I service all levels of buyers and sellers. My current listings range from 300k - 1.8 million. I need not give you my resume of luxury homes sold. My specialty is not in Manhattan, but I do market research also and I know the Manhattan market as I am licensed in NY & NJ and I represent buyers and sellers in both states.

You do not know anything about Manahttan real estate, you think you do because you browse a few websites and cut and paste a few quotes here and there, but you know nothing about it at all. Do you think because you went to a few open houses in Manahattan you have your finger on the pulse of the market?

I seem to have hit a nerve with you since you want to call me stupid and unprofessional, but when you call a spade a spade, they don't like it too much. Especially when they think they are something else, such as you. I think the old expression for people like you is "Blow-hard"
Shut up - move to Florida and whine about it being too hot.

For the rest of the group. I apologize. It is just that blowhards like this guy need to be shut up occasionally.

Dave, good for you. there are some great buys out there right today, better then 9 months ago! Glad you have the means to get in the game, unlike Fred who wants to sit around and scream because he can not make it happen.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
Fred seems to be a chicken little.

First of all Fred, it is stupid of you to compare the MSG deal and other big NYC / Brooklyn commercial projects to the residential market. Two entirely different animals, but I would not expect you to understand that. I'll keep it as you said, it is a stupid response.

My thoughts about investing are correct. You do not have to agree. I think that you are probably just someone that can't take advantage of the current situation by not having the means to do so.

I see that you are a home "buyer" that may also be the reasoning behind your "can't you see the market is bad" whining.. you WANT to buy something with your 250k and no money down and you want to bargin and there ARE NO TAKERS! Why are there no takers? cause it ain't that bad!

As for my business, yes In order to get paid, people have to close. I list homes for sale.. people move everyday and everyday homes are listed and people get paid. I sell homes to people looking for homes, but I have not just sold a person any home, I sold them a home that they wanted, at a good price and I will earn their repeat business and referrals do to my professional business manner.

You want to co-miserate about the market.. then go to Detroit.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 28, 2008
would you mean... "Domo arigato"? Then, you're welcome.

Things may get worse in Virginia, but it is not too bad here. NY is not home to dirty little streets, overcrowding or moody people. If you lived here or were from here you would understand. We do not expect a person form another part of the country to understand anyway, nor do we care.

Just come and visit, stay out of our way and please don't stand in the middle of the sidewalk looking up in the air. It is really annoying.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2008
Hi in Virginia -

Dude, what the heck are you talking about? I have seen a few of your posts and you really make some non sensical statements. I am connecting it a bit since you are referencing Japan, can I assume you are Japanese? Because what you are are typing on the screen is getting lost in translation from your head to the computer.

I think you think you are being bright and witty.. but it is coming across as clueless.

Just a thought.
3 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2008
Anyone see the news about Hampton's real estate being down 20% Dec 2007 through Feb 2008? Anyone catch Halstead's market research guy on Bloomberg this afternoon? He's calling for a drop off in values and volume. Anyone who thinks that a cheaper Manhattan doesn't necessarily translate into discounts in the metro area should be looking for another career.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 2, 2008
In the worldwide markets, NY is a bargain. It is not immune to impact from our financial markets, but has held up better than most areas. Even within NY or NJ, certain price bands fare better than others. Many areas of NJ benefit from the strength of NY.

NY has felt some impact, but overall......we...in NY or NJ are not singing the same song as the national media may sing. Town by town, and price band by price band, there are variables.

The uppermost end of the high tier is doing well in many areas. Buyers are some of the wealthiest and most successful in the country.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
Deborah Madey, Real Estate Pro in Brick, NJ
MVP'08
Contact
John- I just have to say "You are my idol!"
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
Oh, I guess it is o.k. for you, since you are a buyer to say that my opinion of the bottom of the market is stupid, but you can say as you please? Get a life. People like you need to be told to just shut up already. Non-stop whining is annoying.

You want to desperately cling to things like the Case-Shiller Home Price Index and other people telling you what you want to hear as a buyer. You want it to be as bad as Ohio, Florida, Virginia... because you want that deal. Well, the deals are here now. Take them, this is it. in a few months Manhattan will be stronger then ever.. buy now. This is the time.. you are seeing the "bottom in NYC" and it ain't that shallow.

Funny thing happend while you were getting all hot reading statistics. You missed the market.

What would make you think I would want you as a client?
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
NYC metro is a unique market from a supply and demand perspective but you have to take into consideration the affordability of housing.

what i think will happen is Manhattan will ultimately fall prey to the fact that for the same buck, you can get a lot more by relocating outside of the city.


^^^^ Poster does not have a clue about NYC.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
Valleys exist for a reason....yeah, You would think.

Prices in Manhattan are going up. Why? becasue of everyone else in bad shape. Manhattan lost a few... very few percentage points during the last two years and record deals are still happening. In NYC prices were astounding 1.5 years ago... now they are just astronomical. so, it ain't hurting. Hoboken, Jersey City, ain't doing too bad either. Here where I am , 35 miles south of NY... yeah it is a little down. But all that means here is that the houses that people were throwing money at 1.5 years ago.. are sitting a little longer, but selling. Why? because the media is saying so much is soo bad.. that these people are just waiting longer and thinking prices will go down.. when they don't they jump and buy because they don't want to miss the "bottom" of the market.

in a few months Manhattan will be stronger then ever.. buy now. This is the time.. you are seeing the "bottom in NYC" and it ain't that shallow.

FYI - Real Estate is and always has been the best investment. Illiquid? it is not intended to be a liquid investment. If you want liquidity, get in the stock market. If you have to worry about liquidity, I would never advise you to invest in real estate.

I am positive that 99% of people are not in real estaet for the ability to generate large sums of cash in 30 days and sell it on the 35th day... So the "Illiquid" comment is rather inane.

You want liquidity? play options... follow some stock split calendars.. get into some options and follow the run.. you can learn a lot about investing and be as liquid as quicksilver.... make a ton of cash or lose a ton of cash. That is liquid. Real Estate, still the best investment.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 27, 2008
John - Give manhattan a few months and you will see weakness. as for the 30 mile zone, are you really saying that prices are holding up? real estate is the most illiquid investment most people will ever invest in - the conduits shut down in january 2007 - most other lending pulled back by the spring. the resets that we are going to see affect the local markets everywhere because banks are national. no one here has provided anything reasonable that supports $1,000 psf in hoboken much less $1,400 psf in manhattan. you can't just go from peak to peak - valleys exist for a reason.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Mar 27, 2008
I just bring this up because A LOT of people, even New Yorkers, seem to forget this. I am originally from NJ so the price issue is no big surprise, but its amazing at how many people just look at the macroeconomics and forget the specifics of the area
2 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2008
How about the real issue.

How about the people that screwed the market up for everyone out ther. the Mortgage broker. These guys gave the "great" 3% 3 - 5 years arms to dopey people that bought too much house. These are your foreclosures.

The houseing market is in in the condition that is is becasue of the Banks and Mortgage Brokers. Handing out the loans ath they did... they are responsible for the problem.

That is the issue.
2 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2008
As seen in the other bubble-icous areas of the U.S., the first step in a steep decline in prices is a steep decline in sales volume. Guess what? NYC just posted the largest sales volume decrease in 18 years. NYC is a little behind the national averages – but NYC won’t be immune forever. It is bounded by fundamentals.

NYC has been artificially buoyed by high wages and big bonuses. Those, too, are coming to an end as the sub-prime fallout has spread to regions of the credit market once thought to be risk-free.

People are a lot less likely to purchase $1 million studio apartments in NYC when they might not have a job next week.

“April 2 (Bloomberg) -- Manhattan apartment sales plunged the most in 18 years in the first quarter as buyers faced the prospect of a recession and job cuts at Wall Street securities firms.

Sales fell 34 percent from a year earlier and inventory rose 4.6 percent to 6,194 units, New York-based real estate appraiser Miller Samuel Inc. and broker Prudential Douglas Elliman Real Estate said in a report today. The median price of a Manhattan co-operative apartment or condominium increased 13.2 percent to a record $945,000.”


NYC Realtors™ will say – but everything is fine! Median prices went up!

Median prices in other areas that are now crashing (Las Vegas comes to mind) also increased as sales volume decreased early in the downturn. Par for the course.

Plan accordingly.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Apr 2, 2008
Liquid and waiting! Now, that is funny!.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 1, 2008
200,000 bank and financial job cuts expected this year
can't be good for NYC

anyways

good luck
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 1, 2008
Thank you for your screed, Fred. It shows us exactly what your beef is. The NYC market is just a smokescreen. I understand how frustrating it is to not be able to afford to live where you want. I worked in Manhattan myself back in the 70s and 80s, and it sure was frustrating having to travel 2 hours on the LIRR everyday because I didn't want to pay 275 a month for a shoebox sized studio. But I got over it and so will you, I hope. Otherwise you will spend the rest of your life being angry at people because they can afford what you can't.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 1, 2008
John - Wow, you are right. I didn't realize that you have a REAL ESTATE LICENSE! You must really know markets then! That's awesome!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
Manhattan is unique. The comparisons are London and Paris not Hoboken, Park Slope or Williamsburg. These "fringe" areas are where all the aspiring people are forced to live because Manhattan is just too expensive for them. Ever try taking a cab to Hoboken at 1:00 in the afternoon - try this and you'll quickly realize that it isn't NYC. People are out of their mind to even pay 600/sq ft for some of these areas.

Still Manhattan is going down - it is inevitable with layoffs on Wall st. I don't expect it to be too much maybe 10%. But the fringe areas are going down 20-40%. The Europeans are not crossing the atlantic to buy in Hoboken - they don't even know where that is.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
BEST ANSWER
moody new yorkers (with heavy nasal accent like the dominos pizza commercial)

anyways

good luck
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
John -

I've seen your listings. Your experience is fannie and freddie conforming - middle income. You don't know squat about Manhattan cash buyers so stop pretending like selling 450k homes is even remotely comparable to Manhattan or Hoboken for that matter. East Brunswick? Please. Apparently, you didn't read the Bloomberg piece from today because to call a bottom a time to buy is very different than advising a wait and see attitude. Unprofessional and just stupid. OFHEO's raising the cap limits on fannie and freddie will help you though in your segment.

Dave - Not sure how far down they could go. They could simply be flat for a couple of years but the point is that there is no overhang on the supply side, much less credit and layoffs. The potential for lower prices is much higher than higher highs. It's great that you bought and it's gone up (on paper that is), but the micro issues are in fact what I am looking at. Financial services will be laying off all year; it will get worse on that front - that is a micro issue. Jumbo rates in Manhattan are 300bps above fannies - that is a micro issue. Long run, sure, it's all good. But I'd rather wait and buy at 900 psf than sit on dead money for five years paying high OPEX just because one trick ponies like John say buy buy buy! Final thought, even if prices are flat, you have to discount back that same investment, so flat is not necessarily flat. In Manhattan, you need at least 7% appreciation just to offset OPEX and inflation.

Enough said guys. If you choose to ignore recent news, that's fine. Good luck.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
Fred, first off - I would not call 25-30 years that recent...and 2nd, the 80's was an excpetion not the norm. Indeed, the area of "desirable" space in the city has expanded in the past 20 years or so (into parts of Harlem, etc.) however areas like Park Ave., etc. have been extremely expensive for a while.

NYC prices are not going drastically down any time soon, I can assure you that. Its because of short-sighted people like you that I am making a killing in this market...even today. I'm not saying this to brag or anything like that, but to illustrate a point of the health of the area - I bought a place less than 9 months ago and I already know I can sell it for a 15% gain easily. Stop looking at the macroeconomics and start looking at the micro issues...you will be a much better investor and, I bet, generally happier for it.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
I can't resist. John said:

"in a few months Manhattan will be stronger then ever.. buy now. This is the time.. you are seeing the "bottom in NYC" and it ain't that shallow."

There you have it. Funny thing happened on the way to the bottom.....it moved.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
John - We would never work with a broker who takes a pot shot like that. You lack both the sophistication and integrity to counsel any credible buyer. FYI, read below, just out. First comes volume declines, then prices follow. Notice the key in this article: Volume sales off 6% and inventory up 15% - what's that mean? Lenders will now move to seize or force sell condo projects in order to monetize their loans. Developers don't budge until lenders pull the trigger.

Manhattan Home Market Slows as Wall Street Cuts Jobs (Update1)

By Sharon L. Lynch

March 31 (Bloomberg) -- New York City's residential real estate market is showing the first signs of fallout as U.S. banks and securities firms cut the most jobs in seven years.

Manhattan apartment sales fell in January and February from a year earlier and new properties came to the market at the fastest pace since at least 2000, according to data from New York-based real estate appraiser Miller Samuel Inc. Transactions slid 6.4 percent to 3,250, while the number of condominiums, co- operatives and townhouses for sale at the end of last month climbed to 6,225, 15 percent more than at the start of the year.

Declining sales indicate that the nation's most expensive urban property market may founder this year as Wall Street retrenches, said Miller Samuel President Jonathan Miller in an interview. Financial companies have taken at least $208 billion in asset and mortgage-related writedowns. They've cut 34,000 jobs in the past nine months with more to come from the takeover of Bear Stearns Cos.

``It's very much of a concern because while the share of jobs being lost is relatively small, the income effect is large,'' said Marisa Di Natale, senior economist at Moody's Economy.com, based in West Chester, Pennsylvania. ``Wall Street bonuses and salaries in particular have been propping up the Manhattan real estate market.''

Bear Stearns Fallout

At developer Ian Schrager's 40 Bond St., the avant-garde lofts created by Pritzker Prize-winning architects Herzog & de Meuron aren't holding their prices. The Corcoran Group recently cut the price of a three-bedroom, 2,600-square-foot apartment by about 8 percent to $5.5 million. The unit features wide-plank Austrian smoked oak floors, 11-foot ceilings and access to spa services.

Manhattan apartment prices have more than tripled over the last 10 years as employment and population climbed and crime plummeted. The last time year-over-year prices dropped for a quarter was at the beginning of 2002, just after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks. The last annual decline was in 1995, after the Federal Reserve increased interest rates seven times in a year.

JPMorgan Chase & Co.'s planned buyout of Bear Stearns, once the fifth-largest U.S. investment bank, is rattling buyers and sellers now, said Gregory J. Heym, chief economist for Terra Holdings LLC. The closely held company owns residential brokers Brown Harris Stevens and Halstead Property LLC.

Price Gains

``The amount of uncertainty, at least as long as I've been following the market, is unprecedented,'' said Heym.

Bear Stearns, based in New York, employs about 14,000 people worldwide and paid $2 billion in 2007 bonuses.

Property prices are continuing to rise, for now. They gained almost 14 percent to a median of $850,000 in the first two months of this year, Heym said. Miller, Terra Holdings and Corcoran will report first-quarter results this week.

Condo and co-op prices rose throughout last year, gaining 6.4 percent in the fourth quarter of 2007 compared with a year earlier, according to Miller Samuel. Nationwide, the Chicago- based National Association of Realtors reported the first annual decline in median U.S. house prices since the Great Depression.

High End Up

The high end of the New York City market is the hottest. Buyers in the top 10 percent, those anteing up at least $2.8 million, paid 28 percent more in the three months ended Dec. 31 than a year earlier, according to Miller.

``In 2006 and 2007, they looked at the last 12 months' worth of sales and priced their apartments at 10 percent more,'' Burger said. ``Today they are sitting down with the soon-to-be listing broker and saying `Do you think we can get what they got in '06?'''

Miller estimates the number of deals closed in Manhattan has fallen 6.4 percent and Heym at Terra says they have dropped about 4 percent. Neil Binder, co-founder of the Bellmarc Cos., said contracts signed at his firm in January and February were down 20 percent.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
Yeah, you are right. It seems that some of us are cranky - see Mr.Frustrated - aka - Fred.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 28, 2008
Agreed. I was just busting your chops.

I tell people everyday here in NJ... the market is bad... yes, in Ohio, and Florida and Virginia..
NOT 35 miles outside of NYC! Sure, it has come down some, but we are not in the dire straits that some of the places they are talking about on the news!
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2008
Hi Dave,
Did this light bulb just go on? As a New Yorker transplanted to NJ ( for schools and grass for my kids )
Uh, we know this, so no need to discuss it. Are you originally from NY? or like Iowa and you just realized all of this and you felt a need to share....

: )


" I'm a life long New Yorker, we don't talk to our neighbors unless they get robbed."
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2008
The price issue is interesting in New York. The fact is New York hasn't been affordable for a while for most people...that is part of its allure. That is part of the reason people travel there, to look in awe at how expensive a 500 sq ft apartment is. People who live in NYC expect to pay a large % of their income on housing - much higher than any other place in the country. I really don't think affordability is as big an issue in NYC (and parts of Brooklyn, Hoboken, etc.) because of this - in a weird way, the lack of affordability is part of the allure. Part of the reason people go to the city is the price, but most of the reason people move out to the 'burbs in NJ, NY, CT is for affordability...that is why those areas have such a different dynamic than NYC. Once you move out 30 miles, is there a big difference moving out 35 miles? Its called substitutability and the places that aren't substitutable (because of a specific niche with demand) are the best investments.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2008
NYC metro is a unique market from a supply and demand perspective but you have to take into consideration the affordability of housing. The real question is if buyers think that prices are high, demand will offset performance, right? whether or not prices will be lower in 12 months will be what it will be but if the mentality is that they will be lower, markets tend to regress to that. other factors to consider are (1) the suburbs (NJ, CT, westchester, LI) are in fact pretty weak and staying true to the national averages. Manhattan has yet to pullback but watch what happens as job layoffs continue. Brooklyn is overbuilt, Jersey City is overbuilt as are other key markets in NY and CT. what i think will happen is Manhattan will ultimately fall prey to the fact that for the same buck, you can get a lot more by relocating outside of the city. finally, there is no developer financing available and that will translate into lower housing prices because the folks who own the debt will force developers to liquidate. also, expect major regulatory intervention in the brokerage industry - the fees that brokers seek are not only questionable in terms of the value add proposition but way out of line with virtually every other industry. they remind me of the days of full service stock brokers and we know what happened with that business model, right?
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2008
I COULD NOT AGREE MORE With you on this one, The news loves negative stories and that is what they will continue to focus on.
1 vote Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2008
I agree with John the Bruce as I work in the financial industry and things are just getting started when it comes to layoffs and poor earnings, etc. John points this out and I wanted to add that since the stock markets are down, the dollar is down -- individual investors are not liquid b/c their savings are in stocks that are sitting at a loss right now. They are not going to sell their stocks to buy property. I have read writers on this site talk about less expensive surrounding areas like W.NY, Hoboken, Brooklyn, JC, etc. Yes these places are less expensive however if people are not liquid for a downpayment and they are worried about their jobs -- they aren't going to buy anywhere. I agree with another member that NYC is insulated from the problems faced with other markets -- however it is definitely not insulated from the drop in the stock market, etc. If anything -- this market is MOST affected.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Apr 13, 2008
may have, need to look the article up but there was reference to Jan/Feb being the cyclical down points during the year. rentals are apparently steady but the overbuilding out there is over the top and I imagine getting financing for the sub $2mm market is all but dried up since few buyers are shopping for primary residences. watch layoffs expand and Brooklyn - i think greenpoint and the heights are going to tell us a lot about how far and how quickly manhattan is going to pullback. this is going to be a tough quarter for the street with no signs of a job recovery for wall street anywhere in sight.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 7, 2008
JR - average selling price in the Hampton's was off 19% Dec 07 through Feb 08. i imagine transactions were off as well. check the news.....bloomberg and WSJ ran it.
~~~~~~~~~~
I'm sure they did. Bad news always leads. Do you think they also noted that prices were up 17 percent the quarter previous?
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 7, 2008
JR - average selling price in the Hampton's was off 19% Dec 07 through Feb 08. i imagine transactions were off as well. check the news.....bloomberg and WSJ ran it.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 7, 2008
Anyone see the news about Hampton's real estate being down 20% Dec 2007 through Feb 2008?
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Prices or sales? Prices were up 17.5% the quarter before (4th quarter 2007). Sales were down 14.5% in the 4th. So sales were down, prices went up. Percent of sales were down because the inventory was so large. I don't have 1st quarter statistics at my fingertips yet. But personally I did pretty good the first couple months of this year. I was happy.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Apr 7, 2008
Dave,
Could you please provide insight by price band, since all segments of the market do not perform the same? It's sort of like holiday retail sales being down....but sales of electronics are doing well....or iPods and iPhones are flying off the shelf. Please elaborate on your prior posts by defining which areas of the market are up and which are down.
Tx
Deborah Madey - Real Estate Broker
Peninsula Realty Group - New Jersey
0 votes Thank Flag Link Sun Apr 6, 2008
Deborah Madey, Real Estate Pro in Brick, NJ
MVP'08
Contact
not angry at all. liquid and waiting. looks like the Hamptons are now turning downrwards....hmmmm, from the Financial Times yesterday:

Housing slump comes to the Hamptons

By Daniel Pimlott in Washington

Published: March 31 2008 19:35 | Last updated: April 1 2008 02:44

The US housing slump has arrived at the Hamptons, summer playground of the Manhattan elite.

In a sign that falling prices and home sales gluts are no longer limited to the nation’s declining rust-belt cities or bubble markets, prices for gilt-edged properties in East Hampton and Southampton have fallen sharply.

The Long Island resort towns, among the wealthiest and most well-connected in the US, experienced a boom between 1998 and 2007 when home values quadrupled.

“The downturn has caught up with the Hamptons,” said George Simpson, who runs Suffolk Research, a local real estate data company.

The three-month running median sales price of single-family homes in the two towns fell 19.2 per cent to $638,600 (€400,000, £320,000) between December and February, according to Suffolk Research. That is almost as much as the 19.3 per cent drop in home prices that Miami and Las Vegas, where the boom and bust in the housing markets has been most dramatic, suffered in the whole of last year, according to the S&P Case-Shiller house price indices.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 1, 2008
To all the brokers - To be sure the NY metro market is unique, but that in and of itself does not insulate it from the larger economy. Jumbo rates are way up; equity requirements are now 15% to 20% for non-conforming mortgages versus 5% to 10% last spring and volume sales are off. How can you sit there and pretend that the best advice is not to wait and see? Some of you remind me of the NAR's housing economic research that until last December stood firm on housing's resilience, even in the face of mounting subprime issues. Folks don't get it. The underlying credit in the non-conforming segment is still good, but the CDO mess drives liquidity in the jumbo market. Until these assets get sold/written-up or otherwise monetized, the BANKS are not offering attractive terms. Buyers who can put out 500k or a million cash know this. why would they buy today when (a) prices at best plateau, which just doesn't seem reasonable, (b) interest rates are punitive once you get into the 8.0% plus range (why? because the bank gets all the upside), (c) the ROE given the need for a larger downpayment, is half, and (d) any person with the means to spend serious money knows that we haven't seen the bottom when there hasn't been capitulation on the part of sellers. Bloomberg's piece yesterday is the beginning of the correction in Manhattan. Europe is slowing down; wall street will continue to lay-off; NYC housing inventories are up 15% because developers are being forced by their lenders to complete their projects and thus illuminating all the dark inventory; and the stock market seems to be finally turning a corner. If I can get 10% in the stock market and play a wait and see attitude towards housing values, I wait. Which is in fact what we are doing. I am insulted by the blatant aggression demonstrated by some brokers who depend on buyers - rather than at least educating yourselves about the relevant issues ahead of this market. There is a reason why the 5% broker fee is coming down and some of you provide clear justification as to why. Brokers are just front-ends to the MLS network and the very webforum we are using here can supplant the brokers in a second. In order to add value, brokers need to fess up to the fact that playing the buy and sell side is an implicit conflict of interest. You can't be a fiduciary for both buyer and seller - one must pick a side. All of this rah rah market is going up mentality is simply a consequence of an unregulated (soon to-be-regulated) industry. John - Cute attempt at village humor. MCD is a great stock even though the burgers upset my stomach; kind of like your failure to think.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Apr 1, 2008
Dave -

Actually, leaving NYC because you get more home in the burbs is a relatively new feature of the Manhattan market. In the 80s you couldn't pay people to live here namely due to crime; that changed as the city remade itself. Will Manhattan fall apart? Of course not but a true real estate pro knows how to call a top and we've been at one for a while now. Tops in strong markets are interesting because what brings prices down tends to happen faster, but a little deeper than other markets. Affordability is critical because a home buyer is doing just that comparison in choosing $1,200 psf versus $300 psf plus a backyard. For the same buck in Manhattan, you can literally get a mansion in Greenwich, much less Montclair or Morristown. Granted there are always other motives and NYC is a terrific place to live (I live here) but most folks I know are either looking at getting out or waiting for prices to come back to earth. We will see a very soft 2Q, just wait for the data.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
"what i think will happen is Manhattan will ultimately fall prey to the fact that for the same buck, you can get a lot more by relocating outside of the city."

How can you be a "Real Estate Pro" and give a statement like this. Of course, many people want more value and move out...they have been doing that for years (my parents did that.) This is nothing new. However, there are more than enough people that value the convenience and lifestyle the city brings over the affordability (worldwide) to keep prices where they are. Again, part of the appeal is the price...you have to grasp this concept first.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Mar 31, 2008
Fred, where did you get your facts from? NY R/E prices are not going down...look at this recent article:

http://www2.nysun.com/article/72449

Plus, look at this report on rents. Yes, some segments have decreased, but no where near the 10% you quoted below.

http://www.tregny.com/manhattan-apt-rental-report.jsp

Its very easy to simply list numbers, but why don't you support that with reputable sources of where you got those numbers.

By the way, here's another article:

http://www.cnbc.com/id/21094252/

Oh, and Freddie-boy, here's one more:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/22477596/
0 votes Thank Flag Link Fri Mar 28, 2008
Dear Dave,
New York and New Jersey are in much better shape that what the news reports. I couldn't agree with you more. Thanks for your observations. Lucy
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2008
It is all location, location, and timing. The metro area grow during these times because, although prices in these area do not descend as much, the prices do recede enough to make it more affordable again. Being in Morris County, NJ, we have seen an increase in business. The affordability and access to NYC from my Morristown office has gotten to a point in which we are growing. There is no need to move to the outskirts now. When the market turns, that will all revert back to the outer areas.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Mar 26, 2008
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