Hi everyone. Looking to move to Brooklyn (flatbush - prospect park down to brooklyn college) in the next year

Asked by Chicken, New York, NY Wed Jan 23, 2008

and looking to buy a single family detached with garage on a nice block. Do you think the prices of these will come down to $700k? Thanks in advance.

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Pierre Calza…, Other Pro,
Wed Jan 23, 2008
Thank you for the compliment :) we try, I am sure some agents will kick in soon and offer their services for when you are ready. In the meantime, I'll do my best to explain some things about the market here. On Trulia you can see recently sold properties by checking off "recently sold homes" on the left rail. The thing to note when you see those homes is that the typical closing in NYC takes 60-90 days due to title searches, and the red tape of "law". Therefore, the prices you see - even if they closed last week - were prices that were accepted in november to december of last year. So, take that knowledge, compare it to the homes available in the market now - make sure that property type, bedrooms, zoning etc are similar.

In the end, buying a place here can be a bit difficult to navigate due to the intricacies of NYC real estate. I highly recommend enlisting an agent in your search early to help you gauge the market, you may want to set-up some trulia alerts as well - if you have not done so already. We do have "buyers" agency in NY, it is not req'd but at times recommended - there are a few threads about buyers agency here on Voices.

In lieu of cash, and being a fast closing - it depends on the seller motivation. If they need to close in 30 days or less, or if you get lucky and find a distressed home seller it will make a huge difference. It is not likely however that you would be able to find out, but you can tell your agent that you can close in 30 days and that may help with getting a price reduction - especially if the home is on the market for more than 6 months.

Finally, with all of the above, you can figure out how low you should go. Placing a % on it is not my idea of good advice. Some homes are priced perfectly so full asking or above asking could be right, while others are overpriced, and 20% off would make sense. I recommend that when you get here, or even before you do - start looking at virtual tours - video, photos, etc and educate yourself as much as possible, so you will know what 800K SHOULD get you and what 650K should get you.

I personally saw about 30 homes over a year ago when I bought my current property, and I still feel like I got a great deal and my home actually appreciated in value - compared to what I paid for it.

Hope this helps!
2 votes
Pierre Calza…, Other Pro,
Wed Jan 23, 2008
Prices for single family, detached homes are very "sticky" they are a high-deman property in Brooklyn and are not usually a hard sell unless the price is too high, or the home needs too much work. I would not necessarily sit around and wait, as much as get out there, look at homes, see how long they have been on the market - and make offers. Do not feel bad about making a "low" offer, you may be surprised what you will find out, you also may start negotiating to a price that works.

To sit here and try to forecast prices dropping is akin to being a fortune teller, you have a 50% chance of being right - and wrong. you cannot "time" your purchase, you just do your best to make an educated buying decision that fits with YOUR financial situation. If those things line up - that is when you should buy.
2 votes
Chicken, Home Buyer, New York, NY
Wed Jan 23, 2008
thanks Pierre. I have to sell a couple of houses here (in England) first and unlikely to be there before June/July. The plan is to rent for a while to scope out the whole area and get settled in.

I appreciate that the overall market gets fairly buoyant around now with wall street bonuses being paid. Is there a particular time of year that a cash buyer could be particularly mercenary? My wife is insisting that this is the last house move that she has left in her so I really want to get the best house for the money, even if it means sitting tight in rented accomodation for a few months.

Finally, what constitutes a "low" offer currently? Are we talking about 10% off? 30%?

btw, great service that you and Trulia are providing.
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