Home Buyer, New York, NY
From another website: This building has a lot of positives. Gifted & talented middle school entrance is on 92nd St, while Azure entrance is on 91st St. All finishes, including subtleties like HVAC units and flooring, are top of the line -- developer went for quality over gimmicks (e.g. bathroom vanities with actually space on the countertops, high end appliances, dramatic windows, high 9'6"-10' ceilings). Factoring the $500 psf pricing differential versus other new construction (e.g. Brompton with its low 8'6" ceilings & Laurel with its somewhat equivalent location & lesser views on First Ave 12 blocks south, although it does have that cool triathon training pool), Azure is an unbelievable value. Unlike other new construction projects, Azure is not charging for combinations (compare $200K at Laurel), which coupled with the local amenities (Asphalt Green sports club, Ballet Academy East, Champion Tennis Club, 92nd St Y, Diller Quaile & Mary Ann Hall Music Schools, Art Farm, NYC Public Library with Childrens Programs, Carl Schurz Park, Top Public & Private Schools, etc etc) makes this a great building for families whose top priority is space. Additional amenities include Zabar's East (aka Vinegar Factory) a half block away and a wide selection of high quality, ethnically diverse restaurants. From a location standpoint, the draw is living in a neighborhood community that is in advanced stages of gentrification, with a higher slope of appreciation (one could argue) than more established neighborhoods. Population trends and anecdotal evidence would indicate the UES is running out of space, meaning expansion is eastward and northward. Given the new 421A requirements being introduced for all construction that has not laid a foundation by June 08 -- notably the enforced inclusion of mixed income housing on the residential site, rather than in distant boroughs -- this may be one of the last 421A "bargains," especially in this competitive part of the city. Yes, the co-op format requires a bit of understanding for most buyers, but the closing cost math is favorable (approx 4% vs 6% given the avoidance of an onerous 1.925% mortgage recording tax) and the cpsf more than compensates. I would assume the geographic interdependence of the school and the condop would mitigate the city's inclination to raise land lease rates precipitously upon renewal in 26 years. Azure feels like the real estate anomaly in NYC.