2015 Predictions: The State Of The New York City Housing Market

By | December 29, 2014

In 2014 the NYC housing market was bifurcated with listings below $1MM selling quickly while mega-listings above $5MM languished!

Approximately 60% of homes between $500K and $1MM were on the market for under 60-days while 70% of those priced over $10MM were on the market for more than 60-days. (Source)

So what can New Yorkers and those from elsewhere around the country and around the world who may be looking to purchase there expect from the NYC residential real estate market in 2015?

From an article at DNAinfo, experts were asked for their forecasts concerning the upcoming year.

These are their thoughts…

1. Price growth cools in Manhattan

Prices are still expected to increase in Manhattan, but at a slower pace: rising a “healthy” 4 percent, which is roughly half the growth the market saw in 2014,StreetEasy data scientist Alan Lightfeldt predicts.

2. But not in Brooklyn and Queens

As many New Yorkers embrace Crown Heights, Bedford-Stuyvesant and Long Island City, prices are set to continue rising at faster rates.

“There’s still such an influx in new demand pushing prices, so the story might be a little different there,” Lightfeldt said.

3. More inventory is expected in those boroughs

Inventory is expected to rise with new development — condos and rentals — in Brooklyn and Queens, along with an uptick in apartment owners looking to downsize or trade up.

“We have a lot of owners looking to put their homes on market in first quarter,” said Corcoran’s Leslie Marshall, who specializes in Brownstone Brooklyn. “Owners see that prices are good, they’ve been good for a few years now and who knows where they’ll go, so why wait. They’re saying, ‘let’s get on the bandwagon.'”

4. But developers might also pause before building new rentals

A state program, known as 421a, that gives tax breaks to developers is set to sunset on June 15, 2015, spurring many developers to rush and file plans before the deadline, since they are not sure what to expect next.

“There is nothing scarier than uncertainty,” said Drew Fletcher, of theGreystone Bassuk Group, a leading provider of multi-family mortgage loans. Many rental developers are taking a pause until there’s more “clarity on what the ground rules are.”

5. Amenities get ‘cool’

Developers are creating events and programs to ensure amenity spaces get used, especially for high-end rentals.

At Downtown Brooklyn’s 42-story 66 Rockwell Pl., the developer hired a full time “amenity manager” to oversee the 10,000 square feet of common spaces, Dermot Company‘s Andrew Levinson said.

The building is partnering with the nearby Mark Morris Dance Group to offer classes onsite and talking to other local arts organizations like Brooklyn Academy of Musicto create some “cool” events, like film series.

“We want to inspire people to stay in our buildings for a long time. This is one way to do that,” he said. “And, quite frankly, rents are very expensive in New York City, and we want to make sure people are getting value for what they’re paying for.”

6. Developers will focus on roommates

Paying $3,000 a month for a one-bedroom is too burdensome for many New Yorkers, especially the coveted group of young professionals, so developers are eyeing the “micro-suites” model where up to three tenants, each with their own small room, share a kitchen and bathroom.

“You have to find alternatives,” said Greg Katz, a partner of Sterling Equities, which shifted some attention this year from Manhattan to Brooklyn, snatching up Williamsburg rentals.

The company is discussing how “young professionals can have a clean, safe place” and perhaps “split up an apartment where they’re paying less than $1,500 a month,” Katz said.

7. Manhattan’s ultra-luxury market shifts to smaller units

With the uptick in new condos priced above $10 million, brokers have seen a slowdown in sales. Feeling less urgency, wealthy buyers are becoming choosier, many said.

Reversing the recent trend of sprawling units, developers are eyeing new strategies like creating smaller apartments that have the luxurious touches and still command $2,500 to $3,000 a square foot, experts predict.

“Now, instead of palatial, we have clients taking a slightly more conservative approach to what they’re building,” Fletcher said. “They’re trying to do more modest-sized units, priced at $2 million to $4 million, to appeal to a broader market.”

8. China will lead the foreign buyers

Foreign buyers from politically or economically unstable parts of the word will continue viewing New York real estate as “the most safe and lucrative investment,” said Corcoran’s Tamir Shemesh.

Chinese buyers will dominate, especially as its government loosens investment restrictions, he added.

Read #9-15 at DNAinfo.com here.


Michael Haltman, President of Hallmark Abstract Service, New York.

HAS is a provider of title insurance in New York State for residential and commercial real estate transactions specializing in the areas of New York City, Long Island and Westchester.

For anyone either buying a property or refinancing, remember that although your attorney will likely recommend a title insurance provider, you always have the right to choose your own title company (click here to learn more)!

If you have any questions you can reach Michael by email at mhaltman@hallmarkabstractllc.com.

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