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A blog from CityRealty (Links below will take you to the 6sqft site)

Carter's View

Major studies of the city's luxury for-sale residential markets in Manhattan in the fourth quarter of 2008 indicated that the nation's fiscal crisis has not yet significantly impacted the market, a reflection primarily that "closings" often lag many months behind contract signings.

"While the number of reported closings fell 9 percent compared to the same period in 2007, both the average and median prices were higher than a year ago, and even higher than the prior quarter if 15 Central Park West and The Plaza are excluded," according to Gregory J. Heym, chief economist for Brown Harris Stevens.

Those two buildings are condominiums whose sales have been significantly higher than the rest of the market.

New construction constituted 42 percent of all sales and 72 percent of condominium sales in the fourth quarter, Mr. Heym said, selling for an average price of $1,717,115, "3 percent higher than the prior quarter." "At $1,103,952, the average price of a cooperative apartment was 3 percent higher than during the fourth quarter of 2007," due "solely to a 25 percent rise in the average price for four-bedroom and larger co-ops during this time," he continued.

On the East Side, the Brown Harris Stevens report found that pre-war cooperative apartment sales had an average price per room of $422,393 compared to $376,877 a year ago and compared to $238,700 in post-war buildings, a figure that was about the same the previous year. The average price per square foot of condominiums in the fourth quarter on the East Side increased from $1,273 in the fourth quarter of 2007 to $1,378 in the most recent quarter, according to the same report.

The Halstead Property report, also prepared by Mr. Heym, found that "the Downtown market, where almost two-thirds of sales were in new developments, experienced price increases for all sizes of apartments over the past year" and "studios posted the largest increase, as their average price of $560,237 was 18 percent higher than the fourth quarter of 2007." The report also noted that "while the median price fell 42 percent for lofts in the area including Greenwich Village, the East Village and the West Village, the decline on a per square foot basis was just 1 percent since the average loft sold was smaller than a year ago."

The report from The Corcoran Group indicated that "overall, at least 40 percent fewer sales traded versus the same quarter a year ago," adding that "the median price still grew by 3 percent and average price per square foot grew by 5 percent, largely due to the new development market." "The resale market saw median price fall 4 percent and average price per square foot remain the same," the study maintained. "While Uptown was the only area where new development average price per square foot fell, resale price per square foot actually rose this quarter," the Corcoran report declared.

According to the Prudential Douglas Elliman report prepared by Jonathan Miller "the number of sales declined 9.4 percent from the prior year quarter to 2,282" and "the number of resales declined 24.8 percent to 1,408 apartments compared to the same period last year."

"Listing inventory increased 39.3 percent compared to the same period last year to 9,081 units," the report found, adding that "the average days on market was 159 days, 28 days longer than the 131 days of the prior year quarter" and "the listing discount increased to 7.3 percent from a discount of 2.7 percent in the prior year quarter." reported that in the fourth quarter "there was a 37 percent decrease in the number of listings (1,233) that have entered into contract compared to last quarter's number of 1,973 listings." It also found "there were over 1,900 price cuts in available listings for condos, a 34.1 percent increase since last quarter" and that "co-ops had a 42.3 percent increase in the number of price cuts, to just over 2,300 listings."
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Additional Info About the Building

Architecture Critic Carter Horsley Since 1997, Carter B. Horsley has been the editorial director of CityRealty. He began his journalistic career at The New York Times in 1961 where he spent 26 years as a reporter specializing in real estate & architectural news. In 1987, he became the architecture critic and real estate editor of The New York Post.
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