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

Features

Brownstones on the Upper West Side (CityRealty)
Townhouses in New York City may be among the most extraordinary real estate in the city, but owning one is more than the sum of the width and height and outdoor area. It’s buying into a lifestyle—privacy, space, numerous bedrooms, gardens, and often landmark historical details.
“Townhouses are the pinnacle of what a lot of people consider the very finest thing they can buy in New York City after they’ve already bought their condos with the view on a high floor,” says Dexter Guerrieri, founder, co-owner, and president of Vandenberg, Inc.—The Townhouse Experts. “At some point, they want to be near the earth, and they want to live in these historic buildings where they can control their own destiny with their own construction and their own front door. We call it the townhouse lifestyle.”
702-Mac-Donough-Street-1 Park Slope (CityRealty)
Townhouses are the pinnacle of what a lot of people consider the very finest thing they can buy in New York City after they’ve already bought their condos with the view on a high floor
Privacy and vertical living characterize the lifestyle. “The townhouse is really the only way to live self-sufficiently in the city,” S. Christopher Halstead, executive vice president of Halstead, told the New York Observer. “As a result, the way of life is very attractive to some buyers, and equally unattractive to others.” In other words, you’re responsible for salting your icy stoop, taking the garbage to the curb, and maintaining the boiler and HVAC. But on the other hand, you don’t need board approval for renovations, and you won’t have to worry about a downstairs neighbor complaining about how much noise you’re making.

Townhouse Hunting

The experience of buying (or selling) a townhouse is very different from buying an apartment, starting with the process of looking at a property. “I take buyers through it in a completely different way than I would take them through an apartment,” says Guerrieri. “There are so many more spaces to cover and only the finite attention span of the typical New York buyer.”
There’s also a whole different list of items to evaluate. One of those items is width. The wider the townhouse, the more valuable. The average width of New York City townhouses is 18-20 feet. Anything below is considered narrow (and harder to resell), anything above 25 feet is called a trophy property (or a mansion). However, width in a townhouse is about more than value. The wider the townhouse, the more air and light, the better the flow between rooms. Wider, shorter rooms are easier to furnish than longer, narrow ones.
Park-SLope-593 Park Slope rowhouses (CityRealty)
The wider the townhouse, the more valuable.
Of course, there’s location location location. But even location parameters are different when looking for a townhouse. “Most difficult, and the most fundamental thing as well, is understanding values vis-à vis location,” says Guerrieri. “It's very different in a townhouse than in apartment buildings. There are apartment buildings that have wonderful amenities, but they're on a slightly inferior block, and it doesn't make such a difference. With the townhouse, what’s on the block can make a huge difference in terms of value.”
394-Madison-Street-1 Some of the ostentatious townhouses of the Upper East Side (CityRealty)

Price Considerations

What is it that makes one street more valuable than the adjacent one? When you're evaluating townhouses, says Guerrier, it depends on how they back up to the houses behind them, the houses that are beside them, and the houses across the street. The most valuable townhouses are on blocks with rows of townhouses on both sides of the street. The factors that bring the price down include a firehouse, police department, or school on the block. “The values are generally going to be less because there will be more noise and more traffic.”
So what are the hot locations in the townhouse market? That depends, says Guerrieri. If you’re on the Upper West Side, it’s in the 70s on the block between Central Park West and Columbus that has “historically the highest priced sales.” On the Upper East Side, it’s near Fifth Avenue, with the priciest block between East 70th and 71st. In Chelsea, the most valuable townhouses are found on West 21st and 22nd Street between 10th and 11th Avenue. There can be a significant difference in price from street to street. Buyers should do their research to avoid sticker shock.
Townhouses in Prospect Heights (CityRealty)
One factor that can bring the price down for a townhouse on a prime street is tenants. “The best buys are townhouses that have rent-stabilized or rent-controlled tenants in them,” says Guerrieri. “You can only have a limited-sized owners unit for yourself, but then you can afford to be in the neighborhood that you perhaps wouldn't have been able to purchase in. The value has been discounted due to those rent-regulated tenants.” On the flip side, if you are looking to renovate the entire building, rent-regulated tenants can make that difficult.
For sellers, Guerrieri says that it’s a transition market with a disconnect between the way sellers and buyers appraise a property. “What sellers have continued to do is price their townhouse 15 percent higher than what the neighbor's sold for.” Buyers, however, are bidding 15 percent lower. These days, sellers are being more realistic about what can be achieved and are transitioning to more realistic expectations. There are also things a seller can do to raise the value of their property, such as putting in a garden at the front of the home. "Curb appeal really matters," says Guerrieri, but he does suggest consulting an expert first.
If you're prepared to take on the extra work of the search, not to mention the responsibility that goes into owning and maintaining your dream home once you've finally found it, CityRealty has 825 townhouse listings on the market. Some of them are veritable models of Old World New York (and priced accordingly!), while others have been designed with contemporary buyers in mind.
1009 Fifth Avenue Rowhomes in Prospect-Lefferts Gardens

New & Notable Townhouse Listings

This six-story homage to Manhattan's Gilded Age was inspired by the leading architect of the day, McKim, Mead & White, and designed with a Neo-Classical limestone facade, gated garden forecourt, and generously scaled rooms. The townhouse has recently undergone a masterful renovation that kept such turn-of-the-century details as intricate moldings, inlaid hardwood flooring, sweeping staircase, large casement windows, wrought iron and brass balustrade, marble fireplaces, and a drawing room framed by Ionic columns. Modern touches include a state-of-the-art chef's kitchen, large laundry room, central air conditioning, motorized window treatments, and Crestron smart home system. The mansion is located just off Fifth Avenue near Central Park and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

 
 
 
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This Bedford-Stuyvesant townhouse is Brooklyn living at its best. A brownstone facade nods to the neighborhood's history, and a lush backyard offers a green oasis in a bustling city. The owner's duplex features a tasteful foyer, decorative fireplace with red brick surround, modern kitchen, skylit landing, and spacious bedrooms with excellent light and closet space. The garden-level rental units offers backyard access, open-concept living room and kitchen, two bedrooms, and two baths.

 
 
 
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This exquisite West Village townhouse was originally built in 1868 and was masterfully renovated to keep its prewar grandeur while offering everything today's buyer could possibly need or want. A separate street-level entrance provides access to the chef's kitchen, formal dining room, and den. The elegant parlor floor boasts soaring ceilings, gorgeous crown moldings, two marble fireplaces, and access to a private terrace. All bedrooms offer excellent proportions and luxury, but the full-floor master suite takes that to a new level with its fireplace, walk-in dressing area, and spa-like bath. A landscaped roof deck with gas grill, outdoor shower, and views of the Empire State Building and downtown skyline is the townhouse's crowning glory.

 
 
 
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This brick townhouse on a tree-lined Brooklyn street gives every appearance of a piece of history, but modern enhancements include central air conditioning, indoor and outdoor audio surround system, LED lighting, and home surveillance. The owner's duplex features an open floor plan, exposed brick fireplace, chef's dream kitchen, private balcony, and three oversized bedrooms. The duplex garden unit has excellent natural light, a finished basement, and easy access to the townhouse's large backyard.

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Spacious 1 Bedrooms with outdoor space and in-residence w/d View Property
Surround Yourself With Everything You Love at Jackson Park. AdvertisementView Property
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