115 Mercer Street loft could not sell in 2010, sells 16% higher

what a difference 3 years make

It is no longer unusual to see this kind of history, but I remain fond of individual lofts that show in hard data how at least their hyper-local market has changed since 2010. In the case of the “1,998 sq ft” Manhattan loft #2B at 115 Mercer Street, the hard data includes the recent sale (February 28 at $3.35mm) and a not so recent non-sale (9 months on the market in 2010 at $3.25mm and $2.895mm). Same loft, in same condition, same agents even, in different markets. It failed to sell, then it sold. It sold 16% above where it had failed to sell in 2010.

Yes, Virginia, this is not your older sister’s market any longer.

a nice and wide Long-and-Narrow

This was a 2007 new development, with two penthouse units with outdoor space, and 3 pairs of side-by-side floor-through units on the lower floors. At 24 feet wide at each end, there is just a bit more width to the #2B floor plan than to many similarly shaped classic lofts, with the hapy result that no one gets a back bedroom that is only 8 feet wide, and a front room that (with the 11 ½ foot ceilings on the 2nd floor) has great volume. The finishes sound like the industry standard for 2007:

wide-plank white oak floors, and a kitchen equipped with French Walnut paneling, Crema Royale countertops, a Wolf oven, range, and microwave, Sub Zero refrigerator, GE wine cooler, and Kitchenaid compactor. … en suite bath …features a frameless, glass-walled shower, Zuma soaking tub, Calacatta Marble vanity with double Kohler basins, and heated limestone floors & towel rails. …a Miele Novatronic washer and dryer…. Climate controlled with individual thermostats, all rooms are wired for phone, cable, and high speed internet

With plumbing on both sides in the middle, the second (public) bath and washer-dryer sit behind the stairwell, which is opposite the run of master closet, master bath,  a “work room” that must be a very temprting space to stick a kid or a guest, and the kitchen., which is, of course, open . That “work room” is an especially interesting use of space, and gives more flexibility than is typical in a new development Long-and-Narrow.

Obviously, The Market loved the loft (given that it had been bought in the new development sale at $2.7mm), though it took some time to express its love:

July 7, 2012  new to market $3.695mm
Sept 17   $3.495mm
Jan 11, 2013 contract  
Feb 28 sold $3.35mm

(Note the seller confidence that market conditions were
very different than in 2010.)

not funny ha-ha

The Market for this building was odd (“funny peculiar”, you might say).  You have already seen the lack of response to #2B in 2010, though offered for 6 months at $2.895mm. Particularly faithful readers of manhattan Loft Guy may remember the sad tale of loft #4A (the first resale in the building, in 2010), which I recounted in  my  June  18, 2012,  hard to comp loft at 115 Mercer Street closes up 10% over 2007 sponsor sale, about the essentially identical #3A selling last year at a 14% premium to #4A in 2010. That has the look a trend, from 2010 to 2013, adding the #3A/#4A pair to the #2B sale/non-sale pair.

The recent #2B resale is the fourth resale in this small building. You know of the first two; the third is a headscratcher (“funny peculiar”, you might say).

Loft #4B is essentialy identical to lopft #2B (same finishes, same floor plan), though it is fair to say that The Market much preferred #2B to #4B. Compare the #2B chronology above to this for #4B:

Sept 6, 2012 new to market $3.695mm
Sept 23   $3.495mm
Dec 4 contract  
Jan 28, 2013 sold $3.225mm


The two lofts went head to head at the same asking price from the September 23 price drop for #4B until #4B’s contract 72 days later. The #4B sellers were willing to take $3.225mm; the  #2B sellers waited another 5 weeks to get $125,000 more. On the one hand, that’s only a 4% premium; on the other hand, that is $125,000.

This may be nothing more than one set of sellers being more motivated to sell and the other more “stubborn”. Or it might reflect a market preference for higher ceilings rather than a higher floor. Or it may be that buyers did not want to take down a world map that may be as large as 8 x 15 feet (see  the 6th listing picture for #4B).

Fans of StreetEasy building pages will note one set of owners at 115 Mercer Street who believe  The Market has dramatically improved, quite recently. (Note the same  map!)  If they are anywhere  near right, I can’t imagine how to explain it….


© Sandy Mattingly 2013


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