424 Broome Street loft takes 15 months to sell at 9% discount; why so long?

in which I simply just gaze in wonder
Avid consumer of Manhattan loft closing data that I am (the Master List of Manhattan Lofts Sold Since November 2008 now has almost 2,000 transactions), sometimes I don’t know what it is about a particular loft sale that sticks with me, or unsettles me. In the case of the May 25 sale of the Manhattan loft on the 5th floor at 424 Broome Street, I am fascinated by the timeline but have trouble extracting much learning from it, other than to sigh and say ‘sometimes The Market works in mysterious ways’.

Here’s the timeline that is in search of a punchline (omitting one 5-week hiatus):

Feb 13, 2010 new to market $2.695mm
Mar 2, 2011   $2.5mm
May 9 contract  
May 25 sold $2.449mm

Note, first, the patient first year of marketing which, like any year-old pricing strategy, suggests the sellers were stubborn. Note, second, that the clearing price was only a 9% discount from the original (stubborn, unsuccessful) price.

Maybe the sellers were stubborn, in the sense that they rejected a bid in that first year that they later regretted. But this timeline sure suggests that it was The Market that dragged its heals in waiting so long to bring a contract only 9% off the original price. (If the sellers had been actually stubborn, in rejecting a bid they later rejected in that long first year, they certainly convinced the eventual buyer with the price drop to $2.5mm, as that drop took only another 9 weeks to result in a contract.)

If The Market in Spring 2011 yielded a deal within 10% of the first ask, you’d be excused for thinking that The Market in Spring 2010 should also have yielded that deal. But it didn’t, and I don’t know why. Sigh.

Sometimes The Market works in mysterious ways,

is this a brilliant Long-and-Narrow?
The loft has a classic Long-and-Narrow footprint, with 3 windows in front, 4 in back and two on the side walls so far back that they do not support more than the typical 2-bedroom array. Plumbing is in the middle on both long walls. I grant that the floor plan is very efficient, with a flow that really separates the back bedrooms from the public living spaces, but I am not sure I get this bit of babble: “This home feels much larger than its sq footage- thanks in part to a brilliantly designed floorplan.” But maybe that is because I can’t read the floor plan well enough to find the mud room. (Is it between the stairwell and the second bath?)

The loft has the “high ceilings, exposed brick, and hardwood floors you expect in an authentic prewar Loft building”, but the loft itself is pretty done. Wired for sound throughout, a television hidden somewhere in the kitchen (if I could not find the mud room, I won’t find the TV), cedar closet, and a studiously distressed look throughout (the mix if brick and finished wall in that first photo, the broken arch in the [colorful!] master bath). It is very well thought out, clearly. Some would say, brilliantly designed.

All this could have been yours at $1,065/ft in East Soho. (Or, was theirs at that price.)

© Sandy Mattingly 2011

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