125 Watts is FSBO no more

The 4th floor at 125 Watts Street was profiled as a For Sale By Owner open house six weeks ago, but has just been listed with Beth Bongar and Patty LaRocco of PruDE.

The price while a FSBO was $1.795mm; now it is $1.835mm. The size as a FSBO was “1,829 sq ft”; now it is “1,840 sq ft”. Maintenance is still $1,975/mo.

the price of bones
Interesting marketing choice (or, perhaps the pix have not made it up to the web yet): PruDE is marketing this with a floor plan and the description, but no photos:

Landmarked Original Cornered Loft Surrounded by windows with views of the Hudson. Great Project to make this wonderful loft with great bones your own

Interesting choice, because the reference to “bones” without pictures means they are selling this as a gut renovation candidate – which is a terrific way to set buyer expectations before they set foot in the space. The floor plan is classic Long-and-Narrow with 4 windows on the narrow wall (west – those river views!) and 8 on the long (north) wall, with the plumbing clustered along the long south wall.

I wonder if it was difficult for the owners to understand the benefit of marketing their home as a buy-and-gut….

a 3-building condop
Our data-base shows this building was converted to a condop only five years ago and the city’s records suggest that this building is part of the same condop with two adjoining addresses (separate buildings at one time?? they have very similar facades), around the corners at 465 Greenwich Street and 18 Desbrosses Street, which were a (warehouse?) of Romanoff Caviar Company. Based on an old Corcoran listing for the 3rd floor (the last sale in this building, 3 years ago), the condop shareholders share income from ground floor commercial rent. (Perhaps that has changed, as this listing does not include this important fact.)

If you look at the building photo on the PruDE site, 125 Watts Street is the north face (on Watts), with 8 windows, and only extends 4 windows along Greenwich Street.

There is a current sale around one corner, in the same condop: the 5th floor at 465 Greenwich went into contract on October 27 (after only three weeks of marketing) off an asking price of $1.7mm for “1,700 sq ft”. The pictures in that listing resemble the 3rd floor of 125 Watts, and the descriptions are very similar as well.

interesting history
The one old (2005) listing I could get good data for around both corners is the 5th floor of 18 Desbrosses Street, in which Stribling’s Siim Hanja provides still more clues about the condop. He describes the 3 buildings as “Downtown’s most striking tenant-sponsored condop success story (36 units) [with a s]hare in commercial condo“.

This being a “tenant sponsored” condop explains why there have been residents in the building long before the condop conversion and also explains why the units that have been sold are so (no offense intended here) … primitive. Tenants who go to the trouble and expense of buying a building from the landlord and converting to a condop are not nearly as likely to do major upgrades or renovations. Hence, it is left to the second generation buyers who will do that.

© Sandy Mattingly 2007

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