(Part 2) riffing with Toy + NY Times about higher prices “sprinkled” through Manhattan, including in the loft market


[having discovered that my draft post was WAY too long for this platform, the end of my Part 1 post follows, with the last paragraph repeated…]

With this building sales history as context, the exemplar July 2011 sale at the City Spire at $1,366/ft is at least 10% (and up to 53%) lower than sales of comparable units from 2007-08. One more time: How does the City Spire story fit into V-Toy’s narrative that some ‘types’ of apartments sell at a premium to pre-recession prices?

nice try
As I said further up, I am very interested in exceptional (apparently above-market) sales transactions. But I think my caution in noting them, but not drawing a grand theory about them, is prudent. And (to repeat) I find V-Toy’s effort to be brave but flawed.

If I have not already worn you out, you can find my notes about some of these Bright Shiny Objects in these posts (suffice it to say that I see no grand unifying theory to explain [predict!] 2011 sales above Peak pricing):

July 5, man bites dog! 49 East 21 Street loft sells 3.6% above Peak

With most exceptional occurrences, the fact that they are exceptional means that they are difficult to explain. In the context of a Manhattan loft world in which many lofts with paired sales around The Peak and recently show a 15% decline since The Peak (and other such lofts showed greater declines), going from $1.795mm to $1.85mm stands out.

Can we generalize?
July 30, why did 263 Ninth Avenue loft resale kick some serious butt?

I have commented before that bright shiny objects (statistical outliers) tend to catch attention at Manhattan Loft Guy. Today’s bright shiny object is a resale at the 2005* condominium conversion of a former printing building, The Heywood, the “2,124 sq ft” Manhattan loft #6C at 263 Ninth Avenue, which sold with a storage room on July 18 for $2.81mm. It sparkles because it was purchased on January 10, 2006 for $2,036,500 (the storage room cost $22,800), for a gain of three quarters of a million bucks, or 36%. That is a lot of sparkle, sparkle that looks even better on reflection.

 But this one sale is just one data point. (D’oh!) Trend seekers will have to contend with the fact that the other two Heywood resales in 2011 did not sparkle. At all.

We cannot easily we generalize.
July 7, why did Chelsea Mercantile loft sell within 3% of The Peak?

The #15-I valuation compares very favorably to the last three other large high-floor (non-penthouse) sales in The Merc:

    • #14D May 24 “2,065 sq ft” $1,598/ft
    • #16H April 28 “1,631 sq ft” $1,379/ft
    • #16M Aug 31, 2010 “2,236 sq ft” $1,565/ft

What accounts for the success of #15-I? It looks like a successfully stubborn seller: it came to market on November 16 at $3.95mm, a manifestly aggressive price (a 5% premium to The Peak sale of #15-I and a 6.6% premium to the then-recent sale of #16M, on a price-per-foot basis). But there was no deal for 5 months (until April 21, per our data-base), and no price drop. Seller aimed quite high, and got high.

June 11, 21 Astor Place loft sells up 21% in 2 years

Let’s just say that the price is a little difficult to rationalize within other building sales.

May 23,  111 Fourth Avenue lofted loft gains 12% since 2007 sale

Net-net, in comparison to its neighbors and to the froth of 4Q07, #6B is an impressive sale at $750,000.

April 7, 224 West 18 Street loft sells quickly, above 2007

Has the market on the north side of the Campiello Collection improved by 10% in a year? In broad terms, I doubt it, but you could use these “A” sales to make a case.

July 22, 161 Grand Street loft closes up almost 1% over 2007

(a man-takes-small-bite-out-of-dog thing)

July 13, penthouse loft at 121 West 20 Street beats Peak, but is it rational?

A rational and informed view of the market context for #5E in 2011 would have thought that it was well over-priced at $2.195mm. But macro does not explain everything, or predict specific decisions by individual buyers and sellers. This seller seems to have asked for the moon and convinced this buyer that it would take at least a small satellite to own the loft. That “$x,012500” suggests that they ended negotiations with a classic ‘let’s split the difference’, possibly from the seller having come down to $2.05mm and the buyer coming up to the last sale ($1.975mm).

May 26, resale at 15 East 26 Street is up 16% since The Peak, but there’s a catch (up since 2006 contract, not 2008 sale)

Loving the outliers, no matter how much pain they cause me: April 6, why did Carl Fischer loft re-sell at 62 Cooper Square for +21% over 2008?

For the second day in a row, I cannot account for the clearing price of this loft. At $1,587/ft, it dwarfs the 2008 sale (if 21.3% does not feel like a dwarf to you, remember that the first leg was put down at The Peak). At $1,587/ft in 2011, it beats even the $1,496/ft of #6B a year before The Peak (in March 2007), with its museum-featured, “flawless”, “perfect marriage of urban cool and industrial chic” renovation.

The more I know about recent Manhattan loft sales, the more questions I have. Sigh.

etc, etc, etc: March 23, eventual 92 Warren Street resale beats 2007 new development price by 5%

Fun stuff, indeed. My thanks to Vivian Toy for provoking me in this way. My apologies to you for running on (and on …) but (in explanation, not defense) that is what Manhattan Loft Guy does. On a good day, with data.

© Sandy Mattingly 2011


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