NYC Market Realities


1123423-2_lWith regards to the New York City Real Estate market, this is a very busy time of year.
Rentals in prime locations are going within hours and sales are going in weeks.

There is very little inventory across the board, no matter the budget.
From the entry level starter studio on the rental side, up to the uber-luxury penthouse on the sale side.

Vacancies are slim and many are staying put for another year.

Come prepared and have your game face on!

The Belnord


This amazing home is in a unique trophy property on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.

Encompassing an entire city block from 86-87th and Broadway to Amsterdam, there are rental apartments ranging from a

handful of pre-war loft style studios to mostly classic six and seven room layouts ideal for families. When the building was completed in 1908, it was the largest private courtyard in the world.

As you enter from the 86th Street side, you are greeted with a double archway and gates manned 24/7 in addition to a concierge area. Vehicles are permitted to enter and load/unload for a period of 3 hours in an area once only traversed by horse-drawn carriages.

The homes have been completely renovated with all of the modern amenities such as central air conditioning, Viking, Miele and SubZero appliances and yet retain the meticulous prewar details one hopes to find still in tact in this environment.

There are a limited selection of homes remaining. Far from the cookie cutter building and each home is quite unique. Please do contact us if you are not quite ready to purchase as of yet and want access to the best rental properties in town.

Best Starter Apartments Vol. 3


The final installment for this period of the best starter apartments will take us to Brooklyn. This is a great area of town and as you can see from the prior two articles, you can get right in between the pricing of Queens on the lower end and Manhattan on the higher end. If you need a starter apartment and wish to purchase, but can’t afford Manhattan or a high monthly, then this may be perfect for you.

This is a fantastic new boutique condominium in Williamsburg Brooklyn. This is a hip and in demand area that is close to Manhattan and yet has its own sense of culture, shops, dining and great venues for nightlife. For the money, it’s a steal compared to the massive newer buildings with all of the bells and whistles. The monthly for common charges and real estate taxes is only $292 and they are allowing as little as 4% down.

Elegant lines, sleek textures, and clean surfaces infuse every element of this Williamsburg residence, inside and out. And it’s not just modern in aesthetics, but in conveniences too, with streamlining touches like video intercoms and a location just steps from eclectic shops, bars, and restaurants. Each apartment here is an urban sanctuary with windows that rise from floor-to-ceiling and eco-friendly bamboo flooring flowing from wall-to-wall. A sleek modern aesthetic defines every room from the open kitchen layouts to the spacious bathrooms. Some units offer private outdoor spaces, while all of them share a charming common back garden and rooftop deck with views over the surrounding tree-lined streets. Your kitchen is a true highpoint in design and detail, ready to serve dinner for two or a soiree for 20. White lacquer and frosted glass cabinetry and white quartz countertops provide a bright setting for storing and slicing, while a stainless steel appliance package including a wine chiller satisfies both your aesthetic and culinary tastes. Stepping into your bathroom here is like entering a sanctuary from the over stimulation of city life. The white glass and grey ceramic tiles provide a calm and cool aura to soothe your eyes and soul, while an over-sized soaking tub and separate, glass-enclosed steam shower provide options for how you’ll pamper your body. A white custom oak vanity adds a warm note as it enhances your morning and evening routines.

Outside your high-style apartment awaits a world of culture and convenience. Chef-run restaurants, emerging-designer boutiques, and trend-setting clubs are all just steps away. Even Manhattan is just minutes away by L train at Bedford Avenue or Lorimer Street stops. This is a fantastic place to call home and the amount of space can easily convert to a 2BR making for a solid investment.

Here’s the place, now contact us with questions, for more details or to arrange a viewing.

Sex in the City? Outdoor Space? Find the Hat Man!


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Not a fire escape

Even without trying, I ALWAYS end up finding great outdoor spaces for my people. I love grilling and chilling and usually, people who do gravitate to me as well. Out of 100 apartments available in any budget, I have a knack for showing the best four or five right away. What the heck are you paying me for anyway?!!!

This is a super value. At $2100, the rent is actually quite low for the area and outdoor space. This amount of outdoor space is actually quite hard to find, but here it is. The location is what everyone looks for. Details are below on the listing.

This is located on one of the Villages most desirable and beautiful blocks, just steps to Union Square, restaurants, NYU, shopping, Washington Square Park, & all subway lines. This Charming loft studio is peaceful and quiet with an amazing large private outdoor space that is as big as the apartment itself. Other features include high ceilings, an open kitchen with breakfast bar, new stove and refrigerator, A/C, wall of closets and bike storage. The elevator building is perfectly maintained, has a live-in super as well as a central laundry room making this unique apartment the perfect place to call home. JULY 1ST OCCUPANCY.

If you want Sex in the City, then look no further. The Hat Man CAN Do!

Starter Studio with Patio

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$1M NYC Tour Part 4- “Da Bronx Bombers”


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Now if you are thinking outside of the box, then you are thinking of the Bronx. There is nothing as non-diluted, un-filtered and authentically New York as the only portion of the city that is actually on the continental United States. This is the home of the greatest professional sports team in the history of sports, the New York Yankees. If you have a need a reverse commute into Connecticut or work somewhere in Westchester County or upstate NY and still want to be close enough to Manhattan to feel like you are not out in the sticks, this is where it’s at. Plus getting to the games is a simple task. The front-runner Yankee fan commutes an average of 45 minutes from New Jersey, even longer if coming from Long Island or wherever they flock from. A true fan living in the Bronx commutes 15-20 minutes maximum.

As for the purchase options in the Boogie Down, there are plenty of low prices. As with anywhere else in NYC, location is everything. To simplify the process, I have focused on the absolute best amount of square footage in a nicer area for both the co-op condominium options.

$525,000 1750 sf Co-op in Riverdale

Just 12 minutes to the Upper West Side, this spacious, sun-filled, high-floor 3 bedroom, 3 bath residence is located in Manor Towers, the most desirable luxury building in Central Riverdale. With a gracious layout, the spacious entry foyer opens to an ample and sunny L-shaped living room, with expansive views that stretch all the way to the Long Island Sound. The Master Bedroom Suite offers numerous closets–including a large walk-in, a sitting or office area and lovely over-sized en suite bath. There are two additional bedrooms, one with en-suite bath. Third full hall bath and closets galore complete this capacious residence. Pet friendly, full service building near parks, schools, transportation and houses of worship. With 24 hour doorman, wonderful building staff, swimming pool, tennis courts and parking, this special building offers a wonderful lifestyle in the heart of wonderful Riverdale.

$975,000 2275sf PH Condo in Riverdale

This is the epitome of affordable luxury! Instead of spending $3M to even sniff something similar in Manhattan, this sun-splashed four bedroom duplex penthouse comes with top of the line touches. Starting with floor to ceiling windows in the double height living room, to the six burner Viking range and gorgeous granite counters in the Chef’s Kitchen. The master bedroom suite offers an abundance of closet space and a stone master bath with double sinks and a glass door double shower as well as a large balcony. There is a hand hewn walnut staircase leads up to den/office, three generous bedrooms, and two more bathrooms. This is a new Condominium in the heart of Riverdale that offers a fitness center, children’s play space and a river view roof deck as well as indoor deeded parking and washer/dryer in each apartment. There is easy access to PS 24, The Public Library, Seton Park, houses of worship, transportation and shopping. This is all just 12 minutes to the Upper West Side. Low common charges of $856/month and 421a abated taxes of just $25/month makes this a value and a true winner. This spectacular home was featured in the New York Times.

If you missed any of the $1Million Dollar tour of NYC links are right here.

Pt 1

Pt 2

Pt 3

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So what does it REALLY cost to live in Manhattan?


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It really works too!

This is a post that will create a ton of discussion. There are many areas to live, but the ideal areas for most are anything below midtown. A great deal of people will also look along Central Park on either the Upper West or East side.

No matter the area, after many years and seeing thousands of apartments, there is a magic number that must be considered the starting point for anyone looking to avoid crossing 110th Street.

While the last two years have happened and prices did correct themselves a bit, there is no way to keep prices down for a rare commodity for too long. You can argue all you want about what you may read in the papers pertaining to NYC real estate, but the fact is, more people move here each year. New hires, graduates, summer interns, vacationers and people downsizing or upgrading due to divorce and expecting children. The cycle never ceases, if anything it only increases.

Pay close attention, wait for it, here it comes…The one common thing that I have noticed since 2005, for a wide offering of what is out on the market, $1700 per person is the benchmark. You may find some things on the market for less. 95% of what is out there is sub-par and will waste your time.

I have found some rare gems on the market for less. There is this one number that really sticks no matter who or where you look. If you are looking for a simple studio in a great area, this is the starting point. If you are looking for a share in a doorman building, this is the point of entry. You can always try to find a needle in a haystack, or you can come prepared with realistic expectations of how much hay you are looking through. FYI-The fireplace is in a true one bedroom on Irving Place for $4100.

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The Feeding Frenzy Begins


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Rental season here in NYC is a crazy time of year. There are always more people than there are apartments to rent. People come here during this time, expecting some super deal that rarely exists during the slow seasons. There is a virtual turning back the clock to that move Gangs of New York. The entire island of Manhattan becomes the five points and it’s survival of the fittest. Those who are prepared, both in having REALISTIC expectations and also in having all documentation readily available, have the “luck”. Those who are ill prepared, are unlucky.

We have found that the people who stretch a bit beyond their means and get help from elsewhere, are the ones who come here, secure a place in the target area, do the job assignment and then move on. They have clear cut goals and will make whatever adjustments as needed to achieve them. There are few if any “deals” in the solid areas like Gramercy and the West Village. These areas are the most in demand and as a result, they are some of the higher rents in the city. Should you find one below market rate place, making a swift decision is crucial. There is always great competition for them.

This is a yearly trend even in the past two “down” years. The rental market in Manhattan is an aberration to the housing market nationwide. Even four years ago, we were encountering the same issues we have here now. This is a city with a ton of disposable income. People come here to live more, which in turn makes them spend more, but the whole point is that by living here, you MAKE more. As a direct result, this year there are higher end luxury offerings. Contact us for a viewing as the higher the rent, the more likely the landlord will pay us directly for you!

If you factor in the average rental of $2,000 and the qualification of 40-50 times the monthly in annual income, we are talking about a city where the average person has to earn $80,000-$100,000 per year just to sign a lease without a guarantor. For places under $2000 below midtown, there will often be multiple brokers with clients racing to see the same place. Then the race for paperwork begins. If you see a crowd at an apartment it is likely a good deal and people are already conferring about what decision to make.

The time of year is a mad dash for suitable housing. Actually, it’s a all out war with collateral damage in the form of sacrificing in the size of space, quality or location, if not the budget. The market will make that decision for you and we will never push you in that direction. We will take time to educate you on the market realities in the swiftest time period possible due to advanced product knowledge.

Come prepared and be ready to make a gut decision. If you can SEE yourself living there, you should go for it before the person who saw it an hour before you does. When it’s meant to be it just feels right!

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