Brooklyn Ranks High as a Strong Investment Market

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A rebuilt downtown Brooklyn, the hub of the borough’s building boom that has made Brooklyn one of the darlings of investors worldwide.

 

If you’re an investor in real estate, Brooklyn should be looking pretty good to you right now. Across the country, new home sales have flattened, and in many areas have begun to drift downward. That could be a worry for the economy as a whole, but experts and analysts that focus on the real estate sector continue to support Brooklyn as a place to invest. A just-issued report from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and the Urban Land Institute names Brooklyn the number-two Market to Watch for commercial investment. (The Dallas-Ft. Worth region was number one.)

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Brooklyn ranks number two in Overall Real Estate Prospects in the United States in a new report from PricewaterhouseCoopers.

The report, called Emerging Trends in Real Estate: U.S. and Canada 2019, focuses on large-scale investment property, both residential and commercial, and in that area, one has only to look at Brooklyn’s ever-changing, ever-growing skyline to see that the residential building boom continues unabated. Various outlets predict that over 20,000 new condominiums will go on the market in the coming two years or so all over the borough. There is new construction going on in every neighborhood, including those historically ignored. Many are rental projects, and many  targeted for both sale and rental include “affordable” units, meaning offered at significantly less than full market rate, though falling well shy of what most people think of as affordable.

Industrial Brooklyn Three-Part Strip

Industrial buildings in Brooklyn are being renovated and refurbished for use by tenants requiring twenty-first century services and features.

Other than ground-up new construction, the PwC report notes that Brooklyn has a large stock of old industrial buildings that are underused or empty, and these have been and continue to be attractive both to developers and to buyers/renters who enjoy the look and solidity of these old brick-and-wood-beam structures. Many of these building have been modernized for twenty-first century business tenants in the tech sector and high-tech manufacturing, and some, like Industry City in Sunset Park, have been converted to retail/industrial properties, with stores and restaurants on the lower floors making the buildings destination sites for not just for neighbors, but for people from across the city and suburbs. In Greenpoint, the nonprofit organization The Greenpoint Manufacturing and Design Center (GMDC) has refurbished seven industrial buildings and leased them to small-scale manufacturers and artisans, helping to create jobs and maintain the vitality of the neighborhood.

In many of the markets that the report records or anticipates price fall-offs, the reasons noted are rising prices of construction materials, possibly due to the current international tariff cat-and-mouse games going on, and the rise in interest rates resulting from generally good economic news.

Beyond the booming large-scale commercial investment, Brooklyn remains attractive to smaller investors and home buyers scouting through the many single-family and two-to-five-family houses available in almost every residential neighborhood. Sales of these types of buildings have remained strong, and prices, though they’ve plateaued in the past six to twelve months, remain at or near the highest they’ve been.

We’re happy that Brooklyn remains a highly attractive real estate market. This is our home, and we welcome everyone. We do hope, however, that our borough remains a place where anyone who wants to live here can find a home that they can afford. It’s the greatest place on Earth to live. Just ask us who already do.

 


 

2018 in Brooklyn: What to Expect

2018 in Brooklyn: What to Expect

Happy New Year to all! The past year was interesting inside and out of the real estate market, and it appears early on that the New Year will be no less so for Brooklyn real estate.

We’ve looked at sales data from the third quarter of 2017 and compared it to the previouTompkins Pls quarter and the previous year, and we can say that, while things aren’t moving as wildly as in the previous two years, the local market is holding steady.

 In the third quarter of 2017, multi-family homes in Brooklyn, those of two-to-four families, sold for an average of $421 per square foot. In our neck of the Brooklyn woods, Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens, Park Slope and the surrounding neighborhoods, the average prices per square foot were at the high end, with Cobble Hill leading the pack at about $864/sq. ft., followed by Carroll Gardens, $800, Boerum Hill, $719, and Park Slope, $693/sq. ft.

 Compared to the 2nd quarter, Cobble Hill was up 32.92%, from $650/sq. ft., Carroll Gardens was up 28.82%, from $621, and Park Slope was down 13.7%, from $803. However, in the Slope, twenty properties were sold in the third quarter vs. just six in Q2, and larger samples tend to pull averages down. Apparently, no multi-family homes sold in Boerum Hill in all of Q2.

 A year ago, the third-quarter 2016 price-per-square-foot list looked like this: Boerum Hill, $658; Park Slope, $826; Gowanus, $763; Clinton Hill, $709; and Carroll Gardens, $679. Cobble Hill tied with Williamsburg at $625.

 Like the stockKane St Doorways 300 w market, real estate prices don’t go straight up, or down. Based on what we see, the Brooklyn housing market should continue its generally steady rise in 2018, with areas a bit further away from downtown seeing prices rise more percentage-wise than in the recent past, and those closer to Manhattan holding steady, with average fluctuations based on the number and the quality of units changing hands.

 We wish you all a prosperous 2018 and believe it will be another good year for the Brooklyn real estate market.


 

 

 

Buyer, Be Prepared

Buyer, Be Prepared

Be Prepared. That’s the Boy Scout motto, and as a buyer, it should be your motto, too. Time and real estate wait for no man or woman. Deals fall apart and homes are lost out on every day because the buyers are not as prepared as they should have been or as they thought they were.

If you’re considering buying a property, there are many things you can and should do to be ready and willing when the time comes to sign a contract. These include (in order):

1) Be ready to move. The heads of many “buyers” are ready to move long before their hearts are. Going through the motions and then backing out causes disruptions, disappointment, and lost time on the part of everyone else involved in the buying/selling process. No one will be happy with you should this occur.

2) Determine what type of property you are interested in: Apartment, single-family home, or multi-family house.

3) Decide what areas you are willing to live in. Don’t be too limiting, as different areas have different types of properties, and there might not be many of the types of properties you want to buy in a given neighborhood.

4) Do the math. Come up with a realistic price point for your purchase, one that you’re sure you can manage and are willing to commit to. If you feel in any way that you might get cold feet later when your offer is accepted, you’re not prepared to buy. Once you’ve estimated this on your own, it’s time to talk to a professional, so…

5) Get pre-qualified by a bank or mortgage lender. Any company that issues mortgages should be willing to go over your finances with you and determine just how much they would be willing to lend you. You might think you can afford X, but a thorough examination of your financial situation could determine that you can afford X+, or perhaps X-. Either way, you need to know before you start passing over For-Sale properties you think you can’t afford or visiting and falling in love with those you might not be able to have. The lender will give you a letter stating the amount of their pre-qualification for you to present to a real estate broker or seller. Have an accurate number for your price point. (BTW, it’s okay to visit more than one lender to get the best pre-qualification you can. But don’t use one that’s perhaps too much higher than others you might have gotten.)

6) Have your funds ready. This will probably be discussed during your pre-qualification meetings, and it will be important once you receive notice of an offer acceptance. You will need money for a down payment. Often, there is earnest money, which eventually goes toward the down payment, required to be advanced to the seller when the contract is signed. If you are a homeowner now, determine whether your purchase of a new home will be contingent on selling your current property.

7) Get a real estate agent. In most situations, the real estate agent will receive their commission from the seller, though not in every circumstance. There is no reason to traverse on your own the complex process of such an important, unfamiliar, and financially significant transaction as buying property. You should want and should have professional guidance.

8) Hire a real estate lawyer. You may already have a lawyer who helps you in your business or other areas of your life, but for a real estate purchase you should have a lawyer who specializes in this area. Real estate agents are legally prohibited from practicing law or giving any legal advice, but your agent might be able to give you a list of names of real estate lawyers, or you may have associates who have used ones that worked well for them. When it’s time to go over the sales contract, and again at the closing, you’ll want a legal eagle on your side, one that’s an expert in real estate. It is money well spent.

Having completed all the above steps, you should be totally prepared to take your tours, find a place you love, put in an offer, close, and move in to your fantastic new home.