New York City Condo Sales Lifted by Discount Pricing

Residential News » Residential Real Estate Edition | By Kevin Brass | April 30, 2010 12:11 PM ET

After a long dry spell, new condo sales are picking up in New York City, thanks to steep discounts.

In the first quarter, 460 condos went under contract, a 181 percent increase from a year earlier, according to Corcoran Sunshine Marketing Group. Of course, a year earlier the market was in the dark cave of the downturn, but the increased activity--the highest level volume since the second quarter of 2008--is certainly good news for the industry.

"All across the city, homebuyers are emerging from a yearlong hibernation, lured back into the market for new condos by price cuts of up to 40 percent and by a growing sense that prices are now at or near the bottom," Crain's New York reports.

Without a doubt, discounting is playing a key role in the activity. The median sales price in Manhattan slipped 13 percent in the last year, according to The latest S&P/Case-Shiller index shows prices in New York down 4.1 percent from a year ago.

Crain's cites several dormant or financially troubled projects that have bounced back in recent months, after dropping prices anywhere from 15 to 35 percent. For example, three-fourths of the units in Warehouse 11, a 120-unit condo conversion in Brooklyn, have sold in recent weeks, after the developer reworked its deal with lenders--and slashed prices.

"It's a different world now," Shaun Osher, founder and chief executive of brokerage CORE, told the paper. "It depends on the project, but there has to be a discount."

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