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The Manhattan 2020 Q3 Report was just released, and as with the previous quarter, it should be reviewed with some caveats in mind. While there appears to be an increase in average price compared to Q3 in the previous year, this anomaly is due to:  
  1. weak performance in 2019 Q3 resulting from the increase in mansion and transfer taxes last July; and 
  2. a large portion of the closings this past quarter were from contracts signed pre-pandemic at much higher prices.  
Our CEO, Bess Freedman, spells it out in detail in her opening letter on page 2 of the report.  

Meanwhile and more importantly, I want to bring attention to what we’re actually seeing in the market vs. the click-bait headlines you may have seen in the news recently. Taking into account that we’re in the midst of a pandemic, not to mention an election year, things appear to be headed toward a recovery, albeit slow.  

Most buyers understand that the current state of our city is temporary, and by investing today in a cool market, they stand to benefit nicely five or more years down the road. I’m currently working with five serious buyers in different price ranges and a variety of circumstances—either eager to return to the city or looking to relocate here given the attractive discounts and interest rates.  

In fact, Manhattan just saw the highest number of luxury contracts signed this past month since the pandemic hit in March. The stock market has performed well during the pandemic, which has led to increased interest in NYC real estate among wealthy buyers. Another indicator that the NYC market is not dead is that sales have plateaued in the suburbs, which most likely means the “mass exodus” the media reported at the start of the pandemic is long behind us and the New Yorkers here are here to stay.  

I tend to be optimistic especially considering the history of the NYC real estate market with its ups and downs. Although I don’t expect the market to perform better in the fourth quarter, I am hopeful that we will begin to see a slow revival in the city as pharmaceuticals are working hard on a vaccine that could be available as early as Spring.  

I encourage you to reach out with any questions about the Q3 report, the state of the market and/or how you might benefit by acting on your real estate needs during this unprecedented time.  

Be safe and stay healthy.
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Serjik ( Serj )
Markarian
Lic. Assoc. R.E. Broker
212.796.6110
smarkarian@bhsusa.com
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