Sunday, October 21, 2012

Time to Gush: 213 Prospect Place

We've told ya for the longest that Park Slope isn't the only place where townhomes go for $2M+.  It happens all over Fort Greene, Boerum Hill, Cobble Hill, and - gulp! - even Clinton Hill.  It takes more than a picture of a tree to sell a building for $2M.  So luckily, in exchange for the 6-figure commission Corcoran's charging here at 213 Prospect Place, they shelled out a few hundred dollars for fancy pics that speak more volumes than this lackluster exterior pic they could've (read: "should've") simply taken from another angle.  Just 9 pics for over $90K in commission?  Throw in the tenth pic for free, guys!

But the pics they did take sure clean up nice...

Readers were gushing last night at these!  Simply "ooh-ing" and "ahh-ing" at pics that aren't anything a lil' wide angle lens & a few clicks on Picasa couldn't do, but it gets the job done.  When buyers are gushing, prices are rising...

Then again, let's be honest.  With shells that have no interior pics, need a gut renovation, and have adversarial rent controlled tenants entrenched in them around the corner from this house in contract for a net cost of $2M, you really don't need to do much to move a property in Prospect Heights these days.  There is almost zero product and teams of cash buyers.  Interior pics are really just a formality.  As 22 Sterling Place learned, simply put that thing on the market and step out of the way.

"But that was in Park Slope!" - we can hear 'em yelling.  Ah, but don't you know?  North Slope and the heart of Prospect Heights are separated by a few hundred yards, and Prospect Heights has the better school district.  22 Sterling Place was also a mere 3-stories tall, which caused some confusion this Spring for some buyers.  When the four-story 159 Underhill in Prospect Heights came out for $1.79M, some thought it seemed like a completely different market from 416 Park Place for $1.5M just a few months earlier.  Once you factor in that we're talking about 4 stories vs. 3, you realize that 30% more house for less than 20% more money ain't a bad proposition at all.

And good luck finding a 130'+ lot in Park Slope under $3M.  The extra-deep yard alone is another huge unique advantage that 213 Prospect Place has over anything else in Brooklyn even close to this price range:

The extra deep yard also gets you more buildable square feet, something a client of Cousin John's is taking advantage of on this very block as we speak.  Besides the shiny pics, there's work to be done yet in this house and enough bids to throw price flexibility out the window.  They're using it as a single-family, but it wouldn't be hard to make a 2.  Then again, when you're buying a fixer-upper for over $2M, who needs rental income?  Compared to what else is going on around us, don't be surprised to see this poke past asking price.  As one broker told us in a gut-reno estate sale in Bed-Stuy, "3 people will say $900K, and one of them will get tired of looking and say $950K."  The pricepoint is more than double just 2 miles west of that same house, but it gives you a sense of the mechanics that drive a sale like 213 Prospect Place.

Pro's:  curb appeal, location, original details, great backyard on an extra-deep lot, wood burning fireplace

Con's:  no secret, work to be done, bidders abound, no room to low-ball, no rental income as-is

Ideally:  go hard or go home, 'cause while Corcoran may not give you a quality shot of the exterior,  they sure know how to say "best & final" to their multiple bidders until the very last drop is squeezed out of a deal.