Saturday, November 1, 2014

Closings of Note: Spooky Prices

In honor of Halloween, we're bringing you some of the scariest sales in Brooklyn.  Prices that will make you think you've seen a ghost.  Despite spooky signs for the housing market on the macro-level nationwide, try telling that to anyone still looking for a house in Brooklyn for the price of an apartment in Manhattan.  Did you know that Brooklyn's population is higher than Manhattan's by some 1 million inhabitants?

Remind us again why Brooklyn's supposed to remain less than half-off forever?

Speaking of Manhattan prices, where over 500 apartments sell each year for $1.5M+, cue the search for the $1.5M house in Park Slope.  "But don't tell us you have to go further than 9th Street!"  Oh yes, it gets much scarier than that.  You may have to go all the way out past South Slope, past Windsor Terrace, to Greenwood.  Yes, the neighborhood named after the cemetery!

 ....where 216A 22nd Street listed for $1.3M just closed for $1.51M.  Over asking price, 18' wide, only 30' deep, and where did the buyers come from??  None other than 9th Street in Park Slope!  They must feel like the walking dead trudging those next 11 blocks home, right?

Or not.  Or maybe that's just the best house they could find at that price and 11 blocks in Brooklyn - just like in Manhattan - doesn't necessarily spell zombie apocalypse.

Another number that spooks people is $2M as it creeps further and further towards Bed-Stuy.  Another house on Classon joins the ranks as 450 Classon Avenue closes for ~$2.25M.  Check, where's that buyer from again?  Park Slope!  (AKA, the only place you Brooklyn rookies think is suitable for you.)  Hearing Bed-Stuy and two million dollars in the same sentence is enough to scare anyone.  Wait until you see the $3M+ properties set to close there!

But houses on the edge of Bed-Stuy and Clinton Hill aren't commanding $2M+ for no reason.  Homes in Clinton Hill proper are selling with $2M downpayments.  357 Washington Avenue, a single-family frame house, sold for $2.64M last month to buyers from Chelsea.  Over asking price and almost $1,000/sqft.

And that's not even the scariest $2M down purchase of a single-family Brooklyn home from a Manhattan buyer last month.  Don't miss 305 Degraw Street in Carroll Gardens fetching $7M last month!  And its not the only house in this area fielding $7M attention.  Makes us wonder what another 25' wide off-market shell could look like over here if the right people put a million into it.  If spooky sales like these keep you up at night, rest assured that this would be a $12M-$20M house almost anywhere in Manhattan.

Another single-family pick up not far away at 112 Nevins Street is "a triple mint carriage house" with a sick ppsf and a price that sounds almost pedestrian at $2.1M (compared to $7M), closed last month.

Certainly one can run from the flesh-eating price point of $2M for single-family homes by heading to the perceived far-out reaches like Prospect Park South, right?  Well, not if Corcoran has anything to say about it.  120 Stratford Road is certainly a gorgeous gem just off the park on an okay block that's on few people's radar.  Watch out for what this might spell for Ditmas pricing.

Almost $2M for a tweener block in Bed-Stuy that's not a cherry-mint end-user gem right out the box?  A few underwhelming interior pics, no Corcoran open house, barely even marketed?  That said, 72 Herkimer Street was kind of a steal for an 8-Family with 5 vacant units at $1.8M last month.  No wonder people were tripping over themselves for the house next door when it was asking $1.3M barely on the market a few months ago.

Another location that spooks some people is the corner of Nostrand Avenue and Sterling Place in Crown Heights.  A no-brainer corner like this houses Chavela's one train stop away, but here people still treat like it's off-limits.  This huge 43' x 100' mixed-use building at 713-725 Nostrand listed for $4.5M and transferred recently after supposedly being in contract just under $4M.  We toured the commercial space on the 2nd floor that looked like a haunted/abandoned club from another era in Crown Heights.  If those walls could talk!

If you can make it all the way out past Ralph Avenue to the Bed-Stuy / Bushwick border at 900 Jefferson Avenue, you'll see another scary sight.  Corcoran takes a quick flip and sells it to buyers from downtown Brooklyn for $995K.  That's right, the million dollar fixer-upper is alive & well in Bed-Stuy.  Except it's 3 stories, further out than your favorite block, and it needs a ton of work.

Why would someone pay $995K for a fixer-upper all the way out there?  Probably because the generically renovated 3-stories command even more.  863 Jefferson Avenue closed for $1.3M last month.  Add this to the "this is why Franklin Avenue isn't a million" list, please.

If you can take on scary things like as-is 3-story houses, all-cash deals, full of tenants, right by the highway, and lot of time & money to fix it up - then maybe you can get a fixer-upper in Park Slope for the price of one in Bed-Stuy.  That's exactly what experienced folks from Williamsburg did at 68 16th Street for $990K on a $1.499M listing.

Manhattan buyers are still trudging to the haunts of Brooklyn where this mixed-use building at 533 Park Place sold for $1.35M last month.  We remember when they didn't wanna pay this price for turnkey mixed-use on Vanderbilt Avenue in Prospect Heights.  Now they proudly proclaim this block as "Prime Crown Heights" - and we can't blame 'em.  Nice broker got a nice price for a vacant building in a quiet-but-prime patch of Crown Heights.

Nearby, on a grungy block, your Prospect Heights home under $1.6M awaits you.  Wait, is that a home or a haunted stack of cinder blocks and some metal?  No matter what you call it, 949 Pacific Street is "partially constructed and delivered with active permits and approved plans for 4,120 SF gross SF and calls for four units, including three floor-through one bedroom apartments and one duplex two bedroom penthouse apartment" and sold for $1.585M.  No wonder 934 Pacific Street did what it did.  We've got another off-market deal here on Dean shooting for $1.4M-ish and - with the right moves - might get it.

Your million dollar Clinton Hill home awaits!!  Eek, except it's pretty gnarly new construction.  Like Fedders without even getting the Fedders.  And it's over a million.  Narrow, generic, and between Myrtle & Park - at least it's turnkey, has rental income, a backyard, and costs less than many condos.   103 Waverly Avenue closed for $1.1M.

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