Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Closings of Note: Crown Heights Gets Over $3M

Buy & hold investors are heading as far east as Albany Avenue to pick up this hefty 13-unit building at 1097 Prospect Place.  At over 40' wide and over 15,000/sqft, this property didn't sell overnight at its asking price of $3.25M.  However it did close last month for $3.05M, or $200/sqft.  A 3-cap deep in Crown Heights around the corner from the projects?  Investors will do what they have to do to get big buy & holds these days.  Can't wait to see how close to $3M the much smaller 672 St. Marks Avenue managed to achieve.

Over in Ditmas, the big-bad "hedgefund" boogie-man that every likes to blame for the run up in Brooklyn's prices, after picking up over $100M in Brooklyn properties in barely 2 years - they've unloaded another one.  They're not in sales formation quite yet, but supposedly Ditmas wasn't worth hanging on to without a cluster of other properties there like they have in other neighborhoods.  777 Rugby Road, purchased last year for $1.055M, sells this year for basically full asking price of $1.33M.  That's that single-family Victorian living for ya.  And before you go trying to count their money and figure out how much they put into it and is ~$300K gross profits really worth it after fees etc, don't forget they've moved other pieces already for much more drastic returns.  Like when they turned 857 Park Place around within one year without doing anything significant to it, for a $400K profit.  If your "bad beats" are still grossing 30% returns in under a year, that ain't bad.

But you don't have to be a $200M+ international REIT to get a little real estate empire cooking in Brooklyn.  Even in Fort Greene.  All it takes is a decent income, a few hundred thousand (okay, that's not easy), and two eyes.  We told you this year that 460 Carlton Avenue was Fort Greene's most affordable listing.  And who listened?  None other than the buyers from Manhattan who picked up the same house around the corner at 365 Cumberland Street which we called precisely one year prior "Fort Greene's Most Affordable 3-Family".  Cumberland sold for $1.43M, 460 Carlton sold last month for $1.61M with just over $600K down.  The deal so nice, they bought it twice.  Now there are 2 others available over here in Atlantic Commons off-market and pre-market for $1.7M-$1.9M.

Why's a 3-Family built in the 1990's with rental income, a tennis court, and a parking space such a good value at $1.6M?  Because you can cross the street to Newswalk and spend $1.925M for a condo with $1,500+/month maintenance fees.  535 Dean Street, #707 closed last month.  Just another $1,000+/sqft notch on Brooklyn's belt.  Buyers from Fort Greene also picked up #317 in this building for $1.745M last month.

But you true blue ballers don't wanna live in loft condo across Atlantic Avenue to be next to Fort Greene, do you?  And you certainly don't wanna live in a generic 1990's construction 3-Family either.  So step on into real Fort Greene luxury on one of everyone's favorite (there's only 2) blocks in the neighborhood.  128 South Oxford is a 12.5' wide single family.  Good luck fitting a couch through the door at this little gem.  Listed for $2.65M, it sold last month for $2.525M.  AKA, way over $1,000 sqft for a townhouse.  Buyers put a million down to make it happen.  Last week, clowns with less than a million down tried to hate on a 20' wide four-story around the corner from here pre-market for even less than this, but don't even know what the real Fort Greene market is like.

Remind us why $1.6M in Fort Greene for a 3-Fam is such a steal?  Oh, cause come on down to Park Slope and see what $1.6M gets you.  But go long.  Go south.  Keep going... until you get to 321 12th Street where this tiny little 18' x 35' 3-story frame house in need of work closed for $1.6M with $500K down to buyers from the Upper East Side.  Ouch!  Is that the one the unicorn hunters were waiting for?

Or maybe it was this brick beauty in Windsor Terrace at 561 Prospect Avenue?  Closed for $1.665M with over $300K down last month to buyers from Chelsea.  Maybe this was the unicorn they had in mind.  Feel free to hate on the 1960's construction, the Queens-esque facade, and the generic interior.  But it *does* have parking!

Over in Clinton Hill, as $1,000/sqft sweeps west for condos, the 1BR's are approaching $1M.  It's all mathematics.  This groundfloor gem at the Cathedral Condominiums (albethey right on Atlantic Avenue) listed for $795K.  555 Washington Avenue, #1D sold last month for $895K to a buyer from Williamsburg.

We've always gotta smile when pro's and novices tell us the Brooklyn real estate market is cooling down.  Poor Park Slope can't even get full asking price for 415 3rd Street??  Poor thing listed for $4.25M and sold last month for a paltry $4.2M.  Extra wide and extra deep, is there even meat on the bone for condos at this price?  No investor we know would think so, but that doesn't mean they're not out there.  All it takes is one buyer, you don't need a bidding war on every listing.  Besides, remember when $4M got you this in Park Slope...?

Well, now it gets you this...

When Park Slope is surpassing $4M, is it okay for Bed-Stuy, Crown Heights, and Lefferts to poke across $2M??  Or come on down to Crown Heights to see what a million gets you...

How about this one story auto repair garage in "the hood"?  800 Park Place sold last month for $1M.

Or when Park Slope's got you down, go deeper into Greenwood where 266 17th Street closed last month for just over $1.2M.  20' x 30' on 3-stories in underwhelming condition.  That's the supply & demand going on in the streets right now.

Or follow folks from a Pro-Cro condo over to this 16' wide brownstone across the streets from the projects on the Bed-Stuy end of Clinton Hill.  When the owners brought us over to take a look, we were pleasantly surprised at the quality of the details and how manageable the width is as a double duplex or triplex over garden rental.  420 Lafayette Avenue closed for $1.55M last month with about 50% down.  Not exactly what everyone with that kind of money down has in mind, but a great relative value in this market if the location isn't a deal-breaker.

But not everything is priced through the roof.  You've gotta go far out and look at some gnarly product to get under $1M these days.  We toured 268a Kosciuszko Street in Brooklyn as a FSBO for $725K this summer.  It closed for that price last month with less than $250K down.

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