The New York State housing market started 2018 with 8,698 closed sales, according to new data from the New York State Association of Realtors (NYSAR). However, the total sales were 2.7 percent below the record-setting January 2017 total of 8,940.
The January statewide median sales price was $266,000, up 8.4 percent from the $245,000 median set a year ago. There were 8,268 pending sales last month, a 1.4 percent drop from the previous year, and the months’ supply of homes for sale fell 12.5 percent to a 4.9-month’s supply; one year earlier, the supply was at 5.6 months. Statewide inventory totaled 56,374, a 9.7 percent year-over-year tumble.
“The 2017 trends of strong buyer demand and price growth carried over into January as the New York State housing market posted its second-highest sales total on record for the month,” said Duncan R. MacKenzie, Chief Executive Officer of NYSAR. “The other prevailing trend, fewer homes listed for sale, also continued into the new year. We believe that strong competition in a low-inventory market will drive price growth, but it may also provide a braking action to sales growth. We will also be closely watching the data for the potential impact of federal tax reform.”
The Empire State set a new record for single-family home sales in 2017, according to data released by the New York Association of Realtors (NYSAR).
There were 134,066 existing single-family homes sold in New York last year, up 2.4 percent from the 130,949 sold in 2016. The 2017 statewide annual median sales price was $250,000, up 5.5 percent from the $236,870 median in 2016. However, inventory did not follow in upward movement: The months’ supply of inventory dropped 10.7 percent at year’s end to a five-month supply, down from the 5.6 months’ supply at the end of 2016.
“Strong buyer demand combined with still-low mortgage rates and confidence in the economy pushed the 2017 New York State housing market to a record high and fifth consecutive year of growth,” said Duncan R. MacKenzie, CEO of NYSAR. “Median sales price growth throughout the year was driven by the brisk buyer competition in the ongoing low inventory marketplace. As we look ahead to 2018, continuing inventory constraints and the possible effects of federal tax reform are likely headwinds, but we do not foresee a significant dip in home sales or prices.”
Ridgewood Savings Bank has announced the appointment of Leonard Stekol to serve as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Chief Executive Officer, replacing Peter M. Boger, who has retired from his role as the Bank’s Chairman and CEO. Stekol will retain his title as President of the Bank.
Stekol has more than 25 years of banking experience at Ridgewood. Most recently, he served as a member of the Bank’s Board of Trustees since July 2016, as the Bank’s President and Chief Operating Officer since January 2016, and as the Bank’s Chief Financial Officer from 2009 to 2016. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the New York Bankers Association, the American Bankers Association, and is a Trustee of MercyFirst, a not-for-profit human service agency.
“Leonard’s appointment fulfills the formal succession planning process put in place by our Board of Trustees,” said Boger. “I am grateful for Leonard’s support throughout my tenure at the Bank, and have enjoyed working closely with him these past several years. I am confident that under Leonard’s leadership, the Bank will continue to be successful in ushering in a new generation of banking technologies, products, and services, while remaining focused on the core principles upon which Ridgewood was founded in 1921, serving our customers and communities and fostering a positive working environment for our employees.”
Boger will continue to serve as a Trustee on the Board of Ridgewood Savings Bank.
“I am grateful for the trust the Bank’s Board of Trustees has placed in me,” said Stekol. “I want to thank Peter for his steadfast leadership throughout his 18 years of service to the Bank. Under his leadership, the Bank has developed competitive Internet and Mobile Banking platforms, prudently increased multi-family lending, and entered new markets. I will continuously strive to build upon these successes and meet the ongoing challenges of a rapidly evolving banking industry, while maintaining the commitment of Peter and his predecessors to retain Ridgewood Savings Bank as a mutual savings bank.”
New York City experienced a 58 percent year-over-year increase in first-time foreclosures during 2017, the highest level since 2009.
According to new data from PropertySharks, new foreclosures were tied to 3,306 homes across the city last year. Among the city’s five borough, Staten Island experienced the greatest degree of foreclosure activity with 428 first-time foreclosure auctions scheduled in 2017, a 134 percent increase from the 183 scheduled in in 2016. First-time auctions doubled in Brooklyn compared to 2016, while Queens and the Bronx saw 40 percent and 44 percent increases, respectively, while Manhattan saw relatively little first-time foreclosure activity fluctuation.
“After having peaked in 2008, new foreclosures in New York City dropped year after year until it bottomed out in 2012,” said PropertyShark in its data report. “After 2012, it followed a slow, but steady increase in new auctions until 2017, when new foreclosure auctions exploded. As a result, the number of homes scheduled for auction is now getting close to the levels seen in the aftermath of the financial crisis ... The number of cases has actually almost doubled in just two years as 2015 posted 1,762 new foreclosure auctions.”
New York City’s housing market saw a new record achieved with the priciest foreclosure auction in Big Apple history.
According to a Bloomberg report, the penthouse Unit 79 in the ultra-luxury high-rise One57 sold for $36 million in a foreclosure auction that attracted five deep-pocketed bidders. The winning buyer declined to be identified and would not respond to requests on future plans for the property.
The former owner of the property were shell companies linked to Kolawole Akanni Aluko, a Nigerian businessman accused by the U.S. of using bribery to secure contracts with his country’s state-owned oil company. The property was acquired for $50.9 million in 2014 and foreclosure proceeding began in January, only to be delayed this summer after a creditor claimed Aluko owed it more than $83 million that went into gasoline and jet fuel expenses. The property was on the market for $39 million until the foreclosure proceedings were allowed to resume.
One of the nation’s most prominent retailers has sold its iconic New York anchor store.
According to a New York Times report, the 676,000-square-foot Lord & Taylor building on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan was sold by the retailer’s parent company, the Canadian corporation Hudson’s Bay, for $850 million to WeWork, an office-sharing operation. Lord & Taylor will rent out one-quarter of building, which will be transitioned into WeWork’s global headquarters in 2019.
Lord & Taylor was founded in 1826 by English merchant Samuel Lord and operated from its Fifth Avenue site since 1914. The store’s elaborate street-level display windows during the Christmas season has been a staple of New York’s holiday festivities.
There has been no announcement regarding whether Lord & Taylor stores around the country will be impacted by the sale of the anchor location.
New York State saw the sale of 38,445 during the third quarter, a 3.1 percent drop from one year earlier, according to data from the New York State Association of Realtors (NYSAR). Nonetheless, the third quarter sales total is the second best on record for the period.
While sales were down, the median sales price saw a five percent year-over-year increase to $261,500; in the third quarter of 2016, the price was $243,000.
The state’s inventory supply fell 8.6 percent at the end of the third quarter to 6.4-month supply, down from seven months one year earlier. The number of homes for sale stood at 71,930, a decrease of 7.7 percent compared to the 2016 third quarter.
“Home sales remained strong across the Empire State through the third quarter, constrained only by the ongoing decline in the number of homes available for sale,” said Duncan R. MacKenzie, CEO of NYSAR. “Given the positive market factors including a healthy economy and stable mortgage rates, we believe sales would have pushed higher had more homes been available to buyers. Looking ahead to the fourth quarter, we expect New York State home sales to remain on track to finish near the 2016 record total and that the median sales price growth will finish the year more than five percent ahead of last year.”
Foreclosures in New York City saw a 79 percent year-over-year increase in the third quarter, according to new data from PropertyShark, which also reported a 145 percent year-over-year spike in the Bronx, a 118 percent year-over-year surge in Brooklyn.
What do these percentages mean? The Bronx saw 247 first-time foreclosures in the third quarter, but only 101 in the third quarter of 2016; PropertyShark noted this activity was concentrated in the eastern half of the borough. In Brooklyn, the 205 first-time foreclosures in the third quarter was up from 94 one year earlier, and PropertyShark also noted concentrated activity in a relative handful of communities. The greatest foreclosure leap was in New York City’s smallest borough: Staten Island recorded 105 first-time foreclosures in the third quarter, compared to 22 one year earlier—a 246 percent year-over-year skyrocket.
Nonetheless, the third quarter activity was below the second quarter 2017 peak of 911 new foreclosures spread across the city’s five boroughs, which represented a six percent quarter-over-quarter decline.
An affordable housing complex in Brooklyn that is home to 15,000 people has been sold for approximately $850 million—and the sale would turn a profit for President Trump, who owns a four-percent stake in the property.
According to a Bloomberg report, the owners of Starrett City are selling the 46-building complex to a joint venture led by Brooksville Co. The president is a limited partner in Starrett City Associates, the property’s owners, and he received more than $5 million in income from his investment last year.
The sale is subject to approval by state and federal regulators—although the latter might raise concerns of conflicts of interest because approval would need to come from the Department of Housing and Urban Development, which administers the complex’s rent and mortgage subsidy programs. Brownville Co. has already announced it will rename Starrett City as Spring Creek Towers.