Condo Buyers Not Biting in Greenwood Heights

324-22ndSt-03.jpg 352-21stSt-02.jpg
gwoodhill1.jpgIs the building boom in Greenwood Heights resulting in too much supply or is the quality of the projects turning buyers off? That’s the question in the wake of price cuts at three new condo projects in the area. Prices have recently been reduced by about 10 percent at the Green Hill Condos (top left) at 324 22nd Street where all seven units are still available. With only one out of eight units in contract, prices at The Minerva (top right) at 352 21st Street were recently trimmed by 3 to 5 percent. Likewise, at the Greenwood Hill Condos (bottom right) at 313 23rd Street, where about half of the 32 units have been spoken for since hitting the market over six months ago, four units were reduced by more than 10 percent last week.
Here are the reductions listed on Streeteasy:
324 22nd Street
352 21st Street
313 23rd Street

New Development: Greenwood Hill Condos [Brownstoner]

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  • isn’t it a mixture of supply and quality?

    if supply were really tight, low-quality construction wouldn’t matter so much.

    if supply isn’t so tight, then buyers have more to pick from and can get better quality for the same price.

  • I think it’s a matter of crap quality and lack of marketing!I never even heard of any of thee projects. There aren’t even banners on the building with basic information. I’m surprised at the lack of effort, it seems like someone missed marketing 101.

  • Quality is in the eye of the consumer. Have not seen “The Minerva” (geeze!), but the quality of the finishings and the work 324 22nd St. blows away anything in the Green Hill Condos (in any of the 4 buildings). Nice views, but they cheaped out on the finishings.

    I agree with anon 11:56pm, though I would focus more on the quantity.

    Remember there’s the 7 story Shangra La on 6th Ave btwn 23rd/22nd Sts., another smaller 4 story building next to it (6-8 units). Then “211″ at 211 23rd St. (an on hold Scarano design Mr. b posted about earlier this year). Additional developments that will be coming on-line soon include 3 buildings on 21 St St between 5th/6th Aves, approx 20-30 units (one is the brother to the sister site reported on here at 324 22nd St.).

    We have a glut folks in Greenwood Hts. Then you can just cross the Expressway into the South Slope and gander at another say 100+ units.

    I think folks are just being picky with so much stock out there.

  • i think a lot of people are now realizing after a couple years of living in a crappy new construction condo, that they’d like something old and charming.

    it’s been the case with a few people i know.

    these younger kids want something new, then realize they don’t like it.

    i think we’re seeing a shift back to prewar.

    anything nice that’s prewar is sold within weeks.

  • Location is an issue, too. People looking to find some value in a fixer upper home are finding it in GH, given that the same house needing TLC is several hundred grand higher in south slope north of the highway, but given the number of condos coming on line along 4th ave, infilled in south slope and elsewhere around the Slope’s margins, I am not sure the condo market, which skews younger, sees much cause to go another 8-10 blocks south. I’m not down on GH as a neighborhood; having fixed up a south slope frame recently, I am more sympatico with those that have gone south of the highway to do the same than my mroe affluent brownstone owning peers to the north, but I don’t see GH as an attractive condo location yet.

  • This is funny that he lumps all these buildings in together. They are actually very different. And some of them have been on the market much longer than other ones. Also new construction doesn’t typically sell out overnight.

  • I agree with 12:01 about the marketing; I live nearby and didn’t know that some of these places were even for sale yet! There should be twenty foot long banners draped over the side, just like every other new development you actually NOTICE.

    LOL about the “we have a glut folks” comment from 12:18. The drama! Some of these places haven’t even been available that long, it’s the summer (probably slowest time of year for sales) and it takes a long time to sell out most new developments just about anywhere.

    Drama will be felt and “a glut” might be believable if these guys were trimming the prices 35% or 40% off from the original list – but 10% off?

    Geez, people, come on! these are entry-level condos that got banged-up as quickly as possible and were likely way overpriced to begin with…if they can’t sell ‘em they’ll likely rent ‘em.

    Actually, this area of Sunset Park is doing really well; a very nice new wine bar recently opened on 5th between 17 &18th st, a sushi place is going in next to that, and a new upscale restauarant is coming to the building next to aaron’s (other side of the new wine bar.)

  • We lost an Aguayo orchestrated bid on the Nantucket Charmer on 23rd St. Loved that house. Love the area …. except the uphill climb from the subway & the power plant right there.

  • Anon 12:30pm, I agree with you for the most part, with the exception of the 23rd st Greenwood Hill condos. Their location across the street from Green-Wood Cemetery is killer. The views from the upper units are the selling points.

    In these condos the problem is the size. The majority top out at 600 sq ft. for a one bedroom w/ a “den.” the bottom and top duplexes are a bit larger, but still feel cramped. The Corcoran guys actually had a full size bed, not a queen, in the show room unit.

    And As I mentioned above, the finishes are sub-par. However, you are dead on on who’d buying…young crowd for the most part.

    As far as marketing goes, well…

    What’s needed, and I hope some developers or would-be developers in this neighborhood are reading, are 2-3 bedroom condos. We see a lot of young families show up at these open houses and leave sighing since they are mostly 1 bedrooms with no room to subdivide the space after closing.

  • Not to start this debate again, but “Anonymous at July 25, 2007 12:48 PM” since when is 5th Avenue and 18th Street in Sunset Park? South Slope, perhaps. Greenwood Heights is more like it.

  • I agree, I always wondered why they are building so many 1-bedroom units in a great family neighborhood. I think a lot of people are buying their “starter condo” when they already have a kid, or have one on the way.

  • who the hell would live in a new building when there are tons of great older buildings with much better construction.

    people complain about all the glass towers going up everywhere.

    then people complain about brownstone brooklyn being so expensive because people obviously like historic buildings.

    which one is worse

    make up yr mind

  • the fact is that in another 100 years, the brownstones will still be here and the glass houses will have been long torn down and built anew.

    in my mind, that’s where some of the value of these places comes into play as well.

    i like living in a building where the walls are so thick i can’t hear my neighbors and the molding is so beautiful i could look at it for hours.

    it enhances my quality of life.

  • Does anyone know what are the margins in this kind of development. Does reducing the price by 15% give up all th profit on these units?

  • Then there is the Greenwalk on 36th off 4th Ave. which is showing 11 out of 12 in contract and only started showing in June.

  • Hey Action Jackson,

    12:48 here…Feel free to call it Greenwood Heights; Whenever I use that moniker around anyone who’s lived here more than ten years, they all laugh, so I’ve been reverting to calling it Sunset Park. (what this area was actually called up until probably the late 1990′s/early 2000′s)

    I’ve stated this before in previous threads – calling streets south of the Prospect expy down through the twenties/low thirties “Greenwood Heights” seems pretty reasonable to me as the actual “park” in Sunset Park doesn’t begin until 40th street.

    But old school brooklyn still says this nabe is called Sunset Park. So lately I’ve been runnin’ with it. When I meet other new yorkers and they ask where I live, Sunset Park is clear. Greenwood Heights always gets a “where is that?”

    By the way, thanks for the additional info 1:02; I have not toured any of the above mentioned condos and had no idea some of these condos are that small. (600 sf? Damn that is small for a condo.)

    I think that’s probably why they aren’t selling like hotcakes.

  • Acquisition costs aside, what’s the average for new development, $180 per sq. ft to build?

    Assuming my estimate is somewhat correct (please correct me!), a 600 sq ft. 1 bedroom would cost $108,000.00

    Amenities, what, $10-15K or under, depending on the quality of the finishes?

    Now I realize we’re building entire buildings, not single condos, but if the property was acquired for say $600-700K 2 years ago (that’s what they were paying, sill, yes?), I’d say you are looking at $150-200K profit MINIMUM per 600 sq. ft 1 bedroom unit selling at $400-500K.

    How’s my math?

    Seems like a nice profit to me, but I’m not a developer.

  • What do people think about the frame houses in greenwood heights? bhs has one for 900k which is pretty and needs nothing. Is PS.285 a poor school (rated 5/10 by greatschools). I like it but perhaps 900k is better spent in windsor terrace?

  • A lot can be had for under $900K in GWH. Definitely several flips out there in that range OR if you have the inclination, time and cash, many good homes (great bones) who need TLC in the $600-700K range.

    I’d go house before condo any day.

  • Um, supply, demand, quality…or who wants to live on 22nd or 23rd street?

  • I agree, I’ve been there, and it is pretty boring. It’s not that far from Park Slope, but the surrounding area is boring and 4th avenue is a snooze. It seems like a lot of the locals have a staring problem as well.

  • A friend of mine lives on 22nd, and on garbage day I had seen multiple houses who just emptied their garbage bags onto the street. Not just recyclables and bulk items, but regular garbage sans the bag. dirty.

  • my feeling is, if you’re going to live on the R train, why not just go to Bay Ridge. I mean, none of the amenities of Park Slope are exactly nearby anyway in Greenwood Heights. For that matter, get close the N train, which is express, if you work in manhattan. And, the neighborhood is still kind of grimy. Depressing, in my opinion, to shell out big bucks, work hard, and have to live among those just struggling to get by.

  • Its all about price, nabe is good and getting better. new restaurants are in the works for 5th and 6th ave. 15th street (5th or 7th ave)is where things start getting busy, that’s like a 3 to 5 minute walk. I would go house over condo any day. Let them shave off another half million of their profits then they will sell.

  • “And, the neighborhood is still kind of grimy. Depressing, in my opinion, to shell out big bucks, work hard, and have to live among those just struggling to get by.”

    Lifelong Brooklynite, huh? With fixer upper houses going for $750+ and condos (as discussed today) at a starting average of $500K (and would sell faster sans glut), what’s all this talk of being “run down” and living with neighbors “struggling to get by?”

    Have you visited the neighborhood lately? While we still have a way to go to be more “Slope-like” (actually I hope we don’t, the neigborhood has and should have a different vibe) in the way of amenities, houses are being redone, new folks of all kinds are moving in and the old-timers are mixing well with the newbies, whether owners or renters.

    nice mix of working class, middle class and of course now with all the new condos, upper class as well.

    And hey, if we stare from our stoops, either you’re something to look at (both gals & guys) or you look like a perp ;)

    Looks like “up-n-coming” rather than “struggling to get by” to me.

  • Actually you should look at the Greenwalk condos on 36th St between 4th and 5th from Aguayo. Those things flew of the shelves I heard their is one left and they sold at something like $650 a/ft!?!?!?! I haven’t been inside but how come this building sol out in like 3 weks and the other building can’t sell at a lower price in 8 months??

  • David, most likely the location. 1/2 block from the R station on 36th St…and unfortunately 4th Ave as well.

    The building’s fugly, but beauty is in the eye of the buyer, right?

  • you talk about brokers needing “marketing 101″ because there are no signs on the buildings, but just looking at the two top pictures there are Corcoran signs on each project…..

  • The neighborhood isn’t all that bad. If you didn’t know any better at night, you might think it was unsafe, but it’s actually fine. There’s some new bars and health food places that just opened up right near the mentioned condos on 5th. And Kitchen Bar and BBQ on 6th are nice, too. Hey, “nice” neighborhoods started this way.

  • The Greenwalk is in the cemetery. Period. I guess it takes all kinds.

  • Yes, but what better neighbors than dead people? I love living next to the cemetery, it’s beautiful and quiet.

  • Amina, it overlooks the cemetery. Last time I checked Green-Wood wasn’t building anything for the living…except perhaps the new trolley they got.

  • My husband and I bought the smallest cheapest apt. in 323 23rd st. I just wanted to clarify a few things for people: 1) the apts are 685 sq ft, closer to 700 than 600
    2) almost half of the units in each building are under $400K, we paid under $350K for ours
    3) if you look at the floor plans, none of the units share a bedroom wall, which is nice for noise and makes up for the fact that the walls are a bit thinner than a pre war building
    4) pre war buildings are expensive. We were outbid on a under 400 sq ft 1 bedroom in Ft. Greene. We bid $310. I agree that pre wars have more character and are probably better built, but they were way out of our price range by the time you consider the 20% down for the coop plus having a year’s worth of mortgage and mait. in reserve. I’m glad ccgh can spend $600K on a house and then more to fix it up, unfortunately that wasn’t an option for us.
    I love brownstones too, but one has to start somewhere (by the way brownstoner, could you try to feature an apt under $400K sometime?)
    Finally, with regards to anon 1:28 extolling the virtues of his molding, I would like to say that I’m happy to give up crown molding (which I can add myself) to having laundry IN my apartment and a full sized stove. It shouldn’t be a prewar vs. new argument. We need a diversity of housing to suit different people’s needs, and there’s a place for both in most neighborhoods.

  • T at GHC,

    You misunderstood my comment. I was stating that buildings NOW are going for $600K and up (actually, I know nothing at $600K).

    When we bought back in 2004, it was in the $350K range, high even for that time. When we originally bid on the place, comps were in the mid $200K area.

    So, now you can see what all the overdevelopment has done to real estate prices, not only to condos, but to the existing frame as well.

    Welcome to the ‘nabe. Remember, the building ain’t over yet. 614 7th Ave, next to you, will hopefully soon be active again, contextual and legal this time around as well as 338-342 22nd St in your back yard area, unless you overlook the cemetery. Rumored other developments on 23rd St. as well.

    In all seriousness, WELCOME!

  • I have asked this before. Where are all the people going to come from to live in all these new buildings? Are they attracting first time buyers like the “you have to start somewhere” poster above? If many people are moving from renting, what will happen to the rental market? At what rate does the Brooklyn population grow? What are the projections for the next 5-10 years. BTW has anyone been watching the market the last few days? The end is near.

  • The body of the house is in the cemetery. The tombstones are maybe 5 ft from the left side of the bldg. This is not alongside the cemetery, this is in it. I pass it twice every day.
    The ironic thing is there are certain cultures that won’t even walk in a cemetery or on the same sidewalk unless they are visiting the grave of a loved one, and some of those cultures are represented in traditional Sunset Park. This is going to be very interesting.
    btw, their neighbors are going to be Sunset Park people, regardless of the developer’s propaganda.