Real Estate Market


This weekend, the City section of the Sunday Times took a front-page look at the nature of the commenting culture on local blogs (in addition to a focus on Brownstoner, Curbed, Gowanus Lounge,, and Roosevelt Island 360 all got ink), something New York City has in greater numbers than other cities. While it didn’t seem like a particularly new issue to us, hopefully it spread the gospel to the uninitiated. “For the past few years, blog comments sections, acting as virtual town squares, have offered residents around the country a forum in which to weigh in — and vent — on a wide spectrum of local issues,” went the article. “But given New York’s size and diversity, not to mention its fabled brashness, political energy and high emotion, its blogosphere is taking a particularly striking shape.” Yours truly was quoted about the no-brainer decision of allowing comments from the get-go of the blog, despite the fact that some of the established blogs at the time blocked comments. The piece wraps with a description of the Brownstoner End of the World party that took place last October and readers’ reaction online:

The next day, online, the partygoers spoke enthusiastically about the experience. Some noted that their virtual friends didn’t look like what they had expected. A poster named Slopefarm was shocked to discover that Montrose Morris was a woman. Ms. Morris got her own surprise, as she commented, tongue firmly in cheek: Slopefarm, good to meet you, too. I’m disappointed you didn’t have a stalk of organic, heritage, artisanal hay harvested by Bhutanese nuns between your teeth. You are in Park Slope, after all.

It’ll be interesting to see how much traffic the article generates—we’ll be able to report back in a few hours. Update: Traffic yesterday was about double the average for Sunday, but still not close to a normal weekday.
You Talkin’ to Me? [Brownstoner]


The Carroll Gardens Atrocity, what Pardon Me For Asking describes as the “poster child for what-not-to-do with a brownstone,” has finally gotten a much needed price reduction after more than two years of languishing on the market. The upper duplex is now $1,295,000, down from $1,495,000 and the entire house can be had for $2,590,000 instead of $2,995,000. Interested?
Carroll Gardens Hunchback Still Languishing on Market [PMFA]
The House That CG Loves To Hate Gets Price Cut [PMFA]
45 Third Place Not Moving [Brownstoner]
45 Third Place Open House: Yuck! [Brownstoner]
Condos of the Day: No Buyers for 45 Third Place [Brownstoner]
A Current Look at Third Place Horror Show [Brownstoner]
Price for CG Atrocity a “Fantasy” [Brownstoner]
Real Photos of Carroll Gardens Bastard [Brownstoner]
Carroll Gardens “Bastardization” Hits Market [Brownstoner]
CG Atrocity: There Goes the Neighborhood [Brownstoner]


Foreclosures in New York City were up year-over-year in the fourth quarter of 2008 but down from the third quarter, not surprising results given the moratorium around the holidays; overall, rates of foreclosure in New York remained far below Los Angeles, Miami and Seattle. In Brooklyn, there were 83 foreclosures in Q4 2008, down from 108 in Q4 2007 and 165 in Q3 2008. For 2008 as a whole, there were 555 foreclosures in 2008, versus 534 throughout 2007. Queens continued to hold the crown for most foreclosures; there was not a single Brooklyn neighborhood represented on the list of Top 15 zip codes.
Quarterly Foreclosures Report: Now With More Charts! [Curbed]
Property Shark 4Q Foreclosure Report [Curbed, PDF]


There was a time when a house in a prime Boerum Hill location listed under $2 million would have been a blue-light special. These days, we suspect some of the nicest wide Greek Revival houses in the area could still fetch that price. Unfortunately, 295 Pacific Street, while certainly an attractive house, doesn’t quite make it over that hurdle. Its biggest drawback is its 14-foot width, which means the four-story house only weighs in at 2,744 square feet. Otherwise, it has a very nice lived-in vibe and plenty of old-school charm. It’s just not a “wow” house. The house just came on the market ten days ago with a price tag of $1,899,000. It’ll be interesting to see how close to that it can fetch.
295 Pacific Street [Douglas Elliman] GMAP P*Shark


This penthouse at 970 Kent Avenue in Clinton Hill has been on the market since June, when it debuted with an asking price of $875,000. Two reductions later, the 1,100 1,327-square-foot two bedroom is listed for $825,000. The apartment has a some things going for it—big windows, high ceilings and two outdoor spaces—but this feels like a lot of dough these days for this location. (There are five other units in the building currently available at lower prices.) The building also has some bad history, but we’re assuming the C of O issues have been worked out. Someone looking to drop this kind of dough on a loft in the neighborhood could probably get more bang for the buck at 105 Lexington Avenue where $730,000 gets you 1,340 square feet and $959,000 gets you 1,648 square feet.
970 Kent Avenue, PH1 [Triumph Property] GMAP P*Shark


First few post-September meltdown contracts and closings we’ve seen.

1. PROSPECT HEIGHTS $3,140,000
1 Grand Army Plaza/On Prospect Park, Unit 5F GMAP (left)
3,199-square-foot, 4-bedroom, 3-bath unit in the Richard Meier-designed condo, according to its listing. Current listings in the building are running from $885,000 for a 1,000-sf 1-bed to $3.1 million for a 4-bedroom, says StreetEasy. Entered into contract on 5/22/08; closed on 12/23/08; deed recorded on 1/02/09.

2. CLINTON HILL $1,930,000
147 St. James Place GMAP (right)
This former SRO was asking $1,950,000 when it was a House of the Day in late September. Last owners purchased the 2,688-sf, 3-family for $995,000 in January ’07 and gut renovated. Entered into contract on 11/3/08; closed on 12/15/08; deed recorded on 12/29/08.

3. PARK SLOPE $1,580,000
838 President Street, Unit 1 GMAP
1,840-sf, 4-bed, 2-bath condo, according to its listing. StreetEasy says it hit the market in mid-September and went into contract within a few weeks. Entered into contract on 10/7/08; closed on 12/19/08; deed recorded on 12/29/08.

4. PROSPECT HEIGHTS $1,510,000
265 Prospect Place GMAP
5,240-sf, 4-family, according to Property Shark. Entered into contract on 9/27/08; closed on 11/28/08; deed recorded on 12/31/08.

5. MIDWOOD $1,400,500
1348 East 8th Street GMAP
2,658-sf, 2-family house, according to Property Shark. Entered into contract on 8/18/08; closed on 11/17/08; deed recorded on 12/30/08.

Photo of 147 St. James Place from StreetEasy.


When Corcoran took over the sales effort at The Vermeil in July, there were seven units left. The Big C managed to quickly sell three of them, leaving, all you mathematicians out there, four unsold apartments by October. Since then three of the four units have received multiple price reductions, including a round of 5 to 10 percent cuts on Monday. The remaining listings range in price from $1,150,00 for a 1,642-square-foot three-bedroom on the second floor to $1,495,000 for a 1,758-square-foot three-bedroom on the fifth floor. At this point, the developers must be dying to put this baby to bed.
Checking in on The Vermeil [Brownstoner] GMAP
Changing of the Guard at The Vermeil [Brownstoner]
First Closing at The Vermeil [Brownstoner]
Condo of the Day: Price Cut at The Vermeil [Brownstoner]
Update on the Vermeil [Brownstoner]