Market Update: September 26 to October 2
New development condo sales dipped 11% last week but the market is mirroring pre-pandemic norms. There were 56 new contracts reported city-wide, compared to 57 in 2019. Four of those were luxury deals and even though that’s a 75% drop week over week the same period in 2019 saw the exact same figure.
What does this mean? The market is normalizing from its 2020 lows and 2021 highs.
Manhattan had 24 sales (-40%), Brooklyn had 23 (-64%) and Queens had 9 (0%).
That decline in Manhattan is largely due to one project – The Cortland – reporting 17 sales all at once the week before. Some developers employ this strategy to shape perception of sales velocity.
One Manhattan Square, Extell’s mega-tower in Two Bridges, has the boro’s highest sales volume with four deals. Now nearing 60% sold for its 814 units, the 81-story tower has been averaging an impressive seven monthly deals and is a project to watch.
In Brooklyn, sales activity shows prices are holding pretty steady. The average unit was asking $1,379,691 (-9%) at $1,350 per square foot (-1%).
At the high end, Tishman Speyer’s 11 Hoyt had four sales, bringing the project to nearly 80% sold.
But the boro’s more attainably priced offerings like 45 Argyle are also seeing momentum. The 16-unit rehab condo’s offering plan was approved four months ago and after last week’s three deals is more than 50% sold.
According to Douglas Elliman’s Allison Dubuisson, who’s leading sales with the Eklund | Gomes Team, the project’s success proves it’s all about timing, pricing and good design.
“There definitely is a sweet spot in the market for well-renovated apartments with pre-war character (exposed brick and high ceilings) offered at a price point that aligns with the current market,” Dubuisson said, adding that their two-beds below $700,000 hit an underrepresented niche in Brooklyn.
Queens wins the award for consistency, with two straight weeks of nine new development condo sales. Once again, activity was heavy in Astoria, where three boutique condos each found two buyers, including 23-05 24th Ave – now 40% sold in seven months with Compass agents Ellie Wald and Deborah Sokoloski.
Key takeaways this week: the market is performing as it did pre-pandemic, low re-sale inventory is great for older new development stock, and Astoria is apparently becoming the city’s hottest neighborhood.