The New York City housing market lives up to its hype. Glamorous apartments that move quickly mean buyers and renters alike must act aggressively if they see a unit they love. From penthouses to studios, apartments in the NYC “housing” market are usually either condominiums to cooperatives. The key difference is that a condominium is real property, whereas a cooperative is personal property, meaning shares in stock of the company running the building. Those seeking a more free-standing “house” style may consider townhouses and brownstones.

Buyers should obtain a pre-qualification letter for mortgage from the bank to see the highest range of inventory, as sellers can stipulate only pre-qualified buyers be shown their properties.. Buyers also need to be able to verify funds and three years of work history. Both buyers and renters should have on record this year’s pay stubs. In their search, renters will find there is an income requirement. Leasing companies and cooperatives can require an income that is anywhere from 20 to 50 times the monthly rent. If you are interested in purchasing, renting or selling NYC real estate, some of the best experienced sales professionals can be found at Wald Real Estate, a full service brokerage specializing in the Manhattan location.

As of 2012, the median sales price for a Manhattan apartment is approximately $1 million. According to the New York Times, the average rental price in Manhattan for 2012 was approximately $3400 per month. These numbers show the market on an upward trend. After a few down years, Manhattan real estate is thriving, and agents are hustling to keep up with demand. 2012 brought the highest rate of sales in over four years. But these hungry buyers and renters are seeing fewer units on the market in comparison. With this decrease in inventory of available apartments, the Manhattan real estate market this year is seeing the lowest inventory in over seven years. Foreign buyers are also seeing the appeal in investing in the Manhattan real estate market, adding to the competition for apartments and townhouses.

Neighborhoods within Manhattan that are seeing increasing activity in sales are midtown west and the Upper West Side. Increased rental demand has been seen in downtown neighborhoods like Gramercy, Flatiron and Chelsea. The Upper East Side as well as the East and West Villages are also holding steady demand.

Demand for a neighborhood reflects the total personal value which buyers and renters place on a neighborhood. Some people like to be closer to major subway hubs, while others want to be closer to entertainment and nightlife. Still others seek a quiet repose near the city’s parks or on tree-lined streets. Manhattan offers a style of living for everyone. For inquiries into which neighborhood best suits you, contact one of the savvy agents at Stephen P. Wald, a highly-recommended, full-service real estate brokerage specializing in the Manhattan real estate market.

Response to Hurricane Sandy has demonstrated another facet of the Manhattan housing market: its tenacity. Since Hurricane Sandy made landfall on October 29, deluging and damaging much of lower Manhattan, many questioned whether Manhattan’s real estate market would be equally impacted. But at the Bloomberg Commercial RE Conference November 13, a panel of real estate experts shared a more optimistic picture, predicting normalcy within the year.

By Lela

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