Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Manhattan Rental Market Overview

“We have just released” Says Dottie Herman, CEO of Prudential Douglas Elliman. “The Douglas Elliman Report: Manhattan Rentals 2Q 2011″, the most comprehensive analysis of the Manhattan rental market. The first of its kind, this report provides new insights into the largest form of housing in Manhattan. Our market reports are produced in conjunction with Miller Samuel to provide you and your clients with the most comprehensive and neutral market insight available”.

She also says “The amount of new rental activity has been significantly higher compared to last year. The landlords continued to reduce their reliance on concessions to manage occupancy. Rental rates after considering concessions were higher than last year at this time, and the time to lease an apartment fell sharply. As the regional economy shows modest but slowly improving conditions, the economy will also face many challenges. We will continue to look toward the rental market as a leading indicator for housing, and we anticipate modest improvement in the rental market for the remainder of 2011″.

If you like to have more information, please contact me at . To see our listings:


Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Can a Retiree Get a Mortgage


Q. I want to buy a retirement home in North Carolina for $263,000. I am selling my home in New Jersey, where I have lived for many years. Although I could pay all cash for the home I'm buying, I'd prefer to take advantage of current low interest rates and not to tie up so much of my money in real estate. The problem is, I'm 69. Would anyone give me a mortgage at my age? And if they did, would I be foolish to take it?

--Little Silver, N.J.

A. As long as you pass a lender's scrutiny in terms of income, debt-to-income, credit and all the other factors any loan applicant must meet, you should be able to get a mortgage.

In fact, any lender who refused you just because of your age would be guilty of violating the federal government's Equal Credit Opportunity Act. The act makes it illegal to discriminate against someone because of age, among other factors, provided that the applicant has the capacity to enter into a contract.

You also are eligible for any type of loan available, including conventional, Federal Housing Administration and Veterans Affairs, if you meet the program guidelines. Some of these loans require low or no down payments and no private mortgage insurance, which would maximize your available cash.

If you should die before the mortgage is paid off, the unpaid balance will become a lien that is tied to the property. Your heirs will have to either make the payments, sell the home to pay off the mortgage and any other liens, or refinance the loan.

Because you are older than 62 and have presumably amassed considerable equity in your current home, you also have another option, a reverse mortgage. The most popular of these loans is FHA's Home Equity Conversion Mortgage, or HECM. This program allows you to convert the equity in your home into cash. You access the money in a fixed monthly amount, a line of credit, or both. You can use the cash for whatever you want.

Thanks to the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008, you may be able to purchase a new home and get a reverse mortgage in a single transaction, which will avoid the need for a second closing. Provided that you and the property you want to purchase qualify for the program, you won't have to pass any income or credit checks. And you will be able to roll closing costs into the mortgage.

There are some caveats. Among them: You will have to meet with a HECM counselor, who will talk about eligibility requirements and alternatives to the mortgage. You will have to pay cash for the difference between the total proceeds that you receive from the HECM and the sales price. You must own your current property outright or have a small mortgage balance. You can't be in arrears on any federal debt, and the home you buy has to be a primary home and a one-to-four unit property that meets FHA's minimum property requirements for health and safety.

If you are building a new home, construction has to be completed and you will need a certificate of occupancy. Also on the downside: Reverse mortgages can be expensive—overall, they tend to be more costly than traditional loans—and they will reduce the amount of equity you have in your home. Moreover, some consumer advocates are wary of them, and some banks have stopped making them.

I don't know enough about your financial situation to recommend what the best course of action is for you. But I can say that given the current state of the housing market, it will probably be years before you will see much appreciation on your new home. So whatever choice you make, I think you are right to free up at least some cash, and not sink it all in real estate.

Write to June Fletcher at

Manhattan - Market Report Shows Sales Have Been Rising

Prudential Douglas Elliman has just released Market Report of Manhattan Sales 2Q 2011, the leading resource on the state of the Manhattan co-op and condo market. These reports are produced in conjunction with Miller Samuel which provide the most comprehensive and neutral market insight.

The Market Report shows that Sales of Manhattan co-ops and condos have been rising since the beginning of the year consistent with seasonal expectations. The amount of active listings slipped over the past year and housing prices continued to show stability. Relative to other housing markets across the country, Manhattan continues to be one of the best performing markets to date. While our regional economy is showing a slow pace of improvement, we anticipate the Manhattan housing market to follow the same trend for the remainder of 2011.

If you like to see more detail, please send me an email at I will email you the report as attachment.

Monday, June 27, 2011

NYC Real Estate – An Advice for Purchasing Home

I am constantly running into prospective home buyers who want to purchase a house but they haven't a Pre-approval letter from lender.
They talk with me to persuade me to take them out looking for a house! But when the subject of their CREDIT and MORTGAGE APPROVAL comes up, it may answer like, "I believe everything is fine, let's just go house shopping first and after I found the property I like, I will pursue the Mortgage!" But the disappointment would be like this, those house hunters either lost the chance to purchase the home they like due to the timely of the pre-approval process or they can't qualify for a Mortgage for this particular home that they like so much.

Why need pre-approval before search:
-Do not wasting your time
-You will know how much money that you will be eligible to borrow
-You will know what price range you can afford
-You will action quickly, when you find the home you love
-Seller will be more likely to accept an offer from a pre-qualified buyer.
-If you see some errors on your credit report, you can resolve them right away

The fact is, most of us, unless we are paying cash, will need a Mortgage and Mortgage Approval! Why not deal with it up front so that the path is clear for your next home purchase. PressThis to read Tips for Reinforce Credit Score to Buy your Dream Home.

Useful Topical:
- How to Get Pre-approval

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Lower East Side Real Estate – Manhattan Neighborhood

The Lower East Side of Manhattan is located in the far southeastern section of the island. Boundary of this area is not exactly finding because the area has been constantly changed and renewing. It is difficult to tell exactly where the Lower East Side end and where the adjacent neighborhood started. One interpreted the boundary by Bowery on the west, the East River to the east, Houston Street to the north and Grand Street to the south. But others believe it is bounded by the Brooklyn Bridge on the south to Houston Street on the north, from the East River to the Bowery.

The Lower East Side also knows as LES by the local people. It is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Manhattan. Over century, many working class immigrants arrived in New York and lived in the tenement buildings in the Lower East Side. The Lower East Side has been lived by many different ethnic groups. Once the world’s largest Jewish community, now is best known as the neighborhood filled tons things to do with its own unique style. Night life in the Lower East Side is also booming. It is a neighborhood with some of the city’s best nightlife with delicious food, outstanding restaurants and great bargain shops. You can choose all kind of international cuisine or relax in cafes. You can dance and drink all night in the many clubs. Clinton Street offers great strip of food and drinks while Grand Street where you can find strictly kosher delicacies and bakeries. The Essex offers fresh produce. Orchard Street used to be full of cheap stores, now have closed down and instead designer shops, galleries. The affordable and wholesale shops continue to live on Delaney Street. East River possesses sports fields.

Living condition tend to be a large amount of walk-up buildings, Low-rise elevator buildings and some new construction with high-rise doorman building. Prices tend to be more affordable side, which is cheaper than other place. One-bedroom and one-bath in a co-op building on 500 Grand Street asks for $425K, and one-bedroom and one-bath also co-op on 570 Grand Street asks for $439K. But some new condo building for one-bedroom and one-bath on 105 Norfolk asks for $860K for 782 Sq Ft. The average price for condo here is $1,120 per square foot.

The transportation service by multiple subway lines – J M Z F B D as well as cross-town, up/downtown buses.

Restaurants and Bars in the Lower East Side
• Alias Restaurant, 76 Clinton St, (212) 505-5011
• Apizz Restaurant, 217 Eldridge St, (212) 253-9199
• Barrio Chino, 253 Broome St, (212) 228-6710
• Boulevard, 199 Bowery, (212) 982-7767
• Congee Village Bar Inc, 100 Allen St, (212) 941-1818
• Cake Shop, 152 Ludlow St, (212) 253-0036
• Cube 63 Inc, 63 Clinton St, (212) 228-6751
• Chubo, 6 Clinton St, (212) 674-6300
• El Maguey La Tuna Mexican, 321 E Houston St, (212) 473-3744
• Essex Restaurant, 120 Essex St, (212) 533-9616
• Frankies 17 Clinton Street, 17 Clinton St, (212) 253-2303
• Frankies Spuntino, 457 Court Street, (718) 403-0033
• Freeman’s, 191 Chrystie St, (212) 420-0012
• Falai, 68 Clinton St # 1, (212) 253-1960
• Good World Bar & Grill, 3 Orchard St, (212) 925-9975
• Golden Unicorn Restaurant Inc, 18 E Broadway, (212) 941-0911
• Happy Ending, 302 Broome St, (212) 334-9676
• Inoteca, 133 Ludlow St, (212) 614-0473
• Katz’s Delicatessen, 205 E Houston St, (212) 254-2246
• Kush, 191 Chrystie St, (212) 677-7328
• Libation, 137 Ludlow St, (212) 529-2153
• Little Giant, 85 Orchard St, (212) 226-5047
• Loreley Restaurant, 7 Rivington St, (212) 253-7077
• Le Pere Pinard, 175 Ludlow St, (212) 777-4917
• Punch & Judy, 26 Clinton St, (212) 982-1116
• Paladar, 161 Ludlow St, (212) 473-3535
• Schiller’s Restaurant, 131 Rivington St, (212) 260-4555
• Stanton Social, 99 Stanton St, (212) 995-0099
• Suba Restaurant, 109 Ludlow St, (212) 982-5714
• Thor, 107 Rivington St, (212) 796-8040
• Teany, 90 Rivington St, (212) 475-9190
• Verlaine, 110 Rivington St, (212) 614-2494
• W D 50, 50 Clinton St, (212) 477-2900

Bars & Clubs
• Bob Bar, 233 Eldridge St, (212) 529-1807
• Barramundi Inc, 67 Clinton St, (212) 529-6900
• Boss Tweed Saloon, 115 Essex St, (212) 475-9997
• Cake Shop, 152 Ludlow St, (212) 253-0036
• Delancey Lounge, 168 Delancey St, (212) 254-9920
• East Side Co Bar, 49 Essex St, (212) 614-7408
• Good World Bar & Grill, 3 Orchard St, (212) 925-9975
• Home Sweet Home, 131 Chrystie St, (212) 226-5708
• Iggy’s Keltic Lounge, 132 Ludlow St, (212) 529-2731
• Jadis, 42 Rivington St # 1, (212) 254-1675
• Kampuchea Noodle Bar, 78 Rivington St, (212) 529-3901
• Katra Bar & Lounge, 217 Bowery, (212) 473-3113
• Lolita Bar, 266 Broome St, (212) 966-7223
• Lolita Bar, 266 Broome St, (212) 966-7223
• Lucky Jack’s, 129 Orchard St, (212) 477-6555
• Mercury Lounge The, 217 E Houston St, (212) 260-4700
• Motor City Bar, 127 Ludlow St, (212) 358-1595
• Magician, 118 Rivington St, (212) 673-7881
• One Sixty Nine Club Inc, 169 E Broadway, (212) 473-8866
• Oliva, 161 E Houston St, (212) 228-4143
• People’s Lounge & Bar, 163 Allen St, (212) 254-2668
• Parkside Lounge, 317 E Houston St, (212) 674-9308
• Pianos, 158 Ludlow Street, (212) 505-3733
• Rockwood Music Hall, 184 Allen St # 198, (212) 477-4155
• Salt Bar, 29 Clinton St, (212) 979-8471
• Skinny, 174 Orchard St, (212) 228-3668
• Slipper Room, 167 Orchard St, (212) 253-7246
• Sapphire Lounge, 249 Eldridge St, (212) 777-5153
• Stay, 244 E Houston St, (212) 982-3532
• Tuts, 196 Orchard St, (212) 777-0890
• Welcome To the Johnson’s, 123 Rivington St, (212) 420-9911
• Whiskey Ward, 121 Essex St, (212) 477-2998
• White Rabbit, 145 E Houston St, (212) 477-5005
• White Star, 21 Essex Street, (212) 995-5464
• White Slab Palace, 77 Delancey St # 2, (212) 334-0913

View my profile and other properties and contract signed listings at: We pride ourselves as specialists in condominium and co-op sales in Manhattan.

Useful Links
Lower East Side Wikipedia
Neighborhood guide for thing to do
Lucky – New York Shopping Guide
The top shopping Street & Neighborhood

NYC Real Estate – Tribeca Condo 2Br / 1Ba ONLY $1.1 Million Dollars

“Two bedroom one bath loft with Northern and Southern exposure. This 1,347 square foot space offers great possibilities for modern luxury living at a fraction of market price. Washer and dryer unit included. Do not miss out on this opportunity to live in an historic warehouse in the heart of TriBeCa” says Avi Voda & Roland Levin of Prudential Douglas Elliman.

The Condo Apartment minimum down is 10%, monthly maintenance/cc is only $484 plus $844 monthly tax. The square feet is 1,347 (approx). It is 2 Bedrooms and 1 Baths at price of $1,100,000. PressThis to read What You Can Get for Your Money in Manhattan. There are total 10 more units for sell in this building. To view my profile, other properties and contract signed at For more detail, please contact me at or 516-320-0231 (Diana).

Other Useful Topical:
- Manhattan Real Estate Glossary – the dish on Condos, Co-ops, Condops, Townhouse & Brownstone
- What You Can Get For Your Money – The Neighborhoods of Manhattan

NYC Real Estate - Tribeca Condo for Sale – Sponsor units

“This loft provides one bedroom, one bathroom, four large windows, and a washer/dryer unit. 1,265 square feet of light filled living space in a historic warehouse. Do not miss out on this opportunity to live in the heart of fashionable TriBeCa which is home to renowned restaurants, great public and private schools, fine shopping, the Hudson River Park waterfront and great entertainment. TriBeCa Film Festival, Conde Nast Publications, Smyth Hotel, Whole Foods, Century 21, Freedom Towers are your present and future neighbors energizing this neighborhood and making it the place for 21st Century living. Come and enjoy the possibilities! ” says Avi Voda & Roland Levin of Prudential Douglas Elliman.

The Condo Apartment minimum down is 10%, monthly maintenance/cc is $475 plus $828 monthly tax. The square feet is 1,265 (approx). It is 1 Bedrooms and 1 Baths at price of $1,150,000. PressThis to read What You Can Get for Your Money in Manhattan. There are total 10 more units for sell in this building. To view my profile, other properties and contract signed at For more detail, please contact me at or 516-320-0231 (Diana).

Other Useful Topical:
- Manhattan Real Estate Glossary – the dish on Condos, Co-ops, Condops, Townhouse & Brownstone
- What You Can Get For Your Money – The Neighborhoods of Manhattan

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Manhattan apartment prices slip in first quarter

By Helen Chernikoff
NEW YORK | Fri Apr 1, 2011 9:36pm EDT

Reuters)- The median price of an apartment in Manhattan fell in the first quarter as tight credit and a lack of new construction dragged prices down, according to reports released on Friday by New York City's biggest residential real estate brokerages.

The Corcoran Group put the median price at $800,000, down 2 percent from the year before, while Prudential Douglas Elliman put it at $782,071, down 7.4 percent.
"The market is still fragile," said Jonathan Miller, who writes the Elliman report.
Condos tend to be more expensive than co-ops, the other major type of owned housing in Manhattan, but their share of the market has fallen to 14.5 percent, the lowest since 2004, Miller said.

The quarter saw the sale of a relatively higher number of cheaper properties because the persistence of broadly weak economic conditions continues to cause lenders to tighten the loan standards, making it hard for home buyers to obtain loans, he said.
"Credit is not easing and you could argue it's getting a little bit tighter," Miller said.

Even at the higher end, where getting a loan is not as much of a problem, the lack of new construction is constraining the market because well-heeled buyers do not have enough big apartments to chose from, said Corcoran Chief Executive Officer Pam Liebman.

"We're really suffering now from the lack of development on the high end," she added.

The taxman cometh: Need an extension? | Inman News

April 18, 2011 is around corner. I hope this artical can help you for some iusse. Click the link below to read.

The taxman cometh: Need an extension? | Inman News

Friday, April 1, 2011

It's a Great Time to Buy a House....Really?

AOL Real Estate | By Rob Hahn | Posted Mar 29th 2011 4:51PM

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Shawn Tully, the senior editor-at-large over at Fortune, has a post up in which he states that it's a great time to buy a house. That is pure awesome-sauce.

I know my friends and clients in the real estate industry are desperate for Mr. Tully to be right. And so am I, since my business depends in some degree on the industry being able to afford consultants.

Tully argues that the pipeline for new housing is really near empty. He quotes a MetroStudy report that shows that 78,000 homes are vacant and for sale or under construction in 2010, as opposed to 343,000 such units in 2006, at the height of the housing bubble.

I wonder why we wouldn't also want to look at homes that are not vacant and for sale -- as in owner-occupied housing, which is the lion's share of the homes for sale in pretty much any given market. Regardless, Tully goes on to argue that the two fundamentals that govern housing -- cost of ownership versus cost of renting, and the level of new construction -- have gone from pointing toward doooommm to pointing towards nirvana.
On cost of ownership, Tully cites a Deutsche Bank statistic showing that housing affordability is fantabulous. But the metric used -- share of income Americans are paying to own -- is a bit odd. You see, the study shows that in 2007, at the bubble's peak, Americans were paying 17.2 percent of their income in after-tax mortgage, tax, and insurance; in 2010, folks are paying 9.8 percent of their income. That's quite a drop. I wonder what accounts for it?

Note that the metric is that of people paying their mortgages. Homeowners in 2010, who are paying, are at 9.8 percent; homeowners in 2007 were at 17.2 percent. Did all homeowners get

See photos of homes for sale in your area and across the country on AOL Real Estate
huge raises between 2007 and 2010? I don't think so. Government stats show that we actually went through a huge recession between 2007 and 2010 -- a recession that is still going on with official unemployment close to 10 percent. So that probably rules out income increases.

Did the mortgage rates plummet so that people are paying less today than they were in 2010? Well, no... especially since most mortgages are 30-year fixed rate instruments where the monthly payment would have been the same in 2007 as it is today.

The only other explanation is that the group we call "homeowners still paying their mortgages" changed. So many people stopped paying their mortgage altogether, through a combination of foreclosures, short sales, deeds in lieu, strategic default, and straight up extend-and-pretend games so that the ones who are still paying their mortgages are the ones who (a) are in better financial health, and (b) have significant amount of equity in their homes. Yay for affordability?

Curse my lack of Ph.D. in economics, but I just don't see how the fact that remaining homeowners are financially well-off is a measure of housing affordability for people who don't currently own a home.

The second metric, cost to own versus cost to rent, is a truly interesting stat. And it is true that in some markets -- such as Miami -- you are far better off buying than renting. That is, if you can make it safely through the financial proctology exam that the banks call the mortgage application process, and have the 20 to 30 percent down payment required for a bank to even talk to you.

And if we're talking about affordability, we probably should take a look at the fact that in 2010, nearly half of all residential mortgages were FHA loans, with their 3.5 percent down payment requirement.

So when Tully writes that rising rents will "encourage buyers to cross the street from an apartment to a home of their own," he's making enormous assumptions about the continued availability of mortgage financing.

Even with all of those questions, however, Tully is surely correct that as the economy slowly, ever so slowly, recovers despite high gas prices -- not being helped by all of the wars, oops, I mean time-limited, scope-limited kinetic military actions, going on in the Middle East -- and a Japan in shambles and record deficits at local, state, and Federal levels of government... housing should recover. At which point the shortage that he's pointing to will surely come into effect!

Except that the federal government has pretty much stated that the new housing policy going forward is one of "sustainable housing," and has been taking steps to make sure that we don't ever go back to the way things were. So, we have the FHA raising fees, and tightening standards (remember, FHA was almost half of all mortgages last year). We have the Treasury and HUD wanting to wind down Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. We have the FDIC, OCC, and the Fed pushing for 20 percent down payments as the definition of a "qualified residential mortgage." We have serious people talking about limiting or eliminating the mortgage interest deduction.

And we have the Treasury/HUD defining housing policy as "rental options near good schools and good jobs."

This is what is meant by Renter Nation. We can't expect the market to behave as it once did in an era where Federal housing policy was firmly on the side of homeownership, when the government says the things it says and acts the way it acts. The market will adapt; we will still have housing; people will still buy and sell homes. But relying on stats about vacant and for sale homes? On percentage of income? Suggesting now is the time to buy because housing shortage will raise prices three, four years from now, despite all evidence that rentals will be the official answer to any housing demand question going forward?


Here's my overly pessimistic but perhaps absolutely on-target take. Now is a great time to buy if the cost to own is lower than the cost to rent in your area, and you have the cash or can get a 30-year fixed rate mortgage. Then I'd act now. Because the feds are doing pretty much everything they can to raise inflation, making your cash worth less, and to make houses harder to buy. Who knows how long that 30-year fixed-rate product will be available? Get it while you still can.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

U.S. Inflation Expands Beyond Food and Fuel


Posted 11:00 AM 03/30/11 Economy, Retail, Market News
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First came higher food prices, thanks to heat in Russia and floods in China and Australia. Then came soaring gas prices as a result of the crisis in Libya. Now, imported consumer goods -- including almost everything from Brazilian orange juice to imported Toyota automobiles -- are going to be joining the upward price trend.

The culprit is the U.S. dollar, which has fallen 5% in the last year. The inflation-adjusted, trade-weighted dollar, which is a measure of the greenback against the currencies of nations we trade with, now stands at its lowest level since the Federal Reserve began keeping records in January 1973.

As the dollar's value falls, the prices of imported goods grow. The falling trade-weighted dollar is closely correlated with higher import prices, explains Carl J. Riccadonna, senior U.S. economist at Deutsche Bank.

"The weakening dollar is driving up import prices and that is translating through to higher consumer inflation," Riccadonna says. "We're seeing it not only in imported goods, but in domestically produced goods that also contain foreign inputs."

Inflation Trickles Downstream

In other words, it's not just finished goods, like Audis and Volkswagens, that are rising in price as a result of the weak dollar. Imported components, such as automobile transmissions and computer chips, also are becoming more expensive. And that means that all the products that use those components, whether they're made in the U.S. or not, also will see their costs rise in turn.

"Those price pressures in the earlier stages are eventually going to be passed along down the line to consumers," Riccadonna says.

Overall, import prices rose 1.4% in February, the fifth straight month of increases over 1%. Deutsche Bank expects the core producer price index, a measure of wholesale inflation, to rise to 3% by year's end, with consumer prices up more than 2.1%. That's double the current inflation rate.

The expected increase may seem to add insult to injury, considering that imported petroleum prices already have grown 20.6% over the last year, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. While energy is excluded from the measure of inflation known as the core consumer price index, the higher fuel and transportation costs also end up increasing costs throughout the supply chain -- and leading to higher consumer prices as well.

Domestic Prices Likely to Rise Too

Can consumers avoid this inflation by simply buying products entirely made in the U.S.? Probably not. If you think you'll just give up French cheese and buy Californian instead, for example, consider this: When domestic manufacturers see competitors' products rise in price because of the weakening dollar, they tend to raise their prices, too.

"If Toyota's prices are going up because of an exchange-rate move, then Ford has a little more leeway on a domestically produced vehicle," Riccadonna says. "What this means is inflation is absolutely going to trend higher over the course of the year."

Logic -- and the rule of supply and demand -- would suggest that as import prices go up, American consumers would buy fewer of them. But that's not what's happening. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the country imported $166 billion worth of goods in January 2011, compared with $136 billion in January 2010.

Why? While imports are becoming more expensive as the dollar weakens, the U.S. economy is also on the mend. Both consumer spending and business spending is picking up, which has raised the demand for imports, even at higher prices.

Riccadonna says a more important metric than the dollar's value is disposable income. Incomes have been rising for the past year, and that has kept consumers' purchases up despite the higher prices for oil and food. If incomes were not increasing, the economy might have ground to a halt, he says, instead of merely experiencing inflation.

See full article from DailyFinance:

Monday, March 21, 2011