Can you believe it? The year following the largest disruption of our lifetime is just half over, and the resurgence we’ve seen in the City has been nothing short of phenomenal. Not to mention a huge relief. The one thing it’s not? A surprise. Perseverance is the standard operating procedure for New Yorkers, and the recovery following the pandemic is ultimately no different. What is a surprise is the speed at which we’re seeing New York City bounce back.
Week over week throughout June, Manhattan showed strong investment sales with record-setting transaction counts across all property types and boroughs. Prices are consistently up when it comes to Brooklyn luxury homes, where the median list price for high-end homes that entered into contract during the last week of June hit an incredible $3.3 million. Brooklyn isn’t the only place seeing record highs, either. In June, the title of TriBeCa’s highest asking price went to 67 Vestry Street when the four-bedroom penthouse was listed at $22.5 million.
While New York’s statewide eviction protections which remain in place through August, rent collection has also been stronger than expected, according to The Real Deal. In May, 94.6 percent of renters made payments. That’s just two percent less than we saw in May of 2019.
Rental markets are also proving to be affected by the return of office life. Whereas you could hardly give away a Long Island City apartment in the work-from-home phase of the pandemic, the allure of a convenient commute has returned and rents in the neighborhood were up 5.82% in May — approximately triple the city-wide average increase — brokerage firm MNS reports.
While the peak pandemic trend was an exodus to the suburbs, June made it clear that demand has returned to the City for both renters and buyers. At the same time, mortgage rates have remained low, creating a competitive market as we enter the back half of the year. Don’t let that discourage you from making moves; just remember that perseverance is key.
Meanwhile, if you are looking at the suburbs, Westchester recently passed an amendment to the county’s Co-Op Disclosure Law that requires co-op boards to provide a reason when they deny an applicant’s purchase of a unit. Designed to prevent discrimination, the amendment requires boards to provide a notice of rejection to the Westchester County Human Rights Commission with 15 days of the prospective buyer’s notification of denial. Most importantly, it mandates that the minimum financial requirements be disclosed to potential buyers prior to applying to purchase a unit. The New York Senate is considering a similar measure statewide — something we’ll keep our eyes on.
Lastly, the Democratic primary mayoral race was a nail-biter throughout June. With a full slate of candidates with varying philosophies on housing, the race has finally been called for Eric Adams. It’s a sigh of relief for the real estate community; housing is a large part of his platform, and we expect he’ll be a strong, pro-growth mayor if elected. No matter what happens next, it’s great to see NYC not just persevering, but thriving.