Manhattan co-ops are having a good moment this fall; according to the latest report by brokerage firm Douglas Elliman focusing on third-quarter sales in that borough, the median sales price for the market in the third quarter of 2017 set a record high for the first time in 28 years.
For the co-op market, the median sales price was a record $850,000 in this third quarter, an increase of 8.3 percent from last year--”The highest level reached since this metric was first tracked in 1989,” said Elliman. The average sales price was $1,427,544, a 10.8 percent rise over the same period in 2016. The number of sales was 1,876, a rise of 13.5 percent. Meanwhile, the listing inventory fell to 2,670, a year-over-year drop of 4.2 percent.
In surveying the condo market for third quarter 2017, Elliman said the median sales price was $1,700,000, an improvement of 6.3 percent in comparison to the third quarter of 2016. However, the average sales price was $2,725,706, a decline of 7.6 percent. The number of condo sales was at 1,493, a 12.3 percent boost over the same period last year; and the listing inventory was 3,445, almost a 1 percent drop year over year.
In its analysis, Elliman said: “The co-op market moved much more quickly than the condo market, consistent with the lower pricing of co-ops than condos and the 'softer at the top' housing narrative of the past several years.”
“The market is in good condition, with sales up sharply year-over-year,” said Steven James, CEO of Douglas Elliman New York in a press statement. “This activity is actually overpowering the re-sale inventory, which simply can’t keep up. Inventory has now fallen for two consecutive quarters after rising for twelve quarters. While this elevated activity is not spurring runaway price growth, prices in re-sales are definitely trending up.”
“Co-ops are setting a 28-year record high,” said Jonathan Miller of Miller Samuel Inc., the author of the report, in the same press statement. “Average sales prices, however, declined, although this is likely due to the decline in legacy contracts, which I identify as sales that were signed a few years ago, but due to construction are just closing now, as buildings are completed. This pipeline was skewed much higher in price, and as it is starting to dissipate, we see the market coming back to a more stable level.”
However, it was a different story for Brooklyn, where the median sales price for co-ops in this year’s third quarter was $425,000, a dip of about 0.7 percent from the same period a year ago, according to Elliman. The average sales price was $562,410, almost a 1 percent rise. The number of third-quarter co-op sales this year grew by 13.9 percent to 639 compared to the same period in 2016. As for condos in the borough, the median sales price was $880,000, a 9.4 percent increase over last year's third quarter, while the average sales price was $1,082,398, a decrease of 5.5 percent from third-quarter 2016. The amount of condo sales did better over co-op sales in Brooklyn in the third quarter with 897, a year-over-year positive change of 20.7 percent
In Queens, the median sales price for co-ops in this third quarter saw a positive change of 12.1 percent to $270,000 year-over-year. The average sales price was $303,343, an increase of 13.8 percent compared to the same quarter in 2016. The number of co-op sales was down almost 3 percent to 959. Meanwhile for condos, the median sales price was $649,885 for third-quarter 2017, an increase of 22.7 percent from the same period a year ago;the average sales price was $722,343, a 17.8 percent boost. Condo sales grew almost 50 percent this quarter compared to third-quarter 2016 with 521.
“We’re seeing very strong pricing in Brooklyn and Queens, with some record prices set this quarter in Queens and Brooklyn on the verge of setting new records of its own,” said James. “Sales are up in these boroughs, with Brooklyn securely established as competition to Manhattan. Queens continues on its rise as a place for buyers to find greater affordability.”
David Chiu is the associate editor at The Cooperator.