Though the real estate crisis didn't rattle New York City to nearly the degree that it did other markets around the country, construction still stalled on many new developments during the recent recession. It’s not only location or the newest or shiniest buildings that attract buyers’ attention.
The market has since rebounded and new developments are going up at a furious pace, so the pressure is back on brokers to distinguish themselves and their listed properties from a field crowded with gleaming glass-and-steel high-rises that all seem to feature the same list of high-end, ultra-luxe amenities.
Despite indications in the Real Estate Board of New York (REBNY)’s Real Estate Broker Confidence Index report, released in February, that uncertainty about interest rates and the volatility of the stock market has many residential brokers unsure of what the market conditions will be like six months from now, president of Stribling & Associates’ Elizabeth Stribling-Kivlan says that selling in today’s market is still all about well-priced apartments. “They are still in high demand and inventory is still historically low,” she says. “Buyers are used to an exceptional level of lifestyle and amenities now within the new development arena, and in resales, they want exceptionally appointed apartments that show well.”
History and Housewarming
Adelaide Polsinelli, senior managing director and principal with Manhattan-based real estate investment firm Eastern Consolidated says that while she has always tried to distinguish herself from the rest of the broker pack, selling multi-million dollar units these days takes more effort than just hanging out a ‘For Sale’ sign, baking some homemade cookies and hosting an open house.
“In the last few deals that I thought had some significance, I teamed up with Kevin Draper of NY Historical Tours,” says Polsinelli. “We had potential buyers and investors come to the building with us and talk about the past, present and future of the neighborhood. This is important no matter how the market is doing. It brings a whole different element to the real estate market and gives it a life of its own. It is fun, educational and adds value to what we’ve done.” These historical tours have included the South Street Seaport, the Thanksgiving Day Parade route, a Halloween ghost tour of Lower Manhattan, and a tour of Roosevelt Island.