Ch-ch-ch-changes: Looking back at the last decade in Manhattan real estate....and the last month
The Market

Ch-ch-ch-changes: Looking back at the last decade in Manhattan real estate....and the last month

By Lucy Cohen Blatter  | February 2, 2012 - 7:30AM

This has been one crazy decade for real estate -- there's been a "boom," a "bust," and several plateaus too. Despite a shaky real estate environment across the country, Manhattan--perhaps unsurprisingly--continues to be one of the best housing markets in the U.S., according to the Manhattan Decade 2002-2011 Elliman Report, released today.

The report, compiled by appraisal firm Miller Samuel and brokerage Prudential Douglas Elliman Real Estate tracks how Manhattan real estate has changed over the last decade. 

Some of the most interesting facts that caught our eye: Sales prices are up about 80% over the decade; condo sales make up almost half of the market, up from around a third; and the average time it takes to sell an apartment in Manhattan--around 4 months--has remained pretty steady.   

For those of you with shorter attention spans, rolled out a new monthly report yesterday that aims to give a real-time view of the Manhattan market, based on the number of contract signings in the past month.  

"Contract data is based on listings that have been updated by brokers to contract status," says StreetEasy's market analyst Sofia Song.

The report shows a tale of two cities in one borough: While contract signings this January are down about 2% overall compared to last January, the Upper East Side experienced a 13% drop in contracts signed, while Midtown logged a 22.6% jump.

What gives?

"Wall Street bonuses are much smaller this year than last year, which will have a much larger impact on certain segments of the market such as larger apartments, particularly in tony neighborhoods," Song tells BrickUnderground. Further downtown, she says, "Foreign buyers are driving contracts."

We've reprinted some more key findings from each report below:

Manhattan Decade 2002-2011 Elliman Report  

  • Prices and sales have remained generally stable for the past 3 years.  
  • The last two years of the decade saw the most sales of 3-bedroom and 4-bedroom apartments.
  • 2012 3rd highest total number of sales in a decade, second consecutive year above 10,000 sales.
  • Listing inventory of 7,221 in 2011 was similar to the 10-year average of 7,029
  • Foreign buyers and the wealthy continued to seek financial refuge in the high end Manhattan housing market.
  • Median sales price was $850,000 in 2011, down 3.4% from $880,000 in 2010, up 88.9% from $450,000 in 2002.
  • Average price per square foot was $1,087 in 2011, up 2.5% from $1,060 in 2010, up 76.2% from $617 in 2002.
  • Average sales price was $1,426,912 down 2.1% in 2011 from $1,457,255 in 2010, up 79.5% from $795,079 in 2002
  • Number of sales increased 1% to 10,161 in 2011 from 10,060 in 2010, up 6.9% from 9,509 in 2002.
  • Listing inventory slipped 0.2% to 7,221 in 2011 from 7,232 in 2010, down 3.8% from 7,506 in 2002.
  • Market share of co-op sales in 2011: 50.3%; 2010 47.9%; 2001 63.9%
  • Market share of condo sales in 2011: 49.7%; 2010 52.1%; 2001 36.1%
  • Days on Market was 127 days in 2011, up 6.7% from 119 in 2010, up 0.8% from 126 in 2002
  • Listing Discount was 4.3% in 2011, down from 7.1% in 2010, up from 3.5% in in 2002

StreetEasy Manhattan Market Report - January 2012

  • Inventory has continued to tighten, by 3.2% since last year. Upper Manhattan had a decrease of 12.8% while other major markets remained relatively stable.
  • Listing median price went up 3.1% in Manhattan compared to a year ago. The Upper East and Upper Manhattan markets had listing median price declines of 12.5% and 4.3%, respectively.
  • Compared to the prior January, 10.4% more starter apartments went into contract this month than family-sized apartments, which declined by 13.0%.


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Teri Karush Rogers

Founder & Publisher

Founder and publisher Teri Karush Rogers launched Brick Underground in 2009. As a freelance journalist, she had previously covered New York City real estate for The New York Times. Teri has been featured as an expert on New York City residential real estate by The New York Times, New York Daily News, amNew York, NBC Nightly News, The Real Deal, Business Insider, the Huffington Post, and NY1 News, among others. Teri earned a BA in journalism and a law degree from New York University.

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