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Riverdale is one part of New York City where, assuming you have the cash, you can buy a sprawling suburban-style mansion and—unlike the heated market for Brooklyn brownstones—not face an army of rival bidders coveting the same house, the New York Observer reports.
This well-to-do part of the Bronx, and specifically its high-end Fieldston enclave, hasn't seen the kind of real estate boom that's rocking other parts of the city. While a Manhattan three-bedroom apartment will set you back $4 million, on average, the 12 big homes currently on the market in Riverdale—all of which range from four to eight bedrooms—are asking between $2 and $4 million, according to StreetEasy.
Still, is Riverdale truly a win-win for space-hungry buyers? Below, some pros and cons, courtesy the Observer:
- Most places are legitimately big—well over 3,000 square feet. And they're not narrow brownstones that share a wall with the neighbors: they're real houses with backyards substantial enough you'd best describe them as grounds.
- Many houses have been sitting on the market for a while, so sellers may be open to negotiating on price or other parts of the deal.
- If you've got a car, you're only 20 minutes from Manhattan, which is pretty agreeable as far as commutes to the suburbs go.
- Riverdale lacks urban conveniences. Don't expect the kind of nightlife or shopping you'd get in Manhattan, Brooklyn and even some parts of Queens.
- When it comes time to sell, depending on what the market is like then, you may face the same kind of slump that makes the area so value-friendly for buyers right now. From 2009 to 2013, almost a third fewer properties over $1 million sold compared to the previous five years, the Observer reports, and several dozen homes have been on the market for six months or more—quite a contrast to the Brooklyn brownstone market, where many homes are getting multiple offers.