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Besides the much-heralded convenience factor, one of the long-anticipated consequences of the new Second Avenue subway stations in Yorkville has been the presumed effect on housing prices. While the far east side of Manhattan has long been one of the borough's comparatively affordable enclaves, now, with true proximity to the trains, many have assumed that prices in the area will edge up accordingly. In particular, this might be true for apartments right near Second Avenue that have faced years of construction noise and hassle, but now are sitting pretty with prime subway access.
With the three new stations up and running, we asked NeighborhoodX to crunch the numbers, comparing the change in year-over-year condo sales prices right near the new trains, versus in Yorkville as a whole. And while there was an extra bump in the sales closest to the new train stations, the effect wasn't necessarily as dramatic as you expect. See below:
Specifically, there was a 5.12 percent increase in condo prices near the new Second Avenue subway stations between 2016 and 2017, compared to a 2.66 percent increase in Yorkville prices overall, according to data NeighborhoodX pulled from Miller Samuel. (A note on methodology: NeighborhoodX only pulled data on condos, so this data doesn't include co-op apartments. And apartments near the Second Avenue subway were defined as those within a block of the three new stops at 72nd, 86th, and 96th streets.)
"We felt that these properties would have both been affected by the construction, and will have the benefit of proximity to the new stations now that the line is running," says NeighborhoodX founder Constantine Valhouli.
As for why the price differential is relatively small, Valhouli suggests a few possibilities. "Perhaps the upside has already been priced into the Yorkville market overall," he says. "Or perhaps looking at properties further east (on York Avenue or East End) might yield a different result, as their commute to the subway has now been shortened more dramatically."
As we've written previously, some market experts feel that the price hike has already baked into sales in the area, and the true difference over the next year will be in the rental market. For now, though, Valhouli tells us that the rental prices in the area are so skewed by concessions—which keep prices technically high even while offering discounts to renters—that it's tough to tell the difference just yet.
But stay tuned: As the market continues to cool and landlords are more likely to start dropping rents, it's very possible we'll be seeing the true value add of the Second Avenue subway play out over the course of 2017.
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