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While the Covid-19 pandemic does not seem to be slowing down, or resuming as a second wave depending on the location, there are many lessons to be learned, almost six months after the start of the first containment measures.
From a global perspective, real estate has reasserted itself as a safe haven at a time when economic activity is contracting and stock markets are fluctuating nervously, both as a source and consequence of notorious instability.
As far as New York real estate is concerned, it is interesting to note, once again, the very strong resilience of this market, which has so far had only limited impact. Although historically there has been virtually no room for negotiation, in 2019 and early 2020 we saw the first signs of a “buyer’s market“, i.e. that it was (finally) possible to negotiate a little bit on asking prices, at a rate of a few percent depending on the neighborhood and the property. Since the second quarter, this trend has increased somewhat as demand has contracted in the wake of containment measures and restrictions on international travel. The fact that at the same time the inventory has also been reduced by around 30% (some people have taken advantage of the situation to withdraw their goods from the market in anticipation of better days) has tempered the increase in this margin for negotiation; we are now seeing price reductions of around 5% to 10% in the former.
On the other hand, it is a sector that is particularly affected by the effects of the pandemic, and especially by travel restrictions (especially international travel). These are new programs that are mostly targeted by buyers who do not live in New York, and/or rental investors. Moreover, these new programs have much more impactful scheduling and financing constraints than an individual owner, and they must “sell off their inventory” as quickly as possible in order to honor the commitments made to the various stakeholders, including financing and regulations.
It is on the strength of this observation and the recent negotiations conducted by BARNES New York with various developers, which revealed unprecedented commercial discounts, that we now recommend that wise investors take a close look at this real estate sector. Although this varies by project, inventory and neighborhood, we are relatively confident that we will achieve negotiation targets that go even beyond 15%. In some places, our clients have even been fortunate enough to exceed 25% cumulative discount (price and closing fee concessions). While the New York real estate market has historically, and on many occasions, demonstrated its strong resilience and ability to absorb various economic shocks, the exceptional discounts currently granted (until the health and economic situation in the world normalizes) should translate into as many gains in value in the short to medium term.
Do not hesitate to contact us now so that we can present you with the most relevant options today; as well as to pre-register for the next webinar we will be holding on this topic in the coming weeks.
Last but not least, which mainly concerns residents more than investors (although), the containment measures and the risks incurred in high-density areas have favoured a significant growth of the residential real estate market in the inner suburbs. Any property located less than an hour’s drive from Manhattan, in a lower density area, with a stock of single-family homes and a satisfactory school offer, has seen its appreciation increase considerably since the beginning of the year. It is still uncertain at this stage what the long-term effect of such an exodus will be: is it for secondary use (weekends, holidays) or for permanent settlement? In any case, “suburbia” has a bright future ahead of it, and this could be more sustainable than the pandemic. With this in mind, BARNES New York is preparing to open an agency in Westchester, as close as possible to the French-speaking communities of Larchmont and Mamaroneck. Although we are already working on this project through our network of agents active in the area, we will be making a new panel of resources and an office available to you by the end of the year.
Elected for the second year as the best hotel group in the world, discover the future and first establishment of Six Senses in the United States, within the New York condominium under construction, the XI. And take advantage of BARNES ‘partnership with their Crans-Montana site, in the heart of the Swiss Alps.
Now renowned for being the best luxury hotel group in the world, Six Senses has earned this worldwide fame thanks to its values, its architecture always in harmony with the local environment, and its outstanding service. Six Senses’s mission is to promote luxury and personal health, while being sustainable; their vision being to improve all aspects of the experience specific to the needs of each client, from sleep to food and of course well-being with exceptional spas and a physical support service and personalized spiritual.
Six Senses is present in the most coveted regions of the world: Maldives, Seychelles, Thailand, Oman, Portugal… The chain now has 19 hotels around the world and numerous opening projects in new and equally exceptional locations.
New York – The XI, future first American installation of 6S
Located in desirable Chelsea, the XI is an entire block of residential condominium development, overlooking the Hudson River on one side and the High Line on the other, right in the heart of New York City. Led by the developer HFZ Capital Group, and designed by the architecture firm Bjarke Ingels Group, this project with two towers (the X and the I) will include 247 apartments, the famous Six Senses hotel with 137 rooms, 8,000 m² of premises commercial, an artistic space, …
The XI will therefore host the very first Six Senses hotel in North America. The residents of the XI will be able to benefit from the advantages and exclusive services of the hotel (laundry, housekeeping, valet, restaurants, room service, conference rooms, lifestyle expertise and concierge, etc.) and will also be able to take advantage of commercial discounts in all areas. chain hotels. They will also receive a free two-year membership to 6S Place, their private health club, including: multi-service spa, heated swimming pool, jacuzzi, fitness center, sauna, hammam, meditation room, yoga studio, bars juice, coworking spaces, lounges, …
Located at 76 11th Ave, this new program will be delivered in early 2020; with prices ranging from $ 2,350,000 for a 1-bedroom to $ 9,000,000 for a 4-bedroom.
Crans-Montana – Barnes Suisse 6S offer
Barnes Suisse sells the Six Senses Residences in Crans-Montana, in the heart of the Swiss Alps, an enchanting village surrounded by striking nature. It shines through the excellence of its hotel industry, its major sporting events, its social and cultural life. Just an hour’s flight from the main European capitals, the resort enjoys ideal accessibility. Six Senses Résidences presents an exceptional opportunity to become the owner of a prestigious apartment in the jewel of the Alps. New program delivered in 2021, only 17 apartments are available. Owners will have access to the exclusive amenities and privileges of the 6S resort while enjoying the privacy of a private second home.
Built with renewable and local materials, in compliance with energy and water consumption standards, the residences have a low environmental footprint while offering sumptuous and comfortable spaces for an ideal vacation in the mountains. It is important to note that the Six Senses in Crans-Montana is the only luxury real estate product that foreigners can buy in Switzerland, as a secondary home and without applying for a Swiss residence.
Contact your BARNES New York branch for any information regarding the Six Senses offer in New York or Crans-Montana.
It’s decided, New York City will be your next living destination. Congratulations! All you have to do is find the house of your dreams in NYC. But here, between the choice of neighborhoods, type of property, meanders and specificity of the real estate system of Big Apple, the best solution to not be lost is to use a real estate agent. Yes, but who, when and how?
Who is who ?
There are indeed several names relating to a real estate agent that do not designate the same person:
A Real Estate Agent is a licensed professional who can be either a Sales Associate or a Broker.
The real estate agent can be either a “listing agent” or a “buyer agent” (in this case, it represents buyers).
A realtor is a real estate agent who is a member of the National Association of Realtors®.
Now you know.
How to choose the right real estate agent in the United States?
Surely because the variety of properties in the New York real estate market is huge, there are numerous NYC real estate agencies. Beware, not all are equal. Experience and knowledge of the market, confidentiality, availability and reliability are some of the essential qualities that must be possessed by the real estate agent you choose.
Thus, a real estate agent worthy of the name must help you effectively:
In the purchase of a real estate: understanding your needs perfectly (proximity to all conveniences and amenities or, on the contrary, in peace or close to schools for your settling family, etc …), and knowing on the New York real estate market like the back of their hand, the types of properties, the sale prices of similar properties … In a very dynamic and competitive market like NYC, you have to be extremely reactive because everything is first come first serve. Betting on a knowledgeable and experienced professional, who knows the procedure of buying real estate, is a 100% return guarantee.
In the sale of real estate: putting your property for sale “at the right price” is not necessarily obvious. Here again, the use of an experienced and serious real estate agent is essential because only they know the market price and prices of similar goods recently sold. A successful real estate transaction is a transaction made quickly at a price acceptable to the buyer and profitable to the seller. Selling a property at too high a price is simply a waste of time and money, if you need to sell.
But that’s not all, your choice of a real estate agent should focus on the one who works in a reputable real estate agency or group, which has a network of potential customers. BARNES is today the international leader in high-end residential real estate and has a portfolio of clients all over the world. BARNES experts go well beyond the search for real estate and offer a global service to each of their customers.
It’s officially summer season for the Hamptons, an area northeast of Long Island, New York, a short drive from Manhattan. It’s New Yorkers’ favorite place to escape the chaos of the “Big Apple” and relax in the sun, or party in the hippest spots of Southampton and Montauk …
The Hamptons have been very popular for years. Its villages provide an ideal mix for New Yorkers during the summer: oceanfront, rural atmosphere, historic and exclusive charm, all within a convenient distance from New York. Indeed, from Manhattan, it is easy to get there by train, car, bus, or even helicopter. If the people and the local atmosphere are reminiscent of New York City, the area is much more laid back and pleasant for the summer.
Many famous people own vacation homes there, and the absence of paparazzi and privacy make the place conducive to lounging and relaxation. For others, the Hamptons are characterized by world-class beaches, renowned restaurants, and a very lively atmosphere …
WHEN TO VISIT THE HAMPTONS?
Visitors generally start arriving at the Hamptons from Memorial Day (May); but the real high season is from July to Labor Day (early September). This is where the “social scene” is at its peak, with various festivals and events … You can also spend a weekend in the Hamptons in the off-season (September – October), when the villages are less crowded and the weather remains mild.
HOW TO GET TO THE HAMPTONS?
The easiest way from New York is to drive. This is a 2-3 hour drive from Midtown to East Hampton Village, depending on traffic. Many visitors also get there by bus, via the famous “Hampton Jitney” or the “Hampton Luxury Liner” which stops in major hamlets and villages.
Another option is to take the LIRR “Long Island Rail Road” train. Local trains can take up to 3 hours to get to Montauk from Penn Station. There is, however, an express train serving the Hamptons every Friday afternoon in the summer.
The quickest option is to get there by helicopter from Manhattan, avoiding traffic jams and reaching the Hamptons in less than half an hour; finally, for those who can afford it …
WHERE TO STAY AT THE HAMPTONS?
Vacation Rentals: The best way to spend summer in the Hamptons is to spend a weekend, a month, or all of the summer in a house or apartment. August is the most expensive time to book; it’s rare to find even a modest rental for less than $ 7,000 per month, and prices for more luxurious homes even hit six figures!
Hotels: The Hamptons remain limited in terms of hotels. Montauk is the place with the most choice for finding rooms and a variety of options.
Camping: It is also possible to pitch a tent in Montauk’s Hither Hills from $ 35 per day (if you book early). Campground therefore remains the most affordable option to spend the summer in the Hamptons …
Do not hesitate to contact us for more information.
But, fear not! In this article, we define these two types of property ownership for highly sought after real estate in New York City and help you determine which is the right choice for you.
Condo vs. Co-op: An overview
First thing’s first, this division is a feature unique to the New York City real estate market. While approximately 75% of real estate in New York City are co-ops, more condos are active on the market. So even before drafting up their criteria, it’s necessary that potential buyers know the answers to these two fundamental questions: What is a condo? And what exactly is a co-op?
A condo or condominium allows buyers to acquire full ownership of an apartment in addition to a percentage of the building’s shared areas. At closing, buyers receive adeed, as if buying a house.
A co-op or housing cooperative only allows buyers to acquire shares in the corporation, which functions as the residential building. Keep in mind that the size of the share reflects the size of the unit that the shareowner will occupy. At closing, buyers receive a proprietary lease, detailing the share owner’s right to live in a particular unit or apartment.
Luxury condos and co-ops do not differ physically and offer the expected amenities: doorman, in-building superintendent, concierge, storage, etc. However, the more upscale the building, the more upscale amenities, such as daycare centers, spas, gyms, dog facilities, etc. Of course, these factors will depend on the Manhattan (or perhaps even Brooklyn) neighborhood you choose to buy in and your budget. A crucial differences lie in the fact that a condo is considered “real property” and a co-op share “personal property”.
Should you buy a condo …
Long story short, condos are a relatively new invention of the New York City real estate market and most often found in Manhattan’snew hip neighborhoods—such as the West and East Villages. As a result, they tend to benefit from recent construction and a more modern layout and design.
When compared to the co-op application process, potential condo buyers face much less scrutiny. There is a board of directors, but they only have the “right of first refusal”. In a nutshell, this means that they only have two options: 1) To approve the buyer or 2) Buy the condo themselves. Additionally, condos are much more open to international investors, as there are much fewer restrictions on foreign funds financing the acquisition. Though each association is different, condo owners are more or less permitted to put their unit on the rental market, to be leased and subleased.
When it comes to spending, condos are on average more expensive than co-ops; yet, they offer more lenient down payments of only 10% of the purchase price. Also, consider closing costs and additional fees: title insurance for both lender and purchaser; title searches, recording fees, transfer tax, mansion tax, etc. And since condo owners purchase a portion of the communal areas, they are also subjected to common charges, covering landscaping, paying staff, and some utilities.
Conclusion: Buy a condo in New York City if you are looking for flexibility and limited regulations, you have a higher long-term budget, and a revolving door of new neighborhoods won’t worry you.
… or a co-op?
Conversely, co-ops are concentrated in historic, often pre-war, buildings in older yet more centralized residential neighborhoods, like the Upper West Side or the Upper East Side along Park Avenue, for example.
You might have already heard the rumors, co-op boards are notoriously tough as applicants are held to the highest standards. Potential buyers are required to share financial information and employment verification, as well as a background check. Co-op building’s rules and regulations are every bit as rigorous though varied, with heavy restrictions on renting out apartments for long periods of time. International buyers, we’re sorry to say that co-ops are known to reject oversee funds.
The down payment for co-ops can reach anywhere from 20% to 50% of the purchase price. Don’t fret, these prices are generally lower than condos. Additional costs to consider are overall much lower than condos, however, shareowners are still subjected to the mansion tax and relatively high mortgage fees. Co-ops are not excuses from maintenance charges, which are nearly the same as condos.
Conclusion: Buy a co-op apartment in Manhattan if you are looking to plant roots or for long-term investment and pride yourself in being an open book.
In any case, contact a BARNES New York consultant to buy an apartment in Manhattan and decide which type of property ownership is ideal for you.
Whether you are new to New York or a longtime resident, searching for the best neighborhood to live in in Brooklyn is both an exciting and demanding exercise. With a more relaxed pace of life than Manhattan, thanks to its many parks, greater security, and a general feeling of calm, Brooklyn is very popular with expats, families, but also young professionals for its trendy side. With the growing attractiveness of this “borough”, many micro-neighborhoods have developed there. Here is a short guide to some of them, favorites of the French in Brooklyn, according to BARNES – Luxury Real Estate Agency for more than 10 years. This will help you find the neighborhood that suits you best.
The trendiest neighborhoods
These Brooklyn neighborhoods are very attractive to young professionals thanks to their diversity, dynamism and accessibility. They include a large number of bars, restaurants, museums and art galleries.
It is undoubtedly the Brooklyn neighborhood that has experienced the most upheaval in the past 15 years. Williamsburg is Brooklyn’s pioneer neighborhood, showing its living potential and real estate value.
Connected to Manhattan by the L Line (which ultimately won’t close after years of doubt), the first stop after the East River is in the heart of Williamsburg. The neighborhood is thus ideally placed and offers a remarkable compromise: comfort, luxury and proximity to Manhattan, while remaining in the relaxed atmosphere of Brooklyn. It is easy to travel between the two boroughs, whether by metro, ferry, or bicycle. Williamsburg has a rich cultural and artistic heritage with upscale restaurants and art galleries.
The popularity of the neighborhood has necessarily been accompanied by a rise in prices. Today it is one of the most expensive neighborhoods in New York City. However, the work in progress on the L line, which could complicate journeys a bit, has tempered this increase for a time. Yann Rousseau, deputy director of Barnes New York indicates that “the announcement of the shutdown of Line L in 2015 caused a drop in real estate prices, both residential and commercial, and many businesses have closed their doors. When two months before the closure scheduled for April 2019, the Governor gave up this measure so devastating for the neighborhood, real estate immediately changed its trend and it is now again attractive to invest ”.
Dumbo, acronym for “Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass”, has been very popular for years both for its proximity to Manhattan and for the views of its skyscrapers. Now one of the most desirable neighborhoods, Dumbo has welcomed New Yorkers who abandoned their apartments in SoHo and Tribeca for lofts, cobblestone streets, and some quiet. Very trendy district with upscale restaurants, it invites young workers and families. Many French parents have made their home in Dumbo, among others for its nursery school (The Language and Laughter Studio) which offers lessons in French. The neighborhood is also very pleasant for children thanks to the many green spaces and other attractions.
The most “family-friendly” neighborhoods
Greenery, parks, attractions, good schools… These criteria are very important for French families (and others) in New York. You don’t have to choose between a great family life or the buzz of New York City because today it is possible to have the best of both worlds in these Brooklyn neighborhoods!
A lively neighborhood with a wide choice of shops, restaurants and bars, Carroll Gardens offers a particularly French flavor to Brooklyn. It is also a district rich in history, which retains its brownstone style with brown stone townhouses, authentic European pastry shops, as well as numerous parks and green spaces. These qualities make the neighborhood an ideal place to raise children, in particular thanks to its multiple teaching options in French: the private bilingual International School of Brooklyn and the public school PS58 The Carroll School which offers a French bilingual program. English. If you are looking for a private garden, this is the area of choice, with its offer of brownstones, buildings often divided into luxury apartments but sometimes kept as detached houses. Moreover, “the French are largely responsible for the increase in the prices of goods located in the area of the PS58 school”, confides Christophe Bourreau, director of Barnes New York.
“Park Slope is a neighborhood highly coveted by families for a multitude of reasons,” says Christophe Bourreau. “The schools there are excellent, there is real diversity, family friendliness, quality parks… The district is also known for its culture and vitality”.
Indeed, many families are leaving Manhattan for the more pleasant life of Park Slope. It is famous for its pretty 19th and 20th century brown brick houses but also for its few modern buildings. “Townhouses”, “condos” and “co-ops” in well-preserved buildings characterize the neighborhood well. There is something for every taste ! Although the supply is limited and the demand for “townhouses” is high, there are many styles and prices to choose from for real estate in Park Slope.
This quiet and peaceful neighborhood in central Brooklyn owes its historic charm to its architecture and key location. It is the most exclusive area of the “borough”, enjoying a central position (close to Downtown Brooklyn), serene and residential streets, yet adjacent to the dynamic and well-connected main streets. Brooklyn Heights has been attracting new buyers for years, mainly young professionals and young couples looking to be close to good schools, to live in a residential environment, or simply to invest in more spacious accommodation… It also remains a value safe haven investment in the long term, due to limited inventory and strong demand.
Neighborhoods to watch closely for investment
As Brooklyn’s popularity continues to rise, other neighborhoods are emerging and developing. Watch it today as long as the prices are affordable …
At the northern tip of Brooklyn, above Williamsburg, is the charming neighborhood of Greenpoint. Once a bastion of the Polish community, it has retained its industrial aspect of the end of the 19th century, when factories, glassworks and construction sites were active. Greenpoint has taken advantage of these large spaces by modernizing them. Factories and other warehouses are stylishly transformed into modern and luxurious apartments that prompt celebrities such as Sarah Jessica Parker or Paul Giamatti to move in. The area’s real estate is very attractive at the moment as prices have not yet peaked in more central areas, and are notably much lower there than in Williamsburg. Indeed, Christophe Bourreau confirms that “real estate in Greenpoint has for years been watched by many investors because the gentrification process has already started”.
In addition, another public school with instruction in French is located there, PS110, The Monitor School. The bohemian yet refined atmosphere, art galleries, trendy bars and restaurants make Greenpoint a great option. “Its proximity to Long Island City (LIC), Williamsburg and Manhattan make it an area with great potential. Amazon’s announcement to move to Long Island City immediately resulted in Greenpoint’s prices rising. Amazon has changed its mind, but it won’t be long before other companies create similar moves, ”predicts Christophe Bourreau.
Bedford-Stuyvesant, a district in vogue today, owes its evolution to the beauty of its alleys and its “brownstown” houses. Although the price of real estate there has already risen significantly in recent years, buying and renting in Bed-Stuy is still cheaper than in Manhattan or Dumbo. This pleasant district of Brooklyn charms its visitors with its houses with gardens or its buildings not exceeding three floors. New York City has designated Bed-Stuy as a Historic District, protecting over 800 buildings! Living in Bed-Stuy therefore means that you will be able to enjoy these views every day …
An emerging neighborhood ideal for active city dwellers looking for a more lively, evolving, and relatively inexpensive neighborhood. One of the few neighborhoods still in transition, Bushwick is a source of inspiration for artists and writers. The neighborhood remained the same until the mid-1990s, when it has since become a hub for new entrepreneurs and startups. The neighborhood began to gain notoriety when artists and designers seized local real estate opportunities to create trendy lofts and studios. The streets of Bushwick are a veritable open-air museum dedicated to street art: it is one of the few places in the United States where crowds come to contemplate the walls! In addition, the parks add a lot of recreational value to Bushwick.
“People looking for the ‘real’ Brooklyn usually find what they are looking for in Bushwick,” says Feryel Cherait of the house Barnes.
Moving to New York is a life project that can be as exciting as it can be scary at times. Being accompanied by a real estate expert is a real guarantee of success. This is the reason why BARNES is always very attentive to the opportunities that the New York market may offer to its clientele of investors or looking for the right deal. Thanks to its network, BARNES can help you invest in an apartment in New York without charge or monthly tax for several years … even up to 10 years!
It is important to know that in New York, every owner of a condo must pay the condo fees (or “common charges”) each month.
These fees are often paid monthly to the building and correspond to the running costs of the latter, which will often provide its residents with a gym, a doorman, a swimming pool, maintenance of common areas, etc. The more services there are, the more the cost increases.
Thus, in Manhattan, these charges are on average $ 1.30 / sq ft or $ 14 / m2. In other words, for a 90 m2 apartment, it takes $ 15,600 / year.
In addition to these building charges, there is also the real estate tax (“Real Estate Tax”) which may vary from one building to another but which will be on average close to $ 1.20 / sqft ($ 13 / m2) . Or $ 14,400 for a 90 m² apartment.
These monthly charges and taxes, commonly called “Carrying cost” can therefore represent around $ 30,000 per year, or even $ 150,000 over 5 years, which is not negligible… Fortunately, these costs can be reduced considerably, or even to be entirely dispensed with!
Regarding property tax, it should be noted that some buildings benefit from tax reduction programs, thanks to the “421-A”, attributed by the city of New York to buildings that meet a certain number of criteria.
This allowance usually lasts 10 years, but can in some cases last 15 or 25 years, especially when the city wants to encourage developers to build in certain areas or certain types of buildings. The mechanism is progressive with total exemption in the first years (up to 12 years after delivery of the building) then a graduated increase in the Real Estate Tax until the program expires.
Note that 421-A benefits the building as a whole, and not a developer or owner, which is a valuable resale aid.
For example, if you buy an apartment in a tax-rebated building in the first year and sell it in the seventh year, your buyer will in turn benefit from the remaining three years of reduced taxes since the allowance remains with the property, and not with its owner.
BARNES can also advise you on certain buildings that combine the benefit of 421-A and exemption from condominium fees, which has the consequence of having a “carrying cost” of … $ 0!
Indeed, some condominiums in NYC offer the payment of your charges by the developer, as long as certain conditions are met. Thus, we can exempt from paying the charges of a 1 Bedroom for 5 years, or 10 years for a 3 Bedroom! And at the same time, benefit from all the many quality services of the building.
In this context, BARNES New York can allow its clients to take advantage of these opportunities and optimize their investment. Thanks among other things to a perfect knowledge of the New York real estate market, to the advice of our experts allowing the best negotiations as well as to the privileged commercial relations maintained with the most reputable developers.
The icing on the cake: the buyer’s broker’s commission is paid by the seller, even if the interests of the buyer have been defended in the negotiation!
According to a recent article by Brick Underground, the luxury condo market is slowing down. As a result, developers are willing to make more and more concessions to facilitate the sale.
For example, one of the largest developers in New York, Toll Brothers sometimes agree to the requests from buyers asking them to pay for the transfer tax and mansion tax for unit sales in their new buildings. These advantages that are oftentimes not assisted by a broker allows buyers to purchase under better conditions.
In fact, the developers’ goal is to never touch the selling price and thus maintain an upscale image, attracting buyers by conceding many benefits. Another possibility is getting the developer to cover all or part of your legal fees.
It’s also possible to get part of your condo fees taken care of or to negotiate free storage space. In some cases, it’s even possible for the developer to modify the apartment plan to satisfy buyers by moving a wall and/or using different materials.
To conclude, if you plan to buy in a new development, you’ll have to play a game of strategy. Promoters generally do all they can to keep the original price intact, leaving important concessions to the time of the negotiation.
We have advised buyers for over 15 years and remain at your disposal for advice.