(Bloomberg) — Judging by the last quarter of 2020, New York’s luxury real estate market should enter 2021 with confidence.
Sales of homes that cost more than $4 million were a little above those of the same three months in 2019, says Donna Olshan, president of luxury real estate broker Olshan Realty. “Now, some of that has to do with demand that was never met, because we lost the most important quarter—the spring,” she says.
But the tick upward is also, she says, “because most of these sales are [to] New Yorkers, or from the New York metro area, betting on the home team. They are getting Covid-19 discounts, they’re looking at the long-term prospects of New York, and they’re buying.”
As the city looks toward next year, the known unknowns loom large. The timeline of the vaccine rollouts is opaque. A proposed pied-à-terre tax, dreaded by everyone in the industry, remains possible. And the economic futures of the city, the country, and the world are up in the air.
But the city’s luxury residential market has enough momentum to make experts feel comfortable making some conditional predictions.
Suburb Mania Is Over
“The way I think of the suburbs is that they had their moment,” says Jonathan Miller, president and chief executive officer of Miller Samuel appraisers, who adds: “The ‘fleeing the city’ narrative is already extremely dated.”
While suburban sales are still up year over year, “it’s just no longer a rocket ship of growth,” he says. “And the jump in pricing, largely caused by what I would call panic buying—where people left the city out of fear—that was front end-loaded, and I don’t see a compelling reason why that [price growth] can be sustainable.”
John Walkup, CEO and co-founder of UrbanDigs, agrees. He says the move to the suburbs this year was really part of an older trend. “We were in year three in this shift to the suburbs picking up in demand, relative to New York City,” Walkup says.
This spring’s hysterical exodus to New York’s suburban areas was “a bit of a flash,” Walkup continues. “Prices and deal activity have spiked.”
Brooklyn Will Stay Hot
“Houses were on fire,” Olshan says. “Townhouses in Brooklyn did very well during the pandemic.”
The median price for luxury home sales in the fourth quarter in Brooklyn is expected to be up 5.5% year-over-year, according to UrbanDigs data. (“Luxury” in Brooklyn is defined by UrbanDigs as anything over $2 million.) Contracts signed are up an anticipated 26.2% for the same period, and days on the market are down by nearly half.
Overall, despite the nonexistent spring sales season, this year’s median luxury sales price in Brooklyn, according to UrbanDigs, was only down 1.5% compared to last year.
“A lot of it has to do with the lower price point,” says Walkup. “A million dollars buys you a bit more space, or a Zoom room, and once you get into that luxury sector, that value grows quite a bit.”
The demand shows no signs of abating.
“Brooklyn is certainly accelerating,” Walkup says, “and I don’t see any reason for that to stop.”
Foreign Buyers Will Keep Away
“Foreign buyers are a bit of a straw man because sometimes they’re blamed for the ups, and sometimes they’re blamed for the downs,” Walkup says.
Still, many luxury buildings—particularly condominiums along the stretch of W. 57th Street known as “Billionaires Row”—“were predominantly positioned for the foreign market, and that’s where oversupply is at its greatest,” Olshan says.
“Unless the deployment of the vaccine is very, very successful, we won’t see the foreign market back” for at least the first half of next year, she adds.
Manhattan Will Still Have Too Much of the Wrong Thing
The new luxury condominium market “is burdened with a tremendous amount of supply,” Miller says.
“In 2020 we had 8.7 years of sellout, meaning it would take 8.7 years to sell all unsold Manhattan new-development condos,” he says. That is likely to drop to 7.2 years in 2021, because there’s an anticipated “decline of new product coming into the market,” Miller says. Plus, additional sales will occur as buyers are drawn by discounted pricing, he says.
“I think in 2021 we’ll see a continued drop in price trends,” he says.
… and That Means Major Discounts
That’s a nice way of saying there could be serious deals to be found. The only question is at which buildings.
“The problem with developers is that they are held hostage to the bank or their lenders,” Olshan explains. That means that a developer can’t just price on a whim. It’s a negotiation. Whichever buildings sort out their discounts first might have the upper hand.
“These things take a long time, and you know the buyers go where the next project is. If you don’t lower your price, they’ll move on. It’s just that simple.”
The next few months, Olshan says, “are going to be remembered as the time when it was optimal to go out and strike a deal.”
©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Planon acquires a majority stake in real estate software company Reasult BV – Canada NewsWire
NIJMEGEN, Netherlands, Jan. 20, 2021 /CNW/ — The Planon Group and Reasult today announced that Planon has acquired a majority share in Reasult B.V., founded in 2000 and headquartered in Ede (the Netherlands). Reasult is a software company that optimizes the financial performance of real estate portfolios and projects. Reasult’s leading software solutions are used by real estate developers, asset managers and housing corporations in the Dutch- and German-speaking markets. Example customers are Amvest, a.s.r. real estate, VolkerWessels and HANSAINVEST.
The Reasult software suite includes solutions for real estate development, asset- and portfolio- management, valuation management and financial planning. Planon will combine the Reasult applications with its own solutions for asset management and tenant management and engagement, into one software suite. By doing so, Planon aims to support real estate owners and investors in optimizing the performance of their property portfolio from a financial, building operations and tenant engagement perspective.
“This acquisition is one of the first steps in Planon’s ambitious goals to accelerate its future growth. Planon firmly believes in the strength of Reasult’s solutions and its organization, both from a technical perspective and due to its extensive market knowledge and experience. It is therefore Planon’s plan to continue to expand the Reasult software suite, as it has done with previously acquired solutions such as SamFM and conjectFM. I am very excited about this acquisition and the possibilities it will offer to customers of both organizations to further develop their current solutions into an end-to-end property portfolio management solution,” said Pierre Guelen, CEO and founder of the Planon Group.
“As co-founder of Reasult 20 years ago, I am very excited about becoming part of a fast-growing global specialist in the field of building operations and service digitalization. With this move, Reasult will be able to further fulfil its strategy of offering a leading platform for optimizing real estate in the broadest sense. As part of a market leading organization, our customers and employees will benefit from this strategic step. The Planon and Reasult solutions are complementary which drives synergy and innovation. This collaboration will allow us to serve our customers in the best way possible and deliver innovative products to help real estate companies be ‘the best in class,'” said Aart Zandbergen, CEO at Reasult.
Medicine Hat's real estate market holds steady in 2020 – CHAT News Today
But as far as sales go, it’s very close to the city’s standard and is comparable to the 10-year average.
House prices have even gone up a little bit. Devine says the 6 percent increase is due to the cost of the new and bigger houses being built.
Meantime, the average residential home price is almost $300,000 for homes in Crescent Heights, Crestwood, and Ross Glen.
Relatively speaking, Devine says our city has been fairly stable during COVID-19 in the housing market and it hasn’t changed a whole lot.
“I think overall, people that have money still have money. COVID doesn’t affect those people too much. Working people, obviously the interest rate makes a big difference. For young people buying their first homes, interest rates make a big difference. I think due to the diversity of Medicine Hat and the economy here I think that’s why there are so many people buying and getting into starter homes.”
Devine expects 2021 to be a busy year for Medicine Hat in the real estate market
“I think the biggest factor is going to be probably people wanting to get out of cities and to a city of our size that has a lot to offer and has room to basically spread out and people aren’t so congested. I think it will be a very good thing for the city a size of Medicine Hat.”
For the December 2020 market trend summary from the Alberta Real Estate Association visit this link.
And as far as real estate goes, Devine says Medicine Hat is probably one of the most stable places in the country.
“Due to the diversity of the city. Obviously, the oil patch has an effect on us, but the size of the city is very good, farming and ranching community, manufacturing community, we have a lot of different things going for us in this area, so it works really good for the real estate market and keeps it very stable.”
Neuberger Arm Commits $320 Million to Asia Capital Real Estate – BNN
(Bloomberg) — Almanac Realty Investors, an arm of Neuberger Berman, has committed $320 million to Asia Capital Real Estate, a private equity firm focused on workforce housing.
The investment, led by Almanac managing director Justin Hakimian, is set to anchor ACRE debt and equity funds that target multifamily properties catering to tenants who don’t qualify for subsidized housing but don’t earn enough to afford homes where they live and work.
It’s a corner of real estate that, unlike hotels and malls, hasn’t been adversely impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, the firms said Tuesday.
“The uncertainty of the current economic climate has had acute effects for commercial real estate, which is causing many investors to seek out funds with a more secure risk-return profile,” ACRE founding partner Michael Van Der Poel said in a statement.
Since the onset of the pandemic, ACRE has made loans to borrowers such as City Club Apartments for properties in Detroit, Michigan and Cincinnati, Ohio, and to Sovereign Properties for a multifamily project in North Richland Hills, Texas. It has also sold buildings in Atlanta and Athens, Georgia, to Fillmore Capital Partners, among other exits.
“Middle-market multifamily assets offer a more stable long-term outlook than many other areas of the market,” said Van Der Poel, who leads ACRE alongside founding partners Les Menkes and Blake Olafson.
ACRE, which manages more than $1.8 billion, has more than 20,000 apartments in its portfolio. Almanac will own a minority stake in ACRE and anchor its fourth equity fund, which will make bets on multifamily properties in the Southeast, Midwest and Texas.
Other institutional investors have also stepped up their bets on workforce housing. Bobby Turner’s Turner Impact Capital in December said it raised more than $350 million for its second fund, garnering backing from billionaire Bill Ackman’s Pershing Square Foundation, among others.
Neuberger last year acquired Almanac, which spun out of Rothschild in 2007, to bolster its real estate efforts. The firm has backed dozens of real estate owners and operators including Mack Real Estate Group, RXR Realty, Slate Asset Management and ReNew Senior Living.
©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
Planon acquires a majority stake in real estate software company Reasult BV – Canada NewsWire
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