The Real Deal New York

Manhattan’s median price of $1.15M breaks 27-year record

Prices for luxury pads jumped 25% to $6M during fourth quarter

January 05, 2016 08:00AM
By E.B. Solomont

From left: 10 West End Avenue and 123 Washington Street

From left: 10 West End Avenue and 123 Washington Street

After flirting with the $1 million mark, Manhattan’s median sale price shot up more than 17 percent during the fourth quarter to a record-setting $1.15 million, the highest price in 27 years, according to Douglas Elliman’s latest quarterly report.

The price surge was driven by new development closings, which accounted for nearly 19 percent of sales during the quarter, compared with around 10 percent over the past few years, said the report’s author, Jonathan Miller, of real estate appraisal firm Miller Samuel. “You have more and more projects approaching completion,” he said. “We’re seeing closings accelerate.”

The median price wasn’t the only record high during the fourth quarter.

The average sale price rose by 12 percent to a record $1.9 million, and the average price per foot shot up more than 28 percent to a record $1,645.

In the luxury market, the median sales price increased by a stunning 25 percent to $6 million. The luxury threshold jumped 18.5 percent year-over-year to a record $4.2 million.

Overall, the number of sales during the fourth quarter jumped 9.4 percent year over year to 2,973. Inventory remained relatively stable – at 5,046 – and the number of days on market dropped 21.9 percent year-over-year to 82 days.

Condominium sales – also with condo prices – also outpaced co-ops. Condo sales rose 28.6 percent during the quarter to 1,434, with a median price of $1.7 million (up 21.3 percent). Co-op sales dropped 4 percent to 1,539, with a median price of $749,000 (up 2.6 percent).

In a separate report also released Tuesday, Halstead Property said condos accounted for 50 percent of sales during the fourth quarter, the highest percentage since early 2009.

“We’ve got great new developments and they’re starting to close,” said Halstead CEO Diane Ramirez. “We’ve got tight inventory, so the fact that we have new developments coming is opening up our market for more product.”

Compass, which also released a report, drilled down into various Manhattan neighborhoods and said Downtown’s median price hit a record $1.7 million, while the Upper West Side had a median price of $1.3 million.

In the Corcoran Group report, the brokerage said the number of contracts signed during the fourth quarter dropped 12 percent to 2,961 from 3,373 in 2014’s fourth quarter. Corcoran’s report also found the steepest price gains in large apartments, with the median price for a three-bedroom jumping 24 percent to $3.8 million from $3.1 million a year earlier.