The Real Deal New York

Residential real estate need not fear de Blasio: Pam Liebman

December 19, 2013 10:25AM

Pamela Liebman

Pamela Liebman

Though 2013 may have been a mixed year for Corporate America, it sure was a bumper year for the New York City’s residential real estate market. And while commercial real estate execs might fear the next mayoral administration, their counterparts on the residential side expect the momentum of the market to continue under the new mayor, according to some of the real estate’s most high-profile players.

“Why would anyone want to turn such a successful ship around?” asked Pamela Liebman, CEO of the Corcoran Group, referring to incoming mayor Bill de Blasio and worries that his administration would hurt soaring sales. “We had the lowest inventory on record, yet we did our highest volume of sales,” Liebman told the New York Post. “I can’t really explain that, by the way.” Miller Samuel’s Jonathan Miller said the jump in activity was propelled by low interest rates.

“We had many people who were sitting on the fence who jumped in worried that they would miss out — it was the busiest summer on record,” Miller told the Post. Indeed, the year saw prices rising to the heady levels seen at the peak of the real estate boom, especially in high-profile new developments such as Alexico Group’s 56 Leonard and Jared Kushner’s Puck Building penthouses.

Even in less tony neighborhoods such as NoMad, prices at buildings such as Witkoff Group’s 10 Madison Square West hit north of $2,900 per square foot, according to the newspaper.

However, in contrast to the boom years, properties that were thought of as unreasonably high-priced did languish on the market in 2013, Warburg Realty’s president Frederick Peters told the Post.

“One of the ways that today’s market is substantially different than 2007 is that buyers today are both enthusiastic and cautious.” Peters said. “Buyers may fling themselves into a competitive bidding situation for a property they perceive as well-valued or undervalued, but they’ll stay away from something they perceive as too expensive.” [NYP]Hiten Samtani

  • marknroses

    Again, its not about real estate policies, but city policies that impact quality of life factors for residents, visitors and business that could ultimately undo some if not all of the advances that were successfully implemented by MaYor Bloomberg. That would be very detrimental to both commercial and residential real estate markets,.

    • Musashi

      Well said Brah! ;)

  • JamesPasteurIV

    Why??? Simple, he doesn’t believe in capitalism, at least not in the way Bloomberg did. He’s expressed his intentions clearly: he wants more developers to focus on creating low and middle class housing and intends to force them to do it. He may force them through tax changes, zoning changes, slowing down permit approvals, variance requests, etc., or maybe all of the above and he’s almost certain to do it. I have no idea if developers got a free ride or not during the Bloomberg years. I know prices went up and we saw significant development not seen on this scale in generations. Capitalism worked since people were clearly able to buy into these developments. It’s not as though they are all vacant. If those people were all wealthy (a dubious premise to begin with), then we can assume they spent accordingly on food, restaurants and other neighborhood services, creating jobs for people who DeBlasio claims he’s trying help.
    As for Pam Liebman’s suggestion that no one would want to turn a successful ship… her motives are clear: to keep prices going in the direction she wants, not the direction she secretly fears it will, despite her best attempt to steer the narrative in her direction.

    • Questions

      Serious question, and not that I am opposed to incentives and tax breaks, but would you consider many of Bloomberg’s policies as “capitalism” in its truest form?

      • JamesPasteurIV

        In its truest form, no. Once we introduce taxation, we’re altering the system. How politicians choose to push and pull taxations levels becomes an indirect measure of their capitalistic tendencies.

        • Carl A. Ekroth

          Well put.

        • Questions

          So giving tax payer money to corporations as tax breaks or for relocation is capitalistic, giving it to services for lower income people is not?

          • Common Sense

            I miss your point. You call taking less of a corp’s money “tax breaks?” Please explain your point that taking less of the corp’s money is somehow “giving” the corp someone else’s money? Letting a company keep more of their money does not require taking anyone’s money.

          • Questions

            Yes you did miss the point. The taxes pay for services many of which the corporation needs to utilize in order to conduct business. When you give them a “tax break” you are reducing the revenue to pay for those services.

  • Atlanticistreader

    Property Taxes and related Real Estate Taxes are approximately half of the total tax revenue collected by the city.
    Mayor De Blasio, shortsightedly, is certain to raise Property Taxes, since Property Taxes are the only taxes that he is able to raise without the approval of Albany.