Harlem developer sells low to win high

By Sara Polsky | September 30, 2008 12:46PM

Due to the city’s 421-a tax abatement program, an East Harlem condominium is able to set prices for one- and two-bedroom condo units lower than it would have otherwise.

The 35 units in the David Marks Development Group’s Conrad, at 342 East 110th Street, range in price from $399,000 to $560,000, and in size from 610 square feet to 830 square feet. The units average less than $700 per square foot, said Valerie Dominguez, a vice president at the Corcoran Group and the exclusive broker for the Karl Fischer-designed building.

Those price points do “appear to be more aggressive than what we’ve seen pricing in other developments,” said appraiser Jonathan Miller, president and CEO of Miller Samuel.

According to data on the Miller Samuel Web site, the average price per square foot for one-bedroom condos and co-ops in Harlem and East Harlem (the data only considers the two apartment types, and two neighborhoods together) was $530,039 in 2007, and  the average for a two-bedroom was $891,060.

The Conrad is not the only project in the city applying the 421-a abatements. Builders around the city were racing to get projects started before changes — making requirements for receiving benefits stricter, in addition to lowering the level of benefits — were made in the policy June 30, 2008.

Construction on the eight-story Conrad began in early 2007 and move-ins are slated for January 2009.

Dominguez is kicking off sales at a grand opening, catered by Dean & Deluca, this Sunday.