The Real Deal New York

Westchester & Fairfield Cheat Sheet: Houlihan Lawrence dominates ranking of top brokers, signs of Stamford’s office leasing revival … & more

By James Klatell | January 04, 2018 01:30PM

Westchester & Fairfield Cheat Sheet

Clockwise from top left: Houlihan Lawrence dominates Westchester’s top brokers with Leslie Dorf atop the list, a small fire broke out at the Clintons’ property in Chappaqua, and Stamford’s office market shows signs of rebounding in a post-UBS era.

Houlihan Lawrence dominates top 10 residential brokers in Westchester
Leslie Dorf, a Houlihan Lawrence broker who specializes in Scarsdale, ranked No. 1 overall in TRD’s ranking of top brokers in Westchester County. Houlihan Lawrence dominated the list with five other brokers in the top 10, as measured by dollar volume of closed sales on both the buy and sell sides of single-family homes priced at $3 million and above. Brokers from Platinum Drive Realty, Vincent & Whittemore Real Estate and Julia B. Fee Sotheby’s International Realty also made the list. [TRD]

Signs of Stamford’s office leasing revival emerge
With new technology and consumer goods companies moving to Stamford, the city’s struggling office market is seeing signs of a recovery nearly a decade after the Great Recession, but the area is still struggling to fill the void left by financial services firms that have collapsed or withdrawn. Stamford’s central business district still had a vacancy rate of 26.8 percent in the third quarter, according to Cushman & Wakefield data. With average leasing prices running around $32 a square foot in Fairfield County, investors and city officials hope that companies will see value and flexibility as incentives to snap up some of that space. [TRD]

BLT rebrands waterfront mixed-use development in Stamford as Harbor Landing
Building and Land Technology is rebranding the latest portion of its massive Harbor Point project in Stamford as Harbor Landing. Combining an almost-completed 218-unit residential building, a renovated office complex and a new 120-slip boatyard, the mixed-use development —previously named Davenport Landing — is adjacent to Harbor Point, a multi-billion dollar project BLT has been building since 2009. Stamford-based RHYS has been named the leasing agent for Harbor Landing’s 200,000 square feet of office space, which will have renovated common areas, new tenant amenities and a new parking lot. The Hinckley Company will operate the recently complete boatyard. [press release – no link available]

Why local lenders are tightening the purse strings on multifamily development
After years of rapid growth in the multifamily sector for both Fairfield and Westchester counties, traditional lenders are pulling back. Lender People’s United, for example, reduced its amount of multifamily construction loans by 26 percent from September 2016 to September 2017, according to FDIC data. “The market slowdown started maybe at the beginning of 2016, where lenders were more concerned with saturation in markets that have seen a substantial amount of multifamily growth,” said Mark Fisher, senior vice president at CBRE. “Loan values and loan-to-cost [ratios] have dropped also. Banks that were willing to make 75 percent [recourse] loans are down to 60 percent.” [TRD]

Fire damages the Clinton compound in Chappaqua
A fire broke out Wednesday at the Chappaqua property of former President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. The small blaze started in the second-floor ceiling of a detached building behind the Clinton’s home and was put out with fire extinguishers. Neither of the Clintons were home at the time of the fire, a spokesperson said. The Clintons bought the 1.1-acre property in 1999 for $1.7 million and purchased the neighboring house in August 2016 for $1.16 million. [Lohud]

New rule in Ridgefield pushes affordable housing to business zones
Zoning officials in Ridgefield passed new affordable housing rules that are aimed at discouraging developers from invoking Connecticut’s 8-30g statute, which allows projects with more than 30 percent affordable housing to skirt local zoning rules. Ridgefield’s new regulations push construction of affordable housing the the town’s business zones and allows for higher density housing and looser parking restrictions. [News Times]