With asking prices in freefall, luxury market sees strong week

Average number of days on the market is highest since 2012

3 East 69th Street and 252 East 57th Street 
3 East 69th Street and 252 East 57th Street

The penthouse at World Wide Group and Rose & Associates’ 252 East 57th Street started life in 2014 asking an aspirational $37.5 million.

Last week — with the building now complete and the market vastly different — the unit finally went into contract asking $23.75 million, a drop of 36 percent.

It was the priciest of 20 contracts signed last week, according to a market report from Olshan Realty, illustrating the negotiations developers are engaging in to move sponsor units.

“That building was very successful but it’s an example of overpricing,” said Donna Olshan, who authors the report. “If the developers are going to make a mistake, it’s always with the penthouse.”

The second priciest contract, a townhouse at 3 East 69th Street, went into contract asking $15.5 million, down from its original asking price of $25 million.

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According to Olshan, there have been 22 contracts for townhouses signed this year, with asking prices averaging $1,706 per square foot. Last year, that figure was $1,801.

Overall, last week’s count was strong: It was the third week in a row that 20 or more luxury properties went into contract, following disappointing figures in January.

However, the average number of days on the market was 803, which was the highest in any week since 2012.

The average discount between original and final asking prices was 18 percent, which the report noted was skewed by the hefty drops in the top two signings.

Write to Sylvia Varnham O’Regan at so@therealdeal.com