We're 24 hours out on yesterday's breaking news that co-op sales prices have, as promised, finally surfaced online. What does this mean to you, as a real-estate loving New Yorker? Herewith, a Curbed FAQ about the most important thing to happen to our little universe since at least last Tuesday.
Q: So, uh, what's the big deal?
A: The full sale prices that buyers pay for apartments in co-op buildings have never been a matter of public record. As of yesterday, they are up on ACRIS (a property data website that's part of nyc.gov). This means that we can all now see what folks at fine spots like 740 Park Avenue paid for their apartments—and who they sold them to (above).
Q: But I don't care about 740 Park.
A: Fear not. The real fun, as with Zillow, is spying on your neighbors. As a Curbed commenter puts it, "Wow. An apartment my wife and I bid on and eventually declined to close contract on sold for well over $150k more than we had an accepted offer for... Crazy." Indeed.
After the jump, the FAQ fun continues!
Q: Speaking of Zillow, will this data help them improve their NYC property estimates?
A: Yes, most likely. More data in the public domain means more numbers to crunch for Property Shark, Zillow, and generations of entrepreneurs to create tools to display better comparative sales within buildings and neighborhoods. Woohoo!
Q: What's the catch?
A: Judging by the research of the Curbed comment krewe, some properties that should be in the new database are coming up with a $0 sale price. Also, if a buyer wants to conceal his or her identity behind a corporate name, they can do so (expect to see a lot more of this, as is commonplace in the Hamptons). Finally, It's unclear to us how far back the co-op data goes—anyone know?
Q: What does this mean for real estate brokers?
A: Let's turn this one over to broker-blogger Property Grunt, who blogs thusly: "With this new law, brokers are in a very vulnerable position. The majority of residential apartments in Manhattan are co-ops and now instread of going to a broker for information you can just go to ACRIS. You can figure out if asking is complete BS or is actually a good deal. What this means now is that brokers have to really be careful in presenting their information."