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Low Sales Numbers Lead Harlem Developer to Court Victory

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The hopes of boom-price-paying buyers and condo developers both have been hanging on a rarely applied 1968 law, and the early results are in. Things aren't looking good for the buyers. In one of the first decisions to be handed down in New York involving the Interstate Land Disclosure Act (ILSA), Brick Underground reports that a U.S. District Court Judge has rejected two buyers' attempts to get out of their contracts at Harlem's Fifth on the Park. The decision was filed this morning and shot down the efforts of two buyers, one who wanted to cancel a contract on a $999,999 unit and get a $49,999 deposit refunded, and another who wanted to get back a $143,000 deposit and cancel a contract for a $1.4 million unit. On what did the judges' decision hang? The building's lack of sales.

The buyers argued that the developer had not filed the ILSA-required property report before contract signing. But the court found that the developer needed to have sold at least 100 units for the report to be necessary. And only about 90 units at Fifth on the Park have sold. A number of local ILSA cases are still pending -- including a few at Fifth on the Park and at the 505 -- but it looks like down in the dumps developers finally have a reason to smile.
· Breaking news: Ambivalent condo buyers suffer serious legal blow [Brick Underground]
· State o' the Market Report: Will Buyer Backouts Succeed? [Curbed]
· Fifth on the Park coverage [Curbed]