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Short Sales Surge and an Apartment Search in Brooklyn

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If reading The Hunt stokes your deepest hopes that someday everything in life could work out, then you, too, are obsessed with the New York Times Sunday Real Estate section. Join us as we venture into the depths of this weekend's installment, figuring out along the way what the subtext of each story tells us about the state of the NYC real estate market using our bona fide Market Point system.

1.)This one isn't for the weak of heart. The Times just did a piece on Short Sales in Manhattan. Instead of dissecting this bad boy to pieces, let's just give the article a -4 MP. Here's a look at some highlights.

- "And the number of short sales, in which a home sells for less than the amount owed on the mortgage, will most likely continue to grow. The number of lis pendens filings — a first step in the foreclosure process for houses and condos — doubled in 2009 in Manhattan, to 724 from 334 in 2008; this year, 382 had been filed by the end of June, according to the Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy of New York University."

- "A recent search of sales listings found almost 20 advertised short sales, and that did not include short sales disguised with euphemistic terms like “owner must sell."

This one is a tough pill to swallow and really helps debunks the misconception that this is going on only in the outer boroughs.
[The Roller-Coaster Ride Called a Short Sale]

2.) Let's move on to a lighter note and check out The Hunt! This week we saw a couple looking to move out of their "quirky" place in Park Slope and ended up in Downtown Brooklyn.

- "But it was dark, with a small kitchen. The freezer was a compartment within the refrigerator. “Maybe one tiny thing of ice cream could fit in there,” Ms. Maginn said. In winter, the radiators clanked." Definitely sounds like dorm living. -1 MP

- "But then there was the catalyst for their move, the ventilation-free bathroom. Its floor was always wet and spongy.“As far as I could tell, the floor was rotting,” Mr. Maginn, 30, said." Sounds like something out of Oz! -1 MP

-"Since we’ve gotten a big freezer it is like, wow, think of all the frozen things we’ve been missing. We used to have dishes in the sink. It’s weird — you get a nice space and keep it up better.” It's hard to know what you're missing until you actually have it. +2 MP

- "I feel like we went from living in a cave to living in a bird’s nest” We can all let out a collective "aww" for that one. +4 MP
[The Hunt: Escape From Quirkyville]

Dead even. That's what it came out to this week. We flirted with disaster with those Short Sales but inched by and survived.

· Times-O-Matic Real Estate Radar