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Three Cents Worth: Manhattan's Stormy Listing Trend

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[This week, real estate appraiser, Curbed graph guru, blogger, and podcaster Jonathan Miller thinks about the weather while running listing inventory numbers.]

This week I took a look at Manhattan's year-over-year listing trends by the number of bedrooms on a weekly basis. I threw in a few milestones using ridiculous artwork (hey, this is Curbed!) to help provide some context.

To state the obvious, listing inventory is very volatile and there are periods of time where certain segments stray from the pack. It's clear that the top end of the market (four bedrooms, pink line) strayed the most over the past few years as many owners tried to piggyback onto a handful of trophy sales.

2010 Luxury market "wakes-up": In the last two quarters of 2010, we observed a significant uptick in both market share of larger sales (two-bedroom, orange line; three-bedroom, green line; four-bedroom, pink line) and we began to see a few record sales prices. The prior year had been all about the entry-level market.

2011 through early 2012 Trophy sales emerge: During the year, there was a slow erosion of supply except the four-bedroom market. We observed high-end properties coming out of the woodwork to take advantage of the "trophy property mojo." I thought it was interesting that the highest-priced closed sale for $88M at 15 Central Park West went to contract in late 2011 and closed in February 2012, just about when four-bedroom inventory peaked. I bring this up because a lot of "copy cat" listing were out there, trying to take advantage of the mojo. Properties like the $100M listing at City Spire have not been able to glom onto the phenomenon.

2012-2013 Inventory collapsed: The four-bedroom listings began to fall in line with the other size categories as the bloated (overpriced) listings simply expired.

I think the takeaway here is that while many 4+-bedroom sellers were quick to assume their properties were worth multiples of their actual value, buyers weren't on the same page despite a fairly robust luxury housing market. Seller mojo is not always as powerful as buyer sanity.
· Matrix [matrix.millersamuel.com]
· Three Cents Worth archive [Curbed]