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More Than Half of Manhattan Homes Are Being Bought in Cash

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Remember that crumbling Williamsburg loft for sale, asking for $1.5 million in cash? Well, maybe that wasn't as ridiculous of a request as it seemed. A new data visualization from RealtyTrac illustrates just how many New York City homes are purchased in all cash, and the statistic is impressive: in the last three fiscal quarters, eight out of ten Manhattan homes were purchased with all cash, which also statistically boils down to the more impressive ratio of four out of five. The Post looked into the cause of the high statistic, and this is what they gleaned: with the falling rate of foreclosures and the share of institutional investors—defined by RealtyTrac as "entities that have purchased at least ten properties in a calendar year"—declining, it is no longer "bargain-basement-priced foreclosures" driving the statistic. Instead, it's the city's tight inventory that's responsible; market reports released this morning indicate that just 1.45-percent of Manhattan rentals are vacant.

"If you want to successfully bid on a home before another buyer does, in a lot of markets you basically have to offer cash upfront," writes the Post. So too do they theorize that Manhattan's outlier status has to do with its prestige, noting that wealthy foreign buyers may see Manhattan real estate as both a trophy prize and a safe place to store some mulah. Despite the upward trend, that Williamsburg apartment? It's still looking for some love.
· 8 in 10 Manhattan home sales are all-cash [WP]
· RealtyTrac [official]