07:19:27 | 2012-11-08

  • 1.
    N.Y. House of the Day
  • 2.
    Damage on Fire Island Renews Old Worries
  • 3.
    Market Ready
  • 4.
    Thanks To Superstorm Sandy, Northeaster Real Estate May Get Even More Expensive
  • 5.
    Masters of Real Estate Event Breaks Record
  • 6.
    Big real estate investors say Sandy hurts lower Manhattan values
  • 7.
    Lloyd Blankfein, Big Real Estate, Diane Von Furstenberg, Vogue Among Major Sandy Donors
  • 8.
    Future Is in Limbo for the Damaged Buildings Close to the Water’s Edge
  • 9.
    Disclosing Energy Use: A Disruptive Innovation?
  • 10.
    Trulia’s Sales Surge as Real Estate Agents Use Mobile
Good Morning New York! Here’s Some Real Estate News to Get You Started:
N.Y. House of the Day

The owner of this 13-acre property designed it as an oasis from the daily stresses of work. The Bedford Hills home, with a spa and nightclub-themed grand room in the main residence, is on the market for $17.9 million. — Jackie Bischof


Damage on Fire Island Renews Old Worries

On Fire Island, Sandy caused as much erosion in the course of a single storm as the island has seen over the past 30 years. Fierce wind and water carved two new inlets through the narrow barrier beach, the lone bulwark between the open ocean and Suffolk County on Long Island’s densely populated South Shore. Dunes moved on average 70 feet landward, and lost as much as 10 feet in height. Up to 80% of the oceanfront homes on Fire Island sustained damage. Some were reduced to matchsticks.


Market Ready

“Walking into a playroom that looks as if you’re in the midst of a battle is not a good thing,” said Marc Donnenfeld, a real estate agent at Warburg Realty in New York — particularly when a home is being shown to potential buyers. “You’re the curator of your home,” he said. “You want the image of the house to come across in the best light possible.” And a playroom that looks like a war zone “clouds the image,” sending the wrong message to buyers.


Thanks To Superstorm Sandy, Northeaster Real Estate May Get Even More Expensive

The Northeastern U.S. can’t catch a break. As Americans continue to reel from the devastation Superstorm Sandy, a Nor’easter now threatens to dump up to a foot of snow on the battered region, where hundreds of thousands remain without power and tens of thousands have tragically lost homes.


Masters of Real Estate Event Breaks Record

Featuring an all-star line up of the city’s most formidable real estate professionals, this year’s annual Masters of Real Estate fetched a record 450 RSVPs, The Commercial Observer has learned. Observer Media Group executives began preparing for the event, now in its third year, six months in advance with an eye toward creating an eclectic mix of speakers. Larry Silverstein of Silverstein Properties, Michael Fascitelli of Vornado, William Rudin of Rudin Management,Jeff Blau of Related Companies and Glenn Rufrano of Cushman & Wakefield are all scheduled to appear. Rob Speyer of Tishman Speyer bowed out.


Big real estate investors say Sandy hurts lower Manhattan values

Lower Manhattan office building values are likely to suffer as a result of damage inflicted by Superstorm Sandy that has left thousands of downtown Manhattan workers unable to return to their offices, major real estate executives said at a conference on Wednesday.


Lloyd Blankfein, Big Real Estate, Diane Von Furstenberg, Vogue Among Major Sandy Donors

Mayor Bloomberg just announced that more than 10,000 people have donated more than $32 million to the Mayor’s Fund for New York City to help with recovery efforts. There are some interesting, if unsurprising names on the list. Big Real Estate—the Rudins, the Speyers, Brookfield Properties, the Related Companies, Glenwood Management among them—were big backers, even as many of their buildings were buffeted by the storm.


Some Firms Continue To Confront Storm Effects

While law firms in lower Manhattan opened their doors yesterday for the first time in a week, Hurricane Sandy’s effects on other firms, like Sullivan & Cromwell and Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson, have forced lawyers and staff to keep the pace remotely and from alternate locations in Midtown.

[Glober St.]

Disclosing Energy Use: A Disruptive Innovation?

The requirement to benchmark buildings’ energy use and report that information to various stakeholders, including the general public, is a relatively new responsibility for U.S. real estate owners. While leading cities and states such as Seattle, New York City, and California have pioneered required benchmarking in the U.S., the bulk of the real estate market’s energy use remains outside of public scrutiny. That, however, is changing.

[Triple Pundit]

Trulia’s Sales Surge as Real Estate Agents Use Mobile

Trulia Inc. (TRLA), the real estate- information website that sold shares to the public in September, said third-quarter sales surged 76 percent as agents and advertisers bolstered spending on mobile devices and the housing market showed signs of recovery.

[Business Week]

Obama Victory Leads Wealthy to Make Quick Pre-2013 Moves

The race is on for wealthy Americans to save on taxes before Jan. 1. President Barack Obama’s re-election means his administration will push to let tax cuts enacted during the George W. Bush era expire for high earners, as scheduled, at year-end. Obama wants to increase the top federal income tax rate to 39.6 percent from 35 percent, boost rates on long-term capital gains to as much as 23.8 percent, and shrink exemptions from estate-and-gift taxes.


How a Galway Pub Led to a Skyscraper

WHEN they don’t involve sailors kissing nurses, the symbolic photographs of New York City usually involve skyscrapers: Alfred Stieglitz’s snowy shot of the Flatiron Building; Berenice Abbott’s electric “Night View”; Margaret Bourke-White perched atop an art-deco eagle of the Chrysler Building. And Lewis Hine’s celebrated portrait of 11 Depression-era ironworkers, lunching along an I-beam on the unfinished Empire State Building.


Obama re-election douses Wall Street

Wall Street reacted to President Obama’s decisive win with a sell-off. Markets closed down more than 2 percent, with the Dow plunging more than 300 points. The president’s re-election wasn’t responsible for all the turmoil today, but Wall Street was definitely rooting for Romney. His donations from finance, insurance and real estate nearly tripled President Obama’s. Polling predicted a bad night for Romney, but the reality of it still stung his fans in finance.


Barack Obama victory speech: ‘The best is yet to come’

President Barack Obama has won re-election to a second term, overcoming voter doubts about the slow economic recovery on his watch to defeat Republican Mitt Romney.


L&L Holdings’ David Levinson on New 425 Park Avenue Architectural Designs

Lord Norman Foster this month won the contest to design the first new office tower in almost 50 years on Park Avenue, beating three other finalists for the opportunity to make a mark on the row of 30 Class A buildings in the submarket, which already boasts two of the city’s most famous modernist classics.


Pre-War Building at 103 East 86th Street Fetches $76 Million

Ofer Yardeni and Joel Seiden of New York City-based real estate owner and building manager Stonehenge have purchased a 90,000-square-foot, 13-story apartment building at 103 East 86th Street, off Park Avenue in Carnegie Hill, for $76 million.


Microgrids Keep Power Flowing Through Sandy Outages

The widespread power outages in the wake of Hurricane Sandy cast light on the weakness of a completely centralized electric power system and spotlighted the benefits of distributed power generation. A number of locations reported that on-site power generation and the ability to operate independently of the grid allowed organizations, such as colleges and businesses, to stay at least partially online during the worst of the storm.


Battery powered

The warnings were dire: If you were one of the unfortunates living in Zone A, Mayor Bloomberg ordered you to pick up and leave. One Manhattan neighborhood that looked on nervously before Hurricane Sandy hit was Battery Park City. Sitting exposed on the Hudson River, it braced for the worst. But something peculiar happened: The worst passed it by.


Basement apartments are looking up

When we think of basement apartments, many of us think the worst: dark, dank, cramped, low-ceilinged, prone to flooding. One friend of mine described it as a feeling of being buried underneath a house, as though in a coffin. Bad feng shui all around. I know people who will never go to look at any available unit labeled “basement,” no matter how promising the description. There are exceptions to the stereotype, though, and 30-year-old Estelle Sun and 31-year-old Imran Rahaman found one.

[Your Home]

Before Breaking a Lease, Check Your Renter’s Policy

An article in Wednesday’s paper detailed the woes of New York City renters whose apartments are uninhabitable because of Hurricane Sandy. Some renters, the article said, were wondering if they should break their leases and find another place to live. But tenants who have bought renter’s insurance may have other options if they want to stay in their current location.


In New York’s Rockaways, despair sets in as new storm hits

At nighttime, high up in the apartment buildings that tower over New York’s Rockaway Peninsula, it’s so inky black inside that residents have to use their hands to feel their way along the concrete walls, inch by inch, to get up and down the stairs, over to their neighbors, or back to their front doors. The windowless passageways feel like a crypt, unnerving even the most hardened of residents.

[Chicago Tribune]

Losing Power but Finding a Way to Connect

WHEN a natural disaster hits, worlds collide. The ways in which Hurricane Sandy upended home life last week ranged from the truly tragic to the curious and unsettling, as neighborhoods literally and metaphorically washed into one another.


Sandy, Occupy, and the City’s Failures

It has been more than a week since Hurricane Sandy hit New York, and in much of the city, life has returned more or less to normal. Power is restored in Lower Manhattan, the subway lines running into the center of the city have largely restored service, and most people are back at work.

[Village Voice]

Sinkhole in New York repaired with 120-inch pipe

On Thursday June 28, 2012, a sinkhole appeared on 92nd Street near Third Avenue in Brooklyn, N.Y. The sinkhole, west of the sidewalk, caused 11 families to be evacuated from the nearby Bay Ridge apartment building. The block of 92nd Street between Third Avenue and Ridge Boulevard was closed to traffic as emergency crews from the city’s Department of Environmental Protection inspected the sinkhole. Crews worked to stabilize the 70-foot deep sinkhole and began planning a repair.

[Gov Pro]

City Teams Up With Once-Enemy Airbnb To Provide Free Housing After Sandy

Mayor Michael Bloomberg announced a new partnership Wednesday with Airbnb to assist people displaced by Hurricane Sandy — an unlikely pairing given the city’s past accusations that the popular online apartment-sharing site is a marketplace for illegal hotel rentals.


For Public Housing, Pockets of Darkness

The streets were aglow just beyond the Gowanus Houses in Brooklyn’s Boerum Hill neighborhood on a storm-darkened Wednesday afternoon. Machines hummed at a laundromat, neon flashed at a corner bodega and espresso machines gurgled at a nearby Starbucks.


Thousands More Lose Power as Nor’easter Blows Into New York

Thousands of New Yorkers lost power Wednesday as a strong nor’easter blew into the city — including some residents who had only recently had their electricity restored following Hurricane Sandy. The whipping winds and pelting snow knocked out power to 11,000 Con Edison customers in Staten Island, Brooklyn, Queens and Westchester, as trees that were already damaged in the hurricane sagged and toppled, said John Miksad, Con Ed’s senior vice president of electric operations.


When the Power Came Back, So Did the Crowds

AT 9 p.m. Friday, the Eastern Bloc, a popular gay bar in the East Village, was ready for business. The Beastie Boys’ “(You Gotta) Fight for Your Right (to Party)” blared, and the room was bathed in a red glow.


Relocating Uptown, Scissors in Hand

It was Oct. 30, the day after Hurricane Sandy blew through the region, and Matt Fugate, a stylist at Sally Hershberger on West 14th Street, found that not only had the salon been shuttered because of the power failure, but his clients were anxiously trying to reach him on Facebook. In messages and posts, they pleaded: could he somehow squeeze them in for a quick trim?


Might Oaks, and Very Old Ones, Are Among Hurricane’s Victims in Central Park

More than 650 trees in Central Park were destroyed or damaged by Hurricane Sandy, the Central Park Conservancy said on Wednesday, even as it prepared to meet an advancing northeaster. The park is closed to the public for now.


Staten Island Jesuit retreat hits the market

Ten leafy acres in a hilly section of Staten Island near the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge are now up for grabs for $15.95 million and are ripe for development. The site, located at 239 Fingerboard Rd., is currently home to a Jesuit Retreat House that is about 36,260 square feet.


Roof of Greenwood Heights Building Collapses

The roof of an apparently vacant Greenwood Heights building partially collapsed early Wednesday morning, an FDNY spokesman said. Emergency responders rushed to 11 Woodrow Ct., near 30th St., just before 8:30 a.m. after a call of a partial collapse, officials said. Fire officials initially believed 11 people had suffered minor injuries in the incident, but later said no one had been hurt.


Global Real Estate Funds See Sharp Rebound

Global real estate funds have been soaring. This year the funds have returned 25.6%, compared to 14.7% for the S&P 500 and 14.6% for real estate funds that focus on U.S. markets, according to Morningstar.

[The Street]

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