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After a rush of closings in June inflated second-quarter numbers, leading to depressed third-quarter figures, the Manhattan apartment market has returned to levels more reflective of current conditions in the fourth quarter, according to Halstead’s Fourth Quarter 2019 Market Report.

The average apartment price of $1,857,026 rebounded by 10 percent after a weak third quarter, but still remained 10 percent lower than a year ago. Resale apartment closings were down 5 percent from the fourth quarter of 2018. The Halstead Market Report is based on 2,015 recorded fourth quarter sales, 3 percent fewer than the same period last year.

“As we closed out the decade, we saw continued correction mode in the Manhattan market with sellers making necessary reductions to prices, putting them at appropriate levels in the fourth quarter,” says Diane M. Ramirez, chairman and CEO of Halstead. “We expect to see an active start to 2020, as buyers now have a golden opportunity to make a move with the combination of low mortgage rates, competitive pricing and incredible choice in inventory.”

Other noteworthy findings from Halstead’s Fourth Quarter 2019 Market Report revealed:

  • Resale apartment prices averaged $1,467,795, which is 6 percent lower than 2018’s fourth quarter;
  • The average condo price, at $2,756,941, was 12 percent lower than the same period last year, with only studios seeing an increase in price this year;
  • Co-op prices averaged 5 percent less than last year, as all size categories saw price declines;
  • Despite some impressive closings, including a $92.7 million sale at 220 CPS, new development prices were down from a year ago;
  • However, the new development median price rose slightly, indicating that while there were fewer high-end closings than a year ago, the middle of the market ticked upward;
  • Looking at only co-op resales, the average price across all size categories fell to $1,242,683, a 2 percent decline from that same period last year;
  • Prices for resale condos rebounded sharply after a weak third quarter, but their average price was still 8 percent lower than last year; studios were the only size category to see an increase in price during this time;
  • Resale apartments sold in the fourth quarter spent an average of 125 days on the market, 11 percent longer than a year ago;
  • Sellers received 96.6 percent of their last asking price, which was unchanged from 2018’s fourth quarter;
  • Both the average and median loft prices per square foot declined compared to the fourth quarter of 2018; and
  • The highest percentage of resales in Manhattan was on the East Side at 24.4 percent, followed by Midtown (34th Street to 59th Street) at 19.0 percent and Downtown (South of 14th Street) at 18.7 percent.

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