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New York real estate leaders weighed in on the region’s residential market, from the latest prices in Manhattan to bidding wars in Westchester, and shared strategies for how agents can take advantage of the current dynamics, at a virtual panel held on Jan. 22 and hosted by the Hudson Gateway Association of REALTORS®, Inc. (HGAR) and OneKey™ MLS.

Hundreds of industry professionals tuned in for “Getting the Deal Done: The State of NY Real Estate: Setting Sights on 2021 + Beyond,” which featured Bess Freedman, CEO of Brown Harris Stevens; Jonathan Miller, president and CEO of Miller Samuel Inc.; and Joe Rand, chief creative officer of Howard Hanna/Rand Realty and executive director, Broker Public Portal.

“We’ve all had to pivot during the pandemic, and we’ve seen tremendous innovation in our industry,” said Richard Haggerty, CEO of HGAR and president and chief strategic growth officer of OneKey™ MLS, the regional multiple listing service for New York. “Working together is key and we’re so pleased to have Bess, Joe and Jonathan here today to share best practices for the current environment and strategies for moving forward.”

The discussion was moderated by Brian D. Tormey, NTP, president of TitleVest, a leading New York City-based provider of title insurance and related real estate services. The hour-long session focused on market trends, new ways of doing business, the economic impact of the pandemic, patterns to watch in 2021 and whether stability is in sight for NYC.

“Look for a V-shaped recovery,” said Miller. “And by that, I mean ‘vaccine.’ True stability doesn’t really happen until people feel safe.”

Miller pointed to trends in NYC’s rental market, noting pricing was down some 23 percent, but also saw an upside—more affordability is creating a “youth renaissance” in Manhattan’s rental space.

Freedman also noted the vaccine’s impact on the market. “Having the vaccine in sight is excellent,” she said. “The path forward is going to be a bit tough but at least we have some resolution.”

Freedman said she’s optimistic for 2021. “New York City is going to do very well,” she said. “It’s still a buyer’s market—an opportunity market–rates are low. But theaters are going to reopen, restaurants are going to reopen… I’m doubling down on my prediction for NYC in 2021.”

Rand discussed trends in pricing north of NYC and the types of properties being sold. “COVID is impacting pricing, in the short term, in two ways,” he said. “First, all that migration from NYC to the suburbs, those are higher-end buyers. So, the mix of properties being sold is skewing higher, they’re competing and pushing prices up. Also, the economic impact of COVID is disproportionately hitting lower-income people. And that’s really unfortunate… we should be doing more from a public policy standpoint to help people.”

“Getting the Deal Done” is part of the “Be Your Best” webinar series created by HGAR and OneKey™ MLS, to assist REALTORS® and agents during the COVID-19 pandemic. The event was sponsored by TitleVest.

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