June 21, By Christian Murray
Nearly 50 percent of all condos sold in Long Island City last year went for more than $1 million, according to a report released this month by the Manhattan-based real estate firm Stribling & Associates.
The report, titled The Long Island City Condominium Report 2006-2016, noted that there were 234 condo sales in Long Island City in 2016 with a median sales price of $996,443.
Last year, 24 percent of those units were bought with cash, with those financing them putting down an average down payment of $350,000.
Patrick Smith, a Hunters Point resident who was brought on by Stribling this month to launch that firm’s Long Island City operation, authored the report. The report provides an in-depth analysis of the condo market over the past 11 years.
Smith attributes the rise in cash buyers, in part, to the stock market rally. In 2009, when Wall Street was still in recovery mode, only 14 percent of buyers paid cash.
The report noted that the median price paid for a studio in Long Island City last year was $597,000, based on 30 sales. The median price paid for a one-bedroom was $814,000, and the median for a 2-bedroom was $1.25 million. There were 101 one-bedroom units sold last year and 81 two-bedroom units, according to the report, which is based on city records.
The median price paid for 3-bedroom in Long Island City last year was $1.7 million, according to the report. There were 22 units sold.
Prices have climbed in Long Island City for several years as the number of units on the market remains small. For instance, in 2015 only 150 condo units changed hands; in 2014, 206 units sold; and in 2013, 239 units sold.
The greatest number of condos that sold in any year since 2006 was in 2009 when 417 units sold, according to the report. The median price paid that year was $600,000.
Smith, who has sold several condos in the area, expects the market to remain strong given the limited amount of inventory and the growing number of people who want to put roots here. He doesn’t expect a softer rental market to have much impact.
He said some people may be tempted to find rental units that offer concessions—such as a free month’s rent– but many people want to have families here and stay for the long term and will buy.
“If someone has a down payment, a good job and can get financing, I don’t think a month’s free rent will sway them,” Smith said.
The report notes that the number of 3 bedroom units on offer is likely to grow. Last year, 9 percent of sales—22 units—were 3 bedrooms.
Historically, the percentage of 3 bedroom units has been much smaller. For instance, the report notes that between 2006 and 2016, approximately 12 percent of all units sold were studios; 46 percent were 1 bedrooms; 37 percent were 2 bedrooms; and only 5 percent were 3 bedrooms or more.
Smith said that he will be co-authoring a report on the Long Island City condo market every quarter on behalf of Stribling. He said he will be working with Stribling’s Director of Data & Reporting Garrett Derderian to produce it.
In the mean time, he said he will be building Stribling’s presence in the neighborhood and will be working with both developers and residents. He said he plans to build a team in the area and establish an office over time.
Note: Stribling is an advertiser of the LIC Post.