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Open House Agenda: Three Apartments to See This Weekend

By Donna M. Airoldi | November 8, 2013 7:17am
 Three open houses this weekend for apartments with big price drops.
Open houses to see Nov. 10
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MANHATTAN — When the price for an apartment drops significantly, it could mean a bargain for a timely buyer — or that the place was overpriced when it first hit the market.  Here are three apartments with open houses this weekend whose prices have been chopped.

530 E. 90th St., Apt. 2L, Upper East Side, Manhattan
2 Bedroom/1 Bath
850 square feet
Maintenance: $1,917/month
Open House: Sunday, Nov. 10, noon to 2 p.m.

Lowdown: The price on this two-bedroom in Gracie Gardens — a complex composed of four pre-war buildings on East 89th and 90th streets that share a large garden — has dropped four times from its $599,000 listing in March.

“The owners are really motivated to sell,” said Kim Shepard-Fabrizi, of Douglas Elliman. “They own a bigger unit in the building and are tired of paying two maintenances.”

They had a buyer earlier this year, at $615,000, but decide to stay in the old apartment while renovating the new one, so they canceled the contract, Shepard-Fabrizi explained. Since then, publicity about the 91st Street East Transfer Station, now under construction, has affected apartment prices in the area.

“I’ve talked to older residents there for 40 to 50 years when the original [garbage facility] was open, and they said it was not bad, there were no smells, but the anticipation is worse than the reality,” Shepard-Fabrizi said. “The truth is it may not be any big deal.”

Location: The full-service building is half a block from the East River and Carl Schurz Park and two blocks to Gracie Mansion. “Even though you’re in the city, you feel distant from it,” Shepard-Fabrizi said. “It’s very safe and quiet, and popular with families."

It’s a bit of a hike to the subway at Lexington and 86th, but the Second Avenue subway will be two blocks away when it opens in 2016.

Why put it on your open house calendar? The rooms are large and face north over Asphalt Green, so you have open views and can see the river — rare for a second-floor apartment.  The price is not likely to drop again.

75 Bank St., Apt. 2B, West Village, Manhattan
Studio/1 Bath
550 square feet
Maintenance: $797/month
Open House: Saturday, Nov. 9, 12:30-2 p.m.

Lowdown: The price on this pre-war studio on Abingdon Square has bounced up and down since it came on the market in June after a gut renovation and is currently going for 33 percent less than its initial listing of $795,000.

“We priced the apartment based on the superb location, demand for the building and the brand new, high-end renovation,” said Jenifer Minikes, of Corcoran Group, in an email message. “Unfortunately, we did not get the interest we had expected, so we lowered the price and now have had tons of interest.”

The renovation included a new kitchen and bathroom as well as new windows, door moldings and floors, Minikes said. It’s a sponsor unit so no board approval is necessary.

Location: The apartment is across from Abingdon Square Park at Bleecker Street in the heart of the West Village, which means a plethora of restaurants and shops steps away. Hudson River Park is three blocks west. Eleven subway lines are within a 10-minute walk.

Why put it on your open house calendar? It’s a sizable space for a studio, and the kitchen and bathroom renovations look great, based on the photos. And the lowered price puts it at $964/square foot, well below the neighborhood’s average of $2,133.

250 Manhattan Ave, Apt. 5A, Morningside Heights, Manhattan
2 Bedroom/2 Bath
843 square feet
Common Charges: $567.50/month
Taxes: $604.58/month
Open House: Saturday, Nov. 9, 2-3 p.m.

Lowdown: The owner of this newly converted two bedroom condo with views of the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine has slashed his original asking price of $995,000 by 20 percent.

“It was an investment property for the owner, and he has decided to move on to another one,” said Emiliano Acevedo of Michel Madie Real Estate. “He’s not going to just drop it any further, this is his bottom line.”

Occupancies in the building just started this summer, so this unit is the first resell for the property and it’s hardly been lived in. The bedrooms are narrow, “but they’re big enough for a double or queen bed and they have closets. Compared to some other homes in NYC, they’re pretty standard,” Acevedo said.

The developer’s gut renovation of the pre-war building included adding an elevator to the six-story building, along with a roof terrace, laundry and a garden patio.

Location: The building is on Manhattan at 110th Street, also known as Cathedral Parkway, on the block between Central Park and Morningside Park. The B and C trains are at 110th Street and Central Park West. The 1 train is a pleasant walk up the hill toward Broadway. A few years ago there was a grocery store and a handful of restaurants and shops in the neighborhood. Now there’s Harlem Tavern Beer Garden, MODSquad Cycles, even a Posh Paws day spa for dogs.

“The neighborhood is changing dramatically. The number of bars, lounges and restaurants has tripled in the last two to three years,” Acevedo said.

Why put it on your open house calendar? Harlem has become a desirable neighborhood in the city, with its brownstones and tree-lined streets — something you see a lot in Brooklyn but not so much in Manhattan. “The prices in the area may seem expensive now, but they will seem comically cheap one day," Acevedo said.