Manhattan NYC Real Estate Market Ferris Wheel Ride

Real Estate Broker with The Corcoran Group

The World's Tallest Ferris Wheel, NYC

The World's tallest Ferris Wheel opening New Years Eve 2015 in New York City

rendering courtesy of

Real estate is local. In Manhattan it can even be neighborhood, block and building specific. Some hold value better than others. I've represented sellers that bought during the peak that sold recently and some had a loss and some had a gain.

According to Mayor Bloomberg a ride on the Ferris wheel would take about 30 minutes, start to finish. A ride in Manhattan real estate should be a long one too. There is no better asset than real estate when held for the long term. In my opinion it is best to hold real estate for a minimun 10 years.

My first Activerain blog on 7/27/2006 predicted a buyers market for the next 24 months. I was a little premature because we peaked in 2007.  We had a bump in 07 bucking the national decline in housing. Wall Street bonuses soared that year fueling the loca real estate market even though the bonuses lagged Main Street and the national economy. Then came the financial crises and when Lehman Brothers closed Fall 2008 the market crashed overnight. 

2009 was a terrible year in Manhattan real estate. My broker at the time Coldwell Banker Hunt Kennedy, the 6th largest broker in Manhattan went out of business. I moved to The Corcoran Group, New York City's largest brokerage that summer. Barbara Corcoran founded the company 30 years earlier as a rental agency so rentals are just as important as sales there. I did more rental deals the rest of that year then in my entire previous real estate career.

I believe all real estate is local and all markets go in cycles. Booms and busts, bubbles and crashes or corrections, bear and bull markets. There is always a bull market some where.

As I began blogging the summer of 2006 that was the theme of my blogs. That summer I wrote on Activerain Real estate is local. The local economy effects the market. This is evident by reading some of my fellow activerain member’s blogs. By reading Maureen Francis  I know that the market in Detroit is very dependent on the auto industry.  Manhattan is dependent on Wall Street. Wall Street bonuses fuel our market. When Wall Street has a good year it’s great for real estate in Manhattan and New York City, even if the financial media is negative and gloomy about real estate and the stock market.

 On September 6 2006, I received my first gold star and featured post "Will History Repeat Itself? It usually Does" If I were to cut and paste it today, I think it would still be appropriate. It was about the tight rental market and real estate cycles.

On September 20,2006 I got my second gold star and feature post "it-s-best-to-buy-and-sell-in-the-same-market" No matter what the market condition it still makes sense to Buy and Sell in the same market. If you Buy and Sell in a sellers market, you sold high and bought high it equals out. If you Buy and Sell in a buyers market, you might get less for your home than your neighbor who sold a year ago but you will get your new home for less than If you bought it last year. It all equals out. Over the long haul real estate is not only a great investment but a wonderful place to live and enjoy. 

Real estate is local, markets go in cycles and history repeats it self. I base this anecdotal evidence on my almost 6 decades of life experiences, my own and family real estate investments and as a real estate broker in the trenches. 'Riding the Trillion Dollar Real Estate Recovery Coaster' infographic is about the national housing market. The analogy is a roller coaster ride. Ups and downs booms and busts. I agree but it's nothing new. It is natural. What goes up must come down.

Why ride a roller coaster? Enjoy a longer ride, take in the beautiful sights enjoy the ride your home.  Let it ride the full cycle.  Take the Ferris Wheel ride instead.

Actual NYC Data:

The Total Dollar Value of NYC Residential Sales  - Before and After the Great Recession

In the three years leading up to the financial crisis in late 2008, the total dollar value of all home sales, or total consideration, in New York City was $121 billion.  In the three years following, 2009-2011, total consideration for home sales in New York City was $80.6 billion, almost two-thirds of the pre-crisis total consideration.

The level of comeback in the three years after the financial crisis varied between boroughs.  Manhattan recaptured more than 75% of its previous home sales consideration with a total sale value of $45.3 billion.  Brooklyn reached 64% of its pre-crisis total in the three following years with $14.5 billion in home sales.  Queens reclaimed a little more than half with $14.8 billion and the Bronx only reclaimed 44% of its previous three years total with $2.4 billion in sales.


Total Consideration (Millions)









Total 2006-2008

Total 2009-2011

New York City













































Staten Island











source: REBNY research



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Comments 25 New Comment

Gabe Sanders
Stuart Florida Real Estate
Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales

Excellent recap of the market from NYC, Mitchell.  Fascinating how it's so different from the rest of the country.

October 11, 2012 05:25 AM
Michelle Francis
Realtor, Buckhead Atlanta Homes for Sale & Lease
Tim Francis Realty LLC


Love this post. First, I can't wait for the NYC ferris wheel.  (The London Eye is a true treasure and I am sure this will be bigger and better.)

Second, almost everything is cyclical - we have peaks and valley's in real estate all the time.  They are not always as dramatic as they have been the last 6 years, but what goes down will go up and vice versa. 

Great re-invention of yourself through the years.

All the best, Michelle

October 11, 2012 05:51 AM
Karl Hess
on The Jersey Shore
Keller Williams Ocean County

Mitchell...just wanted to respond to the expense thing. My daughter and husband just moved out of Manhattan (views of Rockefeller) to Hoboken (same building as Eli) and the prices are so much cheaper. I have other family members living in DUMBO and a nephew that just opened a bar in Brooklyn...I don't know how they do it!

October 11, 2012 08:26 AM
Mitchell J Hall
Lic Associate RE Broker - Manhattan, NYC
The Corcoran Group

Gabe, Thank you. Everything is different here than the rest of the country. LOL.

Michelle, Thank you. What goes up must come down and then up again. When people were not buying they were renting so I did rentals that year. You have to go where the business goes.

Karl, I know, Hoboken is really nice and much less than Manhattan and now Brooklyn too. I have friends that recently moved to Jersey City (77 Hudson) brand new condo with views of Manhattan for much less.  I'm one of the few Manhattan brokers that specialize in affordable housing. I sell luxury too but because of the blogs I've written and questions I answered on Trulia about affordable HDFC coops I have become the HDFC Coop maven ,-)

October 11, 2012 09:57 AM
Michael Jacobs
Pasadena Real Estate Representation 818.516.4393
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage

Hi Mitchell -- great photo!  As for the experiencing the ferris wheel experience, I'll pass - not a fan of heights.  As far as the ferris wheel known as real estate, you're spot on with the local nuances of our business.   Nicely and fairly presented.

October 22, 2012 08:50 AM

Mitchell J Hall

Lic Associate RE Broker - Manhattan, NYC
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