Nov 19, 2008

They Don't Understand?


Every year the Realtors get a few phone calls from New York and New Jersey, their buyers don't understand why the investments aren't yielding the results they expected, or worse. Their frame of reference is New York, where a one bedroom apartment rents for $3200. Where they come from, it costs about 900 thousand to buy a one apartment unit. They don't understand, although it is only 90 miles and an hour and a half from Manhattan, it's a different world. The think if they give their tenants pre-addressed envelopes, the checks will come in the mail. They think if they convert a commercial building into lofts, yuppies will park their beamers outside, downtown. The Dime Bank Building, on 7th, off of Hamilton is going to be converted into upscale apartments; Expect to see Mayor Ed and his portable podium soon. The real estate market in NYC is recession proof. Here, the local builders know all about down markets. Shown in the photo, is what was to be the second phrase of the townhouses at 8th and Walnut. Despite tax free status from the Keystone Opportunity Zone, the builder has filled in the foundations and discontinued the project.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Mike,

At least some good is coming from the current economic crisis. New residential development on non residential land is counter to the city’s best interest. This is beyond doubt yet this administration, with the school district’s acquiescence goes forward with just such projects.

Scott Armstrong

Anonymous said...

FYI, the foundations are filled because the units do not have basements! An attribute that makes the units less attractive to large families (which i am sure you are happy about). While delayed, phase 2 is still on.

The Farr lofts are doing great. They remain full by any industry standard and the P&P lofts are filling up despite they fact that they are among the, if not the, priciest rentals in the Lehigh Valley.

Of course, things do not happen over night, but they are happening successfully for sure.

michael molovinsky said...

anon 8:48, it would be nice if you would accompany such implied facts with your name. you probably sighed relief because i didn't mention the project on the southside also was "delayed". as a rental agent i'm not familiar with the term full by industry standards, i suppose you mean the vacancy rate is in line with the marketplace. i don't knock zawarski for putting all the projects on hold, but your comments appear more for political coverage than factual analysis.

Anonymous said...

MM:

Not sure what project on the South Side you are referring to but the Hovanian Single Homes are still being built and the Townes at Norfork Station are still moving forward as well. There also has been a new garden apartment complex built at Emmaus Ave and 78.

In line with marketplace will do for the Farr if you prefer. 90% occupied will also work if you would like me to be more specific.

You are intentionally misleading your readers to believe that anything in Allentown other then social Security and substandard housing is failing, hoping it will.

That couldn't be further from the truth, even in this market.

michael molovinsky said...

anon 9:38, you write that i hope allentown fails, i suspect i have a much larger stake in allentown's success than you do. i do not invest my money and time in allentown hoping for failure. but, i believe in reality, not political expediency. be careful what you say, all those "for sale" and" for rent" signs challenge your credibility

Bernie O'Hare said...

The local real estate market is DEAD. Come down to the courthouse and you'll notice that the recorder of deeds office could be converted into a morgue.

Anonymous said...

michael...has the KOZ program had any success stories, or are most of its properties lost forever to our tax base with a series of failed ventures?

enlighten me if you can. thx.

Anonymous said...

Showing one side of a story is one thing, but stating outright falsehoods as facts in unbelievable.

michael molovinsky said...

anon 12:20, what is really unbelievable is that you can accuse someone of stating falsehoods and do it anonymously. I remember last year when an apologist for the administration claimed the 15th st. bridge couldn't be painted because of lead paint and the water works, well they finally painted it this summer. the southside project being "delayed" (last i checked) is behind mack blvd. near emmaus ave.
I believe, overall, that the KOZ has been good for allentown. I wouldn't be surprised to see the existing projects have their tax free status extended past 2010, but the new buildings are a plus. if we should have added grants to the KOZ is another story. I credit Pawlowski for the butz building. he was not a factor in the ppl plaza. i credit pawlowski for the new zawarski townhouses on walnut. i have mixed feelings about the brewpub and cityline, both definite improvements for hamilton street, but with enormous grant money. KOZ status given the former cata building on linden street was totally inappropriate. i believe we have reached the point of diminishing returns with the KOZ program and no more should be granted. i believe no more grants should be given to private property and the money should be redirected to infrastructure for the public good.

Anonymous said...

New residential developments on land zoned no n-residential is counter top the city’s/school district’s interests. All other Facts are irrelevant.

Scott Armstrong