It appears that both luxury buyers and institutional-sized investors may soon be choosing NYC as an alternative to London.
By Alon Gibely Jex
Since 2005, when NY Living Solutions first opened its doors, we’ve been located in the Financial District. Not only did we get our start here, but so did New York City itself, when the first Dutch traders set up shop in this very same area in 1625. And through the years, the importance of this neighborhood has certainly not diminished.
In 1697, Trinity Church was erected to serve the needs of the growing Protestant community, and the church is still there, albeit in its more recent Gothic incarnation, built in 1846 where it still stands. In the church’s adjoining cemetery lies the remains of Robert Fulton, inventor of the steamboat and namesake for nearby Fulton street, Albert Gallatin, former US Treasurer and one of the founders of New York University, and Alexander Hamilton, former US Treasurer and revolutionary, who’s currently nearly as popular now as he was when he was alive thanks to the Broadway musical.
The revolutionary roots of New York City’s Financial District don’t end with Hamilton, Federal Hall, located on Wall Street, is where George Washington first took office as the first president of the newly formed United States of America, with New York City as its capital, and Federal Hall housing all branches of its newly formed government. Federal Hall still stands right there on Wall Street, as a museum, with a statue of George Washington in front in honor of the oath of presidency he took in 1789.
Just a few blocks from Federal Hall, on Pearl Street, sits Fraunces Tavern, New York City’s oldest building. This tavern was a flash point for the American Revolution and also the site where George Washington bid farewell to his troops. Fraunces Tavern is now a museum, but still an active bar as well!
Head up north to Beaver Street (so called because it was the site of an active pelt trading market for Dutch settlers) and you’ll run into the iconic Delmonico’s steak house. Started in the early 1800s, Delmonico’s has been serving prime cuts to the people of the Finanicial District for over two centuries.
Many of Delmonico’s most loyal customers are those who work in another iconic building, the home of the New York Stock Exchange. Although Wall Street (so named for the 12-foot wall that was built in 1697 to protect the Northern boundary of a Dutch Settlement situated there) is synonymous with the world of finance, and more specifically, the stock market, the actual home of the New York Stock Exchange is technically on Broad Street. And while the nearby bronze behemoth, the Charging Bull (also called the Wall Street Bull) has only been around since the late eighties, the building on Broad Street has been the home of the NYSE since 1903.
Yes the history of the Financial District is long and illustrious, and this post merely scratched the surface of the birthplace of New York City. No longer just a center for finance, the Financial District is now home to thousands of people that call New York their home, including us at NY Living Solutions, who have been here for over a decade and can’t wait to see what the next ten years brings to this wonderful neighborhood.
Rent Guidelines Board Chairman Jonathan Kimmel (credit: DNAinfo)
The Rent Guidelines Board voted last night on the lowest rent increases for the city’s 1 million-plus stabilized rent units since 2002, the New York Daily News reported, and no one’s happy. Landlords claimed the increase, totaling 2 percent for one-year leases and 4 percent for two-year leases, wouldn’t cover rising costs and property taxes. But tenants advocates argued that any increase was unaffordable considering the current economic climate.
Landlord representatives wanted 5 percent and 9 percent increases as property taxes rose 7.5 percent in the last year. Joe Strasburg, president of the landlord’s Rent Stabilization Association group, said the inadequate increases would hurt small property owners, in particular, as many of those buildings are exclusively rented to stabilized renters that already pay well below market rate.
Shoppers will get a break from the 4 percent state sales tax as well as a 0.375 percent Metropolitan Commuter Transportation District tax. In New York City, purchases under $110 have already been exempt from the city’s own 4.5 percent sales tax which makes a total of 8.875 percent or about $8.88 in savings on a $100 item.
“You can’t split a suit in half,” to meet the exemption, said Wayne Berkowitz, a partner and head of the State and Local Tax Group with Berdon LLP in New York. “If you’re buying five items and they’re all under-$110 items, you’re good.”
The full tax exemption returns after a more than one-year hiatus when it was amended to help close a state budget shortfall. From October 2010 to March 2011 there was no relief from the state sales tax or the commuter surcharge. Those breaks returned for items of less than $55 in price from April 2011 through March.
Tax Revolt 2012: By Frank Lovece
“It’s counterintuitive that a condo unit you bought for 10 percent more than you could sell it for today has gone up in value,” admits Dept. of Finance spokesman Owen Stone. “But if the rental market is moving up, you’re still going see an increase in the value of your home.”
When a Home Is Not a Home
By “home” he means “co-op or condo,” not single- and two-family homes and townhouses. That’s because under New York State’s Real Property Tax Law Section 581, co-ops and condos are assessed as if they were “comparable” income-producing commercial properties — i.e., rental buildings. And rents generally tend to go up, regardless of what the sales market does.
Whole Foods Market Inc. faces a series of City Council votes starting next week to win final approval for construction of a 52,000-square-foot supermarket next to a 140-year-old landmark in Gowanus, Brooklyn.
The new store is planned to wrap around two sides of the vacant Coignet building, the city’s earliest known concrete building, at the corner of Third Avenue and Third Street. After expected council approvals, the grocery chain would be allowed within five feet of the old building and wants to have its first Brooklyn store open in 2013.
Built in 1872 for the New York & Long Island Coignet Stone Co., the 2½-story building is the sole survivor of a five-acre industrial park built along the Gowanus Canal in the early 1870s.
The elegant Italianite mansion provided office space for Coignet and subsequent companies, including its longest-running tenant, the Brooklyn Improvement Co., from which Coignet leased the land for its stone works.
“It’s a lonely little building,” said Jennifer Gardner, a researcher at the Gowanus Institute, a local think tank. “To some degree, the plans for that site will limit the opportunity for the [Coignet] building, but also provides a potential draw for people to see it and appreciate it in a different way.”
The building received city landmark status in 2006. Two City Council panels overseeing landmarks and planning will vote next week on whether to reduce the Coignet building’s lot size to about 1,720 square feet from 6,250 square feet, a measure that’s already been passed by the Landmarks Preservation Commission. If approved, a full City Council vote on the measure is slated for April 18.
March 29, 2012 06:30PM
Charles Garner, principal at CIM, and the proposed tower at 440 Park Avenue (center)
CIM Group and New York developer Harry Macklowe are making strides toward building the tallest residential building in New York City at the Drake Hotel site at 440 Park Avenue. They filed a plan examination request for the building, one of the first steps towards getting a development off the ground, with the Department of Buildings, according to a DOB filing dated March 26.
The California-based real estate investment trust filed its plans for an 82-story condominium tower for review to DOB, which will check if its plans are in compliance with building code, a DOB spokesperson confirmed, saying an examiner had not yet reviewed the filing. The filing cites the height of the building as 1,397 feet in total, which would make it the tallest residential building in the city; for comparison’s sake, One57, Extell Development’s planned condo tower on 57th Street will be 1,004 feet tall upon completion in 2013 and the Empire State Building, the tallest structure in the city, is 1,453 feet in height.
As previously reported, CIM, (which acquired the site for $305 million last year), and Macklowe plan to erect a slim condo and retail complex designed by Uruguayan-born architect Rafael Vinoly at the site. It is slated to have 128 units and 12-foot high ceilings. The $1 billion project will include a 5,000-square-foot driveway, golf training facilities and private dining and screening rooms, according to previous reports.
Neither CIM nor Macklowe immediately responded to requests for comment.
— Katherine Clarke