|USING AND INTERPRETING THE DATA
|OUR PURPOSE: We have strived to
offer a complete and accurate analysis of residential real estate value trends
in New York City. All recorded transfers of one, two and three family
residential properties and condominiums in the five boroughs from 1995 to the
present were considered in our research.
|OUR METHODS: The real estate market
is by definition imperfect; therefore, an analysis of trends in this type of
market can only strive for perfection, but may never actually achieve such a
lofty goal. Our information on sale prices and sale dates is from public
record. Every effort has been made to reflect the actual prices for these
properties, which are published based on the recorded New York State transfer
taxes. In some cases prices were corrected, based on specific information
received from realtors, lenders, or actual contracts of sale. We are not
responsible for sale price information which was recorded incorrectly, however
we believe that these errors are minimal, and that they do not have a
significant statistical effect on the final analysis. The high number of sales
in each year further ensure the accuracy of the figures. (For example, in
Brooklyn, the most populous borough in New York City, there have been over
2,200 sales of single family houses each year since 1995.)
|OUR LIMITATIONS: Statistical
analysis (percent change) was excluded for zip codes with minimal activity,
i.e., with less than ten sales of any property type in any given year. It is
our opinion that the data could be misleading for such a small sample, since
averages could be skewed by one or two very high priced (or low priced) sales.
In these cases, only total sale information is included. (Note: When searching
for percent change, “nc” indicates no calculation due to insufficient data).
|QUEST TO BE THOROUGH: Some zip
codes show no sales activity throughout the years, which indicates that there
are no residential dwellings in these zip codes. For example, Kennedy and La
Guardia Airports, Fort Totten, the General Post Office, and the World Trade
Center all have their own zip codes, but do not have residential dwellings.
Furthermore, many zip codes in Manhattan show minimal activity, indicating few
one to three family residential properties in those areas. In order to be as
comprehensive as possible, it was deemed prudent to include one to three family
sales information for Manhattan, regardless of the dearth of sales data.
|QUEST FOR ACCURACY: In our emphasis on accuracy, objectivity, and consistency throughout the analysis, sales of less than $80,000 were excluded for one, two, and three family properties for all data prior to 2005; sales of less than $20,000 for condominiums were also excluded; sales of less than $100,000 were excluded for all data after 2005. These sales typically reflect distressed properties, nominal considerations, or non-arm’s length transactions. Moreover, it is our experience that in New York City, sales for less than $100,000 for these property types typically do not reflect actual market conditions. However, in most zip codes this was not an issue, since there were few or no sale prices below this threshold.
|NEIGHBORHOODS: It is important to
understand that value trends in one zip code may or may not accurately reflect
the trends in a specific neighborhood. Potential buyers especially need to be
aware that neighborhood boundaries are usually irregular, and transcend zip
code boundaries. Values in specific neighborhoods frequently vary within the
neighborhood itself, and are influenced by many factors, such as proximity to
public transportation, schools, houses of worship, and convenience to shopping
and recreation areas. Reputable local real estate brokers are usually the best
guides for neighborhood characteristics. Reputable, licensed real estate
appraisers are the best guides for estimating the value of specific properties
and for more extensive, objective analysis of neighborhood trends.