Tag Archives: Westchester Luxury Real Estate

This Grand, Flowery Remsen Street Brownstone Wants $6.2M | Bedford Corners Homes


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This new-to-market townhouse is pretty Old World, so if you’re into marbleized fireplaces, molding that doesn’t confine itself to the perimeter of the ceiling, flowery stenciled wall decoration, and elegant chandeliers, you’re in luck. The Italianate, 25-foot-wide facade of 37 Remsen Street hides a 7,000-square-foot single-family mansion, with eight bedrooms and 8.5 baths. “This regal residence possesses all the charm of yesteryear with updated mechanicals/systems throughout,” goes the brokerbabble, perhaps in an attempt to justify its asking price: $6,200,000. There’s an outdoor space off the cheery yellow kitchen, as well as a garden. The cellar level comes renovated, too, with eight-foot-high ceilings, a gym, laundry room, and a full bathroom. There’s space for a media room or wine cellar. Those too-chintzy details can always be painted over, right?




Mayor de Blasio to party with real estate | Chappaqua NY Real Estate

A powerful cast of public officials, including Mayor Bill de Blasio, is expected to descend on the Real Estate Board of New York’s annual winter banquet on Thursday night at the Hilton Hotel in midtown.

The event, in its 118th year, has long been an opportunity for the city’s largest and wealthiest landlords and developers to schmooze with each other as well as top political figures both in city and state government. During his 12 years as mayor, Michael Bloomberg attended almost every year, one among a long list of senators, City council members and governors who made the year’s biggest New York real estate event a perennial stop on their social calendars.

It had been uncertain, however, if Mr. de Blasio and some of the officials who have filled top posts in his administration would do the same. The real estate industry has greeted the new mayor with unease as he campaigned on populist issues such as growing income inequality and the lack of affordable housing. Those dynamics have been a windfall for the real estate industry, which has rushed to build a new generation of luxury residential towers in recent years.

In addition to the mayor, Police Commissioner William Bratton is expected to attend, along with other top de Blasio appointees, including Tony Shorris, de Blasio’s first deputy mayor; Emma Wolf, the director of intergovernmental affairs; and Alicia Glen, the deputy mayor for housing and economic development. Kyle Kimball, president of the Economic Development Corp., who Mr. de Blasio recently renamed to that position, is also likely to be at the event, sources said. U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer will likely attend as well.




5 Twitter Marketing Tactics | Pound Ridge NY Realtor


5 Twitter Marketing Tactics for Building a Fanatical Following

If there’s one group that’s well-versed in developing large and loyal  audiences on Twitter, it’s bloggers. They do, after all, have a content strategy  built into their title — ahem blogging — which means that even when  they’re promoting their personal brand, it’s more likely to be with content that  their followers find helpful or otherwise more interesting than, say, a random  company selling bar soap.

Bloggers who want to be successful have a kind of urgency to directly engage  with, build and look after their following, as there’s really no better way to  attract visitors to their sites. (Can you imagine a blogger running a TV  campaign ad, particularly before they’ve had any measure of success? Yeah,  no).

But of course, not all bloggers have thousands of followers, so, what  separates the superstars from those that hover indefinitely in the middle of the  pack?

Let’s take a look at a few bloggers and their Twitter marketing tactics who  really knock it out of the park to see if we can’t glean a lesson or two.

1. Get targeted

Twitter is a pretty reciprocal place, so you could hop onto the  platform every night and just randomly add people, and in the morning you’d have  a fair amount of people following in return. But having a mass of followers doesn’t mean much if they’re not  engaged, and if one new follower is all about muscle cars while the next is  all about creative applications for doilies, you’re going to have quite the time  appealing to all of them. And if they’re not engaged, they’re certainly not  going to share your work and help you grow your following.

One great example of someone who does this kind of singular focus right is  Heidi Swanson of 101  Cookbooks. Originally started as a way to share her many recipes with her  friends, Swanson’s site features a wealth of healthy recipes and is also home to  her cookbooks, which have a “supernatural” focus.

Clearly, Swanson is targeting not just cooks but also those with a crunchier  bent. You can see this hyper-focus on her Twitter feed:

5 Twitter Marketing Tactics for Building a Fanatical Following

While Swanson does do some retweeting of causes close to her heart and  recipes from likeminded sites, the majority of her tweets are links to her  content, prefaced with a listing of ingredients. This fits well with the  mentality of Swanson’s site, which allows users to search for recipes based on  ingredients, and it does what it needs to do simply before getting out of the  way. This is just what her avid audience, on the hunt for seasonal recipes, is  looking for.

What This Means for You As a rule of thumb, keep in mind that it’s  better to be hyper targeted than too broad; you can always expand from your base  once you get going. While you may not need to get as targeted as this, having some kind of theme is crucial — all the better if you can turn that into  a hook, a la @shitmydadsays. In fact, sometimes just getting a great Twitter  handle can frame all of your activities. Once you have that, get as creative as  possible within those confines.

Who can you follow that clearly shares your interests? What kind of content  can you retweet? How can you mix up the content? Give your followers not just  information but actionable insights, and you’re sure to grow.

2. Help each other

Call it guest posting, call it co-branding, call it coasting on each other’s  tail winds — whatever. There are few strategies quite as effective for growing  your following than teaming up with or regularly giving press to another blogger  or business. Teaming up with someone else not only gives you great material for  your Twitter feed (and who couldn’t use a little bit more meat to feed the  social-content beast?) but it also exposes your work to a much wider audience.  And while not everyone in that audience will be primed to follow you, if you’ve  done a good job of picking a partner whose interests parallel your own, you  should gain a sizable chunk.

Blogger DIY Victoria E. Barnes, who focuses on renovations of her Victorian  home, does this in a number of ways. Sometimes, it’s as simple as retweeting a  fellow blogger’s contest:

5 Twitter Marketing Tactics for Building a Fanatical Following

Sometimes it means riffing on popular culture, a la this Mad Men Spoof:

5 Twitter Marketing Tactics for Building a Fanatical Following 3

Whether it’s directly teaming up with someone or just a playful tease, being  in on it with someone else is a great way to gain exposure

Read more at http://www.jeffbullas.com/2014/01/16/5-twitter-marketing-tactics-for-building-a-fanatical-following/#C6SjYvwkFbaEvxKh.99

Real Housewives, Tour Boats Made Rosie O’Donnell Sell Her Star Island House | Katonah Real Estate


We crazy Miamians really did scare talk show lady Rosie O’Donnell out of her Star Island house after all. In a radio interview on the Paul & Young Morning Show, Rosie admitted that tour boats constantly cruising behind her house, and the insanity of her Real Housewives of Miami neighbors, finally drove her from the island, where she had lived for 18 years. And by that she probably means the Lisa Hochstein/42 Star Island debacle right next door, although to be fair Lea Black does own on the island too.




HomeFinder.com acquires Open Home Pro | Chappaqua Homes


Real estate marketplace HomeFinder.com has acquired Open Home Pro, maker of a popular iPad app of the same name that helps agents capture and keep in touch with leads gathered at open houses.

In addition to collecting open house leads, the app also helps agents determine whether a prospect is already working with another agent, allows them to set up automatic emails and notifies potential homebuyers when changes are made to a listing they’re following.

The companies claim that more than 35,000 users have downloaded the app – currently for sale in the Apple Store for $14.99 – since its launch in 2010.

Launched in 2009 by media giants Gannet Co. Inc., The McClatchy Co. and the Tribune Co., HomeFinder.com features more than 4 million listings that attract upwards of 3.4 million unique visitors a month to a network of more than 375 news sites, including the ChicagoTribune.com, Azcentral.com and MiamiHerald.com. In addition to the 130 websites operated by its owners, HomeFinder.com powers real estate search on more than 200 websites belonging to GateHouse Media through a May 2011 agreement.

HomeFinder.com also sells advertisting and provides marketing services like Open Home Pro and single-property websites to a network of 20,000 real estate professionals.

“(The app) makes something agents do on a weekly basis much easier,” HomeFinder.com President and CEO Doug Breaker told Inman News. Part of the appeal for the acquisition, he said, was the app’s high rating in Apple’s app store and its lofty volume of paid users.

– See more at: http://www.inman.com/2014/01/14/homefinder-com-acquires-open-home-pro-maker-of-popular-agent-ipad-app/?utm_source=20140114&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=dailyheadlinesam#sthash.ZgytCb6L.dpuf

Say So Long To Sub-Zero Wind Chills, Bedford, As Warming Trend Starts | Bedford NY Real Estate

After days of record-breaking and dangerous cold temperatures, the Polar vortex has finally receded north and a gradual warming trend is now under way in Westchester.

After a chance of mixed precipitation Friday morning up until 11 a.m., the rest of the day will be cloudy with a 60 percent chance of rain and a high between 37 and 40 degrees, according to the National Weather Service.

Then comes the real warmup.

The outlook for Saturday calls for rain in the afternoon and highs between 53 and 55 degrees.

With temperatures rising dramatically, melting ice could cause urban flooding and possible river flooding as well as ice jam flooding along local rivers, according to the National Weather Service.

It will remain cloudy on Sunday with a chance of showers and a high between 46 and 48.


Why 2013 Might be Housing’s Best Year Ever | Katonah NY Real Estate

After nearly a decade of disaster that reached levels of despair not seen since the Great Depression., the year ending today was more than a turnaround year. Within its short life, it changed housing from a liability to an asset so favorable that it had to power to take the rest of the nation’s economy along for its ride upward, in the eyes of the Bernankes and Obamas.

In some ways, it changed the housing economy for years to come. Like a human life, it’s true place in history won’t be known until it is gone and some time has passed, but it will be hard to argue with the hard numbers of what was achieved in 2013.

Some examples:
◦ Home prices are rising faster than they have since the housing boom. The S&P/Case-Shiller index of property prices in 20 cities released today climbed 13.6 percent from October 2012, the biggest 12-month gain since February 2006, after a 13.3 percent increase in the year ended in September.
◦ Annual existing home sales should reach 5.1 million in 2013, the highest total in seven years, according to NAR. That is 10 percent higher than 2012’s total of almost 4.7 million.
◦ New home sales are on pace to reach 435,100 new homes sold this year, the most since 2008, according to Bloomberg. In November, purchases of new U.S. homes exceeded projections, holding near a five-year high and showing the housing recovery was gaining momentum even as mortgage rates climbed.
◦ Through the third quarter of 2013. more than 3 million homeowners returned to positive equity and homeowner equity increased by $33 billion. Some 7.1 million homes, or 14.5 percent of all residential properties with a mortgage, were still in negative equity at the end of the second quarter of 2013. This figure is down from 9.6 million homes, or 19.7 percent of all residential properties with a mortgage, at the end of the first quarter of 2013, according to CoreLogic.
◦ By the end of October, homeowners in 55 of the nation’s 100 largest markets have now recovered more than half of the equity they lost in the housing crash. Of the 84 all markets that achieved more than a 100 percent rebound in November, 58 were midsize. Additionally, 58 midsize markets (28% of the U.S. midsized markets) now have fully recovered prices.
◦ Mortgage rates rose about one full point during the year, which made buying a home more expensive for many. But at long last lending standards have begun to loosen up, perhaps because many originators are shifting from refinancing to purchase loans. Median FICO scores, for example, were at 729 in November, down from 750 in November 2012. Closing rates were 53.1% compared to 52.3% in 2012.


Four Big Things in Real Estate That WONT Happen in 2014 | Pound Ridge NY Real Estate

If your inbox is like mine, it’s chock full of predictions and forecasts for 2014. If recent history is any guide, a sizable percentage of them won’t come true-perhaps that’s a result of living in extraordinary times. However, here are some things that you can be certain won’t happen again in the year ahead.

1. Inventory shortages like the one last year are history.

Unusually conditions came together last year to create a real estate perfect storm. Millions of potential sellers underwater on their mortgages when the season began. Millions more were in positive territory by prices hadn’t risen enough to generate enough profit to move. Four million houses once owned by families are no longer on the market; they’re now single family rentals. Couple that with a generation of first-time buyers scared stiff by reports of soaring prices and rates and you got a recipe for a real estate pandemonium, which happened in some Northern California markets.

Not a chance of a repeat in 2014. Rising values pushed another 30 percent of homeowners above the surface last year. They are continuing to rise even as inventories are normalizing, though not as quickly. Markets across the nation have returned to better balance between supply and demand.

2. If interest rates dip below 3.5 percent, its time to move to China.

Rates on a 30 year fixed rate mortgage bottomed out a year ago below 3.5 percent and they remained low through the first of this year despite widespread predictions from the Mortgage Bankers Association on up that higher rates were right around the corner. A crappy economy kept folks guessing until June, when the cork popped out of the bottle and rates blew above 4 percent.

With the economy starting to return to life and the Fed talking about tapering, not if but when, it’s pretty obvious that rates aren’t going back and the 3 percent days are a thing of the past, unless we hit a depression. The question to ask today is not if rates will rise, but how far and how fast.

3. Discounted deals on distressed sales are a thing of the past in the sand states, except for Florida.

The guys who hang out at auctions in Phoenix and Vegas long ago said goodbye to the big discounts on forecloses that made rehabbing and flipping almost a no brainer. The hedge funds got the blame but the real culprit was tight lender standards. No more toxic loans, no more toxic foreclosures. In 2014, however, it will still be possible to do some flipping in places like Jersey City, Albany, Columbus O, and Baltimore where judicial state laws extend the foreclosure pain on homeowners and lenders alike. As for Florida, please email me if you understand the Florida foreclosure picture. I think only Jack McCabe can explain it to the rest of the nation.


Top 10 Social Media Marketing Posts: This Year in Social Media | Bedford Corners Real Estate

It’s not always easy to stay up to date with social media.

Here’s what was really hot in 2013.

As you scan these articles, you’ll find great ideas you can put to use today.

Here are 10 of our most popular articles of 2013.

Top 10 Social Media Marketing Articles

#1: New Facebook Marketing Research Shows What Works: The latest research on Facebook marketing shows interesting trends and opportunities. Use this to update your Facebook marketing with the latest findings.

Read more about this research to help you improve your Facebook marketing.

#2: 10 Ways to Use Social Media to Promote an Event: Discover 10 creative ways to use social media to promote your offline and online events.

Read more about these 10 creative ways to use social media to increase your chances for a gangbuster event.

#3: How to Use Hashtags in Your Social Media Marketing: How to use hashtags in your social media marketing to create successful campaigns and maximize your exposure across all social media channels.

Read more to discover how to choose a hashtag that’s memorable and unique.

#4: 4 Ways to Use Social Media to Generate Leads: Here’s how social media for lead generation works and how you can activate your social audiences to generate leads that can affect your bottom line.

Read more on how you can activate your social audiences and generate leads that can affect your bottom line.

#5: How Your Business Can Use the New Facebook Cover Photos: Here are some examples of what you can do with your Facebook cover photo and how to leverage the new rules to boost your business.

Read more to find out how you can feature an engaging and interesting cover photo.

#6: 26 Tips to Create a Strong Social Media Content Strategy: Discover how to strengthen the impact of the content you create and generate the buzz you’re looking for.


Manhattan apartment market closes out crazy year with record-smashing quarter | Armonk Homes

We’ve said it before, but now we can say it definitively: 2013 was a banner year for real estate, particularly for high-end residential sales. In fact, so many real estate records were smashed in the fourth quarter, according to reports released today by the city’s biggest residential brokerages, that data wonk Jonathan Miller said it was hard to count them all.

The last three months of 2013 had the most sales of any fourth quarter since Miller began compiling the data 25 years ago, according to the report that his appraisal firm, Miller Samuel, prepared for Douglas Elliman. Median condominium sale prices and inventory were also at a record high and low, respectively, Miller said.

“The fourth quarter is usually the weakest,” he said. “But we have a lot of records going on this quarter. It’s a bit of an anomaly.”

In the fourth quarter, 3,297 apartment transactions closed in Manhattan, a 26 percent increase over the same period in 2012, and the median condo sale price hit $1.32 million, up 14.3 percent from $1.13 million this time last year, the Elliman data show. Part of the reason for the spike was that larger units sold, Miller said.

The overall median sale price was $855,000, up 2 percent from a year ago.

The median cost for a one-bedroom condo was $891,000 last quarter, up 9.19 percent from $816,000 last year at this time, whereas two-bedrooms ticked in at a median of $1.83 million, up 12.2 percent from $1.63 million, according to Town Residential’s fourth quarter report. Three-bedroom condos hit $3.22 million, up 3.8 percent from $3.1 million year-over-year.

Co-op prices were up 4.6 percent year-over-year, to a median sale price of $680,000 in the fourth quarter, according to Elliman’s data.

And according to Halstead Property, new development sale prices in the last quarter averaged $1,562 per square foot, up a whopping 26 percent from 2012’s average, about $1,230 per square foot – another record. (Halstead shares data with sister brokerage Brown Harris Stevens.)