Author Archive for: Ron

Launch of the Marco Polo Festival in New York City

The Marco Polo festival dedicated to East Asian culture

http://www.nydailynews.com/2.1279/marco-polo-festival-helps-city-discover-new-cultures-article-1.1489025

Festivities at the Marco Polo Festival in Chinatown and Little Italy

10-year high record for Brooklyn home prices

We weren’t kidding when we said its time to buy. :http://nypost.com/2013/10/10/brooklyn-home-prices-hit-10-year-record-high/

After the Boston Marathon Tragedy, NYC authorities will be implementing new security measures. Read the full article: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/04/sports/organizers-overhaul-security-plan-for-marathon.html?_r=0

The Real Estate Marketing is Still Decreasing Despite of Price Gains

An interesting report from Las Vegas Review Journal stating that the US Real Estate market is still suffering, harming construction jobs all over the country. However, certain states lile NV and AZ report price growth: http://www.reviewjournal.com/business/business-press/real-estate-housing-starts-down-construction-jobs-further-down

John “Jellybean” Benitez to list his Gramercy Park Brownstone for $32K / mnth

Source: The Real Deal

John “Jellybean” Benitez, a NY-based bassist, producer and a remixer known for working with music legends such as Madonna, Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, Billy Idol and Talking Heads is listing his triplex brownstone property, located at 11 Gramercy Park, for rent this week with Luis Ortiz of Keller Williams NYC. The three-story, property was first listed for sale in 2011. John’s former listing agency, The Modlin Group,  was attempting to sell the triplex for $18 Million. Since then, the price was decreased several times, from $25 million in May of 2012, to $22 million in February of 2013, and, finally, to $18 million in June.

John and his wife Carolyn, a former model who now owns a coffee shop in Union Square, purchased the property back in 1992.

John “Jellybean” Benitez is very well known in the music industry for his famous remixes of artists like Madonna, Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, Billy Idol, and Talking Heads.

TheRealDeal - JellyBean's Gramercy Park Property

TheRealDeal.com pic of Jellybean’s 33K/mnth appt

NYC Real Estate News: Smoking Banned In NYC Apartments

Smoking Banned In NYC Apartments

Related Companies, which bills themselves as the premier global residence company, banned smoking in its rental buildings. What started as a pilot program in 2009 is now live in 40,000 rental properties that Related manages and owns.

What does the ban mean? New tenants and those with expiring leases must sign a contract stating that they won’t smoke anywhere in the building – from private balconies to the actual apartments. The result if tenants to – they face eviction.

Related Companies has a number of properties in New York City such as The Lyric, One Carnegie Hill, The Tate and MiMia.

What do you think of the ban? Are they at the forefront of a trend?Stay tuned for more NYC real estate news from Ron Hershco

Ron Hershco on Madison Square Garden Losing their Lease

Madison Square Garden

Late last month, when reviewing the lease of Madison Square Garden, the Department of City Planning recommended that its commissioners grant the Madison Square Garden Company a limited 15-year renewal. This means MSG will most likely be leaving the neighborhood in 2029.

The Huffington Post  highlights the current predicament MSG is in:

The Madison Square Company had sought an unlimited extension for The World’s Most Famous Arena, which had been operating under a temporary certificate of occupancy since its 50-year permit expired in December.

Local leaders and community groups, by contrast, had advocated for a 10-year cap, which they said would help force the arena to relocate and make way for an expansion of Penn Station, the busiest and one of the most overcrowded transit hubs in the country. City Planning ultimately tried to find middle ground, Planning Commissioner Amanda Burden said Wednesday.

“The special permit term limit we are approving today recognizes that Madison Square Garden occupies a unique location on top of a major transit hub,” Burden explained, adding that the vote was unanimous.

The City Council has 50 days to vote on City Planning’s decisions, a City Planning spokeswoman said. If it does not, the measures will automatically go into effect.

The Madison Square Garden Company said it was “extremely disappointed” in Wednesday’s outcome.”

Do you think MSG should move from its current home? If so, where should it move to?

Hurricane Season and Flood Insurance – What Ron Herscho Wants You to Know

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The 2013 hurricane season began on June 1 and will officially end on November 30. Ron Hershco believes now is the best time to make sure your properties are covered with you current flood insurance policy.

The Wall Street Journal recently published an article about new FEMA evaluations on how much flood insurance should be attained by multiple mortgage holders:

The Federal Emergency Management Administration is currently re-evaluating flood maps, requiring more jumbo-mortgage holders with homes in high-hazard areas to buy flood insurance. Also, changes to federal law enacted in July are expected to jack up premiums.

Even though flood coverage is only mandated for government-backed mortgages, or conforming loans, lenders generally keep the same requirements for jumbo borrowers who live in high-hazard (Zone A) areas. These are defined by FEMA as having a 26% chance of flooding during the lifespan of a 30-year mortgage.

“The pool of people required to pay flood insurance has dramatically increased,” said Peter Grabel, a senior mortgage loan originator at Stamford, Conn.-based Luxury Mortgage.

Both Bank of America and Wells Fargo require jumbo-mortgage borrowers to obtain the $250,000 maximum coverage available for residential properties under the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), which is an arm of FEMA. Homeowners can purchase a second NFIP personal-property policy that covers up to $100,000 to replace a home’s contents.

Homeowners also have the option to buy what is called “excess” flood insurance from private insurers to cover repair or replacement costs above $250,000.”

Where you or your family affected by Hurricane Sandy? Did you have flood insurance before last year’s hurricanes? Do you plan on getting it now?

 

Ron Hershco and Living Under Co-Op Rules

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Can you imagine being told what shoes to wear in your own building? What about having your umbrella and rain boots taken away when you leave them outside your door to dry for a quick moment? How about being told you can have a dog, just not the breed of dog you currently own? These are just a few examples of harsh co-op board rules that exist in NYC.

Ron Hershco recommends getting a list of the co-op board rules for living BEFORE putting in an application. There most likely won’t be a rule to make you not buy the apartment of your dreams, but if you’re early in your process, a known list of rules could help you narrow down your options.

A recent article in The New York Times gave a more detailed background on where these rules came from:

“The average co-op or condominium has two dozen house rules. “Typically, they’re quality-of-life rules meant to benefit everyone in the closed community,” said Toni Hanson, a vice president and senior managing director of Douglas Elliman.

While there’s good sense behind many of these rules — don’t hang or shake things out the window; lay off the stereo before or after a certain hour — certain strictures can charitably be described as quirky, not to say capricious or overreaching. Your home is your castle? Think again.

It’s all, of course, in the interest of helping a building full of strong-minded New Yorkers coexist in (relative) harmony. Co-op boards have long issued directives about deportment and decorum, and condo boards are increasingly following suit. For the most part, they are well within their rights. Residents can either get with the program or get behind a co-op coup to remove the big-brother board members in their midst.

Generally, thanks to what’s known as the business judgment rule, boards have broad latitude in making, amending and rescinding house rules — the good, the bad and the decidedly wiggy. If board members think a situation needs to be addressed, they can address away without input from residents.”

Have you ever experienced any of these tough co-op rules? Do you think they are fair or unjust? What rules would you make sure to enforce?

Ron Herschco on Illegal NYC Housing Laws

Global rental website Airbnb, which connects short-term renters with budget priced room rentals, has found themselves on the wrong side of the law in NYC. Residents are restricted by NYC law from renting out rooms or apartments for fewer than 30 days, unless they are also living in the home as the same time as the visitor. This is contradicts the basic business plan of Airbnb.

Earlier this month, Ron Hershco commented on the Department of Buildings cracking down on real estate agents and brokers. Now it seems they are heavily pursuing non-licensed renters and average home owners as well.

According to Time Magazine it is not the first time Airbnb has been in trouble:

No stranger to similar controversies in other cities, Airbnb released a statement saying it will continue to fight the legal battle. While its  terms of service say that users are fully liable for complying with local laws, the company maintains that New York City’s laws are not aimed at individual tenants, but instead at preventing landlords from buying residential buildings and operating them as hotels, reports CNN Money. The San Francisco-based company, which currently operates in over 33,000 cities in 192 countries, has raised the ire of authorities elsewhere — most recently in Amsterdam, where the main issue is that local laws, such as paying tourist taxes, are circumvented with Airbnb transactions.

Since New York City’s mayor’s office of special enforcement began carefully scrutinizing short-term rental issues in 2006, it has received more than 3,000 complaints, conducted nearly 2,000 inspections and issued nearly 6,000 notices of violation, according to the New York Times. In January, the travel news site Skift estimated that approximately half of Airbnb’s listings  in New York City “are likely illegal.”

Have you ever rented to or from someone that could violate this new law? Do you know anyone who has?