Weekly News (June 12, 2019)

This week’s Interest Rate

     30 Y Rate: 3.875%/  15 Year Rate:3.375%/ 10 Y Treasury: 2.145%/  Prime Rate:5.5%


Constructing super high-rise buildings in Manhattan, NY is booming

(The Korea Daily 6/7)

  • According to New York Times, 16 super high-rise buildings over 1000 ft (304 m) are under construction or planning in Manhattan currently.  It is super fast rate while only 7 buildings over 1000 ft were built in NY after 2007.
  • Hudson Yard and Billionaire’s street on 57th street are making new skylines in NYC.  Empire State building (1250 ft) and Chrysler building (1047 ft) were making NYC skylines before.
  • Use of super high-rise building is being changed to more residential one.  In NY, 64% of super high-rise building space is used for residential. (For example, Central Park Tower (1550 ft) on 57th street is worth of $4B).
  • NYT reported that 2019 will be the busiest year in NY super high-rise building history.


Waldorf Astoria Hotel will start selling it’s 375 condo units in Fall this year

     (The Korea Times  6/12)

  • The hotel, owned by AnBang Insurance group, at 301 Park avenue, New York is currently closed under a complete renovation.  AnBang group purchased the hotel at $1.95B in 2014 and started converting to condominium, facing China government’s pressure to control US dollar.  14th floor through 43rd floor will be converted to condo units and the rest will be hotel rooms, total of 1413 rooms.
  • The hotel service will be re-open in 2021.


Queens, NYC housing cost becomes heavy burden 

(The Korea Times 6/11)

  • According to NY Comptroller in the recent report “Housing Affordability in New York”, 52.5% of residents in Queens pay over $30% of their income for rent while 28.7% of residents pay over 50% of their income for rent.  For house owners, 39.1% of home owners pay over 30% of their income for mortgage payment while 19.8% of home owners pay over 50% of their income for mortgage payment which is called “House Poor”.
  • For House Poor statistics among 62 counties in NY, #1 is Brooklyn (21.8%) and #2 is Queens, #3 is Bronx(19.4%), #4 is Staten Island(%17.9%), #5 is Suffolk(17.5%), #6 is Rockland (17%) , #7 is Nassau(16.6%), #8 is Westchester(15.7%).
  • In 2017, NY State housing units are 7,304,332 while rent units are 3,374,229(46.2%) and owned units are 3,930,033(53.8%).  Owned units are 7.6% more than rent units.
  • In 2017, Queens housing units are 777,904 while rent units are 431,863(55.5%) and owned units are 346,041(44.5%).  Rental units are 11% more than owned units.


Korean Owned hotel will be developed in Chelsea, Manhattan . 

(The Korea Times  6/11)

  • 18 story new modern hotel will be developed at 157 W. 24th by SMA development (President: Ahn, JinSub): Former 4 story mixed use building, right next to NY Korean Association Building.  If it is built successfully by 2021, then it will becomes the highest hotel that Korean owns in Manhattan.
  • It will be luxury boutique hotel with 72 rooms and total of 25,000 sf.  Total development cost will be $12M.
  • SMA development is currently operating 3 hotels in Manhattan: 12 story and 15 story hotels on 36th St and 3 story hotel on 30th.


KumKangSan restaurant was defeated on law suit for employee paycheck dispute

(The Korea Daily  6/7)

  • The court judged that owner of the restaurant (Yoo, JiSung) transferred ownership of property to his wife in order not to pay unpaid paycheck purposely.  There was a law suit by 9 Korean and 2 Hispanic employees against the owner for non-payment for labor in August 2012, including minimum wage, over-time pay, and large portion of tips that employees earned.
  • Consequently, Mr. Yoo’s building in Brooklyn will be on auction sale on 6/12/2019.


65% of “15 Hudson Yard” condo units in Manhattan were sold as of June, 2019 

(C Land 6/11)

  • It is located between 30th street and 11th avenue : Total floor area is 800,000 sf , 285 units, 917 ft tall, near by 35 Hudson Yard(mixed use), the Vessel, the Shed.
  • The 50th and 51st floor are a 40,000 sf amenity space including 75 ft swimming pool.
  • The lobby contains a large-scale wooden installation designed by Joel Shapiro.
  • The price of 2br room/1782 sf unit is $4.87M ($2,732/sf).  Maintenance fee:$4,048/m and tax:$55/m (20 year tax abatement).
  • The price of 4br penthouse/3,405 sf is $13.8M ($4,052/sf).  Maintenance fee: $8,345/m and tax: $114/m(20 year abatement)


 STR (Short Term Rent) is booming as Real Este investment      

(The Korea Daily 6/30)

  • Forbes reported on STR trends and benefits that one of great Real Estate investment is STR via such as AirBNB, Home Away, VT-BO websites.  Yet these investment vehicles are still early stage.  The big concern is town regulation.  For example it is almost impossible to get rental certificate in Las Vegas because towns live out of hotel business.  This makes STR investment moves to area with less hotel business and less regulations.
  • Advantages are 1) High ROI which is higher than regular rent income (It could be $4,000 income on a property with $1,500 regular rental income)  2) Owner’s personal use is possible except high demand season.  3) Less riskier than regular long term tenants which means no eviction needed.
  • For example, AirBNB started in 2007 and has over 3M listings in 65,000 cities worldwide.


Mortgage interest rates is lowest in 2 years

(The Korea Times  6/10)

  • Mortgage interest rates is falling down for 6 consecutive weeks which will be kept for awhile this year.  New buyers are expected to enter into RE market which will induce positive impact to the market.  Freddie Mac announced 3.82% for 30 year fixed on 6/7.
  • MBA reported that number of mortgage application has been increased by 1.5% for the week on 6/7.
  • Experts forecast number of sales will be increased during 3rd and 4th Qt this year due to low interest rates under 4% and interest rates will be kept low because Fed Reserves might freeze RI rates or even lower RI rates.
  • Stable low interest rates also trigger inventory increase because owners think it might easier to sell their houses in this market environment with low interest rates.


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