Weekly News (March 20, 2019)

Over 110,000 New Yorkers use illegal basement for living

  • 114,000 New York residents are living in altered basement without permits. Mostly they live in basement because they cannot afford high NY rent. FDNY concerns poor ventilation and lack of fire alarm system, and exposure to CO gas.
  • NYC Council initiated program to modify basement and legalize them in East New York in Brooklyn as a trial case on 2/13. If this program turns to be successful, NYC plans to expand the program to other area.


Many New Yorkers think Amazon HQ2 should come back to LIC

  • According to Siena College poll (700 residents), 61% of New Yorkers express their opinion that Amazon HQ2 plan should have been proceeded even with $3B tax benefits, and therefore, the plan should come back, while 30% of them object the plan.
  • Governor Cuomo sent a letter to Amazon CEO Bezos to re-consider their plan to come to LIC.


Eminent Domain off the table in Leonia, NJ.   

  • Borough officials unanimously adopted a resolution Monday night to eliminate eminent domain from a redevelopment study that was approved by the council in September 2108. The move came in response to an outcry from home owners who learned in January. (They learned in January via a letter from the borough that there would be studied as an area in need of redevelopment )
  • Property owners formed a coalition called “Leonia United Against Eminent Domain Abuse”.
  • They also enlisted the help of the Institute for Justice, a national civil liberties law firm dedicated to stopping the abuse of eminent domain across the county.


Gloria Oh failed to be elected as Democrat Mayor candidate in Englewood Cliffs

  • Democrat Party has elected Ed Aversa as Mayor candidate instead of Gloria Oh among 8 delegates (Ed:5, Gloria:3). Gloria Oh might run as an independent Mayor candidate without Democrat endorsement, but she has to think it over while the dead line for registration for pre-election is 4/1.


Mayor Mario Kranjac was censured by council in Englewood Cliffs 

  • During council meeting at the end of Feb, Mario Kranjac threatened attorney Al Wunsch. Councilman Ellen Park said Mayor mentioned “I will punch you in the face “ to Al Wunsch. It is the first time that Mayor has been censured since town established.
  • Mayor insisted he did it out of self defense.
  • Multiple issues in town: former Police chief Michael Cioff’s discriminatory speech/suspension, 800 Sylvan Ave development project, etc.


A luxury women’s fashion brand is opening a show room in Garment district

  • 231 West 39th st, Manhattan (between 7th and 8th avenues). Rent is $49/sf on 1,100 sf, which is about $53,900 annually. Tenant leased 3 years.  12 story building was built in 1908 and houses more than 100 fashion showrooms.


A house can be built in 3 days by super size 3D printer

  • A start-up company “Icon” in Austin, TX developed huge 3D printer “Vulcan” recently. With this crane like 3D printer, 2000 sf Bangalore style house can be built in 3 days. Vulcan will be available to construction companies from end of this year and will be used to build low and middle price houses in Austin.
  • In South America, 50 houses are being built by this 3D printer and complete by the end of this year.
  • Biggest benefit of using Vulcan is saving on time and money: About 30% cost saving.
  • Vulcan produces thin concrete layer according to design on a computer and accumulate layer by layer, which makes building like Shar Pei dog while Vulcan was selected as highest invention of the year in 2018.


Millennium generation is bigger player in RE market

  • According to Core-Logic report, millennial (1981 – 1996) mortgage application took 44% of total application in 2018, which was increased by 2 % from the year before. Average age of the applicants is 31.  As of 2016 census, millennial population was 75.4M which exceeded baby boomer population of $74.9M at that time.
  • They show strong influence in Mid-West in US, but weak in South, West and East. especially in big cities.
  • Also they show preference in border area of other states, for example border area between New Jersey and Pennsylvania, where house price is relatively low.


January, new construction sales dropped

  • January new construction sales reached at 607,000, which was decreased by 6.9% from last month, and decreased by 4.1% from last year. WSJ’s forecast was 622,000. The reason was due to US Government shut down even though interest rates were down, according to CNBC.  Now construction sales takes about 10% of whole sales in US.
  • Median price of new construction is $317,200 which was decreased by 3.8% from last year.


Tech News : Teslaannounced new electric SUV Model “Y”


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