Emily Zhu 6/2/2020
We are now at a special time. First and foremost, we hope that our investors, business partners and fellow real estate warriors remain safe, sound and strong. Like many of you, most of our colleagues are working from home. Management team based in Metro New York is working at home using Zoom to simulate what we do in the New York office. Our development and condo sales team have been keeping busy with offering virtual tours and managing home buyers for our Long Island City and South Park Slope new development projects. Thanks to the technology and hard-working team allowing our business to remain as intact as possible. However, sales have slowed down moderately due to the economic uncertainty. We do believe the housing marketing in New York City will resume and pick up once a clearer economic view emerges from a better-contained situation of Covid-19.
New Empire Corp is well-positioned even facing a potential economic downturn. Our company focuses on building upper mid-end condos in New York boroughs that offer elegant living at an affordable price (i.e. between $900-$1250/sq ft) which are designed for middle class household income residents with stable jobs on payrolls. Out of 77 units at the Neighborly Long Island City (https://www.theneighborlylic.com/) we listed six weeks ago at an average sales price of $1250/sq ft, we have received 36 offers and 16 are under contract. Among these, 95% of the current and prospective buyers are working for healthcare, education industries and professional services at lower risks of losing regular income. The average time between listing properties and the buyer signing contract is 20 days.
During the pandemic, there are some changes in the way people live and work, which affect people’s preference for housing locations and living conditions. We anticipate there might be people moving from buying high-end condos to upper mid-end condos due to the financial difficulties and moving from Manhattan to the boroughs as seeking less population density and infection risks. In addition, working from home is change the way people live from the pandemic. With people spending more time at home, housing demand rises, and more people are pursuing high qualities and conditions of living. Our 567 Ocean Avenue (https://567ocean.com/) sits a few short blocks from Prospect Park, granting residents access to Brooklyn’s largest green space and the charms of its surrounding community. As working from home becomes a new norm, embracing elegant living with incredible access to recreational space, sublime amenities and luxurious interior finishes will become more preferential for people to live in. In short, the mid-end condo market is not only a stable, recession-proof sector but also a quick-rebound market after the pandemic. In the long-term, the demand of such category is expected to surge.
2020 is a difficult year, it is also a year for us to thrive from a reflection of our development strategy and business model not only pursuing a growth during an appreciation period but also sustainability in a difficult economy. We believe our market selection, company outlook, construction efficiency and quality control have been well-positioned and benefited from our dedicated professional management. The upper mid-end condo sector in New York City is indeed one of the safest out there. With disruption comes change and yarn to move forward, we will continue to monitor the market, be cautious and fully prepared for any changes that might happen. At the same time, you can count on us to continue to deliver quality and well-priced condos and look out for the best interest during this unprecedented time.