Preparing for the Buyer Journey

Here is our best advice for potential first-time buyers in New York City.


1. Location, Location, Location: Find a neighborhood you want to live in and can afford.

2. Co-op, Condo, or Townhouse: Determine what type of property you want to buy.

3. Expect a 10% – 20% down payment: Figure out how to save up enough if you’re financing.

4. Secure the mortgage quickly: Getting pre-approved is just the first step.

5. Partner with a Bizzarro Agency buyer’s agent: Their services are free and make the process much easier for you.

6. Don’t forget about the closing costs: It can reach into the tens of thousands of dollars, depending on your purchase price.

7. Prices are starting to dip: Take advantage of the current buyer’s market.


No comments

How to Choose The Right Neighborhood

There are many calculations New Yorkers make when choosing where to live…

And even if you have the means to afford to live wherever you want, there will be trade-offs.


Here are 5 things to consider when picking a neighborhood in the city:

1. Don’t get bogged down! Just because a neighborhood is supposed to be hip or was made famous by a TV show doesn’t mean it’s the right place for you. Instead, consider your specific wants and needs before settling on a place.

2. Figure out what matters most to you: location, space, or price! If space and price are your biggest concerns, you may end up living in a neighborhood that’s a bit off the beaten path. If you’re invested in a location with lots of amenities and things to do, you’ll almost certainly end up paying more in rent.

3. How important is being close to nature? New York may have a reputation as a concrete jungle, but there are plenty of areas where green space is abundant… Fort Tryon and Inwood Hill Park are enormous and close to the vibrant neighborhoods of Inwood and Washington Heights.

4. Take public transportation options into account. The MTA does not serve all parts of the city equally, so don’t get stuck in a “subway desert”. Even so, prepare to spend a lot of time on the subway. The average one-way commute time in New York City is about 36 minutes.

5. Treat the entire city like your neighborhood! Researching neighborhoods extensively before moving means that you’ll find a ton of places you want to explore! Once you have a home base, spend the rest of your time doing just that.

No comments

Should You Rent or Buy?

Should you keep renting, or are you ready to become a homeowner?

Consider the following when making a decision:

1. Timeline: It can take three months or more from contract signing until the time you get your keys.

2. The Market is Shifting: Inventory is up and prices are going down. With more choices, it’s the perfect time for first time home buyers to start looking. [UPDATED: THE MARKET HAS SHIFTED AGAIN DUE TO COVID19]

3. Disappearing Opportunities: Prices are at average much lower than Lower Manhattan. However, rezoning and new developments are going to soon change this.

4. Personal Finances: Some co-ops only requiring 10% down, so if you saved up some cash and built your credit, this is the best time to start your home buying process!

Join Simonne Hill, Licensed Real Estate Agent at The Bizzarro Agency, for an important chat on what it means to be a potential first-time homebuyer, below.


No comments

May Market Report


What is the market going to do? Hey everybody. Matthew Bizarro here, Broker/Owner of the Bizzarro Agency and for today we have my main man, junior agent, Francis joining us to bring you the May Market Report.


Diving into the data, I’m going to show you two very important charts and this shows the difference in the effects of what COVID19 has done to the real estate market in upper Manhattan.


So what we have in front of you is deal count. This is how many homes (condos, co-ops, townhouses) were sold per quarter. We’re going to look at the first two quarters cause that’s what’s the most relevant right now (obviously may right in the thick of the second quarter).


So first quarter deal count for home sold was how much? 245. Ionically, the count for the first quarter in 2020 is also 245.


So our first quarter kept pace with last year perfectly. Now here’s where we’re going to see the difference. Last year’s 2019 second quarter, how many properties were sold? 320. Now COVID19 steps in and where are we at?


Halfway through almost may in the second quarter. Where do we sit with the property sold? 39.

So we have gone from a quarter that’s going to have last year, 320 homes sold to right now being halfway through and only having 39. You want to talk about putting on the brakes? That’s what COVID19 has done to our market.


The last chart I want to share with you is a very important one. It’s the listing count chart and this shows the amount of homes, co-ops, condos and townhouses that are on the market right now and if you take a look at this, you’re going to see all a lot of inventory in Harlem.


There’s 209 homes for sale in Harlem. Everyone looks at that and says, “Whoa! Shy is that so high? Why is that so much higher than everywhere else?”


East Harlem, Morningside, Washington Heights, Hamilton Heights, and Hudson Heights, all have around 50 properties each and Inwood and Fort George have a little bit less.


But they say, “why is there so much inventory in Harlem?” Well, that’s because of all the new construction and new developments. There’s a lot of condo inventory for sale, so if you happen to be a condo buyer, now is the time. With the amount of supply that is out there, you can go in and get some great deals.


Interestingly enough, new construction aside, the rest of the market is very low. Supply right now is super low. We’re talking less than 500 homes for sale in all of upper Manhattan. It hasn’t been this low in over 20 years.


We’re starting to get nicer weather. We’re starting to get more antsy. People are home. People are sitting around realizing this isn’t enough space for me. “I really hate my apartment.” or “I only dealt with this neighborhood or this building cause I was never home!” and now they’re home. So there’s a lot of beginnings of the plannings and the next chapter in their life and that always involves a new home.


If you are thinking about selling your home, you may want to take a look at this data. With incredibly low inventory, your listing will be competing with far less properties right now in this market.


Same if you’re a buyer. Yes, you have less choice right now, but you also may be shopping with less people and have less competition to get some homes that are good deals.

No comments

February Market Report


It’s February 2020 we are about four weeks from spring and here’s what you need to know to position yourself to win.


February market is a market of transition and that’s okay. It happens every February as we prepare for spring. But if you’re a buyer out there, you want to take a very good look at what’s currently on the market now because there presents itself a very good buying opportunity as the listing agents know spring is coming.


So let’s dive in. As of today, there are 505 apartments and homes for sale in upper Manhattan and the average days on market is 119 days. Now that number is important because that is an average, which means a lot of them are sitting longer. So if you are a seller who has listed their apartment in the winter, it’s because you need to sell. It’s not because you’re looking for the highest price the market can give you. So if you’ve been on the market for three, four, five months, there is a buying opportunity here.


So the next fact you want to look at is location-locations are an important play. Because you need to know how many opportunities of apartments and homes there are for sale in the neighborhood you want. If you don’t have your neighborhood pick but you know upper Manhattan, this will allow you to view how many opportunities you have per neighborhood and the numbers are actually quite staggering.


If you desire to be in Harlem and we’re going to count Morningside and Hamilton Heights, you actually have 393 buying opportunities. A lot of that is also because much of the new construction in condos has been going up in Harlem, so there is a large inventory of new construction available for you as well. Should you desire to be North of one 55 to 200 in Washington Heights there are 81 apartments and homes for sale.


If you desire to go to the tip on Inwood 200 to 218 there are only 26 opportunities to purchase in this February market. Now that you’ve got the information, talk to your buyers agents and go out and get it. It’s always a pleasure bringing you these market reports. Give us a like, comment, subscribe, or better yet share it with a friend that you know is in the market that needs the information. Bizzarro here and I’ll see you around the neighborhood.

No comments

January Market Report


What lessons did we learn from 2019 and what does that have to do with the housing market moving forward this decade?


Hey, Matthew bizarro here and we’re going to deep dive into what to look forward to if you’re a home buyer in this January Market Report. In the last Market Report, we discussed how inventory was up, how prices were coming down, and about how almost 25% of the properties have seen price reductions and you listened. December was gangbusters. Everybody was purchasing. We had one of the hottest Decembers and purchase contracts that we’ve seen in 10 years. Those deals are still out there.


If you are considering buying right now, listen up. I’m going to give you some tips. One, no seller lists in the middle of winter to get the highest price. If you are listing in the winter, that means you need to sell your home relocation, family situations, whatever the reason is, those that list in the winter are sellers that are looking to sell so they are motivated.


Second, we’ve got three months till spring. This is an opportunity for you to leverage the winter, put on your gloves, put on your hat, put on your goal lashes. That’s right, gold lashes, and get out and see some properties. Yes, there are more properties that come up in the springtime, but you are competing with fewer buyers, which means if the property is right for you and it’s out there and it’s on the market, you have an opportunity to make an offer with less other buyers interested. So let’s make 2020 your best year ever.


Thanks for watching. I really enjoy bringing this information to each month. If you have any questions, feel free, free to reach out. As always, please like comment, share, and subscribe and I’ll see you around the neighborhood.

No comments

December Market Report


There’s no place like home for the holidays. Bizzarro here, and I’m bringing you a gift. The December Home Buyer’s market report.


we’re going to dive right into the three most important stats of December and they are mind-blowing. Buyers, listen up: 23.7% of the properties on the market have had a price reduction. The median price uptown alone has gone down 11% and the vest inventory is up again, 7.7%.


So what does this mean? If you are a buyer looking out there right now, it means this: things are on sale! Take this as your holiday sale! We’ve already seen almost a quarter of the market do a price reduction. There are opportunities up there and if inventory is increasing, that is going to allow you the opportunity to stretch your dollar and allow you the opportunity to have more choice and be a little more picky and obtain more of what you want.


So in recap, this winter has presented a tremendous opportunity to take advantage of a great market, it is a good time to buy. Enjoy the holidays from our family to yours. We’ll see you around the neighborhood.

No comments

November Market Report


There’s a lot to be thankful for this month. Family, friends, Turkey, Tofurky, lasagna. But most importantly you should be thankful for this buyer’s market. Bizzarro here and buyers, listen up! I’m coming at you with our November Buyer’s Report.


So everybody knows that November is a phenomenal month for sales and deals. What I need you to do is shift your thinking and take that and apply it to the housing market because there are tremendous opportunities out there for you. Now what do I mean by that? We talked last month about an increase in inventory and the numbers are in an inventory has actually ticked up 7.7% that’s a large tick for a season like this.


So there is inventory, inventory equals choice. Now everybody always asks me, “How is the pricing?” Well, those numbers came into and actually the pricing in the housing market right now has gone down to the 2015 level. So that is going to allow you to get some great bargains. It’s going to allow you to stretch your dollar up to get something a little bit nicer or it’s going to allow you to get a better deal and keep your monthly’s lower.


The last piece of information I want to share with you, it’s not staggering but you really need to hear it. It’s that rents are up big surprise, but actually rents are up to an all-time high. So if that is affecting you, it’s time. It’s time to really look at can I own for the amount of money that I’m paying in rent or can I own for very close to the amount of money I’m paying for and rent and this holiday season, when you’re around the table, you may have an opportunity to get support, family and friends to have a conversation about how they might be able to help you move from renter to homeowner.


But bottom line is, and I know this is true, you need to give a call to your Bizzarro Agency Buyer’s Agent, and you need to get out there and walk off all the wonderful food that you eat this month, looking at homes bizarro here. And I really appreciate if you know somebody that might benefit from this or someone that’s on the fence about homeownership, please share. I love reading your comments. I’ll respond to all of them. Just drop them below and I’ll see you around the neighborhood.

No comments

October Market Report


This Halloween market going to give you a trick or a treat? Bizzarro here, and let’s dive right in to the October Buyer’s Market.


If you are thinking of buying, listen up: This market is not a market you should be frightened of. In fact, it’s the opposite. This is a market where you should get your sugar buzz on and run straight to open houses over the weekend because inventory has made a slight tick up and that’s unusual for this time of year, so with an uptick in inventory that means more choice for you, more opportunities to get the home that works for you.


Now you’re keeping in mind, in addition to having high inventory, we have continued to remain very low on the interest rates. This allows you to stretch and work your dollar to the maximum potential possible. It is a fantastic time to get out there. This is not a market to be frightened of.


Thank you for watching and do me a favor. If you know someone that’s on the fence about this market, send them the video. I love reading your comments. Leave them below. Hit like if you’re so inclined as a Bizzarro here and I’ll see around the neighborhood.

No comments

September Market Report


I’d love to talk about pumpkin spice, but that is way too controversial for this Market Report.


Hey everybody, Bizzarro here and I am chiming in with September’s Market Report. The numbers are in and summertime was fantastic. Closings were up year to date. For example, July was up 19% that’s right. Contrary to what you’re reading, what you’re seeing, what people are talking about. Closings were up. So what does that mean? That means that the spring was strong, in fact stronger than last year.


On average. It takes between two and four months to close your property. So properties that are closing in the summer went to contract, most likely in the spring. I want to talk to you about where we’re going. How is the fall looking? Every day people ask me, where’s the market going? What should I do this fall? Should I be looking? Should I wait until next spring? Where are we at? Homebuyers, if you’re thinking about it, listen up.


If you thought my rent is too high, I might want to buy. Listen up. It is a phenomenal time to purchase a home. Inventory is coming in every day. We’re seeing new properties from all sizes, from studios to brownstones. The inventory is looking great. Interest rates are down. They are almost historically low. Again, it is cheap to borrow money, so what does that mean? I get asked all the time.


What does cheap to borrow money mean in your terms? It means this for the amount of money you want to spend, you can borrow more money, which means you can bring up your price ranges, which may be the difference in getting you a bigger apartment. It may be the difference of getting you an eating kitchen. It may be the difference of getting you from a one-bedroom to a two-bedroom. This is massive and this is something that buyers should be taking advantage of.


Now, if you’re a seller, good news fall numbers are also strong. Here’s the key. The key is it’s not 2016 that market is gone. The apartments that sell now are priced correctly. Gone are the days of overpricing, multiple offers and bidding up, but very much here are apartments with multiple offers. If they’re priced right, the consumer is very smart. They’d been watching the market, they’re not rushing into purchasing like they were a few years ago, so now the apartments priced are moving quickly.


The apartments that are overpriced are sitting on the market over price. Your apartment with failure to adjust, you’re going to be instantly looking at 40, 60, 80, 120, 200 days on the market, and what you don’t want as a seller is to become stale. If you found this helpful, like comment, share, I love reading what you have to say for onto a friend.


Who do you know is renting that shouldn’t be? Send it onto them. Love to hear your thoughts. Talk to you soon. Check out more exclusive, Bizzarro agency content and don’t forget to subscribe. You can also stay up to date with the New York city real estate market by following us on Instagram and liking our Facebook page.

No comments