2008 Aug 13th

The Weekly Wednesday Wrap-Up – Hoboken Condo Sales and Market Activity for the Week of August 13th

The Dabo Dilemma  Revisited

Last week, I discussed a problem present in the MLS in that the DABO listings were not being accurate because some agents hadn’t changed the status when the properties were sold, withdrawn or expired.  As a result, list of DABO’s properties included old, out of date listings that weren’t really under contract any longer.  So last week I looked at each property with a status of DABO and manually eliminated the ‘stale’ ones but I’ve figured out a better system.  Starting this week and from now on, I will include in these reports only new DABOS – that is, properties which went under contract in the prior week, as I do for sold condos and new listings.  Here is the info from last Wednesday through today: 

Studio & 1 Bedroom Condos:

 1 unit sold for an average sale price of $402,500  – View Sold Listings

 3 units under contract this week –   View Dabo Listings

 155 active listings with an average list price of $484,565  –  View All Active Listings

12 new listings – View New Listings

Two Bedroom Condos:

9 units sold for an average sale price of $570,824 – View Sold Listings

5 units under contract this week – View  Dabo Listings

10 new listings – View New Listings

272 active listings with an average list price of $673,927 – View All Active Listings

Three Bedroom and Larger Condos:

none sold this week

none under contract this week

no new listings this week

48 active listings with an average list price of  $1, 054,463 –  View All Active Listings

  1. JC

    There is a property in the 1BR new listings that I just cross checked with the Hudson County tax records. Of course the listings states the property is 200 sq feet larger. Is this normal? Do you come across this a lot? Is it possible the tax records dont show an extenstion put on? I have heard plenty of stories where the sellers overlist the size of the property only to be shot down by some good research. The PPSF went from $580 to $800 with this new found info from the tax records. thanks

  2. Lori

    Which property?

    It is not common at all for the tax records to differ from the MLS listings. Any agent worth his or her salt is going to get the square footage number directly from the tax records. When working with a buyer, good agents immediately check the tax records of the property in which the buyer is interested for several reasons – to see who owns the property, how long they’ve had it, what they paid for it, whether they have a mortgage and how much, the size, the taxes, how many rooms it is listed at (1 br, 2br, etc). So normally the numbers are quite accurate. An extension cannot be built in this town without permits and when permits are pulled the tax assessor office is notified and the unit inspected. So that is not likely either. That being said, it is possible that the tax office made an error on the tax records and the owners never corrected it. Or that agent made a mistake. Or the owners did. I could probably give you a better answer if I knew the particulars.
    – Lori

  3. JC

    104 6th street.

  4. JT

    I don’t believe the tax records should be used as a definitive resource, but rather guidance data points. I live in a condo that is listed in the tax records as more than 100 square feet smaller than that of a 100% identical floorplan in the identical building next door. I know in ours they used whatever was on the architect’s drawing in our condo conversion (with no allocation for common space) as the number. They just took it as given (nobody’s going around with a measuring tape) and I’m sure they used whatever was on the plan in the other building also – nothing more sophisticated. So I look at those numbers as directionally correct but certainly not perfect.

  5. JC

    well, If was buying this condo you better believe I would have a measuring tape considering the large discrespancy. If I measure 525 sq feet (as the county has) you can be sure I would ask for clarification on why the list square footage is 720 and my follow up question would be; what else are you falsely presenting?

  6. JT

    Agreed that due diligence is the right way to go – all I’m saying is that it’s completely possible that the tax records are wrong. Measuring tape is the way to go (or even common sense on viewing – I’d hope I’d be able to recognize a 25% discrepency!). Lori is it standard in Hoboken as it is in NYC for people to include their share of common space in their square footage?

  7. JC

    Sometimes a balacony or terrace is included since its justified as “livable square footage”. I doubt common space would be deemed “livable” and therefore my opinion would be it is not included. That being said a yard is certainly livable as well but is never included. There really is no common rule and its a shame the sq footage is more a function of local custom then actual science. This is my opinion and of course I refer to Lori to shed some light on this.

  8. Lori

    Actually, in Hoboken, the ‘local custom’ is NOT to include a terrace, yard or any other outdoor space. Realtors often make note of these spaces in the comments section of an MLS listing but the space wouldn’t be added to the indoor square footage. The tax records are our best source for this info because that is, as far as I know, how ones percentage interest in a condo association is determined and therefore the proportional maintenance fee. Obviously, the motivation is for the owner to have the records portray the space as smaller rather than larger for all purposed except selling the unit. In all my years of selling property I’ve yet to have a buyer come out looking with a tape measure. Occasionally they will ask to measure after they have gone into contract but never while shopping. I always suggest that they bring a camera, take pictures, take notes and measure but they just don’t. Also, square footage can come from the condo docs (i.e., master deed) that is filed with the state of NJ when the condo plan is submitted for approval. The master deed always includes a description of the property, metes and bounds, address, and floorplans. The architect who does the renovations for a condo converson or does the plans for new construction draws these up and they include square footage info. The problem is that there is not rule as to whether you measure from the inside of the walls or the outside, or include closet space. So a little variation is forseeable. 200+ square feet seems odd. I tried to make some inquiries today about that particular unit but got voice mail. I’ll resume trying to get more info tomorrow.
    – Lori

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