2008 Nov 7th

Historically Low Mortgage Rates + Price Cuts = A Buying Opportunity in Hoboken Condos

Mortgage Rates Have Been Below 6% Only 2 Times in Recent History

Yes, we are in difficult financial times and the economy is a mess.  Be it due to a job transfer or job promotion, financial downsizing, a growing family with another baby, a marriage or divorce, or many other reasons, there will always be people who need to buy a condo in Hoboken.  Here is an interesting chart that makes it very clear how low mortgage rates are today in relation to the past:

National Average Mortgage Rates - 1964 to present

National Average Contract Mortgage Rates - 1963 to present

Price Reductions on Hoboken Condos Have Been Happening Like Crazy

If you follow Hoboken Condo price changes on the Weekly Wednesday Wrap Up you have seen that there have been reductions and more reductions.  Many Hoboken sellers find themselves in a squeeze, either already in contract to buy elsewhere and forced to sell their current property, or unable to keep their current home because they’ve outgrown it.  One glance down Washington Street on a sunny day and the ever increasing number of small childred in our community is obvious.  Although the average price per square foot for a Hoboken condo has for the entire year been above above $500 per square foot, there are many Hoboken properties on the market today priced in the $400s.  Many of these properties have NOTHING wrong with them (I’ve seen them) but have anxious sellers who are highly negotiable thanks to current market conditions.  For those today’s Hoboken condo buyers, and they will always exist, the combination of historically low rates and reduced prices can make for an extremely attractive buy.

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  1. Dmitri

    Lori your site is priceless. Thank you for providing such a valuable resource.

  2. JC

    How bad is it really in Hoboken Lori? Are prices really coming down that much? Much like NYC Hoboken has stayed relatively strong but may I ask your opinion on how far you think the market will fall and how long will it last? Your opinion if very much appreciated and respected.

  3. Dmitri

    I also have a question. Is there a law in NJ that prevents builders and owners from stating incorrect square footage of their properties. I looked at apartment I live in as well as on one open house and came to conclusion that both properties were listed with square footage inflated by 25%.
    Can they legally get away with this?

    P.S. I re-measured myself and came up with significantly different numbers.

  4. Lori Turoff

    – JC
    I wish I had “an answer” to your inquiry. We’ll know more about what happened to Hoboken condo prices in late December since deals that were made in September (when the Wall St. firms started failing) will likely close in December. What I can tell you from my day to day experience is that many, many buyers have the mind set of sitting on the sidelines to see how low prices go. That alone tends to drive prices down as properties, even lovely, well-priced properties linger on the market longer and longer leading the sellers to reductions. If I were to believe the economists and columnists I read in the press, I would say the down turn has only just begun. But what I see happening is that there are still buyers out there. They just need better motivation to buy. Also, as prices in Manhattan have not fallen all over and, in fact, have risen in some parts of the city, Hoboken will continue to be the affordable alternative to the City. The Hoboken real estate market is in considerably better shape than most other places. I don’t believe the slow down is over yet, I don’t think prices are going to come down much more and I sincerely hope I’m correct. Unfortunately, I can’t predict the future.

  5. Lori Turoff

    – Dimitri
    Square footage is a funny thing as there is no real standard as to how it is calculated. Sometimes the measurement is outside of wall to outside of wall, sometime inside-inside. Sometimes closets are included, sometimes not. The discrepancy may be due to how you measure. I don’t know of any law or ordinance regulating how it is done but outright lying would probably be fraud. Often, the number in the tax records comes from the “condo docs” or the offering plan that the developer puts together when the building goes condo. These documents typically include floor plans of each unit with the square footage noted. The many, many listings I’ve seen have been pretty accurate.

  6. Kelley

    Nice post, keep up the good work!

  7. Lori Turoff

    Thanks!

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