Jamaica has been making headlines with plans for major projects and sites notching higher prices as developers continue to look for investing opportunities in the borough.
But while land prices are hot throughout Queens, and value is rising in Jamaica, prices could trend downwards soon. So now could be a good time for property owners in the neighborhood to sell and maximize profits, said Swain Weiner, president of Greinz-Maltz Investment Properties.
“It’s my belief that there is going to be an increase in [interest] rates sometime early next year,” Weiner said. “Unemployment is at 5.8 percent, inflation is near zero, the economy is growing strong, and gas prices are low so it’s helping everybody. It’s not a matter of if, it’s a matter of when. If you feel you are near the top of the market, I think now is better to [sell] than later because nobody can accurately time the marketplace.”
The value increase in Jamaica is caused in part by its vast transportation hub of subways, buses, LIRR and the JFK Airtrain, where major projects have been announced and big properties have sold or listed for high prices.
A 90,000-square-foot building and parking garage at 163-05 and 163-25 Archer Ave., which has 719,736 square feet of buildable space, traded hands for $22 million in October. Additionally, a huge development site at 147-07 to 147-37 94th Ave. was listed for $24 million by real estate firm CPEX.
Even when it comes to residential properties, Jamaica prices are trending much higher than before.
Real estate website StreetEasy recently predicted Jamaica would be the fifth hottest neighborhood in the city for 2015, based on median asking rent and median sale price. In Jamaica, the median sale for homes rose by 72.2 percent over the year, according to the website.
Although there is a chance high prices in the neighborhood may increase even further, it could be better to sell than to wait, Weiner said.
“I think with the concern of the top of the market being in place and also some properties demonstrating strong interest, right now might be a good time to capitalize on the strength of Jamaica’s growth,” he said, “and minimize the risk in interest rates or correction of the market.”