Long Island City home prices surge in wake of Amazon HQ2 deal announcement: Report

Long Island City home prices surge in wake of Amazon HQ2 deal announcement: Report
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By Carlotta Mohamed

In reaction to Amazon’s plans to build its second headquarters (HQ2) in Long Island City, it’s no surprise that home prices are spiking in the neighborhood.

Real estate site StreetEasy released its November 2018 Market Report, which found that the number of recorded sales in northwest Queens — which includes Long Island City — rose 23 percent over the last year to the highest levels since February. Boroughwide, the number of recorded sales increased 10.5 percent.

The northwest Queens submarket includes Astoria, Long Island City, Sunnyside and Ditmars-Steinway.

In the five weeks after Nov. 5, when the Amazon HQ2 plans leaked, 35 listings in Long Island City, or 18.8 percent of the total number of homes for sale there, increased their price, StreetEasy reported.

“In the five weeks prior to the Amazon announcement, not a single listing in Long Island City had raised its price,” said Grant Long, StreetEasy senior economist.

Rent in northwest Queens, the borough’s most expensive submarket, increased the most by 1.1 percent to $2,252, according to the report.

The median monthly asking rent in Long Island City was up 10.4 percent over last year — reaching $3,124. The median in Astoria was relatively stagnant — down just 0.8 percent from last year to $2,183. In Sunnyside, the rent remained the same from last year — $1,975.

Yet despite the excitement among New York City landlords and sellers about Amazon’s plans, the current price increases are largely confined to Long Island City, according to StreetEasy. No other neighborhood has seen a dramatic reversal in its price trend as Long Island City, and some nearby neighborhoods haven’t seen much change at all.

However, even some sellers outside of neighboring areas have been alerting potential buyers of the proximity to HQ2.

While Long Island City has only three current listings to celebrate the incoming Amazon campus, listing descriptions for another 75 units for sale in 48 buildings across Manhattan, Queens, and Brooklyn are alerting home shoppers of the news, StreetEasy said.

Long said the recent trend of Manhattan listings touting their proximity to Queens illustrating just how “upside down the New York City real estate market has become going into 2019.”

“With Manhattan prices down 2.5 percent from the prior year as of October, and Queens prices up 5.4 percent, developers are pinning their hopes on Amazon,” said Long.

Overall, in Queens, the number of condos on the market increased by 65.3 percent year over year; there were 628 condos on the market in November, according to StreetEasy.

The number of co-ops in Queens increased by 16.4 percent with 996 in the market; and single-family residences increased by 38.5 percent with 1,673 residences in the market, according to the report.

In Queens, there were 35.1 percent more homes on the market this November compared to last year; in Nov. 2017, there were 2,418 homes on the market, and 2,418 this year .

StreetEasy also reported earlier this week that a number of property sellers in Long Island City actually increased their asking prices in the weeks following the announcement.

Reach reporter Carlotta Mohamed by e-mail at cmoha[email protected]nglocal.com or by phone at (718) 260–4526.

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