Posted by Jonathan J. Miller -Tuesday, May 15, 2012, 1:16 PM 2 Comments
About five years ago, The New York Observer started a publicity campaign called The Power 100 where they selected 100 notables in New York Real Estate circles, put them on a list and threw a party to build loyalty and hopefully attract advertisers. It was a fun thing to be a part of. It wasn’t scientific and it wasn’t a serious endeavor nor was it taken seriously. It was just fun and created appreciation from those selected.
I was part of the list in three of it’s first four years. Myself and many others blogged about it. The effort got a lot of attention for NYO which was the intent.
I’ve always liked and respected the reporters there (still do) and I love the flagship NYO publication. I’ve subscribed for years and have been a regular source of market information for the publication.
However this year the publisher changed the methodology by switching it to their other publication The Commercial Observer and excluded media types and most residential types unless you owned a brokerage or sold a few apartments north of $20M.
Of course I’m down with that.
However I didn’t expect the publication to be mean about it. (Not to be confused with snark.) The Commercial Observer published a list of who was cast off (your’s truly) without disclosing the methodology change.
Imagine your kid applying to college but they don’t get accepted – only the college decides to publish their name in a list with all those who weren’t accepted?
I think the “Out” list is just as interesting as the “In” list – here’s a sample.
Bill Ackman – Pershing Square Capital
Serena Boardman – Sotheby’s
Timothy Dolan – Archbishop, RC Church of NY.
Steve Cuozzo – New York Post
Si Newhouse – Conde Nast
Howard Rubenstein – Rubenstein Communications
Steven Rubenstein – Rubenstein Communications
Sheldon Silver – Speaker NYS Assembly
Lockhart Steele – Curbed Network
Jay Walder – MTA
I’m going to start a new list “The Tepid 25″ since the word “Power” is a bit obnoxious.
Ok, enough of this drivel already. Back to work.
UPDATE: Here’s the response (tweet) to my post although they neglected to include my link and changed the topic – the social media person at TCO treated this as opportunity to expand the conversation thread rather than addressing the issue of right versus wrong. In media relations this technique is called “reframing the conversation” since my post was addressing how they mocked people being removed as being “Out” in a fit of self-importance, although many are sources for the publication and have been long time friends of it. When you don’t disclose your methodology you can’t do what they did. It’s simply wrong. No, it’s mean.
So here’s a lesson on what not to do on Twitter when your actions are challenged:
CO: Dear @jonathanmiller, you provide your list of the 100 Most Powerful, we’ll publish in our pages 2 weeks from now. Sincerely, The CO #co100
JM: @commercial_nyo yes I’m sure you would. #disconnect
Posted by Jonathan J. Miller -Sunday, April 22, 2012, 11:15 AM 2 Comments
Well I’ve locked myself in my office for the past few days placing the finishing touches on the upcoming week’s (Thursday) housing market reports for Long Island and Hamptons/North Fork but noticed about 500 new followers on my twitter account.
Posted by Jonathan J. Miller -Tuesday, April 10, 2012, 2:09 PM 1 Comment
I got an email a few days ago from a group that was marketing a $35M property known as “Carbon Mesa Estate” in Malibu, California. They sent me an iPad with 3-minute action movie with high production values that shows off the features of the house.
The presentation was sent via an app (or a bookmarked home page button) on an iPad along with customized packaging and external speakers.
Because it is an app, I can’t share a link or a web site, but you’ll get a sense of it in my overview including who to contact if you happen to be in the market for a $35M Malibu property or know someone who is.
Posted by Jonathan J. Miller -Monday, March 12, 2012, 9:45 AM 1 Comment
I saw this TV ad and I liked the message – it struck me as the way real estate brokerages should have been talking about the housing market long ago. Don’t speak about it as an investment like a stock pick, but soft sell it as an experience. Coldwell Banker gets it right. The Tom Selleck connection didn’t hurt either.
It initially caught my attention because it was a tongue-in-cheek valuation approach:
You start by taking the smell of pancakes made on a Sunday morning and times that by the sound of kids laughing from the bottom of their bellies. Then you add the taste of a good cabernet with family at Thanksgiving and multiply that by the warmth of a winter fire. Then you subtract the stress of work and minus the struggles of the outside world, add the power of a bedtime story and times that by the square root of a grandmother kissing her grandchild. Multiply all this by about 50,000 memories and 100,000 smiles. And then you have a value of a home.
Apparently all those appraisal courses I’ve taken over the years were for naught.
“People’s homes are so important because they are the setting for life’s most meaningful moments,” Michael Fischer, chief marketing officer for Coldwell Banker, said in a news release. “While the economics of homebuying are critical, we must remember there is much more to it: lifestyle, memories, family and pride of ownership.”
During the housing boom and bust, real estate messaging lost its way.
Gelinas demonstrates a lack of understanding with the Manhattan rental market, inconsistent with her long established writing credentials. She pontificates that the article was hyperbole and concludes the housing (rental) market has peaked because the New York Times said there was plenty of room to go:
If the Times thinks there’s no ceiling in sight, you can almost bet that the ceiling has already been reached. The paper of record has a track record on this. In 2005, the Times Sunday magazine ran a nearly 9,000-word story on the nation’s real-estate boom.
Well the rental market still has plenty of wiggle room if we are talking peak. We are currently 27% below the inflation adjusted rental peak reached at the end of 2006. In other words we are not in uncharted territory as a rental market.
The Manhattan sales market didn’t peak until mid-2008. And the reference to Bob Toll confuses the national housing market with Manhattan market. The national market peaked in mid-2006, 2 years before Manhattan did.
The rental market is up 9.5% year over year and continues to rise. Why? Because credit remains tight and likely will remain tight for the next several years driving many people to rent rather than purchase.
And then there is the issue of “froth”:
Toy further notes that “to compete for top rents, some landlords are undertaking expensive apartment renovations in older rental buildings. Even 10-year-old properties are being subjected to face-lifts.” That points to landlord worry, not complacency. You don’t plunk down tens of thousands of dollars in free cash flow to overhaul an apartment unless you’re nervous that newly built apartments are going to pose a threat. In a sizzling rental market, nobody insists on a washing machine or a hardwood floor.
This logic also shows a lack of understanding with the current dynamics of the market. The renovations are being done because the cost of renovations are far less than the resulting increase in achievable rent. There is a premium on upgraded space. You can see it in the market.
And the closing snipe is hypocritical since Ms. Gelinas is held to the same standard as Ms. Toy.
Neither Toy nor the Times editors did their job here—unless their job is to sell real-estate advertising.
My recommendation to Ms. Gelinas is to be more responsible with your platform and actually understand the issue you are writing about. I live and breath housing metrics every day and was offended by the inaccuracy and mischaracterization of your writing.
I assume this wiki entry was the result of an energetic social media consultant hired by the company that produces the report to help get the word out. I could even take it as a dig toward our work by suggesting that a quarterly report is something less than a monthly (hint: the devil is very much in the details). I also assume all concerned over there are nice people and are good at what they do.
It is currently the only report that compares fluctuations in Manhattan rents on a monthly basis.
Of course another firm, a competitor in the quarterly rental market report arena has been producing monthly rental reports almost as long and still does – but also produced other reports at least 5 years earlier – so the claim is inaccurate, but yet it’s out there as a talking point.
Why should I care that the wiki entry is inaccurate when Wikipedia is full of this stuff – politicians are notorious for puffing up entries while wrecking opponents entries? Admittedly I don’t have an axe to grind here other than that I do find it a annoying when free public resources get gummed up with excessive marketing promo material.
[Idea!!] I’ll make a wiki entry called Manhattan Rental Market Report [Quarterly]. And since I’ve been producing market reports for PDE since 1994 and because I found market reports that go back to 1927 (I swear I didn’t author them), I could provide some fodder for a wiki entry with some super hot SEO content.
Oh wait, I don’t care about that stuff. Nevermind.
Posted by Jonathan J. Miller -Friday, January 27, 2012, 10:25 AM Comments Off
I got a call from the New York Times recently in response to a Redfin study looking at the best time to list a house. Their conclusion seemed to be different than my experience in the NYC metro area, Washington, DC, Baltimore and Miami, all housing markets I have analyzed extensively so I dug deeper. I was inspired by the challenge and looked to Long Island for answers.
I think it really came down to the way Redfin used “winter” in the study since I came up with March as the best time to list using the extensive data over at the MLSLI (16,664 signed contracts from 12/10 to 11/11).
The Redfin report concluded that when you list in the Winter, you have less competition. However, you also have a lot less buyers so that benefit would be an offset by lower demand. This point is illustrated by the fact that the highest number of listings actually enter the market in March which is the month that results in the fastest marketing time.
When I drilled down to the day of the week, I caveated to the reporter (and was pointed out by the brokers in the article) that I think it really depends on the date of the broker tour day (the day brokers view new listings that came on the market). When I lived in Chicago, my town tour day was on a Friday and in my hometown in Connecticut, our broker tour day is on Tuesday. I would bet that Friday is a more common day for broker tours (to view all new listings that entered the market that week) which makes the findings somewhat contrarian since I would think Thursday would have been the best day to list (it was a close third best) because the property has time to get distributed before the tour day.
Of course this doesn’t suggest that a seller who decides they want to sell their home and it happens to be June, must wait until the following March.
Whatever the reasons or issues that are raised, we looked at over 16,000 contracts in a one year period marketed through the MLS of Long Island, excluding the Hamptons/North Fork. I was only measuring the time to market a property, not whether the highest price was achieved. I’ve got metrics on that but I want to crunch the numbers over a longer period to get more comfortable with them. I plan to do this in other markets I cover with MLS data.
Listing on a Wednesday, on average, results in the fastest marketing time.
Conclusion to the question: “When is the best time to list your property?”
On a Wednesday
These are mutually exclusive results but based on the data resulted in the fastest marketing time – days on market from original listing date to contract date.
Posted by Jonathan J. Miller -Monday, January 16, 2012, 7:59 PM 4 Comments
These are a couple of screenshots from my friend, real estate agent and former appraiser, Mike Lefebvre in Massachusetts who always beats to a different real estate drum. Big on technology and marketing, he succeeds at getting under the skin of appraisers and real estate agents in search of the right answer for his clients.
While watching his video on his web site FSBOSherpa.com, I grabbed some screenshots (above) that struck a chord with my appraisal sentiments.
Had a fun interview with Tom and Sara this morning on the always MUST watch/listen Bloomberg Surveillance. We talked housing, rentals, vacancy and inventory. An added bonus was the addition of Adam Davidson – co-founder and co-host of Planet Money... Read More