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Miller Samuel: Shadow Inventory Lurks

Posted11/Aug/2009 16:20:00

Quoted by Crain's New York, Jonathan Miller, chief executive of appraisal firm Miller Samuel Inc, says that there is a lot more condo inventory in the city than it appears, the invisible part being the inventory of so-called shadow units - apartments that are available but not actively listed.

Miller posits that the way in which inventory is currently counted is flawed and certain effectively available units do not show up in it; specifically, there are a lot more units in the Financial District and Williamsburg - neighborhoods that already have a glut of condo availabilities, with more projects such as 111 Kent Avenue, The Edge (South Edge & North Edge), and Two Northside Piers coming online soon - so far, without too many active listings being advertised.

According to Miller, there are many reasons why some inventory is not listed - one is that developers prefer to release apartments in stages to avoid putting downward pressure on prices. Another is that certain projects such as 25 Broad at the Exchange, a condo conversion at 25 Broad Street, are stalled, which means their apartments are yet not listed (Swig Equities' web site currently simply lists the building's layouts without further breaking them down to the unit level or providing prices).

Mr. Miller estimated that number of "shadow" condos in the city to be about 7,000.


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