Saturday, July 23, 2011

Friday, July 22, 2011

Pruitt-Igoe Design Contest Winner

st louis downtown developmentBack when the competition was announced for the former Pruitt-Igoe site, many thoughts came to mind.

First off, the current forest that exists could use some nature trails and an obervatory. Your typical state park.

After my visit yesterday to Schaumburg Illinois in the Chicago area, my feelings changed.

With its proximity to the loft district, and several other areas that could use a good design & accessory store, St Louis should work as hard at luring Ikea as they are working on Aerotropolis.

Since the organizers of the design competition have already stated that they are in no position to make any decisions about the use of the land, and are just trying to stimulate discussion, the practicality and logistics of this award winning design aren't relevant.

My decision is made up, they just want the best Ikea.

st louis real estate

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Unique and Stunning: Jack Thompson 6A

st louis real loftWorking extensively in the downtown loft district makes "high end, stylish and modern" seem run of the mill. It's everywhere; especially once the loft boom began. High end modern spaces were being churned out all over the place. We are really lucky here in St Louis.

Every once in a while though, a loft shows up that is truly extraordinary. This space is one of those. A 2 story 3000 square foot gem. Just listed today for $524,900. We've listed it before, and also unit 6d that is similar, but not quite the same. This building has the exposed brick and timber look as do many others, but unlike some of the other spaces, this one is exquisite throughout.

Along with the Grace Lofts and the Syndicate Condominiums, this unique space will be open on July 23rd from 1-3pm.

Contact us today for a showing or any other real estate questions.

lofts downtown

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Sales Up, Prices Stabilizing

Last week was a busy week at the title companies as the 1st half of 2011 came to an end and Festivities for Independence Day started up. The million dollar question remains in every real estate market, when will the market "come back?"

In the past few months, the inventory of available downtown lofts has been less than what we've seen in past years. A search for 2 bedroom, 1 bath spaces for less than $240,000 produced only 39 possibilities. Not what we're used to seeing. I double checked to make sure there wasn't a mistake.

This year it seems that several great things are happening downtown that indicate a turnaround is on the horizon. A sweep of the Reds over at Busch Stadium would have been icing on the cake.

Looking at the numbers, there were 53 condos sold in downtown St Louis during the first half of 2011. That is based on Realtor sales on the MLS. Last year there were 41 sales in the first 6 months. While the median sale price dropped by about $20,000.

From the Realtor perspective, it seemed like seller's in this years market seem to realize what they're up against more than in years past. One big factor in the increased sales this year also was the failure of Premier Bank of Jefferson City, the owner of the remaining lofts at the Dorsa. That change of the guard made the prices of these attractive units drop substantially overnight. As of today, the building is 90% Sold. The FDIC doesn't mess around when it comes to unloading property. Other foreclosures still pop up, and some are ridiculously priced. One would think that in this market, getting multiple offers on a property in less than a week wouldn't occur, but it does when a foreclosure agent prices a condo $50,000 to $100,000 below market, that happens.

Despite the number of distressed sales taking place in all areas right now, it seems that compared to 2009 and 2010, there are more loft buyers that are interested in buying a place on more factors than just price alone. I had a conversation with one agent earlier this year about how her listing was substantially overpriced. It was! It didn't matter though, someone scooped it up for nearly $180 per square foot. Most seller's aren't that lucky, but just seeing it start to happen is reasurring that prices are beginning to stabilize. Considering the inventory is lower and only the 24 Grace Lofts have been added to the number of available condos in the past 4 years, we may start to see a housing shortage again downtown; the condition we were in back in 2005 when pricing began to spike.

Lastly, one thing has continued to drag pricing down, which is the number of non-warrantable condos in the downtown area. Some of these were non-warrantable from the beginning, and others became non-warrantable when developers chose to rent out unsold inventory or some other factor. Lofts in buildings like Ely Walker, Ventana, Packard Lofts, King Bee, or Ballpark Lofts have been unable to entertain anything except cash offers; they've been sold for the lowest prices of all.

We'll see about the future, but here are the sales for the past 6 months:

2207 Washington Ave #307 47,250
1709 Washington Ave #904 58,000
210 N 17th St #205 65,000
210 N 17th St #1011 75,900
2020 Washington Ave #214 90,000
2020 Washington Ave #707 92,250
1511 Locust St #303 95,000
2020 Washington Ave #404 95,040
1501 Locust St #601 97,000
2020 Washington Ave #406 97,000
1627 Locust St #504 100,500
1511 Locust St #205 102,500
1312 Washington Ave #4a 104,000
901 Washington Ave #308 106,000
2020 Washington Ave #402 St 118,000
1720 Chouteau Ave #402 120,000
1511 Locust St #606 St 125,000
1611 Locust St #504 129,000
314 N Broadway #1301 St 134,900
2323 Locust #403 140,750
1123 Washington Ave #507 152,000
314 N Broadway #1307 St 154,000
2323 Locust #308 161,000
1123 Washington Ave #605 162,500
1123 Washington Ave #213 165,000
507 N 13th St #509 168,000
1123 Washington Ave #316 168,000
400 S 14th St #1106 184,000
1601 Washington Ave #205 200,000
2020 Washington Ave #101 St 207,000
1611 Locust St #301 211,000
1015 Washington Ave #301 213,500
901 Washington Ave #509 225,500
2020 Washington Ave #813 233,500
703 N 13th St #404 255,000
315 N 11th St #703 265,000
400 S 14th St #1214 275,000
915 Olive St #1209 285,000
915 Olive St #1401 287,900
901 Washington Ave #706PH 399,000
901 Washington #204 345,600

Dorsa Lofts
1015 Washington Ave #503 158,000
1015 Washington Ave #607 159,000
1015 Washington Ave #608 159,500
1015 Washington Ave #407 169,000
1015 Washington Ave #601 171,000
1015 Washington Ave #505 179,250
1015 Washington Ave #405 180,440
1015 Washington Ave #404 185,200
1015 Washington Ave #605 193,000

1015 Washington Ave #706PH 306,000
1015 Washington Ave #708PH 325,000
1015 Washington Ave #707PH 389,000