Saturday, February 18, 2006

Lowball! 2/8-2/18

Lowball! takes a look at home sales over the past week from a very different perspective. For those new to Lowball!, a lowball offer is when a buyer offers a significantly lower bid than asking in hopes that the seller accepts the offer. We take a list of home sales over the past week and pick out the sales that have the highest percentage difference between asking price and selling price.

Lowball! is to show buyers that the market has changed and buyers now have considerably more leverage than sellers. Just a short time ago, lowball offers would have been laughed at and discarded, however, not any more. The fact that so many under-asking offers are being accepted is clear proof that the market is changing.The list does not contain all sales, I hand-pick the most interesting sales from the list. These listings might be the highest dollar drops, biggest percentage reductions, or sales in towns that are thought to still be 'hot'. Please note, even with double digit percentage reductions, these homes are still incredibly overpriced.

Let's try a new format this weekend, I'll call it High/Low. We'll drop out the middle of the market and take a look at the high and low sides. On to the list(s)!

MLS# 2225447 - Verona, NJ
Asking Price $1,299,000
Sales Price $1,117,500 (13.97% Lowball!)

MLS# 2096174 - Bernardsville, NJ
Asking Price $1,150,000
Sales Price $999,999 (13.04% Lowball!)

MLS# 2078155 - Westfield, NJ
Asking Price $5,295,000 (Reduced from $5,895,000)
Sales Price $4,625,000 (12.65% Lowball!, 21.5% off OLP)

MLS# 2206653 - Green Brook, NJ
Asking Price $1,099,000
Sales Price $985,000 (10.37% Lowball!)

MLS# 2203630 - Millburn, NJ
Asking Price $1,450,000 (Reduced from $1,549,000)
Sales Price $1,300,000 (10.34% Lowball!, 16% off OLP)

MLS# 2102538 - Mountain Lakes, NJ
Asking Price $1,990,000 (Reduced from $2,100,000)
Sales Price $1,800,000 (9.95% Lowball!, 14.3% off OLP)

MLS# 2094705 - Irvington, NJ
Asking Price $110,000
Sales Price $70,000 (36.36% Lowball!)

MLS# 2207199 - Morristown, NJ
Asking Price $349,000
Sales Price $236,000 (32.38% Lowball!)

MLS# 2106160 - East Orange, NJ
Asking Price $119,900
Sales Price $95,000 (20.77% Lowball!)

MLS# 2103974 - Linden, NJ
Asking Price $249,000 (Reduced from $260,000)
Sales Price $205,000 (17.67% Lowball!, 22% off OLP)

MLS# 2098813 - Paterson, NJ
Asking Price $399,000 (Reduced from $414,000)
Sales Price $340,000 (14.79% Lowball!, 17.87% off OLP)

MLS# 2205942 - Passaic, NJ
Asking Price $239,900 (Reduced from $289,900)
Sales Price $208,000 ( 13.29% Lowball!, 28.25% off OLP)

Caveat Emptor!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can you tell me where this lowball was or any more info on it?

MLS# 2207199 - Morristown, NJ
Asking Price $349,000
Sales Price $236,000 (32.38% Lowball!)

2/18/2006 07:20:00 AM  
Blogger grim said...

It was on Linden.


2/18/2006 07:23:00 AM  
Anonymous Ken K said...

So interesting that these substantial reductions are happening on both the low end and high end. What's also interesting are the reductions that are NOT happening but probably should. A house on the corner down the street from me in Cedar Grove was bought by a speculator about a year ago. I think (but am not sure) he paid 1.1 mil. Did a TON of stuff to it -- full re-do in and out, which it really needed. Put it on the mkt for 1.3 -- has had NO offers. Great blog, thanks for this desperately needed service.

2/18/2006 09:07:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Are these prices lower than Summer 2005 prices? In some cases i believe so. So prices are truoly falling for once.

2/18/2006 10:35:00 AM  
Blogger landgrab said...

Wow, that Morristown price cut is EXACTLY the type of deal I'll be looking for when we MAYBE buy later this year.

I know people say this housing problem could last a few years ... and I haven't seen this Morristown house ... but from the price cut alone, I like what I see.

(This is rescinded if the house is a 2/1 teardown in a crappy area).

2/18/2006 01:42:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Trust me, that place in Morristown might look good on paper but it is in a very bad area. If you are familiar with Martin Luther King Ave. you know what I am talking about as it is right off of that by the train tracks. I would not take it for free.

2/18/2006 06:33:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've looked in Morristown -- lots of depressed and shady areas, and the schools are not that great. The high school is right in the middle of a 'downtown' area where half the signs aren't in English.

2/18/2006 07:07:00 PM  
Anonymous Michelle said...

I'm wondering if Morristown will make a nice upswing with the Epsteins redevelopment. I think the proposed plan is fairly smart.

2/20/2006 08:56:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've seen Morristoen come and go since the '80's. Though this town has improved, it has not been consistent compared to Summit or Montclair.

2/20/2006 02:20:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Looks like another bidding war in Short Hills:

MLS #: 2234906
Style: Ranch, 4 BR / 3BA
List price: $895K
Closed: $950K

Listed on Jan 16th, went into contract on Feb 2nd, closed on Feb 17th.

2/20/2006 06:18:00 PM  
Anonymous Michelle said...

Interesting how perspectives differ.

We looked in Montclair and I thought it was totally scuzzy in town (sure the hills were nice) and overall it was overvalued, plus the taxes were even more insane than Morris Township.

I think Mo'town's got some potential. Give it a coupla years with the new buildings downtown and I bet it will be more like Summit or Madison.

2/21/2006 07:29:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have been in Morris county all my life only to notice Morristown keep going down hill each year. It will never be a Summit, Chatham or Short Hills. Yes, there are a couple nice areas where the old money is but over by the center of town near Headquarters hotel is terrible and that area just expands each year. It has potential but when each house is being occupied by 15-20 illegal immigrants that is not a good thing. Some parts of Madison are actually getting like this as I currently rent here. I rent in Madison in a 3 floor home that was convereted into 3 apartments. They each have 3 very small rooms and I had 8 people that did not speak any English living above me for a couple of months before the landlord found out. My fiance and I barely have enough room and I can not imagine how they cram 8 people in there.

2/21/2006 09:18:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

On Morristown, we had looked at near Convent Station, which seemed like a nice area. Then we looked a the Morristown school rankings and were stunned:

2/21/2006 11:01:00 AM  
Anonymous Michelle said...

Yeah, I've seen that. Don't know why the HS fares so poorly even though the grade schools seem OK.

The stacking problem is an issue all over NJ. And heck, with housing prices where they are, it won't just be the illegal aliens doing it!

I'm going to choose to be optimistic about Morristown's future. I lived in lousy neighborhoods in NYC many years ago (East Village, southern Park Slope) that I now can't even afford making a nice 6 figure income. I don't buy the fact that Morristown's decline is a foregone conclusion based on the past.

Epsteins was a dinosaur that had to go. With some nice mixed use the downtown could, and probably will, improve.

2/21/2006 09:32:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Michelle wrote:

"I don't buy the fact that Morristown's decline is a foregone conclusion based on the past."

Seems the decline has already occurred?

Were the schools better ranked in the past?

2/21/2006 11:46:00 PM  
Anonymous Michelle said...

I have no idea about the schools. I'm only referring to the town being vibrant and an enjoyable place to live.

The statement that Morristown is "going downhill each year" doesn't mean that it can't turn around and improve. In fact I think there are WAY better shops and restaurants there now, especially along South Street, then there were 10 years ago.

2/22/2006 11:14:00 AM  
Anonymous NJHouseHelper said...

Hello all - I am a local realtor in the Morristown area and I had to check this lowball out in Morristown for myself. But I do have to offer one (unfortunate) correction. As per the MLS the listing in Morristown sold for $336,000 NOT $236,000. Sorry. Just an FYI

2/23/2006 12:21:00 AM  
Blogger Effex said...

It's good to see some realtors on this site. It looks like the word is spreading rapidly Grim :)

I am sure some of us would love to hear your opinion as to the market and where you see it heading.

2/23/2006 10:06:00 AM  
Blogger karenlenore said...

Please tell me where your got your info for lowball the very first one I checked is incorrect MLS#2207199 in morristown sold for $336,000 no 236,000. I am a realtor with acess to these records

2/26/2006 09:44:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here's the home buying process into a single weekend. She does it by compressing the real estate marketing budget into a much tighter timeframe than normal .

7/06/2006 08:48:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Blackstone, a public company, has a well-deserved reputation as a savvy real estate group. Will their investment blow up in their face?

7/08/2006 12:34:00 AM  

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