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REBNY Watch

Queens making a point when it comes to growth

By John Banks

Our five borough series has so far covered Brooklyn, which is in the midst of a heated real estate boom, and The Bronx, a borough whose rapidly growing population is being met with more affordable and market rate housing and commercial development.

The next stop on our city-wide our is Queens, our largest borough and the most ethnically diverse urban area in the world.JOHN-BANKS-REBNY-WATCH-300x180

According to The Real Estate Board of New York’s latest Residential Sales Report, home sales in Queens also saw a sizable average increase of nine percent over the second quarter of 2014.

Total consideration for Queens home sales was $1.6 billion, an increase of 15 percent over last year.

Rego Park/Forest Hills/Kew Gardens saw the most home sales (378), with Flushing and Jackson Heights/Elmhurst following at 325 and 286 home sales, respectively.

It doesn’t take an industry expert to tell that Queens is becoming increasingly popular, and this is a trend which will only continue to grow over time.

REBNY’s Residential Queens Committee, which was founded last September, regularly meets in Rockrose Development Corp.’s LINC building in Long Island City to discuss market trends, share ideas and best practices for Queens’ diverse marketplace.

Our Commercial Queens Committee has also been fulfilling its mission of giving REBNY’s commercial members a forum to meet and discuss Queens’ strong commercial presence as well.

“I am pleased and honored to have been appointed the chairperson of the Queens Committee for the Commercial Brokerage Division,” said David Brause, president of Brause Real Estate.

“Our lively meetings are always well attended and consist of proud brokers and owners sharing pertinent information on Long Island City and the commercial Queens marketplace. This newly formed committee looks forward to many years of REBNY’s support and participation as we continue to grow and discuss Queens’ thriving commercial real estate market.”

Queens is the home of various exciting new developments. For example, The Durst Organization is spearheading a new residential and retail project at Hallets Point in Astoria – its first major development located outside of Manhattan.

This residential and retail development will result in seven buildings and over 2,400 rental residences, at least 20 percent of which will be affordable. It will also include community use facilities, a site for a new K-8 public school, and an additional development lot for the New York City Housing Authority.

Not only is Queens the site of new development, but the borough is also focused on building resiliency.
In the aftermath of Sandy, REBNY members served on a diverse task force of industry experts whose goal was to generate a list of precautionary methods for city and state officials to minimize the destructive power of the next super storm.

The task force’s recommendations included retrofitting buildings, strategically placing generators and water pumps in easier-to-access locations, reinforcing the foundations of buildings on the waterfront.
In January, the City announced the start of post-Sandy construction on 1,002 homes and sending out 2,104 checks to reimburse storm victims who paid for their own home repairs.

With all of the real estate activity taking place in Queens, it can sometimes be difficult to keep track of it all.

Whether by creating new housing, or protecting and preserving existing homes and businesses, REBNY members are playing a part in the continuing transformation of Queens.

In other REBNY News:
August 18 is REBNY’s next Residential Breakfast Club Seminar. From 9:30 a.m. to 11 a.m., join your fellow REBNY members at this free seminar in our Mendik Education Room, where our top industry leaders will be imparting hints and tips to improve your business. For more information, contact Yesenia Dhanraj at YDhanraj@rebny.com, or check the Events section of www.rebny.com.

REBNY’s next Residential Rental Clinic Seminar in September 11 from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m in the Mendik Education Center. Presented by Daniel Marrello of Town Fifth Avenue LLC and Douglas Wagner of Bond NY Properties LLC, join fellow REBNY members in this exciting seminar that will teach you more about how to expand and improve your residential real estate business. For more information, contact Yesenia Dhanraj at YDhanraj@rebny.com.

The City has developed a new e-cycleNYC program to assist residential buildings in complying with a new law which makes it illegal for New Yorkers to discard electronics in the trash. Residential buildings wishing to participate in this free program will be required to sign a Site Sponsor Agreement, and REBNY’s Residential Management Council and its legal team have reviewed the Terms of Agreement with the Department of Sanitation and ERI, who have agreed to REBNY’s recommended changes. Special thanks to Ben Kirschenbaum, Eva Talel, and Michael Wolfe for dedicating their time and expertise on behalf of the industry.

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