PRESS

In recent years, thousands of condominiums have been built throughout the country. From New York to Texas to Florida, new submarkets have emerged with a seemingly perpetual demand for units that range from tiny to spacious.

To determine where the market is headed, we first must look at how and why it got so hot in the first place. Real estate prices are a function of supply and demand. From third-quarter 2002 to fourth-quarter 2005, the largest influences on demand came from interest rates hitting historic lows.

In recent years, thousands of condominiums have been built throughout the country. From New York to Texas to Florida, new submarkets have emerged with a seemingly perpetual demand for units that range from tiny to spacious.

To determine where the market is headed, we first must look at how and why it got so hot in the first place. Real estate prices are a function of supply and demand. From third-quarter 2002 to fourth-quarter 2005, the largest influences on demand came from interest rates hitting historic lows.

Featuring Abraham Hidary on the success of Hidrock’s side street locations

Tenants faced with steep jumps in office rents and loss factors are retreating to side streets or smaller buildings and splitting operations to reduce their occupancy costs, brokers say.

“It’s a question of price and location,” said Mark Lauzon, senior director of Cushman & Wakefield. “You can’t afford $80 to $90 a foot, so you will see a migration to these buildings in the 20s, 30s, and 40s. Those side streets off of Fifth Avenue have great buildings and used to get $20 a foot on a good day.” Now those buildings are in the $40s, $50s and close to the $60s a foot, brokers say.

Abraham J. Hidary, 29
President, Hidrock Realty

Hidary became the president of Hidrock Realty in 2004 at the age of 26, with
responsibilities including acquisitions, dispositions, partner and lender relations,
development, marketing, management and leasing. In the past two years, he has
developed a leasing services division handling landlord and tenant rep work in
New York City, proving a new income stream for the company. His leasing clients
include Project Sunshine, Maverick Apparel, Magnet Media and Israel Diamond
Institute. He has also formed Gracie Developers, a wholly owned subsidiary of
Hidrock, to purchase land for ground-up developments. Gracie’s first project was
a 10-unit residential building in Kensington, Brooklyn. Hidary is a member of the
Fashion Avenue Business Improvement District, REBNY, and the ICSC.

Vacancy rates plunged and rents soared in the last month of 2006, capping off a record year for commercial real estate in the city. According to numbers from brokerage Colliers ABR, the vacancy rate for Class A properties shrank to just 6.0 percent – down from 6.5 percent in November and from 7.4 percent a year ago – as tenants continued their quest to rent every nook and cranny in the major office districts.

Leasing activity in side street buildings in Manhattan has hit a frenzied pitch as tenants priced out of towers Ion the average search for comparatively affordable alternatives. The trend is another illustration of how tenants are scrambling in reaction to the red-hot commercial real estate market.

Law firm Graubard & Nihamin recently moved out of 250 Park Avenue South at East 20th Street, while construction subcontractor Granite Construction Northeast has vacated 1350 Broadway at West 36th Street.

Park Slope’s Pavilion multiplex theater may have been sold, but it’s not a wrap for the popular neighborhood movie house. In fact, it’s the theater’s popularity – as well as a lease which runs through 2022 – that will ensure that in the future, the show will go on.

This summer, Jill Schwartzman decided to move out of her shared Williamsburg apartment and find a place of her own. She initially searched in Windsor Terrace, the neighborhood bordering Park Slope, but found it too expensive. Her broker suggested Kensington, immediately to the south.

“At first I thought it was too far away, but I ended up really liking it,” said Schwartzman, 31, an editor at Random House. “Most importantly, there was no fee.”

Relative affordability varied housing stock and a burgeoning artistic community makes once-overlooked Kensington the Brooklyn neighborhood of the moment.

Featuring Abraham Hidary on Hidrock’s Pavilion Movie Theater

With housing prices in brownstone Brooklyn at lofty levels, patrons of the Park Slope Pavilion movie theater often ask anxiously if it will be converted to condominiums.

The new owner has a reassuring answer, at least for the short term.

“It would be a great condo conversion at some point,” says Abraham J. Hidary, president of Manhattan-based Hidrock Realty Inc. “[But] it is a movie theater, and is going to remain that way for a long time.”

Hidrock Realty has secured a $16.1 million refinancing for 35 West 36th St. from
Assurant, the original lender, at a 3.89 percent interest rate.

“Now is a great time to refinance commercial properties, as the lower interest rate environment has given owners the opportunity to increase income by lowering monthly payments,” said Abraham Hidary, president of Hidrock Realty. “By lowering our interest rate, we have significantly reduced our mortgage debt costs.”

Hidrock acquired the 12-story, 79,200 s/f Class-B property in 2007 and began renovations in 2008 to create loft-style office and showroom suites ranging from 2,500 to 6,500 s/f.

The firm also reconfigured the spaces to attract high-quality tenants. 35 West 36th St.
is currently 96 percent occupied, with a lease out on the remaining availability.