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The 2012 Downtown Columbus Condo Wrap-Up

JoePeffer JoePeffer The 2012 Downtown Columbus Condo Wrap-Up
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Would you believe that 165 condominiums sold in the 43215 Downtown Columbus zip code in 2012? It’s true. That’s about 30% more than the previous year, 30% more than 2010 and 40% more than the number of condos that sold in 2009 in and around Downtown Columbus.

At an average of $237,130 per condo, we’re talking about an increase in Downtown residential purchasing of nearly $12 million over the previous year. 43215 condos would include all of Downtown, the Southern Short North, some of the Northern Streets in German Village and the Brewery District, and of course, the Arena District.

Though some of these Downtown Columbus condos may not have ever been lived in, few were newly built. Also, there were no clear runaway pockets Downtown as these sales were nicely spread out, with many of the prior lackluster performing properties making a good showing.

Here are some of the highlights from last year’s condo sales in Downtown Columbus, in alphabetical order:

8 On the Square – 8 East Broad Street – Three units sold, a one, two and three bedroom unit — that’s right, for you naysayers out there who complain about there not being any three-bedroom condo units in Downtown Columbus. That model unit was on the 11th floor, with over 2,100 square feet plus two balconies. You might recall that this unit was once listed at just over a $1 million, but sold last year for $599,000 after over three years of availability.

Atrium Lofts – 106 North High Street - Four one-bedroom units and two two-bedroom units. This reinvigorated building saw only six sales last year but that’s a coup for a well-located building best known for its multistory light well. The one-bedroom units averaged $121,500 and the two bedroom units averaged $173,500.

The BuggyWorks – 448 West Nationwide Boulevard – It was a pretty good year for one of Columbus’ only true New York loft style condo communities. Buggyworks had nine sales in 2012: the four one-bedroom units that sold averaged 1,041 square feet and sold at an average of $209.72/sqft. The six two-bedroom units at Buggyworks sold for an average $217.27/sqft and had an average of 1,273 sqft. The largest unit sold in 2012 was 1,649 sqft and sold for $365,000. The taxes are only $1,002 per year and the monthly condo fee is a steep $500 per month. Sometime in 2016, the taxes for many of these will adjust to non-tax-abated levels. A 1,200 square foot short sale sold for $216,000 after originally selling for $279,000 back in 2006.

Burnham Square – 250 Daniel Burnham Square - Since they were built in 2006, Burnham Square condo units have done a remarkable job keeping their value. Seven units sold last year, five of them being two-bedroom units. Those five Burnham Square units sold for an average of $245.21 per sqft, though that’s slightly misleading as two of them were the extra large units at 2,200 and 2,400 square feet which sold for $495,000 and $625,000 respectively.

Carlyle’s Watch - 100 East Gay Street – Carlyle’s Watch, at the Downtown uber-corner of Third and Gay Streets continued the momentum of 2011 with seven sales averaging a brisk 77 days on market. The three one-bedroom units that sold averaged $147,167, 821 square feet and 36 days on market. The four two-bedroom units averaged $215,000, 1,258 square feet and 106 days on market.

Cityview at 3rd – 78 East Chestnut – Lest they feel slighted, six units sold at Cityview on 3rd in 2012. I’ve never been a big fan of the project, though I appreciate the location. All one-bedroom two-bathroom condos, these averaged $148,500 per unit and a bargain $151.18 per sqft. This building has been through some tough times in recent years and these legitimate sales sure beat rentals if you ask the previous buyers.

The Dakota – 845 North High Street – Yep, still located within the 43215 zip code, the Dakota had five sales last year: two one-bedroom units at $176,000 and 126 days on market (though one was a short sale) and the two-bedroom units went for $250,000, $255,000 and $337,500, the later being about 200 square feet bigger and the former being ultra-motivated.

Exchange Urban Lofts – 110 North Third Street – Always a fan favorite, Exchange Urban Lofts just did ok last year. Four units sold with two of the three two-bedroom units having an identical 1,456 square feet and selling in under six weeks for an average of $257,700 (just over $175 per sqft). Will these units be a harder sell when tax abatements begin running out in 2014?

Harrison Park – Harrison West – One of the big winners last year, albeit they were due, was Harrison Park with 11 total sales. Many of these units have come down in price since being built in 2008 and buyers liked the low condo fees and minuscule taxes. The one-bedrooms units averaged almost 1,000 square feet and $170,000, and the two-bedroom units went for just under 1,200 square feet and just over $201,000.

Miranova – One Miranova Place – It was a breakout year for Miranova as the Queen of Columbus Condos, which had 11 sales, eight of them being two-bedroom units that averaged a mere 57 days on market and $190 per sqft. One interesting sale was a 2,440 square foot 21st floor unit listed at $640,000, which sold for $550,000 after a quick three days on the market.

Neighborhood Launch – Gay Street - 2012 was another solid year for Downtown’s newest condo development. Curb appeal and location will keep buyers coming back for more at Neighborhood Launch. Highlights include two one-bedroom units that sold in one day, another that took 16 days on the market, a three-bedroom unit in the contemporary block on North Fifth Street that went for $385,500, and an end unit with two bedrooms, 2.5 baths and nearly 2,000 square feet in the newest Gay Street block for $495,000. Curious what the condo fees would set you back on that? Only $169 per month… compare that to aforementioned Miranova unit at $1,488 per month. I guess it’s all about what you consider to be important amenities.

North Bank – 300 West Spring Street - Speaking of high-rise condo developments in Downtown Columbus, North Bank had four sales that were entered into the Columbus MLS. That’s important to note because many of the new sales are sold by the building’s sales team and not entered in the MLS database. These four sales (all resales) were all two-bedroom units that averaged $482,100 or about $268 per square foot. Great Location, great views, great amenities.

One Ninety Nine – 199 South Fifth Street – It was an overdue breakout year for this development that sold eight units in 2012. Known for their giant terraces, 199 sold two one-bedroom units, and the six two-bedroom units that sold went for an average of $211 per sqft or $275,150 for your average 1,297 square foot unit.

Terraces on Grant – 196 South Grant Avenue - Six two-bedroom units sold in Terraces last year. Built in 2006, these units had struggled to sell but like many other buildings in Downtown Columbus, Terraces saw a slight resurgence in popularity. These condos averaged 1,170 sqft and a sales price of around $164 per sqft, or about $186,000.

Victorian Gate – Victorian Village – Last but not least in terms of location, Victorian Gate continued to be popular with buyers looking to be in the middle of the happening Short North and Goodale Park area. Victorian Gate saw 12 condo sales in 2012. The seven one-bedroom units averaged $205 per sqft and a sales price of $161,000 for just over 785 square feet and a quick 57 days on market. The two-bedroom condos sold for $170 per sqft for just over 1,500 square feet of space and a sales price of $261,540 in only 100 days on average.

Waterford Tower also saw five sales, one of them a two-bedroom unit for $199,900. The bulk of the rest of 2012′s condo sales were sprinkled throughout Downtown Columbus, as well as the residential streets of the Short North and the Brewery District.

Joe Peffer is the Managing Partner of the Delicious Real Estate Group and Broker of Record at Re/Max Town Center. All information from Columbus Area MLS and deemed reliable.

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12 Responses to The 2012 Downtown Columbus Condo Wrap-Up

  1. buckette13 January 8, 2013 9:20 am at 9:20 am

    “You might recall that this unit was once listed at just over a $1 million, but sold last year for $599,000 after over three years of availability.”

    That is pretty scary. Someone is out $401k plus 3 years of carrying costs.

    How much will the taxes be when the abatements run out?

  2. columbusmike January 8, 2013 9:53 am at 9:53 am

    I’m going to guess they’ll extend the abatements. The abatements have really helped the residential component return to downtown. Eventually, once downtown has a stable population, they can terminate the tax abatement.

  3. mrpoppinzs January 8, 2013 10:14 am at 10:14 am

    I believe they will continue having tax abatements for new builds, but I don’t see them extending the 10 year tax abatements for buildings that already have it.

    I imagine that condo prices will continue to fall as more (and more flexible) housing options become available downtown (ie all those apartments coming online).

  4. Walker Evans
    Walker January 8, 2013 11:09 am at 11:09 am

    @buckette13 – Joe said it was a model unit, which probably means it wasn’t was resell from a previous owner. If that’s the case, the developer had to sell it at a lower price, not an individual at a loss.

  5. Walker Evans
    Walker January 8, 2013 11:15 am at 11:15 am

    Overall, this is some pretty great news. I hadn’t heard much about condo sales last year, as every developer I spoke to was all about apartments, apartments, apartments. But it sounds like sales Downtown have actually done pretty well, especially considering that very little of these were newly built units.

  6. Pickerington_Kyle
    Pickerington_Kyle January 8, 2013 11:50 am at 11:50 am

    Do we know what the Vacancy is on Condos in Columbus and Vacancy in Apartments?

  7. billbix January 8, 2013 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm

    I don’t think we have hit bottom yet. I would be tempted to buy when prices really level out but we are looking at having another child and will probably need the money and space.

  8. heresthecasey January 8, 2013 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm

    Nice to see that sales are picking up. Looks like there is plenty of demand for modestly-priced homes downtown. This is the market that should probably be targeted, not the high-end, 600,000, 1 million+ end of things.

    Here’s hoping we see some new for-sale developments start to pop-up this year.

  9. columbusdreamer January 8, 2013 4:46 pm at 4:46 pm

    We need more Town Homes Brownstones and Multifamily units to round out the market.

  10. Walker Evans
    Walker January 8, 2013 4:55 pm at 4:55 pm

    I think that smaller units (both apartment and condo) are really lacking from the Downtown market. There seems to be very little product in the 400-600 sqft range, but I recall developments such as the Yukon in the Short North selling incredibly quickly with one-bedroom condos in those sizes. I’ve often wondered if a building filled with 500-sqft one-bedroom units could sell well in a prime location like Gay Street.

  11. buckette13 January 8, 2013 5:15 pm at 5:15 pm

    When I was looking I was told that it is harder to get financing for one bedroom condos as they appraise lower than two bedrooms. The banks will not lend you the cash unless they think the equity is there. I need to mention the Yukon thing to my mortgage agent.

  12. Anne Evans
    Anne January 14, 2013 8:49 pm at 8:49 pm

    Here’s a note I received about sales at Neighborhood Launch: “a correction to the sales that we had here in the Neighborhood this past year. We do not list all of our units in the multiple listing service when they are available, so all of our sales won’t show from there. We actually sold 7 new units this year and I believe that there were 3 one bedroom units that re-sold.”

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