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Old 03-15-2015, 04:52 PM
 
2 posts, read 5,103 times
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I am a single 30-something living in Manhattan and looking to buy a coop in the Bronx. I am wondering if anyone familiar with Bedford Park or Norwood Bronx has an opinion on buying in those areas. I hear very mixed things in terms of whether the areas are on an upswing or declining. There seems to be a good deal of investment happening in residential real estate (e.g., Webster Avenue developments), but at the same time, some say that there is a substantial amount of supportive housing being built that is problematic. I also wonder what the impact of gentrification (or the someday gentrification) of the South Bronx may have on the North Bronx.

Are there any residents of these neighborhoods that can comment on your property values over the past few years? All the values dropped quite a bit with the financial crisis, and it's hard to tell if prices have recovered or not and what direction they may be going.

So basically, where do you see the neighborhood going in the next 10 years? I'd also welcome any input on the quality of life, the sense of community, how people find the commute to Manhattan, and any other things a person buying in the area might want to know. Thank you!
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Old 03-15-2015, 06:28 PM
 
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We've lived here for a while - 11 years, and moved from Inwood. We chose Bedford Park because there are a lot of similarities with Inwood, and a lot of park space (and it's more affordable). In any other part of the country property value growth would probably be considered quite strong (ours have gone up at least 1/3 of the purchase price), but for some parts of the city, it would be considered pretty weak. Since we moved here, our block has improved a lot. Really this is because the owners on either side of us were absent and rented to crappy tenants. Both those properties changed hands and it's a huge change. The funny thing is that the rest of the block has changed very little - we still have a ton of neighbors who've been here the whole time. Personally, I really like this. I go out of the house and run into people I know a few steps away from the door.

Lately I feel conflicted when someone asks this type of question you do. There are some people living here who have an incredible fear of gentrification, and for the longest time I thought it was crazy (and still do in a way). But on the other hand, the neighborhood has gotten some press and I see the change in people interested when we look for tenants. Anyway, rising property values directly correlates with rising property taxes, so my hope is that the neighborhood stays affordable.

On a neighborhood level, I don't think it's changed that much in the time we've been here. There is some gentrification, but not like Brooklyn by a long shot. I would say not to buy here if you don't like the neighborhood as it is now, or are buying with some vision of what you'd like it to be in the future. There is a lot of community involvement, and I find people to be very friendly. A lot of people speak Spanish (I do too), so I wonder if this may give me a different perspective.. But my husband doesn't speak it and he still finds it to be friendly too.

One note about social services housing - the whole Bronx is at risk for this because if its affordability. The South Bronx already has way more than it's share so it would be unlikely that Bedford Park / Norwood would catch up in the worst case scenario.
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Old 03-16-2015, 07:32 PM
 
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Thanks for taking the time to respond. Very helpful. I think your advice about buying if I like the neighborhood now, rather than buying based on what I think it may become in the future, is very sound. I do like what I see in the area now - parks, beautiful architecture and what seems like a nice business area up on Bainbridge Avenue. But since I don't know anyone in the area, hearing from someone who lives there is quite helpful. The commute to Manhattan gives me hesitation but everything in NYC real estate is a trade off of course! Hopefully a few others will weigh in. Thanks again!
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Old 03-17-2015, 06:01 AM
 
3,345 posts, read 4,302,104 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by newyork750 View Post
Thanks for taking the time to respond. Very helpful. I think your advice about buying if I like the neighborhood now, rather than buying based on what I think it may become in the future, is very sound. I do like what I see in the area now - parks, beautiful architecture and what seems like a nice business area up on Bainbridge Avenue. But since I don't know anyone in the area, hearing from someone who lives there is quite helpful. The commute to Manhattan gives me hesitation but everything in NYC real estate is a trade off of course! Hopefully a few others will weigh in. Thanks again!
If you're travelling at rush hour the commute's not bad - like 25 min. on the D train to Columbus Circle. The 4 goes express too at rush hour. I guess it depends on what you're used to though. Compared to Inwood, the commute is pretty good. On the weekends I'll often take the Metro North because it's cheaper. Good luck.
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Old 03-22-2015, 07:51 PM
 
Location: New York, NY
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I've been renting in Norwood since august. I would suggest renting here, maybe a short term roomate situation so you can get to know the area before you sink dollars into real estate. The neighborhood is beautiful in the summer.

Right now, the prices here are a real bargain. The South Bronx is more expensive and arguably less safe. Real estate here seems to be close to the prices in the more ghetto areas between 167 and Bedford Park Blvd and yet it has much more to offer in terms of green space and safety.

For a 30 something single person, its not a bad investment if you like living in the area the way it is now. You'll live in a reasonably safe, quiet area with beautiful parks and good subway access to manhattan. The real trouble you'll run into is if you have kids and want good schools.

The commute via the 4 and D gives you express east and west side access. Commuting can take longer depending on where you want to go. All those stops in the west bronx take some time to get through before the lines become express in manhattan. The D train during rush hours is very fast though. You will always get a seat on the train in the morning.

You have easy suburban shopping in nearby riverdale and westchester county if you own a car. Street parking is possible.

Finally, I think most of the West Bronx real estate is going up in the near future. How fast it happens is anyones guess. I feel pretty strongly at this stage that the South Bronx will lead whatever happens in BP / Norwood. There are already a lot of commercial and government investments happening in the south which will likely result in large QoL improvements for the whole area. I do not think either area will be facing a decline anytime soon.

I would pay close attention to whats going on in Upper Manhattan (Harlem, Wash Heights, Inwood) as a leader to the South and Northwest Bronx development.

There are a lot of people living in the Bronx who are unable to save for a down payment. The result is a proliferation of rentals and fewer quality co-op buildings. February / March is actually a strong rental season because so many people are using their tax returns to pay for a move.

If you want to get into the real estate game in the Bronx use local realtors who know their neighborhoods well.

Last edited by fmatthew5876; 03-22-2015 at 08:28 PM..
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Old 03-23-2015, 10:45 AM
 
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i'm interested in these parts too, but i don't have any money for a down payment, i feel like it's a great investment opportunity for the non=millionaire crowd
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