Warren Buffet on Real Estate: Buy!

Real Estate in Staten Island

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Suppose you were looking to buy a house in Staten Island and were, say, indecisive. Given the chance, who would you ask for real estate investment advice: your mother or Warren Buffet?

If you picked your mother, well I’m sure she’s a very sweet lady, but I have a feeling she might not be a successful billionaire investor, like the gentleman mentioned above. Although, of course, I don’t want to be making any assumptions about your mom. In any case, the choice is yours.

But, if you said Warren Buffet – you’re in luck! He has voiced his opinion and thus sent news channels around the country into a frenzy.

Earlier this week, Warren Buffet sat down with CNBC’s Squawk Box for his annual “Ask Warren” three-hour talk. Below are some highlights from the interview:

On Single-Family Homes

” I would say the single-family homes are cheap now, too. If I had a way of buying a couple hundred thousand single-family homes and had a way of managing— I would load up on them and I would— I would take mortgages out at very, very low rates.

On Interest Rates

” It’s a way, in effect, to short the dollar because you can— you can take a 30-year mortgage and if it turns out your interest rate’s too high, next week you refinance lower. And if it turns out it’s too low, the other guy’s stuck with it for 30 years. So it’s a very attractive asset class now.

On Investment in Stocks vs Real Estate

If I knew where I was going to want to live the next five or 10 years I would— I would buy a home and I’d finance it with a 30-year mortgage, and it’s a terrific deal.

On Buying Multiple Homes

And if I— literally, if I was an investor that was a handy type, which I’m not, and I could buy a couple of them at distressed prices and find renters, I think that’s— and again take a 30-year mortgage, it’s a leveraged way of owning a very cheap asset now and I think that’s probably as an attractive an investment as you can make now.”

And if that wasn’t enough, the very next day Donald Trump went on record to say that “the best thing you can own is real estate.”

Watch the full length interview below

Now, I don’t know about you but when Warren Buffet and Donald Trump say “buy!” I listen. Over the last couple of weeks, housing economists have been coming to the same conclusion: real estate recovery is on the horizon.

Realtors Decline in Numbers

LuMaxArt FS Collection Orange0101

LuMaxArt FS Collection Orange0101

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As the housing market continues to struggle, the number of members of the National Association of Realtors dips below 1 million. The highly inter-dependent relationship between the number of actively practicing Realtors and the economy is what guides the changes that can be seen in this profession. As you are well aware, the real estate market, in Staten Island, as well as nationally, has been declining for the past few years and experts are predicting a long road ahead to recovery.  Due to these reasons, many Realtors have left the industry or found a second job as a source of extra income. Now, as never before, the Darwin’s theory of  the survival of the fittest applies.

So what does that mean for you as a seller or a buyer? Brace yourself – this is good news!  Before the market crash, many have rushed to take the real estate license exam for the lure of easy money. Now the game has changed. In a tough real estate market it is harder to practice real estate and it takes a trained and experienced professional to close the deal. The hours are longer, transactions are more difficult, negotiation skills have to be sharp and the local market knowledge is key to a successful and mutually agreeable closing of a transaction. Implementing technology in the real estate industry is not simply an option, it’s a necessity, and meeting challenges through innovation is what gets things done.

A little tip: When selecting a real estate representative make sure they are an active professional and not a part time amateur. A true professional is someone who’s available and is willing to put in the effort.

Top 3 Most Expensive Staten Island Homes Sold in 2011

#1 Most Expensive Staten Island Home sold in 2011

Recession? What recession? The slowing economy has in fact been providing some great real estate opportunities for the wealthy, and it certainly has not changed their lifestyle. The proof is in the numbers. It will come as no surprise that the 3 most expensive real estate transactions this year took place in the most exclusive Staten Island neighborhood, called Todt Hill – a neighborhood that is  not only known for being the highest natural point in the five boroughs of New York City, but also for its sky high prices for custom made homes. Without further ado, I present to you the Top 3 Most Expensive Staten Island Homes Sold in 2011 (don’t be jealous).

#1 Most Expensive Home Sold in 2011 – Benedict Rd, Todt Hill

Original List Price: $4,299,000

Sold Price: $3,700,000

#1 Most Expensive Staten Island Home sold in 2011

This stunning colonial with European flair is situated on superb park like lot. The detailed and customized interior features high-end amenities including 6 bedrooms, 11 bathrooms, 4 fireplaces, home theater, library, gym, several terraces overlooking the pool area and perfectly manicured gardens, and of course an elevator for convenient access to all floors. One look at this home and you get the feeling of a special inviting space with an old world charm.

#2 Most Expensive Home Sold in 2011 – Julieann Ct, Todt Hill

Original List Price: $2,999,999

Sold Price: $2,600,000

#2 Most Expensive Staten Island Home sold in 2011

This beautiful all brick mansion features well appointed rooms with many amenities. The structural columns on the front porch add drama and are sure to impress anyone who approaches the entryway. The formal rooms are to the right and left of the open two-story foyer. Designed with entertainment in mind the house offers 2 family rooms, banquet size dining room, formal living room, gourmet kitchen, butler’s pantry, home theater and much more.

#3 Most Expensive Home Sold in 2011 – Charter Oak Rd, Todt Hill

Original List Price: $2,900,000

Sold Price: $2,350,000

#3 Most Expensive Staten Island Home sold in 2011

Here’s a look at the 3rd home that rounds up our list of Top 3 Most Expensive Staten Island Homes Sold in 2011. This spacious home is a fine example of quality craftsmanship. The overall design of the house is traditional, combining rich fabrics and textures. There’s no doubt the new owners will have plenty of space to entertain family and friends inside this timeless classic.

All information and photos are courtesy of the Staten Island Board of REALTORS®, our multiple listings service.



SIEDC 14th Annual Awards Ceremony

Every year, the Staten Island Economic Development Corporation honors community leaders in economic development, at an official Awards Ceremony held in Staten Island. This year the ceremony took place at a magnificent waterfront facility – The Vanderbilt at South Beach. The event brought some of Staten Island’s biggest movers and shakers who joined SIEDC in acknowledging the exceptional work of the local economic advocates. The following activists were presented awards for their efforts and accomplishments in improving Staten Island’s economy and quality of life:

Councilman Vincent Ignizio, recipient of the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge Award for his support and participation in launching of the South Shore Merchant Project. This program is aimed at enhancing the commercial districts of Annadale, Eltingville and Great Kills.  Through this project, local businesses receive services and assistance, such as sanitation and beautification, in an effort to draw more shoppers and visitors. In his acceptance speech Councilman Vincent said ” We should all strive to be better, and I will keep fighting to keep Staten Island the great place that it is today.”

Raymond Masucci of Raymond Homes, Inc., recipient of the Outerbridge Award for his numerous residential and commercial real estate projects, including one of his most successful called The Tides at Charleston. The Tides at Charleston is New York City’s first active adult gated community consisting of single- family homes set in an attractive waterfront location. This thoughtfully designed community has enabled for the growing population of Staten Island’s seniors to stay in the borough, making a positive economic impact on Staten Island.

Ram Cherukuri of New York Fragrance, Inc., recipient of the Goethals Bridge Award for his achievements in the wholesale fragrance industry and provision of employment opportunities to the local job market. Ram came to America in the 1970’s and studied marketing and finance at Wagner College. In the 1986, he started his own small company called New York Fragrance, Inc., that, over the next few decades, expanded to become an international fragrance distributor. Ram attributes his success to perseverance, saying “Anything is possible with hard work in America.”

South Shore Rotary Club Of Staten Island, recipient of the Bayonne Bridge Award for their continuous donations and support of various charitable and non-for-profit organizations throughout Staten Island, including a sponsorship to the SIEDC’s Staten Island Film Festival, support of the SI Economic Conference and the Health and Wellness Expo. The organization has also supported  local schools and seniors on Staten Island by sponsoring Annual Holiday Parties, Spelling Bees, A Food Pantry and an Annual Senior Ball.

Special thanks to Flint Fotos for providing photos to this event.