Manhattan real estate rebounded from the pandemic to post an all-time high $30 billion in sales for 2021, according to real estate reports.
CNBC reported 16,000-plus signed contracts also were a record, according to a report from the Corcoran Group.
The news surprised many who feared population losses, rising crime, and high taxes would affect sales adversely.
Sales in the most densely populated of New York's five boroughs eclipsed pre-pandemic totals and were showing no signs of slowing in 2022, CNBC reported Tuesday.
More than half of the deals in Manhattan last year were all-cash, the media outlet said.
Fourth-quarter sales equaled a previously unseen total of $6.7 billion, according to a report from Miller Samuel and Douglas Elliman.
The average price for a Manhattan apartment now is $1.95 million.
The median price, which many experts consider to be a more accurate indicator of the market, increased 11% in the fourth quarter compared to the year-earlier period.
"Clearly, the pace of the recovery in 2021 was faster than I think most people anticipated," Miller Samuel CEO Jonathan Miller said. "It's been startling."
Miller added the Manhattan market, helped by shrinking inventory and thriving financial markets, likely will remain strong in the first half of 2022: "Because New York was late to the party with the return of real estate demand, there could be several quarters ahead with elevated or higher-than-normal activity."
Brown Harris Stevens said Manhattan apartments were selling at 97.6% of their last asking price, the highest since 2017. Prices had fallen between 6% and 7% during the market bottom during the pandemic.
Miller Samuel said Manhattan bidding wars were at their highest levels since 2018, CNBC reported.
Manhattan's real estate flourished in 2021 due to ultrawealthy buyers buying penthouses and large full-floor units in new developments.
New property inventory fell by a third in the fourth quarter, with apartments priced at $10 million or more selling the fastest — averaging just 97 days on the market, according to data from Serhant.
Eight properties sold for more than $50 million each last year, Miller Samuel reported. The largest transaction ($157 million) involved Alibaba co-founder Joe Tsai purchasing two full floors at 220 Central Park South.
That building, which accounted for 3 of the 8 $50 million-plus deals in 2021, includes hedge fund billionaire Ken Griffin's $238 million penthouse, the most expensive ever sold in the U.S.
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