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from cnn:

Average Manhattan apartment: $1.21M

Apartment sale prices hit new record in 1Q as supply shrinks; up 26% from a year earlier.
April 1, 2005: 6:21 AM EST

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NEW YORK (Reuters) - The average sale price for a Manhattan apartment topped $1.2 million in the first quarter, a new record, as the supply of properties for sale shrunk, according to an industry report.

The average sale price rose to $1.21 million -- up 23 percent from the final quarter of 2004 and up 26 percent from a year earlier -- according to the Prudential Douglas Elliman Manhattan Market Overview.

In the condominium sector, the average sale price jumped to $1.55 million -- exceeding $1.5 million for the first time -- and surging 34 percent from 2004's fourth quarter, the report said. The average condo sale price went up 22 percent from the year-ago first quarter.

For Manhattan's entire apartment market, the average price per square foot climbed to $910 -- topping $900 a square foot for the first time. That's up 16.7 percent from the fourth quarter of 2004. It's a gain of 28 percent from a year earlier.

"Improving economic conditions, a tight housing supply, rising incomes and the widely held expectation of rising mortgage rates in the near future, caused housing prices to surge this quarter," the report said.

It was the first time the quarterly report included Manhattan markets above 116th Street on the West Side and above 96th Street on the East Side.

The median sale price -- the point where half the sales are higher and half are lower -- climbed to $705,000. That's up 16.5 percent from the previous quarter and up 18.5 percent from a year ago.

The volume of apartment sales fell to 2,028 units -- down 6.2 percent from the previous quarter and down 5.8 percent from a year ago, according to the report.

Limited supply kept sales volume in check.

The average sale price of a cooperative apartment, in which an owner holds shares in the building and does not own the individual unit, rose to $988,746. That's up 15.5 percent from the previous quarter.

The average co-op sale price went up 25 percent from the first quarter of 2004.
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