New York City
Washington DC Metro
Northern New Jersey
open house planner
manhattan condo market index
submit your listings
why sign up?
Become an Insider
post your listings
Interesting article in this Sunday's New York Times on Upper East Side and Upper West Side white liberal Obama-voting yuppy parents who can no longer afford to send their kids to private schools, desperately trying to move into areas that are zoned for elementary schools with lots of white kids and few minorities (it's easy to read between the lines of the story).
These are the lines I'm most interested in:
“We actually had a Realtor come to our home, because I was completely hysterical about what to do with this smart kid I can’t seem to find the right school for,” Ms. Knafo said. “We bought it for $570,000 in 2004 and she said we’re back at 2004 prices, so we might not necessarily lose money on it.”
When brokers can give such frank assessments to sellers, we begin to see some light at the end of the tunnel. The remaining disconnect for the sell-side is that calling the market for where it is does not mean that is where the property will trade. Unfortunately for this quoted homeowner, all the broker may have done is highlight a freeze-frame along the market's descent.
These were the ones that resonated with me:
"Indeed, the boom-inflated price of the real estate they occupy has worsened the situation. “I think of my father, who had three kids in private school when I grew up,” the man said. “His home probably cost him two or three times his income. So there was some money left over for school. But that math doesn’t work anymore. Most people I know own apartments that cost five or six times their income. And most people are spending so much money on their apartments there is nothing left for private schools.”"
I've lived in NYC all my life - 40 plus years - and all within 2 zip codes on the UWS. And the paragraph above brought into sharp focus something that I've been working my way towards for a while. Just because something is LESS expensive than it used to be doesn't mean it's cheap. Perhaps this is obvious to everyone else here & if so I apologize for this post, but there has to be a more rational way to value apartments than just "down 20%" or "back to '03 levels." Expressed as a % of average income or something like that, my gut tells me that NYC real estate is still expensive, both compared to it's historic (meaning long term, say 20 year) levels, and also to national levels. Now before everyone talks about the "premium" that NYC or other population centers deserves, consider all tat is happening in the world & labor pool currently.
Cheaper? yes, certainly it has become so. But is it cheap yet? My mother certainly doesn't think so, she can't imagine paying even current levels for the apartments we look at. She remembers what they cost when the buildings first went co-op. Will we return all the way there? I doubt it, but that valuation tool of apartment price expressed as % of income from the quotation above may yet prove a useful guideline, it certainly has given me food for thought. Happy weekend all & sorry to ramble if I did.
I love the following line:
>>%u201CFor the last 10 years people have made an extraordinary amount of money, so they have the cash to buy an apartment now, even with the setback from the stock market.%u201D said Daniela Kunen, a managing director at Prudential Douglas Elliman, whose two listings on Park Avenue in the P.S. 6 zone are drawing significantly more traffic than comparable ones just north and south of the school zone.<<
Typical broker, trying in vain to continue spinning the falsity that folks are still flush with cash, and eagerly clamoring in droves to buy apartments... Lady, I got news for ya--that 'extraordinary amount of money' everyone made over the last 10 years? Gonzo!
^^^Why does it always do that weird jumbly encryption-y thing with cut-n-paste quotation marks? *sigh*
Do couples (of child-bearing age and inclination) not look at school zones when they buy an apartment? Boggles my mind. Even before we had children, school zones were always in the back of my mind. It is a huge investment, makes you less mobile. I have little sympathy for those who cry when their child has already turned 4.
There is definitely an upper limit on what I would pay for a place out of a desirable school zone, and a place in a desirable school zone. Not only do you have to set aside for private school tuition, you need to think about the geographical location of private school (most likely East Side) and the commute as well as the expense of arranging pickups if you both work.
If my kids were placed in a good private, and were happy there, I'd move to a cheaper area - no sense in paying the premium for an expensive good public zone if you're not using it.
LP: Totally agree. Equilibrium requires a sustainable definition of affordability. Before the days of securitization madness, mortgage underwriting was based on a few simple principles. Among the bedrocks were guidelines for front- and back-end ratios - essentially the share of income devoted to housing and debt service. Every boom pushes those ratios higher, amplifying the effect of higher incomes. Every bust pushes them lower, contributing to the tendency of real estate to over-correct to the downside. Sooner or later, they revert to historic norms. 28% was good enough for the Bailey Building and Loan, and eventually it will be a good enough guideline for most portfolio lenders. The great unknown is wealth. We know a lot has been destroyed, but we don't know how much is left.
Getting back to schools, I'm with nyc10023: not much sympathy for parents who locked themselves into school zones that they consider unacceptable. I bet the local PTA warriors will volunteer to vet the catchment bona fides of families that suddenly "move" to better zones when public records indicate that they still own an apartment elsewhere.
West81st: these parents have no idea the extent to which the "PTA warriors" will go to unearth people they consider cheaters. If your child does not host playdates, people will wonder why and a quick stroll with Intelius/Zabasearch/ACRIS will soon unearth your real address. Especially when they know that if they get your child kicked out, there's one less body requiring the teacher's attention. The desired public schools in Manhattan have some of the most impassioned parent bodies anywhere.
Nyc10023, I don't think its that couples didn't care...I can tell you two years ago, I would have thought private would be an easy decision. That was before my industry was cut in half and targeted (perhaps rightly) by the government as excessive.
doesnt everyone remember the article awhile back about a condo on the uws, that ppl bought for the school district and then it got rezoned.. not saying this is likely but the times article references that there is a waiting list for ps 6.. whats to say it wont get rezoned to be west of lex now instead of the portions that are west of 3rd, or something to that extent??
Rhino86: yes, but barring rock-solid alumni connections (which don't count for that much anyway), how can you know that your child will get into an acceptable (to you) private school? And what about parents buying on the UUWS - how many private schools are up there (answer - not many). Why not buy good public as a backup? Or rent because you don't know which private your kid will end up going to?
As for borders changing. The rezoning was unprecedented but now that it has happened, I would caution anyone buying on the edges of a zone.
I think people think that they will get into one of the acceptable private schools, and/or they buy a place before their first is born and figure they will upgrade in four years with the kid's school in mind one way or the other. I mean, we did that (look without regard to the public school zone per se)...luckily we didn't buy anything.
I guess I am a nervous nelly and I need to have a backup for a backup for a backup. We basically figured that it would cost an extra 10k on top of 30k to arrange for child pickup from private school. Public school has the advantage of being in your neighborhood (usually).
Rhino86: if you are moving to a good public school zone, the lesson here is to move the fall before your kid goes to K. The other thing to consider - if your child doesn't place in a great private school off the bat, start off in public and do ERBs every year. With the economy in the toilet, spots may open up along the way.
If people put the energy into improving the system, rather than gaming it, they wouldn't have to worry so much. How about higher standards and better schools for all?
Liquidpaper: you bring up an interesting point. My parents bought a brand new house, in a brand new suburb for 2x their annual income in 1973. Being the conservative people that they are (and also as children of formerly wealthy, then poor families), they didn't borrow very much and bought the smallest house in the neighborhood. Mortgage was paid off in 7 years, before they then upgraded to a bigger house in the same suburb which cost 2x their annual income. Fast forward 36 years. That house is now at least 8 times the annual income of a person with the same job as my dad. Hmm, so how do people afford that house? With lots and lots of parental help, typically. Their parents are sitting on nice nest eggs because their assets grew from 1970 to 2009. If you ask me, this all seems like a Ponzi scheme to me. How it will all play out, I don't know.
Hey I am all for public, but a plan to upgrade the apartment in five years can be the mindset...Or in our case, getting lulled into the idea that finance would stay as lucrative - making the private school doable. Or perhaps moving out of the city altogether once school starts.
Lookingforhome: there have been numerous posts on this. As long as there are public housing projects whose socio-economic and racial makeup are so divergent from the surrounding neighborhoods, there will always be some public schools on the UWS that remain pariahs. I think the lead couple in the NYT article are zoned for PS165.
Interestingly, Lloyd Bankfein (CEO of Goldman Sachs) grew up in Bk (East New York) housing projects that were predominantly white and Jewish and received a fine education in public school (I don't even think he tested into Stuy/Bx Sci).
It will all play out as those baby boomers, who created the credit bubble, have to sell their stocks and real estate to survive. In this way, real estate will get cheaper than anyone expected that it could (like every other asset did)...And while we could see the stock market rally further, it will probably be a head fake and we'll see something around 500 on the S&P. The waves of selling pressure from retired boomers is a lot for this market to overcome, from levels that aren't even that cheap when weighed against the severity of this crisis.
Rhino86: you have to consider that getting into a desirable private is extremely difficult. We came to this conclusion a few years ago. How many schools are worth 30k+? People debate this to death on urbanbaby and ybm.
Rhino86: that is the scariest thing ever. I agree. The boomers, due to their sheer numbers, created this mess to some extent. Most pension schemes will fail.
None are worth that much. But if you are in finance and making far and away enough to cover the cost then the argument with your wife can be very difficult. You pay more than its worth because it may not be a lot of money to you, and/or it may just make you feel good that you are doing the max that you can for your child. Like if I was confident I could make the money I made in 2005-2006-2007 over the course of my finance career, then why not... Its not 'worth it', but you just do it. Now that I have no sense of where finance incomes go over the long haul, I would definitely not go that route. Hell, even when I was making the money, I thought it was dumb and didn't like the application culture and all that BS.
Not that you need to be in finance to make far and away enough to cover it... but I think its accepted that the prices of things in NY are based on the fortunes of mid-level finance people. Now there are fewer employed and the employed make less to state the obvious. Private school actually comes back around if the price of a classic six falls from $1.8mm to $600k haha. All the sudden maybe you go from a $1.2mm mortgage to zero mortgage.
Boomers didn't create this with their numbers, they created it with Reagan and Greenspan. Without leverage the banks could never have paid people what they did, neither could companies have used so much debt to 'create value'. I mean logically this should de-volve into something resembling its original launch point....like 1982. S&P P/E ratio was like 7x back then.... half where we are now.
My spouse & I are the products of private schools (not in NYC). The bottom line as to whether it's worth it depends on your child. Self-motivated, intelligent kids will do well anywhere. The other thing to consider is that you don't have to attend private school K-12 to reap the benefits.
How do you reap the benefits without attending? My latest thinking is to consider it for high school but not before. 8 years x $30-40k is just too much money. I am trying to stave it off. Our baby is only three months, so I have some time haha.
Depends on your child. My spouse went 7-12, started falling through the cracks in 5th grade. I went K-10 (had to leave due to family finances).
Lot of research says parental involvement is the #1 factor. Most of my wife's friends went to private, and it looks like a mixed bag to me. My wife is going to stay home, and I want to be involved too.. I just don't buy into the whole thing being important from first grade.
Baby is 3 months old? Born after Dec. 31? Then you are in a good spot with respect to public and private in Manhattan. If you are still here in 4 years, move in Sept 2013 to a good public school zone. Have your kid take the ERBs, OLSATs, SB that fall. If he/she does really well on ERBs, apply to privates. If not, send to public.
She was born 12/18. We're in PS 6 renting...if I have a good income in Manhattan, we will likely stay here. I'd expect in two years the buying might get really attractive, and I might be able to have a small or zero mortgage. Wow, so you are saying low scores - forget privates? I wonder if it will still be that competitive in 2012. I guess what we do will all depend on my income and our housing payment at that time.
12/18 is a little problematic. Either start in public K (cutoff for privates is Sept. 1) and apply from there, or apply for privates and skip the year of public K. Go straight to public for 1st grade. Low scores + no connections/family money = less desirable privates. It will never be easy to get into a top private.
Oh, and lucky you - you get to start making phone calls after Labor Day for preschool applications next fall (2010).
This Labor Day (2009) or next (2010)? 2010, right? Christ. She'll get good scores... I was good at those tests haha.
2010. For 2's programs. Most stay at home moms are pretty eager to have their kid/s go off to preschool at 2, IMO.
I think it would be better to invest in private school during earlier years and if a child tests into one the city's specialized high school, then transfer out of private. Hunter College School, Stuy, Bronx Sci and Townsend Harris have average SAT scores and college placement records that surpass just about any private school. Regis High School is a free Catholic boys' school (with competitive admissions) that also compares to the best private. It all comes down to a family's particular needs, but I would rather invest the money early to give kids an early leg up and have several options during teen years. The worst case, IMO, is to invest hundreds of thousands of dollars in private schools only to have a kid attend a 'less competitive' college.
Also, as i've noted before, it's a bit of a perfect storm for parents. perhaps when they decided to buy and then have a child they should have thought of schools, but 5 years ago things were tight but not crazy. Good public schools were getting crowded but not oversubscribed. the reduction in wealth and confidence came at a time of peak enrollment. the current administration knew this. indeed, even in Guiliani's population report they anticipated a reduction in the number of under-5s in the next decade, noting that the predominant demographic trend that they could not predict was flight by the middle-class for the suburbs. the cynic in me believes they knew indeed that this would happen.
Aboutready, I agree. this is the perfect storm. If you have cumulatively paid $500K +++ in taxes in the last several years and have lost your wealth, your apartment equity is gone and your job is at risk -- the problem is that you may not get into a decent public school in your neighborhood. 150 apps for 100 slots -- for example. You may not want your 5 yo to schlep to a crap school in an iffy neighborhood for a seat. It is a problem without a solution. The world shifted very quickly for these people.
It is time for nyc to reinvest heavily in public schools. Or we will lose not only the marginal tax dollars but a larger portion.
Aboutready: agree with you. I am a cynic as well and what is the point of providing better schools in gentrifying areas from the perspective of the DOE? If schools are not up to parents' standards, the parents who care will leave. The vast majority of NYC public school students take what they can get. I'm not sure the city has woken up to the fact that it has or just had an unprecedented opportunity to expand its tax base by keeping affluent /middle-class families in the city. Or maybe they have and the costs of providing services outweigh the benefits.
What makes the difference in our school zone is an educated, affluent parent body and demographics that attract applications from teachers in the system. The hard question to ask is who would voluntarily teach the children who come from poor families, parents in their 20s, poor working parents who have no time or even the English to navigate the educational system, kids who come to school with junk food for lunch? And what does the administration gain by pandering to the white affluent minority in the NYC system?
What does the city have to gain by pandering to the white affluent minority? Are you serious? Imagine if all the $250k or so earning families who can't comfortably afford private school just left the city. The tax base is already in the shitter on account of smaller or non-existent bonuses. Its down 35% in a blink. If you saw a lot of those families leave, the tax rolls would be in serious trouble on top of serious trouble already.
i believe you just answered your own question nyc10023 -- by pandering to the white affluent community (you know, the people who pay the taxes) - you get an educated, interested, affluent parent body. This provides a nicer environment for the public schools. Failure to do so will make the city more bankrupt.
Most of the kids I see are those having breakfast at Fairway (flinging food about and lacking the motor skills to cut their own pancakes with a fork) so shouldn't talk. Just seems as if sending the kid to PS along with $5K or so for the PTA would be the best deal for all. It's not as if the kids themselves care at that age.
If they left the city, they would still pay commuter taxes, without needing schools.
rhino, i think it's a total number cost-benefit-analysis thingee. the doe is happy to accommodate parents where it's easy, not too messy, and the costs aren't exorbinant. when that's not true, i think they find that the costs of educating children and the hassles of opening and paying for new schools isn't worth it. the public school system is complicated and difficult and expensive.
manhattanfox, i think they miscalculated. the demographics without a bust showed that there would be plenty of affluent, educated people in Manhattan, just a lower percentage of the households would have had children. i believe they thought the outflow would increase slightly as the spaces would become scarcer, but that it wouldn't be enough to affect the market overwhelmingly. but then the bubble burst. just like the real estate market, there's not a lot of volume. it doesn't take that many additional families to seriously stress the system and cause a bit of a panic.
what the developers were doing, however, other than trying to charge a fortune, building all these large apartments when the city clearly didn't have the educational infrastructure and had only minimal plans for expansion, that's beyond my comprehension. maybe they all just hoped they'd be done in time before the issue came to a head.
NWT: that is exactly the calculation most in our school zone have made. Preschool is easily 10k+, closing in on 20k for 5 mornings/week. So what's 5k per child for the PTA.
NWT, the problem is middle school. you can delay by taking the public route, but it doesn't necessarily meet a family's needs.
If a group of parents decide to turn a school around, they can. It has happened in Brooklyn (I don't recall which school - somewhere in CG or WB) and it has definitely happened in Hudson Heights where a group of young parents looked at the school and worked to make it better by the time their kids were in pre-K.
I've tutored in bad/poor schools (as a community volunteer, not a teacher) and although the lack of parental involvement or knowledge is an issue, the biggest issue in my experience is low-expectations as evidenced by nyc10023's comment about junk food lunches. My husband is white and middle class and often went to his public school on a breakfast crappy sugary Entemann's (sp?) coffee cake. But he was still expected to do well, so he did.
All I have to say for the folks in the article is, quit your whining and practice the change you believe in.
In D3 (UWS), there are a couple of good selective middle schools. The hope is that your kid tests in, if not it's private for 3 years, and then test for the selective public high schools. This approach will save hundreds of thousands of dollars.
It's worked the other way, IMO. Potential parents have gone in to volunteer or even had their kids at the low-performing schools and then run the away.
Nyc10023 you realize commuter tax is like 1.5% vs. 4% in the city and rising now up to 6% or 8% on income above $300k or some such thing? I am surprised you'd downplay the significance of the risk of an accelerated upper middle class exodus at this particularly vulnerable time. I would think the city would take it very seriously. On the retail side, it seems there's a vacancy every block, whether I am walking on Second ave or Madison.
Yes, but you realize how much more the city would have to increase taxes to provide the same facilities as Bronxville or Scarsdale schools? Not to mention that city schools have to provide things like translators, school lunches, English tutoring, etc. than homogeneous affluent suburbs. I'm with aboutready. You have to perform a total cost/benefit analysis to see how much the city will lose either way.
Read some Jonathan Kozol. It will make you cry, when you see what the vast majority of NYC students put up with and how much better schools like PS199/6/234 et al. are.
who was the superintendent who gave empty schools to complaining parents? i believe some of the greatest lower school success stories came from them, but often they were in fairly gentrified neighborhoods. it's not just turning around the schools, it's the need for additional space in neighborhood schools. there's just not enough in some locations, and too much in others.
ny10023, in the last few years the problem has been getting into private school for middle school. the competition has been much worse than for Kindergarten. one of the many reasons i'm forking over tens of thousands yearly (at least i only have one, and i really like the school).
"Not to mention that city schools have to provide things like translators, school lunches, English tutoring, etc."
Suburban schools provide those same things. They give lunches. And in north Jersey, there are tons of Koreans, so they spend money on ESL programs.
rhino, and to add to what nyc10023 has said, do you know what kind of division they create when they open a ps234? when everyone knows that, for the most part, the best teachers want to work in those schools?
i know someone who gave up a high-level marketing job to become a lower-school teacher in the south bronx. he said that those children's lives would have been enriched immeasurably by NEVER attending school.
My quesion is where do all these liberal latte drinking Prius driving Yuppies plan to send their kids to high school? Because except for the 3 test schools, 99% of them SUCK!
The sad thing is, most teachers start off wanting to teach where the need is greatest. I know a lot of novice/beginning teachers and they start off all bushy-tailed and bright-eyed. But when you get disrespect from the students and the parents (who are not able to accept any criticism and are not providing what the kids need), after a while you want to quit. And ironically, most teachers do not come from a poor urban background so while they may empathize, they don't really get it.
Aboutready: you allude to something which I've often thought. There are many teenagers/tweens (mostly boys) who would probably benefit from a rigorous physical education (or labor or trade) 24/7, interspersed with classroom time. Get them to work digging roads or farming. They just cannot sit still and give respect to someone flitting about with the blackboard. Also, get them into trade of some kind, where they start understanding the usefulness of math & English. One of the saddest things I ever saw was a kid in my high school - didn't understand compound interest rates at the age of 18. Giving people like that credit cards and mortgages? You start understanding
the problems with the U.S.
Hey I didn't say I did a cost benefit analysis for the city...I just said this downward spiral can accelerate if people in that $250k range start leaving at greater-than-normal rates. Wow, you are giving me another reason to be bearish on Manhattan real estate. I have to assume that 2002 levels are too high now, and we're edging for a 10-year retrace to like 1997 just like the stock market. I think I have to get out of dodge.
If my kids don't get into Stuy/Bx Sci/Hunter/Bk/Townsend (there are more than 3!), there's always Dwight & York Prep :)
I think real estate is too sticky and slow a market for prices to fall fast enough to hit my bid... I may be gone. Manhattan is on notice. Show me the $800k 1600-foot classic six by end of 2009 or I am outa here.
One of my neighbors sold last year, because "the kid's hitting fifth grade". I guess that meant leaving PS 199 for middle school. Anyway, ran into the guy by Penn Station a few months ago, on his way to god-forsaken Upper Saddle River. Back and forth, every working day until the kid's in college, when he used to ride two stops on the 2/3 and had those hours for the kid. I wanted to ask whether he was afraid the kid'd pick up an ... accent, but forebore.
Goodbye Rhino. We'll miss you.
Rhino: don't give up on NYC. Living in the burbs suck. That's a huge generalization, but here's where I radically differ from my peers in parenting. My kids don't have to have the "best of the best" when it comes to schools. As long as they're physically safe, have a reasonable peer group, get enrichment at home, they'll be okay. If they're not testing into the selective HSes, they're probably not going to be academic superstars and it's better to nurture their other talents. Some of the most successful (and happy) people I know were below average all the way through.
I haven't given up...Our baby is three months... Which means that the three years before school starts gives ample time for prices to collapse. At 2000-2002 type of prices, in a decent public school district, it might make sense. I think designer private school is overrated, but if we stay here, I would like to be in one of the decent districts on the UES or UWS. Yes, as a product of them, I agree that the selective ugrad and grad schools are not the end all be all either.
PS: I'd probably only leave if I got a job out there in CT or Westchester....and I'd never go to Jersey god forbid.
And, things change more than they stay the same. nyc10023 may have more competition for ms public spots, but because of the downturn may get her kids into good private easily, and then back out for high school.
rhino, i don't think it will be that sticky. be patient.
Rhino: why do you have to buy anyway? If you can rent and don't have to worry about your equity increasing/decreasing, just rent. As an owner, it was perhaps a foolish decision to buy back in after having sold in '06, but the rental market then was tight. It's a different story now. Rent, and enjoy your flexibility.
Exactly, aboutready. If I had 1 like you, I'd definitely go private and not even worry about the costs.
I don't have to buy now, not at all. I will certainly enjoy renting for now. Like I said tho if I take a job up in CT I don't think I want to deal with the reverse commute. I don't need to be down here that much. Also, the total cost of living is kind of hard to rationalize. Taxes, space, etc. Leaving Manhattan is really a non issue unless I get a job up there, or we get to school age. Maybe the internet will make this downturn faster. I can't wait to see the supposed condo auctions.
Bingo to you, too. I know some teachers/admins at one of those private schools in Riverdale, and they say the same thing you did.
LOL. My spouse & I have spent the last decade debating private v. public and the "best of best" parenting style - before even having kids. Totally overanalyzed the situation. But as long as we can afford it, we're always going to live in a city. Maybe not NYC, but definitely 100% not the suburbs. It's not about the kids, it's about us. We just like the urban lifestyle better. Maybe it's selfish to have the kids here (lack of green space, etc.) but until they complain (doubt it), here we'll stay. Could always rent a shack in the Poconos or go tent camping every weekend if they crave the outdoors.
New Jersey is not that bad. I sugges you guys take a rip ou here. Sure, the parts of NJ along the Turnpike suck, but when you g to northern Bergen County, there are some towns that are on the same level as Beverly Hills.
sorry about the typos, but my t button is sticking.
and NJ high schools have the highest graduaion rate in he country.
alpine, yes, it's pleasant for a Sunday drive to make a pity visit, but every day? I guess you can get used to any kind of torture. I took the train out to Greenwich the other day, 51 f'ing minutes each way, plus waiting time, and thought I'd go out of my gourd.
Someone mentioned Catholic schools as an alternative. I too was considering sending my kids to a Catholic school in the city. But after hearing the Pope, while in Africa, say to the Africans that condoms do not help stop the spread of AIDS, I changed my mind quickly.
How irresponsible is that comment?!? Millions of people have died from AIDS there and it continues to be a huge killer. Many people and non profit organizations have spent countless time and money to educate the Africans to help stop the spread.
The Pope has such influence to many of the Africans. They will listen faithfully to his words. I am aghast that the Pope would say something that harmful.
No thanks, I don't want my kids to ever be brainwashed like that.
I'll tell you what else may happen - those 3 kids that everyone wants will go back down to 2 kids or 1 kid. If you want to stay in the city and have less money you will probably have less children. So maybe after this initial overflow of kids it will start to taper off. One can only hope.
If your kid does not get into any of the good high schools and you don't want to move to the burbs, one option you have is online high school. No, I am not joking.
nyc10023 - if living in the burbs "sucked," there would be a mass migration of wealthy suburbanites back to the city. Ain't happening. Nothing wrong with having a house, a backyard, a school district where you can send your kids from K to 12, a driveway, and a car that gets you wherever the hell you want to go at the spur of the moment, including my 27-minute drive to Manhattan.
I do agree it makes sense to buy in a good public school district - 6, 158, and 290 on the UES, for example, even in flush economic times If you don't have a child in school yet, you don't know if they will get into a private school that you like. And for resale value, being in a good district is always helpful.
I own a house in Bergen Cunty. It takes 25 minutes to go from my driveway to Times Square. And that's wih no E-Zpass!
during the 90s slump, the burbs actually recovered before Manhattan did. I wonder if the same will happen this ime.
That is logical in the sense that Manhattan can't bottom until prices fall low enough to stem outflow...Outflow is to the benefit of the burbs. Burbs bottom first as outflow slows, then city bottoms. Coop boards also create a lag. Also finance by nature is a lagging industry. Capital raising, the bread and butter of finance, is a late cycle/expansion phase business.
There's no sense arguing the pros and cons of city life. From my perspective right now the city needs to get a whole lot cheaper.
Rhino86, not sure if you are already thinking about getting your kid into H, but this season, admission rate from some of the NYC privates (at least the ones I've looked at) have dropped at least in 1/2 to around the national mean. Not sure if this is statistical variation, related to the absence of Early Action or b/c more students being waitlisted. It could be that top students from these schools prefer to apply for Early Decision or maybe now the process is more fair to public schoolers from otherwise underserved areas. Perhaps this info will make it easier for you to decide public school vs private b/c it may not really matter that much. IMO direct parental involvement is likely more important.
I never bought into the advantage of applying to top colleges from top privates. I think the admission numbers reflect the numbers of kids at the private schools looking to attend those colleges. Connections also contribute to the figures. I think a well articulated application from a outstanding student at a reasonable high school might have the best advantage of any.
justlooking, no one in a NYC Catholic school has "listened faithfully" or even cared anything about what the Pope has had to say about condoms for generations. Jesuit schools especially are operated independent of the Vatican and some are good educational alternatives.
"I own a house in Bergen Cunty. It takes 25 minutes to go from my driveway to Times Square. And that's wih no E-Zpass!"
Living in the NJ suburbia (and not even Hoboken or something Manhattanites have heard of) is probably why Alpine completely missed the crash here.
I don't live in NJ. I just own a house there.
Hey Rhino, I know you have moved on from this but your comment about assuming private until circumstances changed prompted me to write about recent experience related to preshcools in tribeca.
Two or three three years ago there were many disappointed parents of kids who attended these elite preschools who were rejected in alarmingly large numbers from private schools. Most of these parents had assumed that their money, connections, monetary contributions at the auctions, and of course their precious little dears would enable them to sail into private school. This did not happen and despite many behind the scenes moves, sabre rattling and the like, the charming little ones were still left out.
By some accounts it was down to there being a larger than usual proportion of boys that particular year but the attitudes of the banker parents (which was the predominant occupation) who were drunk on the excesses and empowerment thru money of that period did not help either.
As I say, you have moved on and you certainly don't sound like one of those tribeca uber parents but all that to say that in recent years private school admission is not a shooin which supports nyc10023's assertion that public school zoning considerations are another critical factor to take into account when buying.
"I never bought into the advantage of applying to top colleges from top privates. I think the admission numbers reflect the numbers of kids at the private schools looking to attend those colleges. Connections also contribute to the figures. I think a well articulated application from a outstanding student at a reasonable high school might have the best advantage of any. "
If the reasonable high school isn't in the NYC metro area. Send the kid to Nebraska.
"nyc10023 - if living in the burbs "sucked," there would be a mass migration of wealthy suburbanites back to the city."
Actually, that is what happened. There was a good article about this every few months in the boom years.
"Nothing wrong with having a house, a backyard, a school district where you can send your kids from K to 12, a driveway, and a car that gets you wherever the hell you want to go at the spur of the moment"
Nothing wrong with those things, but the problem is the crappy stuff you get along with them.
1) Traffic. suburban traffic has gone haywire... and its worst because you HAVE to drive. Getting in and out of strip malls and stores on a weekend... I want to kill myself.
2) Culture (do we really need to talk about this one)
3) Few real "neighborhoods" in suburbs anymore, very little neighbor interaction
4) Drugs. The biggest drug problem schools are generally the wealthy suburbs these days.
5) Your kids are dumber. Manhattan kids have a huge advantage in terms of culture and street smarts
6) Its not Manhattan.
7) Its not Manhattan.
8) Its not Manhattan.
9) Suburbs are boring.
And, oh yeah, its not Manhattan.
Informally, based on a survey of people I went to college with, work with - most people of my generation (30-40) would prefer to stay in an urban environment. Burbs is 2nd choice. People do end up leaving for more space, better schools but the difference between my generation and my parents is that we don't think of the burbs as Utopia, don't aspire to the burbs. The attitude is more, "settling" for the burbs.