Real Estate

Ditmas Park Home Prices Have Jumped 30% Since 2013, Says Corcoran Postcard


corcoran postcard
Having moved recently from a large apartment building to a unit in a house, we were surprised/amused/terrified to find this postcard in the mail last weekend from Corcoran, encouraging local homeowners to sell.

“Home prices have skyrocketed in Ditmas Park! There’s no better time to sell. The average price in your neighborhood has *increased by 30% since this same time last year,” the card begins, noting the percentage cited is from the company’s Quarterly Marketing Analysis.

corcoran postcard 2
The opposite side of the card offers a quaint collage of old timey Victorian Flatbush images, including a vintage shot of PS 139 and a 1907 aerial view of Prospect Park South from George R. Lawrence’s Captive Airship camera, and the tagline, “Rich in History… Steeped in Value.” Judy Sim is the realtor recommended on the card for her familiarity with the Ditmas Park area.

Perhaps the card shouldn’t feel so out of the blue–Corcoran certainly seems to be listing more and more gorgeous local properties on a weekly basis, including the new $2.975M build at 1216 Albemarle Road that will set an area record if it gets anywhere near asking price. And for longtime homeowners, we could imagine it’s nice to know your investment is quickly appreciating–but as a rental tenant with a good deal, opening the mailbox is a bit nerve wracking now.

Local homeowners, do these mailings make you more likely to sell? And have you seen an increase of such mailings, from Corcoran or other companies, as of late?

Comment policy


  1. Real estate agents are such scum… complicit with all of this bubble and bust crap (no matter what they earn a commission!) A 30% increase in “value” in a year is NOT A GOOD THING. I don’t care what Judy Sim has to say. Homes are supposed to be homes. Not investment speculation and potential windfalls. It’s friggin’ disgusting.

    Full disclosure — I’m a renter with a “good deal” too.

    All of this Corcoran-style ginning up of values — and yes, it’s ginning up, not actual appreciation — is harmful to the community. Long-time residents are “priced out,” renters become stressed and resentful, disposable income for neighborhood businesses vanishes, long-time owners are selling (good for them), but the properties are being bought by people that need to rent their mother-in-law basement apartment for $3000/mo to pay the mortgage, etc. etc. etc.

    Though, isn’t it nice that her family has lived here for 40 years?

  2. Once again, this topic is going to pit renters vs owners (unless the renters can pay market price).
    Renters paying below market are going to say it SUCKS because they’re eventually going to get priced out. And owners….well, although I hate this word I’m gonna say it anyway – AWESOMESAUCE!!!!
    Note to Jim: 30% increase in value IS AN AMAZING THING! You try to get that sort of return putting money into the stock market (although it has been doing better lately).
    And I will beg to differ on the “ginning up of values” and how it’s “not actual appreciation”.
    How can you say that when the neighborhood is currently in GENTRIFICATION MODE?!?!
    Property prices ALWAYS appreciate when gentrification happens. Gentrification means an area becomes safer, it attracts more businesses, new businesses provide better amenities for the residents, which in turn attracts newer tenants……why WOULDN’T property prices go up?

  3. They’re in a clear conflict of interest reporting those numbers, so that 30% figure shouldn’t be taken at face value. Having said that, why should it be so shocking if house prices here very slowly converge towards Park Slope levels?

  4. About Judy from Corcoran web page “Having rented and sold real estate, first in Queens then in Brooklyn where she has lived in many different neighborhoods over 15+ years”
    So Judy nothing about your family lived in Ditmas 40 years

  5. All real estate agents are NOT scum. In fact, I married one.
    No, I
    don’t believe a notice that your house has appreciated is likely at all
    to be an important stimulus to sell, unless you’re an empty nester who’s
    looking to downsize, or move far away.
    The market (if it was
    “ginned”) was ginned mostly by the Fed. When I moved to Ditmas in the
    late ’70s, 30 year rates were maybe 8 percent. Rates peaked in the
    early ’80s above 16%. People forget how much more expensive carrying a
    mortgage can be.
    If the Fed decides to tighten rates, it will
    certainly put a brake on prices. But this won’t necessarily be good
    news for anybody.
    Having said that, there’s no denying that we have a
    huge problem with affordable housing in Brooklyn. But blaming
    homeowners (or real estate agents) for creating the market is
    scapegoating, and while I’m all for catharsis it doesn’t address the
    real problems we continue to have for working people in this city.

  6. I don’t like real estate brokers soliciting homeowners to sell. I witnessed “blockbusting” in action in East Flatbush in the ’70’s and I think it stinks. I’m a homeowner and not only would this not make me more likely to sell, if I ever did decide to sell, I wouldn’t use this broker.

  7. *sigh* I wish people had better reading comprehension.
    “Family” can mean: parents, grandparents, aunts/uncles – the word “family” is pretty broad. Also, Judy may have grown up in Ditmas – and moved away from home like most of us do. Just because the Corcoran web page covered 15 years of Judy’s professional life does not mean the postcard was inaccurate.
    Especially since it didn’t say “I (meaning Judy herself) have lived in Ditmas for over 40 years”.

  8. That’s exactly my point. That means that a “market analysis” which they themselves perform and report doesn’t have any credibility and is not informative.

  9. I don’t like people’s homes being treated as investments, but that’s the system we live in.

  10. I’m 100% with you Jim – homes should be homes. But it’s part of that tricky “pursuit of happiness’ clause – we can’t force other people to think of homes as homes instead of commodities.

  11. SBornfeld — I said they were complicit (an aggravating factor). Real estate agents are not *the* problem, they are part of the problem. Change real estate commission to a flat rate instead of a percentage — you wanna make a bet prices will come down?!

    This isn’t a happy little supply (seller) vs. demand (buyers) scenario. Real estate agents play a major role in determining the price points. Or should I be specific and say, they play a major role in inflating the price point for their own enrichment. Not scapegoating. It’s part-and-parcel the perversity of their job.

  12. We’ll have to agree to disagree. If sellers don’t think seller’s agents are performing a service, they are free to show it on their own.
    I’m certainly not as familiar with the finer points, but it’s a curious dance between sellers, seller’s agents, buyers and buyers agents. An agent can try to get listings by promising a higher price. That doesn’t mean it will sell, and agents and brokers who high-ball asking prices get known pretty quickly. Same with those who low-ball to sell quickly. Either way, a bad agent can lie or exaggerate–but all these deals are in the public record.
    That’s a lot more above board than in my business, in which fees are not public and not required to be public.

  13. Of course, all real estate brokers are biased, but I’m not sure exactly what you expect. A peer edited journal of housing appreciation in the Ditmas Park neighborhood?

    It’s clearly based on the truth as there has been a huge appreciation in the neighborhood recently. Take it for what it is….

  14. These new people moving in paying these inflated prices have not become involved in the neighborhood other than earing and drinking on Cortelyou Road. Years ago, the teachers, postal workers and assorted middle class workers stabilized the neighborhood that real eastate brokers tried to block bust, and built up neighborhood associations. The real estate brokers making the huge commissions on the overpriced homes (homes not just houses), owe a huge debt of gratitude to those who came here in the 1970’s, 80’s and 90’s.

  15. JIm… you owe all Realtors an apology. We’re all SCUM? Why is that Jim, because we get hired by a homeowner to sell their property at the highest price possible??? I guess that we shouldn’t do that because it might offend someone???

    Jim, what do you do for a living?? Maybe you’re a criminal attorney… you defend criminals, thieves and rapists. that makes you SCUM?? Maybe you’re a dentist. You wont fix anyone’s teeth unless you get paid… does that make you SCUM?? Maybe you repair cars. I guess that if you charge someone money to fix their car, that makes you SCUM too??

    You see where i’m going here. Bundling all real estate salespeople as scum is a stupid statement. We get paid a commission to INCENTIFY the process. If realtors were paid flat fees instead of commission, the risk to the homeowner is that the agent has no motivation to do better and to out-perform our competition.

    This agent from Corcoran did nothing wrong. She is soliciting business. Again, what do YOU do for a living? I guess people are just lining up to throw money at you to help support your family. Assuming you work for living, your employer probably has to solicit and promote their business in some way so YOU can get your paycheck.

    – Proud FILLMORE REAL ESTATE agent!

    Howard Witz

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