Real estate is the property that consists of land and buildings attached to it, as well

as the rights associated with such property. These rights include the ability to use air

above the land, underground water and minerals beneath it, and the surface that

surrounds it. Real estate also includes the buildings on it, such as houses, apartment

complexes and warehouses.

The real estate market is made up of professionals who help buyers, sellers,

investors and renters navigate the complexities of buying, selling, leasing and

renting real property. These professionals include real estate agents, brokers, and

appraisers. A real estate agent is a licensed professional who acts as a liaison

between buyers and sellers. A broker is one step above an agent and has additional

education and licensing requirements. A real estate appraiser is a professional who

analyzes and evaluates the value of properties.

A real estate investor buys and sells properties for a profit. They can be private

individuals or corporations. Investors typically look for properties with high growth

potential and good cash flow. Some invest in residential real estate, which consists

of single-family homes, condos, townhouses and duplexes. Other investment

properties are industrial, which can be a warehouse or factory, and commercial real

estate, such as malls and strip centers. Also read

An important factor that influences the real estate market is the overall health of the

economy. A growing economy usually means higher consumer spending and

increased home sales, whereas a weak economy can lead to lower home prices and

a shift toward a buyer’s market.

Local conditions also influence the real estate market. In metropolitan areas, housing

prices are generally more expensive than in suburban communities. Factors such as

unemployment rates, crime rates and the quality of schools can affect home values

in specific neighborhoods.

The New York City real estate market is always changing. Each of the boroughs has

its own flavor, with Manhattan offering a fast-paced, urban environment and

Brooklyn boasting vigorous growth in neighborhoods like Park Slope and

Williamsburg. Staten Island has a more suburban feel, and Yonkers offers a blend of

urban and suburban living.

The market’s performance is influenced by the amount of available inventory,

mortgage rates and the general sentiment of consumers and investors. Increasing

inventories and falling mortgage rates usually result in higher sales, while declining

inventories and rising interest rates result in slower sales and fewer closings. The

Department of Justice’s investigation into real estate commissions may also impact

the market. If the DOJ wins its appeal, it could mean a return to more aggressive

enforcement of existing laws against unethical real estate practices. This would

likely drive up mortgage rates and make it more difficult for many prospective

homeowners to qualify for a loan.