He believes that the arrival of new tenants—the Atlantic Yards project is looking to add more than 6,300 units—and a growing local workforce—such as in the new office building on 470 Vanderbilt Avenue that recently signed the New York City Human Resources Administration to a new lease deal—will bring more new renters, prospective home owners and a new cadre of consumers to local retail.
More important, the development will encourage investors to snatch up mixed-use properties in the surrounding territories for future retail locations. He thinks that is especially the case for Vanderbilt and Washington avenues, mere blocks away from Atlantic Yards.
“I’d say 75-to-85 percent of Washington Avenue is mom-and-pop retail,” said Mr. Riney. “That’s the fringe, where an investor can still get in relatively cheaply in terms of the basis with nothing but, in my opinion, upside on a five- to 20-year time rise, which is what most real estate investors are looking at.”
At 567 Vanderbilt Avenue, for example, the building features a 600-square-foot commercial storefront, where the estimated rent tops out at $50 per square foot. “That rent will only increase as the project comes to fruition,” Mr. Riney said of a space that some day could house yet another trendy new restaurant.
A lot of his listings are multifamily buildings that feature retail—like 437-439 Tompkins Avenue that sold for $1.35 million, and a mixed-use building on 690 Prospect Place now on the market for $1.025 million.
“The bread and butter of Brooklyn in general is multifamily mixed-use buildings,” said Mr. Riney. “That’s what is selling right now, that’s what banks are willing to finance, and that is the majority of the housing stock in northern Brooklyn, and I think it’s the asset class which I think has the most potential.”
Brooklyn buyers, for the most part, agree. Thirty-nine multifamily buildings in the borough sold for a total of more than $116 million in the third quarter of this year—a dramatic improvement from the 14 buildings bought at $44 million at the same time last year, according to an Ariel Property Advisors quarterly report.