Strong indication of economic transformation
Governor Cuomo’s Nano Utica initiative, a distance of 17.3 miles from Herkimer, is expected to create in excess of 4,000 world-class jobs over the next 10 years. It will contribute to New York State’s goal as a technology hub for nano-tech, education and economic development.
The long-depressed Herkimer economy has left a glut of low cost, rundown homes dating back to the 19th century. It appears prices have finally reached rock bottom. Unimproved homes on our street are for sale starting as low as 35K . A lovely garden and outstanding accessibility to country lanes, excellent shopping and medical services are within a 10 minute walk. When you buy an unimproved home, you can create just the space you want. It can be distinctive or neutral and you stand to increase your profit potential substantially.
History repeats itself
In 1999, I renovated a 3-family home on Walnut St. in Brookline, MA. I was very charmed to find such an affordable home in upscale Brookline Village. I purchased the building for $210,000 in the mid 90s from an architect who needed to cash out. At that time it looked like a tenement, with rusty bathroom fixtures and walls coated in grime. The back hall stairs were sagging and the basement had a dirt floor. The roof itself alerted me to its need for immediate replacement dripping water into my morning coffee just after I moved in.
I spent about $90,000 on renovations executed by a general contractor and converted the 3 rental units legally to condominiums. Today – 16 years later – the property is worth a total of about $1.35 million. While I sold each unit after completing renovations, some of the condo buyers may have ended up profiting more than I did. For example, I sold the bottom unit for under $200,000. It is now worth close to $480,000 which is still a deal for this area where the average home is valued at $800,000.
Technology driving economy
Technology companies, historic charm and lovely landscapes are great contributors to a healthy local economy. The ingredients for investment success are the same as those in Boston and neighboring Brookline back in the mid to late 90’s.
- a depressed real estate market – Buying low means easy buy in with numerous choices.
- a good location – I-90 accessibility, walk to commerce and nature, all within a 15 mile proximity to the burgeoning Marcy Tech area.
- a healthy economy on the horizon – with billions of dollars being invested nearby it’s likely that the local property values will reflect new investment. What helped bring Boston back was the massive infusion of cash from expanding high tech and biotech firms.
- Timing – Those who are on the scene first will likely reap the greatest rewards. If you wait too long, your chances will decline. And with the huge publicity and massive investment rolling into the Marcy Tech, I wouldn’t be surprised if groups of investors soon began quietly snapping up properties in Otsego and Herkimer counties.
New York City and San Francisco Bay have long been US high tech Leaders. New York is now extending its technology leadership to our Mohawk Valley. Consider being part of this success story.