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NYC Real Estate Market Tanking Hard

Oct. 27 2008, Published 7:07 a.m. ET

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SERIOUSLY VACANT New York City then and now Nobody ever backs out of apartment closings in New York City. You put your money down, you get your apartment. Now, estimates at least one broker, as many as 10 percent of closings are going south, with people walking away from massive deposits. "Buildings where buyers are scrambling to close include some of the city's most luxurious new condominium," says the New York Sun. Who will benefit from the real estate troubles? Lawyers! Rich-ish people can't afford to buy these apartments they've paid nonrefundable deposits on—but they sure can sue to get out of contract! But that's not all! Don't forget that, in New York, one in every three square feet of office space is held by a financial services company. Ruh roh!

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