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Real Estate Record
AND BUILDERS' GUIDE.
NEW YORK, SATURDAY, AUGUST 6, 1881.
Published Weekly by The
Real Estate Record Association
ONE TEAR, in advance.....$6.00
Communications should be addressed to
C. W. SWEET, 137 Broadway.
J. T. LINDSEY, Business Manager.
The city was never so full of merchants
doing business, as it is to-day. Wholesale
merchants report the sales as being excep¬
tionally heavy. The movement of trucks
through our streets tells the story of the ac¬
tivity in business. Some of this activity is
doubtless due to the low passenger fares and
the cutting of rates. Western merchants
are tempted to come on east on their sum¬
mer trip, because, if tliey buy now, they can
take advantage of the low rates on west¬
bound freight. This may lead to a duller
time further on, but, notwithstanding the
rate cutting, the railroad returns for the
month of August will show that a heavy
business has been done.
Ex-President U. S. Grant has clearly made
up his mind to become a i-esident of New
York. Within the last few days he has pur¬
chased a residence in the finest quarter of
tlie city. It is situated No. 3 East Sixty-sixth
street, and was the last of seven houses built
by Mr. C. W. Luyster. It is a four-story,
higli stoop, brown stone building, built on
a lot 34x100. The cost is $90,000. New
York is the proper headquarters for the great
soldier of the war of the rebellion. It is not
unlikely that the money paid for this house
is a part of the $250,000 which has been
raised by the admirers of General Grant to
make him comfortable during the rest of his
present and future wants, and this would
involve a new aqueduct.
Such of our subscribers as are interested
in realty would do well to critically scan
the following table:
Comjjarative table of Conveyances, etc., from
January 1st to August 1st, compared with last
Mechanic's Liens... 215,622
This, will be remembered, is the showing
for seven months, as compared with the
seven months of last year. The remarkable
feature is this, that during January, Feb¬
ruary and March of 1880 there was quite a
speculative movement in real estate; but
this cannot be said of any part of the spring
of 1881. While the market was a fair one,
there was no maiked excitement, and in
one re-sale of auction propertv lower prices
were bid than in the year before. Yet all
this while there was active but quiet buy¬
ing, and large amounts of property have
changed hands during the last seven months.
Nearly double the amount of property
changed hands, as compared with the pre¬
vious year, and the increase of the mort¬
gage indebtedness is very marked. Later
in the season, it will be found, that there
will be a large increase in Mechanic's Liens.
It is notable that there is so small an increase
in the sum total of judgments obtained
against delinquent debtors.
P On the other hand "there is the general
feeling that stocks are high, and that Van¬
derbilt is willing to have the railway
war go on so that rival enterprises may be
discouraged. Then it is a fact that there
has been no advance in the market of
any account, except when there were
gold importations, and these have not yet
commenced. It is undeniable that there is
a strong undertone to the market, although
the latter is dull and transactions are few.
It is now probable that speculation proper
will go into other products, and that there
will be booms in general merchandise and
special businesses. It is not unlikely that
before the close of the season we will see the
Stock Exchange the arena of desperate con¬
flicts between the bulls and bears. The
short interest is large and the bearish feeling
strong, while there are vast moneyed inter¬
ests arrayed on the side of higher prices.
This may lead during [the coming fall and
winter to an excited^and variable market.
If Governor Cornell were presented with a
house on Murray Hill, he would soon become
a convert to the necessity of anotlipr aque¬
duct and more water for New York City,
Although we have had a year of abundant
rains, the central zone of this city is troubled
for lack of water. In many cases it cannot
be procured above the first floor. House¬
holders are put to the expense and inconve¬
nience of constructing tanks on their upper
floors, which every day or two must be flUed
with water pumped up from the first story.
Thousands of householders pay flOO per an¬
num for labor and material, due to their in¬
adequate supply of water, and the aggregate
tax from this cause alone would build a new
reservoir within ten years' tiine.
Then the legislature was amiss in not pass¬
ing a law requiring the Department of Pub¬
lic Works to prevent the waste of water, by
enforcing the use of meters everywhere, ex¬
cept in tenements and dwelling houses.
There is a criminal waste of water in this
city, but we ought to be able, when it is re¬
quired for any legitimate purposes such as
manufacturing, to have all we need for ou^.
THE COURSE OF PRICES.
In the Real Estate Recorb of June SSth,
page 650, will be found the following fore¬
cast of the course of prices during July.
There was more in that article to the same
effect, but the extract we give shows that
we were not far wrong in our estimate of
what was going to occur. We quote:
The feeling between the fourth of July and
the twentieth will be one of great anxiety, with
the chances of a lower market. The probabilities
ai-e that an impression will prevail that the crops
are a failure. It is already very well settled that
the harvest abroad will be very large. From
every part of Europe come reports to the effect
that magnificent crops will be reaped during the
coming summer. Our winter wheat crop was
certainly injured, and will not be within 30 per
cent, of the yield of last year. Spring wheat is
late; corn is very backward. There is sure, in
any event, to be disappointment, for a compari¬
son with last year and the year before will neces¬
sarily show a large falling off Those were ex¬
traordinary years for crops, and we may not see
their like again for a decade. It follows that
when, sometime during July, it is fully realized
that Europe will not need so much from us, and
that our own crops will be deficient compared
with last year, there will be disappointment, and
a gloomy feeling as to the value of the grain
carriers. Hence a " slump " may be looked for,
to be followed later on, when the immense
government disbursements are due, by higher
figures. It is an open secret that the great Ger¬
man bankers predict the highast figures known
to Wall street, during August.
The question now comes up, will we have
a booming market during August? In favor
of an advance in prices, are the low rates for
money, the heavy disbursements by the
government, and the large immigration and
extraordinary business activity in alldepart-
kinents of trade?
FACTS TO BE KEPT IN MIND.
Owing to the advance in wages the work¬
ing class have far more money to spend in
retail trade than in former years. It is esti¬
mated that the wage and salary receiving
class spend $50,000,000 a week more in 1881
than they did in 1878.
Consumption this year will necessarily be
enormous. This will be due to the full em¬
ployment and good wages of millions of
people who did only half work or no work
at all during the hard times which followed
the panic of 1873. This consumptive de¬
mand will stimulate all manufacturing busi¬
Money is certain to be easy for some time
to come, due to the heavy Government dis¬
bursements for the called bonds. Then, our
paper money is steadily increasing in value.
During July our bank note circulation in¬
creased $2,500,000, and $1,700,000 new silver
certificates were issued. Additional curren¬
cy, whether gold, silver or paper, enhances
prices and stimulates business.
The immigration continues large and is
not likely to diminish during the fall, due
to the extraordinary demaud for more labor
in farm work and railroad building.
Stocks have had their boom and labor has
had its advance. We may now look for an
enhancement of values in all articles manip¬
ulated by human hands. Raw material will
continue to be reasonably cheap, due to im¬
proved processes in production; but every
article produced by skilled labor wiU continue
to rise in prices.
Land will soon have its turn. The con¬
tinued prosperity, the desire for better tene¬
ments and the increased ability to purchase
homes will soon have its effect upon the
price of realty. We are on the eve of the
greatest land speculation known to the his¬
tory of this country. This will show itself
especially in the centres of population ; and
unless all the signs of the times are fallacious,
the upheaval in prices will commence next