Troy: Been there, done that
Anyone familiar with Troy, NY often hear the term “it’s up and coming.” While this may be a view proclaimed by people passing through, the locals know better.
Troy’s deep history has demonstrated many cyclical ups and downs, and like the Hudson River along which it sits, it ebbs and flows, changing directions with the tides. When one walks through the historic downtown, they see an abundance of new developments: renovated factory buildings and new construction; unique restaurants and pubs; recent high tech, professional and non-profit new business entrants and lots of new residents.
Visitors marvel at the beautiful historic architecture and imagine what stories the bricks would tell if they could. Yet, some passers-by recoil at boarded up windows and deteriorating storefronts. As a commercial real estate agent, many investors and developers have asked me, “What is wrong with those buildings? Why aren’t they renovated? Why can’t I buy them?” Herein lies the issue.
Over decades and probably much longer, speculators have come to Troy and bought a piece of it. Some of these investors have done very well to improve their properties and profit from them. Other property owners merely sit on them and wait for values to increase, doing little to improve on their own structures. Their investment is time and not much else. These properties often become a blight and dumping ground for trash, graffiti and unscrupulous behavior. Eventually, they expect others’ hard work to improve the landscape so that their properties will benefit and sell at a profit.
As a result, the city has become a patchwork of restoration and redevelopment. Investors and developers are coming in droves looking for opportunities. However, many seek what is long gone - cheap buildings with easy fixes; or fully rented income properties at a bargain.
This new phase in Troy’s transformation is about pairing buyers willing to do the work and pay market rate prices with sellers willing to part with their properties at a reasonable price. To do this requires a real understanding of the city’s progress and to educate buyers on a building’s backstory and possibilities.
As I’ve taken people on a Tour de Troy, I explain all the underworking and activities bubbling beneath the surface. I’m not selling them on Troy properties so much as I’m enlightening them on the Troy market and its value.
Properties are commanding higher prices because the market demands it. Troy no longer attracts attention for cheap real estate, It’s a proven haven of innovation, creativity and community. This renaissance means that Troy is not “up and coming.” It is “here and now.”
Deanna Dal Pos is a commercial real estate agent with NAI Platform and one of Troy’s biggest advocates. She lives in the heart of the city and is passionate about its urban renewal. For more information, go to this economic development website and resource on all-things-Troy: www.TroyCommercialRealEstate.com. Also, please follow her Twitter, Instagram accounts and Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/TroyCommercialRealEstate.