9,995-Square-Foot UES Townhouse Trades Hands in Complex Transaction

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A 32-foot-wide townhouse with 23,661 buildable square feet at 149-151 East 78th Street  sold for $18.25 million, it was announced today.

The five-story, 9,995-squre-foot property (aka the Ackerman Institute for the Family building) went to a developer who wishes to remain anonymous. Eastern Consolidated brokers Ben Tapper and Marion Jones represented the seller, while their colleague Brian Ezratty worked with the buyer. The intricate transaction included a 12-month close and a deposit of roughly 45% of the sale price that would be releasable from escrow toward the purchase and renovation of new space.

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149 East 78th Street.
149 East 78th Street.

“Timing and structure were critical as the sellers required both top-tier pricing and a long term close with a releasable deposit,” Mr. Tapper said in a prepared statement. “In the midst of negotiating the sale, Ackerman also had to find a new home that would pass muster with a discerning non-profit board.”

This was the latest in a series of deals coordinated by Eastern’s Not-for-Profit Services Group, whose recent assignments have included organizations like Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New School University and the Union of American Hebrew Congregations.

“The purchasers exhibited unusual patience in a hot market where most developers want a shovel in the ground as soon as possible,” Ms. Jones said in a prepared statement. “The non-profit could not close on the sale until they had purchased a new space and had time to renovate it.”