Founded in 2013, Harlem Small Business Fund, LLC is a socially responsible private equity firm committed to achieving superior, risk-adjusted returns by investing in African-American and Hispanic small businesses (including start-up and mature businesses) that create and preserve jobs for young Black and Hispanic men and women located in Harlem, New York.
Harlem is a neighborhood in the New York City borough of Manhattan, long known as a major African American cultural and business center. Change has come fast to the neighborhood -- over the last five years, thousands of people have moved into Harlem apartments. Harlem real estate developers have been one of the driving forces in helping to improve the community. The prices of Harlem real estate has more than doubled in less than 10 years. The majority of the residents live in Harlem HDFC Coops, Harlem apartments of which many are Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops. Harlem brownstones for sale have become one of the most popular housing option.
Harlem stretches from the East River to the Hudson River between 158th Street-where it meets Washington Heights-to a ragged border along the south. Harlem real estate is one of the most affordable in Manhattan. Harlem brownstones for sale cost less than the ones located below 110th street. Central Harlem begins at 110th Street, at the northern boundary of Central Park; Spanish Harlem extends east Harlem's boundaries south to 96th Street, and while in the west it begins north of Upper West Side, which gives an irregular border west of Morningside Avenue. In this area, Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops have been developed.
The first European settlement in what is now Harlem was by Hendrick de Forest and Dutch settlers in 1637. Harlem was a village independent of New York City until 1873, and has been defined by a series of Harlem real estate boom and bust cycles, with significant ethnic shifts accompanying each bust. At this time, no one was developing Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops. However, Harlem brownstones for sale were developed for high income families.
Originally a farming village best known as the site of Revolutionary War battles, it collapsed around 1850 and was occupied by Irish squatters. It revived after being incorporated into New York City and boomed with the introduction of efficient public transit to lower Manhattan. The Harlem real estate market cracked twice -- first in the mid 1890s, and again in 1904. Jews, Italians, and other ethnic groups moved into the neighborhood in large numbers, after the 1904 crash, black residents arrived en masse to live in Harlem rentals with no broker fees. Harlem brownstones for sale provide some of the best housing for residents. During this time Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops were years away from being brought to market.
It was this last group that would define Harlem in public consciousness. In the 1920s and 1930s, the neighborhood was the locus of the "Harlem Renaissance," an outpouring of artistic and professional skill without precedent in the American black community. Harlem brownstones for sale lined most blocks in the community. However, starting with the Great Depression and especially after World War II, rates of crime and poverty increased significantly, and the neighborhood became essentially synonymous with these and other social ills.
Harlem is a neighborhood in the New York City borough of Manhattan, long known as a major African American cultural and business center. Harlem real estate development failed to keep pace with local demand for Harlem rentals began to fall. Change has come fast to the neighborhood -- over the last five years, thousands of people have moved into Harlem rentals. Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops begin to be developed by developers. Harlem stretches from the East River to the Hudson River between 158th Street-where it meets Washington Heights-to a ragged border along the south. Harlem brownstones for sale became the main form of housing for many middle income households. Central Harlem begins at 110th Street, at the northern boundary of Central Park; Spanish Harlem extends east Harlem's boundaries south to 96th Street, and while in the west it begins north of Upper West Side, which gives an irregular border west of Morningside Avenue. In East Harlem, thousands of people have purchased Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops.
The first European settlement in what is now Harlem was by Hendrick de Forest and Dutch settlers in 1637. Harlem was a village independent of New York City until 1873, and has been defined by a series of Harlem real estate boom and bust cycles, with significant ethnic shifts accompanying each bust. Originally a farming village best known as the site of Revolutionary War battles, it collapsed around 1850 and was occupied by Irish squatters. It revived after being incorporated into New York City and boomed with the introduction of efficient public transit to lower Manhattan. The Harlem real estate market cracked twice -- first in the mid 1890s, and again in 1904. Jews, Italians, and other ethnic groups moved into the neighborhood in large numbers, after the 1904 crash, black residents arrived en masse to live in Harlem rentals with no broker fees. Developers constuct well over thousands of Harlem brownstones for sale. In time, Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops would become an option for many home owners.
It was this last group that would define Harlem in public consciousness. In the 1920s and 1930s, the neighborhood was the locus of the "Harlem Renaissance," an outpouring of artistic and professional skill without precedent in the American black community. However, starting with the Great Depression and especially after World War II, rates of crime and poverty increased significantly, and the neighborhood became essentially synonymous with these and other social ills. Harlem brownstones for sale would in time become housing for poor people. Harlem real estate development failed to keep pace with local demand for Harlem rentals began to fall. Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops would be years away before this form of housing was for sale in Harlem.
LiveUptown.com: Broadway @ West 125th Street
Arrival of black people
125th Street station on the 7th Ave. IRT Line Recovery came when elevated railroads were extended to Harlem in 1880. With the construction of the els, Harlem real estate development of Harlem brownstones for sale occurred very rapidly, springing up practically overnight. Developers anticipated that the planned Lexington Avenue subway would ease transportation to lower Manhattan, and feared that new housing regulations for Harlem apartments (with no broker fees) would be enacted in 1901 limiting the development, so they rushed to complete as many new Harlem rentals as possible before housing regulations came into force. Developers at this time laid the foundation for Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops to become a home ownership option.
Early entrepreneurs had grandiose schemes for Harlem real estate development and Harlem brownstones: Polo was actually played at the original Polo Grounds, later to become home of the New York Giants baseball team, and Oscar Hammerstein I opened the Harlem Opera House on East 125th Street in 1889. In 1893, Harlem Monthly Magazine wrote that "it is evident to the most superficial observer that the centre of fashion, wealth, culture, and, must, in the near future, be found in the ancient and honorable village of Harlem." Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops were far off in time before entering the marketplace. However, the construction glut of Harlem rentals and Harlem brownstones for sale and a delay in the building of the subway led to a fall in Harlem real estate prices which attracted Eastern European Jews to Harlem in large numbers, reaching a peak of 150,000 in 1917. Jewish Harlem, however, was an ephemeral entity, and by 1930, only 5,000 Jews remained.
Small groups of black people lived in Harlem as early as 1880 many in Harlem apartments, especially in the area around 125th Street and "Negro tenements" on West 130th Street. At this time, Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops was not an housing option. The mass migration of blacks into the area looking for Harlem brownstones for sale began in 1904, due to another real estate crash, the worsening of conditions for blacks elsewhere in the city, and the leadership of a Harlem real estate entrepreneur named Phillip Payton, Jr. (a Black man). Another bust came in 1904-1905; after the collapse of the 1890s, new speculation and construction of Harlem apartments started up again in 1903 and the resulting glut led to a crash in values that eclipsed the late-19th century slowdown.
Landlords could not find white renters for their Harlem apartments with no broker fees, so Philip Payton stepped in to help bring blacks in. His company, the Afro-American Realty Company, managed Harlem real estate and Harlem brownstones for sale was almost single-handedly responsible for migration of blacks from their previous neighborhoods, the Tenderloin, San Juan Hill (now the site of Lincoln Center), and Hell's Kitchen in the west 40s and 50s. Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops would not be sold until years later. The move to Harlem was driven in part by fears that anti-black riots such as those that had occurred in the Tenderloin in 1900 and in San Juan Hill in 1905 might recur. In addition, a number of tenements had been occupied by blacks in the west 30s were destroyed to make way for the construction of the original Penn Station.
Between 1907 and 1915, some white residents, many living in Harlem resisted the neighborhood's change, especially once the swelling black population pressed west of Lenox Avenue, which served as an informal color line until the early 1920s. Some made pacts not to sell Harlem brownstones for sale to or rent Harlem apartments to blacks. Others tried to buy property and evict black tenants, but the Afro-American Realty Company retaliated by buying other buildings and evicting whites from Harlem rentals. Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops was not being sold at this time. They also attempted to convince banks to deny mortgages to black buyers, but soon gave up. Housing began to open up to blacks as whites started to more out.
LiveUptown.com: Church of the Nazareth, 144th Street and Hamilton Terrace
Employment among black New Yorkers fell as some traditionally black businesses, including domestic service and some types of manual labor, were taken over by other ethnic groups, or the industries in question left New York City altogether. The entertainment industry was a major employer in Harlem but relied on income from wealthier whites, whose numbers dropped significantly after Harlemites rioted in 1935, and who stopped coming to Harlem almost altogether after a second round of riots in 1943. Many Harlemites lived in Harlem brownstones for sale and found work in the military or in the Brooklyn shipyards during World War II, but the neighborhood and the quality of Harlem rentals declined rapidly once the war ended. Looking back one could see that Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops was not an option.
There was little investment in private Harlem real estate and Harlem brownstones for sale or businesses in the neighborhood between 1911 and the 1990s. However, the unwillingness of landlords elsewhere in the city to rent apartments to black tenants, together with a significant increase in the black population of New York, meant the fee for Harlem apartments with no broker fees were for many years higher than rents elsewhere in the city, even as the housing stock decayed. Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops did not exist during this period.
In 1920, one-room Harlem apartments in central Harlem rented for $40 to whites or $100-$125 to blacks. In the late 1920s, a typical white working class family in New York paid $6.67 per month per room, while blacks paid $9.50 for the same space. The more desperate the renter, the higher the rents would be. This pattern would persist through the 1960s; in 1965, CERGE reported that a one room Harlem apartment rented for $50-$74, while comparable Harlem rentals for $30-$49 in white slums. The high rents for Harlem apartments and Harlem brownstones for sale encouraged some Harlem real estate speculators to engage in block busting, a practice whereby they would acquire a single property on a block and sell or rent it to blacks with great publicity. Other owners would panic, and the speculators would then buy Harlem brownstones for sale and additional buildings relatively cheaply. These Harlem rentals could then be rented profitably to blacks. Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops would not become apart of the housing market until many years later.
The high cost of Harlem apartments with no broker fees forced people to live in housing that were close quarters, and the population density of Harlem in these years was stunning-over 215,000 per square mile in the 1920s. By comparison, Manhattan as a whole had a population density under 70,000 per square mile in 2000. The same forces that allowed owners to charge more for Harlem rentals also enabled them to maintain them for less, and many of them fell into disrepair. The 1960 census showed only 51% of housing in Harlem to be "sound," as opposed to 85% elsewhere in New York City. In 1968, the New York City Buildings Department received 500 complaints daily of rats in Harlem apartments and Harlem brownstones for sale, falling plaster, lack of heat, and unsanitary plumbing. Tenants in Harlem rentals and Harlem brownstones for sale were sometimes to blame; some would strip wiring and fixtures from their buildings to sell, throw garbage in hallways and airshafts, or otherwise deteriorate the Harlem apartments which they lived in or visited. Living conditions were some of the worst in New York City. Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops would in time offer local residents with the income to buy a better place to live.
LiveUptown.com: Dunbar Apartments
In 1928, the first effort at housing reform was attempted in Harlem with the construction of thePaul Lawrence Dunbar Houses, backed by John D. Rockefeller, Jr. These Harlem apartments were intended to give people of modest means the opportunity to live in and, over time, purchase homes of their own. The Great Depression hit shortly after these Harlem rentals opened, and the experiment failed. They were followed in 1936 by the Harlem River Houses, a more modest experiment in housing projects. And by 1964, nine giant public housing projects had been constructed in the neighborhood, housing over 41,000 people.
As Harlem real estate decayed, landlords converted many Harlem brownstones for sale into "single room occupancies," or SROs, essentially private homeless shelters. In many cases, the income from these buildings could not support the fines and city taxes charged to their owners, or the houses suffered damage that would have been expensive to fix, and many Harlem brownstones for sale were abandoned. In the 1970s, this process accelerated to the point that Harlem, for the first time since before WWI, had a lower population density than the rest of Manhattan. At this time, residents were not able to purcahse Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops.
Between 1970 and 1980, for example, Frederick Douglass Boulevard between 110th Street and 125th Street in central Harlem lost 42% of its population and 23% of its remaining housing stock of Harlem rentals. By 1987, 65% of the buildings in Harlem were owned by the City of New York, and many had become empty shells, convenient centers for drug dealing and other antisocial activity. The lack of habitable buildings and falling population reduced tax rolls and made the neighborhood even less attractive to to investors of housing and retail. During these years, developers did not build Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops and Harlem brownstones for sale.
The high rents and poor maintenance of Harlem rentals that residents suffered through much of the 20th century was not merely the product of racism by white landlords; though precise statistics are not available, wealthier blacks purchased Harlem real estate, and even by 1920, a significant portion of the neighborhood was owned by blacks. By the late 1960s, 60% of the businesses in Harlem responded to surveys reporting to be owned by blacks, and an overwhelming fraction of new businesses were black-owned after that time. Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops and Harlem brownstones for sale would in time become an ideal home to live in.
LiveUptown.com: NYPD @West 148th Street
Harlem has a long history of marginalization and economic deprivation and has long been associated with crime and the poor condition of housing, including Harlem brownstones for sale.
Injecting heroin grew in popularity in Harlem through the 1950s and 1960s, though the use of this drug then leveled off. In the 1980s, use of crack cocaine became widespread, which produced collateral crime as addicts stole to finance their purchasing of additional drugs, and as dealers fought for the right to sell in Harlem apartments, blocks and/or particular regions. Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops were being considered by developers for the community.
In 1981, 6,500 robberies were reported in Harlem, many occuring in Harlem apartments with no broker fees. The number dropped to 4,800 in 1990, perhaps due to an increase in the number of police assigned to the neighborhood. With the end of the "crack wars" in the mid 90s and with the initiation of aggressive policing under Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, crime in Harlem plummeted. In 2000, 1,700 robberies were reported many in Harlem brownstones for sale. There have been similar changes in all categories of crimes tracked by the New York City Police Department. Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops had not yet arrived.
In the 32nd Precinct, for example, in Central Harlem, between 1993 and 2004, the murder rate dropped 68%, the rape rate dropped 70%, the robbery rate dropped 60%, burglary dropped 81%, and the total number of crime complaints dropped 62%. Life for tenants living in Harlem rentals and Harlem brownstones for sale over time got better.
LiveUptown.com: 8th Avenue & West 113th Street
Inadequate housing contributed to racial unrest and health problems. However, the lack of development of Harlem real estate and Harlem brownstones for sale preserved many buildings from the 1870-1910 building boom, and as a result has many of the finest original Harlem brownstones for sale in New York. This includes work by many significant architects of the day, including McKim, Mead, and White; James Renwick; William Tuthill; Charles Buek; and Francis Kimball. Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops began to be sold to those looking for housing.
By 1980, the City of New York owned 60% of all residential Harlem real estate, and began auctioning these properties to the public in 1985. After years of false starts, Harlem began to see rapid gentrification of Harlem rentals and other businesses in the late 1990s. This was driven by changing federal and city policies, including fierce crime-fighting and a concerted effort to develop the retail corridor on 125th Street. Starting in 1994, the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone funneled money into new developments. The number of Harlem apartments with no broker fees increased 14% between 1990 and 2000 and has been much more rapid in recent years. Harlem real estate values and rents for Harlem apartments and Harlem condos and Harlem HDFC Coops in Central Harlem increased nearly 300% during the 1990s, while the rest of the City saw only a 12% increase. Even empty shells of Harlem brownstones for sale, as of 2007, routinely selling for nearly $1,000,000 each. Former U.S. President Bill Clinton has rented office space at 55 West 125th Street since completing his second term in the White House in 2001.
Despite gentrification of Harlem real estate and Harlem brownstones for sale and other businesses the neighborhood remains a predominantly African American area, with census data revealing about 72% of the population in 2005 to have been black. The number of white residents has increased from only 672 people in 1980, about 0.5% of the population, to some 5000 people, or 4.3% of the population, in 2005. As of September 2008, their number was estimated to have tripled from 2005 levels.
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