Housing sales increase all over the Greater New York City region

In the Big Apple, private equity firms have begun to purchase debt on MLS Listings in New York, NY, and various other small properties, according to The Real Deal. The goal is to turn these listings into rentals, taking advantage of distressed values seen in parts of the metropolitan area. However, the housing market as a whole has begun to improve in the big city, with several boroughs seeing notable home sale increases in the first quarter of 2012.

Queens and the Bronx have experienced the biggest surge, as competitive prices and low interest rates have encouraged buyers back into the market, according to The New York Daily News.

Overall, the New York City residential real estate market has remained stable in 2012, with sales up approximately 1 percent compared with last year. But the increase marks a 16 percent surge from the fourth quarter of 2011, and many real estate experts predict the market will continue to improve.

Additional neighborhoods that saw more activity in the greater New York City area were Flushing, Rego Park, Forest Hills and Kew Gardens, according to the news source. What's more, Long Island City condo sales went up 50 percent compared to the first quarter of 2011.

New York City has shown continuous signs of improvement across the board in employment and housing stability, which may cause the market to experience considerable highs in the coming months.