September Rental Report: Manhattan Slows; Brooklyn Grows

Brooklyn Bridge to Manhattan at Sunset

The latest report is in, and according to Elliman, the median manhattan rental price finally decreased for the first time since June 2011. The median rent for an apartment in Manhattan slipped 3.1% from the same month last year, down to $3,095 per month in September. The numbers weren’t straight across the board, however. In year-over-year numbers, there was a slight price decline in studio and one-bedroom apartments, while there was an increase in price for two- and three-bedroom apartments.

Why the overall decline? More people are simply buying. With rising mortgage rates, buyers are quickly trying to close on a condo. While the rents have been steadily increasing, they have also been steadily increasing by less, so we’re entering what Curbed’s Jonathan Miller, the man responsible for creating the graphs, called “a period of transition to a plateau rather than always rising.”

This probably isn’t great news for renters, as mentioned above, these numbers are affected by sales, which aren’t expected to continue at this rate for too long. So Manhattan rental prices aren’t likely to drop significantly, rather, they will probably hover in their current range.

In Brooklyn, however, there’s no slowing down. This time last year, the median price was $2,536. The median rental price for a Brooklyn apartment is now $2,800 per month—a 10.4 percent increase. On a month-to-month basis, the median rental price dropped from $2,850 in August, to $2,800 in September.

As a result of landlords seeking higher rents, renters are seeking new Brooklyn apartments when their leases expire at a higher rate. From this time last year, there has been a 32.1 percent increase in new rentals. As rents continue to rise, this trend is likely to continue for some time, as affordability will trump renewal.