Manhattan’s property market has taken its biggest hit in four years as landlords made steep price cuts on apartment rents to entice tenants.
The median rent last month stood at $3,295, which was 2.7% less than the previous December, according to Miller Samuel and brokerage Douglas Elliman Real Estate. It was the biggest annual decline since February 2014 for New York’s most densely populated borough.
For the last two years, landlords have been offering behind-the-scenes deals in an attempt to prop up apartment prices, potential tenants have been lured with rent-free months, price cuts, gift cards and gym memberships. In December, a record number of 36% of all new leases experienced a price cut.
Hal Gavzie who oversees leasing for Douglas Elliman announced in a statement that although the concessions were working for a while, the consumers are now really pushing on the negotiating side of the rents.
The rent reductions have seemed to help the market as the vacancy rate declined to 1.9% in December, the lowest in five years for the same period.
Taking into account the concessions and payment of broker’s fees, tenants paid a median of $3,208, down 2.5% from the previous year.
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