NYC Market Realities

1123423-2_lWith regards to the New York City Real Estate market, this is a very busy time of year.
Rentals in prime locations are going within hours and sales are going in weeks.

There is very little inventory across the board, no matter the budget.
From the entry level starter studio on the rental side, up to the uber-luxury penthouse on the sale side.

Vacancies are slim and many are staying put for another year.

Come prepared and have your game face on!


$5800 – 3BR/2BA Apartment – 45 Pineapple Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201, USA

It’s been a while since an update, life happens.

Here’s an awesome Brooklyn Heights rental currently available.


Living Room

$5800 – 3BR/2BA Apartment – 45 Pineapple Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201, USA.

The Belnord

This amazing home is in a unique trophy property on the Upper West Side of Manhattan.

Encompassing an entire city block from 86-87th and Broadway to Amsterdam, there are rental apartments ranging from a

handful of pre-war loft style studios to mostly classic six and seven room layouts ideal for families. When the building was completed in 1908, it was the largest private courtyard in the world.

As you enter from the 86th Street side, you are greeted with a double archway and gates manned 24/7 in addition to a concierge area. Vehicles are permitted to enter and load/unload for a period of 3 hours in an area once only traversed by horse-drawn carriages.

The homes have been completely renovated with all of the modern amenities such as central air conditioning, Viking, Miele and SubZero appliances and yet retain the meticulous prewar details one hopes to find still in tact in this environment.

There are a limited selection of homes remaining. Far from the cookie cutter building and each home is quite unique. Please do contact us if you are not quite ready to purchase as of yet and want access to the best rental properties in town.

Sex in the City? Outdoor Space? Find the Hat Man!


Not a fire escape

Even without trying, I ALWAYS end up finding great outdoor spaces for my people. I love grilling and chilling and usually, people who do gravitate to me as well. Out of 100 apartments available in any budget, I have a knack for showing the best four or five right away. What the heck are you paying me for anyway?!!!

This is a super value. At $2100, the rent is actually quite low for the area and outdoor space. This amount of outdoor space is actually quite hard to find, but here it is. The location is what everyone looks for. Details are below on the listing.

This is located on one of the Villages most desirable and beautiful blocks, just steps to Union Square, restaurants, NYU, shopping, Washington Square Park, & all subway lines. This Charming loft studio is peaceful and quiet with an amazing large private outdoor space that is as big as the apartment itself. Other features include high ceilings, an open kitchen with breakfast bar, new stove and refrigerator, A/C, wall of closets and bike storage. The elevator building is perfectly maintained, has a live-in super as well as a central laundry room making this unique apartment the perfect place to call home. JULY 1ST OCCUPANCY.

If you want Sex in the City, then look no further. The Hat Man CAN Do!

Starter Studio with Patio


So what does it REALLY cost to live in Manhattan?


It really works too!

This is a post that will create a ton of discussion. There are many areas to live, but the ideal areas for most are anything below midtown. A great deal of people will also look along Central Park on either the Upper West or East side.

No matter the area, after many years and seeing thousands of apartments, there is a magic number that must be considered the starting point for anyone looking to avoid crossing 110th Street.

While the last two years have happened and prices did correct themselves a bit, there is no way to keep prices down for a rare commodity for too long. You can argue all you want about what you may read in the papers pertaining to NYC real estate, but the fact is, more people move here each year. New hires, graduates, summer interns, vacationers and people downsizing or upgrading due to divorce and expecting children. The cycle never ceases, if anything it only increases.

Pay close attention, wait for it, here it comes…The one common thing that I have noticed since 2005, for a wide offering of what is out on the market, $1700 per person is the benchmark. You may find some things on the market for less. 95% of what is out there is sub-par and will waste your time.

I have found some rare gems on the market for less. There is this one number that really sticks no matter who or where you look. If you are looking for a simple studio in a great area, this is the starting point. If you are looking for a share in a doorman building, this is the point of entry. You can always try to find a needle in a haystack, or you can come prepared with realistic expectations of how much hay you are looking through. FYI-The fireplace is in a true one bedroom on Irving Place for $4100.


The Feeding Frenzy Begins


Rental season here in NYC is a crazy time of year. There are always more people than there are apartments to rent. People come here during this time, expecting some super deal that rarely exists during the slow seasons. There is a virtual turning back the clock to that move Gangs of New York. The entire island of Manhattan becomes the five points and it’s survival of the fittest. Those who are prepared, both in having REALISTIC expectations and also in having all documentation readily available, have the “luck”. Those who are ill prepared, are unlucky.

We have found that the people who stretch a bit beyond their means and get help from elsewhere, are the ones who come here, secure a place in the target area, do the job assignment and then move on. They have clear cut goals and will make whatever adjustments as needed to achieve them. There are few if any “deals” in the solid areas like Gramercy and the West Village. These areas are the most in demand and as a result, they are some of the higher rents in the city. Should you find one below market rate place, making a swift decision is crucial. There is always great competition for them.

This is a yearly trend even in the past two “down” years. The rental market in Manhattan is an aberration to the housing market nationwide. Even four years ago, we were encountering the same issues we have here now. This is a city with a ton of disposable income. People come here to live more, which in turn makes them spend more, but the whole point is that by living here, you MAKE more. As a direct result, this year there are higher end luxury offerings. Contact us for a viewing as the higher the rent, the more likely the landlord will pay us directly for you!

If you factor in the average rental of $2,000 and the qualification of 40-50 times the monthly in annual income, we are talking about a city where the average person has to earn $80,000-$100,000 per year just to sign a lease without a guarantor. For places under $2000 below midtown, there will often be multiple brokers with clients racing to see the same place. Then the race for paperwork begins. If you see a crowd at an apartment it is likely a good deal and people are already conferring about what decision to make.

The time of year is a mad dash for suitable housing. Actually, it’s a all out war with collateral damage in the form of sacrificing in the size of space, quality or location, if not the budget. The market will make that decision for you and we will never push you in that direction. We will take time to educate you on the market realities in the swiftest time period possible due to advanced product knowledge.

Come prepared and be ready to make a gut decision. If you can SEE yourself living there, you should go for it before the person who saw it an hour before you does. When it’s meant to be it just feels right!


Priced out of Manhattan? Here are the best options elsewhere


I know that everyone comes here to live in Manhattan. But what do people who live here do when the landlord raises the rent to an amount that you just can’t afford anymore? Or what about the transplant who is new here, but really isn’t making that $3500 luxury hi-rise money yet? Or maybe the hipster who wants to be adventurous and go against the grain of living in the East Village? For those that are new to the city and the market reality of the prices and space here has just smacked you in the face, I have some areas that you will want to consider.

This is the first place people mention when considering going away from the traditional areas on Manhattan to live. It’s hipster vibe, trendy shops and cafes make people gush for days. I lived here for a year and it was decent. There is almost too much to do along Bedford Ave. Cool bars, great restaurants and McCarren park are the pluses of the neighborhood. The subway access if you are close to the L train and no further than Lorimer is actually superb and in some ways, better than being in Manhattan. Well, at least if you are way east or west and far from a subway line. The problem is that rents here are starting to mirror Manhattan places, now that it is a well-known hot spot.

This was once an area that people feared. With a huge expanse by Columbia, Bill Clinton coming to town and the lack of acreage on Manhattan Island as a whole, this area is enjoying a new Harlem Renaissance. The rents here are lower than areas below 96th street (but hurry, because they are rising), the commute downtown is not that bad (try to get a spot near an express train) and the food and shopping options are plenty. Your getting the Manhattan zip code, but if you are smart, can pay borough prices. The trade-off is less drunk frat kids stumbling around the streets for EVERYBODY hanging out on the streets. From Grandma’s and Grandpa’s to young children staying out way past their bedtime, this area of NYC is super diverse, a last remaining slice of what New York USED to be and becoming more and more gentrified by the week. You would really be surprised to see the eclectic mix of faces that stay on past the old “Mason Dixon” line of 96th Street these days!
Harlem World

I have stayed here off and on at times. My father lived here when I was young. This is a great area that looks close on the map to Manhattan, but if you are not right by the subway, it can be a bit of a trek on the late night. The area is becoming trendy and so the prices are nearing Manhattan prices, though you MAY have more flexibility in terms of requirements and negotiating a deal. MAY is the operative word. Dining options are mostly Latin mom and pop restaurants and Greek as there is a heavy Greek population in the area. This is the first destination for most when considering the outer boroughs aside from Willie B.

Jackson Heights
This area is a hidden jewel of the boroughs. If you don’t know, now you know. This is a great area for keeping the costs down. This is a diverse area in Queens with great subway access if you can get a place in the 70’s to 80’s and not too many avenues away from Roosevelt Ave. In some ways, it can actually be a shorter commute than Astoria if you work it out the right way. I lived here for over five years and loved it. Great food from many different cultures, cheaper prices than Manhattan, Willie B, or Astoria and only a 30 minute commute to Manhattan max.
Jackson Heights

Park Slope
After Williamsburg, this is usually the next place on the map when considering BK. The Brooklyn Heights area is always first on the list, but with its superior subway access and closer to Manhattan than parts of Manhattan location, it is the one area of the city that is truly across the river with city prices. So heads turn to Park Slop as the next viable choice. There is a great neighborhood feel, great school systems for those families with or having children. Good dining options and a short trip to the city make this a solid value.
Park Slope

That’s the five top areas that people consider when leaving the traditional areas of the Upper West or East sides, midtown to downtown. I have one more bonus area that is perhaps the best jewel in all of the boroughs. The mainstream writers haven’t caught up to this old school native yet though. To find out about that one, you will have to go with me.

Happy home hunting!  😉


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