OMFG! Manhattan Rents Drop a Bit in June

For the most part Manhattan remains a brutal market for renters this month, especially if you’re set on living below 23rd Street. But economic uncertainty has brought bargains (in the New York sense of the word) to some neighborhoods in the middle of a season when rents usually peak, according to the June rental report (PDF) released today by The Real Estate Group New York.

The good news is you can still find a market-rate apartment for less than $2,000 a month on the island of Manhattan, if you’re willing to live without a doorman in the borough’s sleepier neighborhoods.

Average June rents for non-doorman studios were below $2,000 on the Upper East Side ($1,831), the Upper West Side ($1,968), Harlem ($1,287), and Midtown West ($1,984).

Overall, Harlem remained the cheapest place to rent in June, with average prices ranging from $1,287 for non-doorman studios to $2,636 for full-service, two-bedroom apartments. (That’s around $300 less than the average studio rents in Tribeca and Soho on the opposite end of the price spectrum.) But after declining steadily since February, Harlem doorman rents started to go up this month.

The Real Estate Group’s report tracks neighborhoods south of Washington Heights.

On the Upper West Side, rents in doorman buildings of all sizes dropped in June. The average studio rent hit a 12-month low of $2,386 in June, compared to $2,477 last July. Average rent for a two-bedroom apartment in a full-service building dropped from $5,469 last July, to $5,255 this month.

On the Upper East Side, studio rents inched up slightly year-over-year, but otherwise rents dropped across the board from July of last year. The average rent for a doorman one-bedroom dipped from $3,670 last July to $3,579 this month and from $2,493 to $2,405 for a non-doorman building. During the same period, the average rent for a two-bedroom apartment on the Upper East Side went from $5,396 to $5,308 in a doorman building to $3,388 to $3,204 without a doorman.

Midtown rents on both sides of the park have dropped in June. In Midtown West, doorman studios went from $2,683 in July 2007 to $2,533 this month; and doorman two-bedrooms went from $5,371 in July to $5,028.

In Midtown East, doorman studios dropped from $2,734 to $2,468 annually; doorman one-bedrooms from $3,996 to $3,698; and two bedrooms from $6,071 to $5,876.

Sadly, rents continued to climb where the cool kids live in June (with a few exceptions).