During the recession, as financing vanished and condo prices plummeted, the city’s real estate market was flooded with ultra-luxurious rentals. Developers, eager to fill what had been envisioned as condo towers, offered renters top-of-the-line finishes, sprawling floorplans and master-of-the-universe views—perks long denied to those who borrowed rather than bought.
And though such unprecedented luxuries came with unprecedented price tags—a penthouse at New York by Gehry debuted for $60,000 a month—renters materialized all the same. Brokers cooed about this new breed of renter, who preferred a lease to a deed not because of circumstance or financial necessity, but because they craved convenience and flexibility. Not so frequently discussed were the many would-be buyers swelling the ranks of luxury renters who would, presumably, abandon the high-rental market as soon as the housing market rebounded. Read More