A Tale of Four Neighborhoods: Gauging Manhattan’s Apartment Market from Peak to Valley

From boom to bust: We plucked four Manhattan neighborhoods and charted their average rents.

In the psychological pantheon of renters, the Financial District might as well seem the New Harlem. It’s quickly becoming the strapped Manhattanite’s least expensive option before moving to Brooklyn.

To understand just how far rents have—and have not—fallen throughout Manhattan since the boom busted, we plucked four neighborhoods emblematic of the headier days and charted their average rents on different-sized apartments from the peak of the boom in September 2007 to what’s likely the trough (or close to it) in March 2009. The statistics come from the Real Estate Group New York (PDF of the new March report here).

The four neighborhoods are The Financial District, which was once the next hot neighborhood as, like Harlem, it could be a refuge for renters who wanted to stay in Manhattan and maybe didn’t have the cash to pay the record rents elsewhere; Greenwich Village, where everyone wants to rent always; and the Central Park–seperated Upper East Side and Upper West Side, where everyone ends up renting.

Of these four, the Financial District is the only one to have experienced a decline in rents for studios, one-bedrooms and two-bedrooms in both doorman and non-doorman buildings. Leading the FiDi retreat is the doorman studio market, where rents have fallen 18.2 percent in the 18 months since September 2007.

Upper East Side rents on doorman studios and one-bedroom apartments have dropped 9.1 and 7.8 percent, respectively, while rents on non-doorman studios, one-bedrooms and two-bedrooms have tanked 10.1 percent, 15.1 percent, and 15.5 percent, respectively.

Peruse our interactive map for more rental stats.


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