Manhattan rents are on the rise as nation’s economy recovers, but available apartments still scarce

Manhattan rents are on the rise as nation's economy recovers, but available apartments still scarce

BY Phyllis Furman
DAILY NEWS BUSINESS WRITER

Thursday, April 7th 2011, 4:00 AM

A recovering economy means that Manhattan rents are on the rise while inventory is shrinking.

Bonifacio/News

A recovering economy means that Manhattan rents are on the rise while inventory is shrinking.

The good old days for Manhattan renters are history.

As the economy improved, rents rose and inventory shrunk in the first three months of the year, according to reports from two brokerage firms to be released today.

The median rent for a Manhattan apartment when landlord concessions were taken into account was $2,808, up 7.4% versus last year, Prudential Douglas Elliman said.

Apartments were snapped up at a faster pace: On average, units stayed on the market for 40 days, down from 86 a year ago. Listings fell 25.6% from last year to 3,874 apartments.

“Renters have to move more quickly,” said Yuval Greenblatt, executive vice president at Prudential Douglas Elliman. “Fewer buildings are offering concessions, and the market is tightening.”

Manhattan’s rental market is rebounding faster than its sales market. While lower unemployment has boosted demand for rentals, the tight credit environment is still making it tough for many to secure a mortgage.

“The rental market is able to respond more quickly to improvements in the economy,” said Jonathan Miller, president of appraisal firm Miller Samuel, which compiled the Prudential Douglas Elliman report.

Gary Malin, president of brokerage firm Citi Habitats, said leasing was active at several pricey new rental buildings, including New York by Gehry in lower Manhattan, where studios go for $2,720.

pfurman@nydailynews.com

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