No-fee NYC apartments hit a $ 4,735 median: study

Just how high can rents get in New York City? A month after a bombshell market report found that median Manhattan rents reached a jaw-dropping $ 4,000 for the first time ever, a study from a new rentals site tallies that already sky-high sum even higher – at least for a specific type of unit.

Rent Betta, a portal featuring only no-fee listings that users can lease directly from landlords and leasing offices, found that median city rents for no-fee units – defined as those that do not require the tenant pay a commission or a broker’s fee – reached $ 4,735 in the second quarter.

The site surveyed 1,070 listings in all five boroughs of the city, about 70% of them in Manhattan – and found that the median price marked a 9% rise from the first quarter of 2021, when Rent Betta recorded a $ 4,360 median.

The numbers come as apartments, especially since late 2021, have seen dramatic price increases. Not only has it been fueled by New Yorkers returning to the city from their pandemic hideaways as schools and offices have reopened, but also by out-of-towners who work remote and moved to the Big Apple to take advantage of their ongoing flexibility. But Rent Betta notes other recent factors for the increases, including the pressures of inflation and summer demand.

Rents for New York City units have gone through the roof over the last year, marking a sudden change from the pandemic-era discounts that allowed many locals to upgrade.
Christopher Sadowski

It stands in stark contrast to when local tenants took advantage of lower pandemic-era rents by scoring upgraded apartments for the same price, or even less, in 2021.

Rent Betta found that prices for two- and three-bedroom pads rose the most dramatically quarter-over-quarter. Respectively, they climbed 22% to a $ 5,829 median and 30% to $ 7,492. Meanwhile, the median price for a no-fee studio notched a 12% increase quarter-over-quarter to $ 3,693, while one-bedrooms jumped 8% to $ 4,415.

The costs are high, but the study notes there are ways to save a bit – a bit – of money. Among them, the traditional roommate arrangement.

Splitting a two-bedroom, for instance, would make rent $ 2,915 per room, while sharing a three-bedroom would lower it to $ 2,497 per room. Rent Betta found the most savings for sharing a four-bedroom – whose median prices rose 14% quarter-over-quarter to $ 8,298 – would cost $ 2,075 per bedroom.

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