NYC rents fall slightly due to incentives

- If you rent a home in New York City, you already know we have some of the highest rents in the country. Now, finally, some promising news: rents are starting to come down a little, according to a report by appraiser Miller Samuel Inc. and brokerage firm Douglas Elliman Real Estate.

Manhattan rents dropped 3.8 percent. Brooklyn did even better—rents fell  6.3 percent. And Queens renters got the best deal—rents dropped 6.4 percent.

"Right now is a great opportunity to find a good apartment at a reasonable price," said Janna Raskopf, a broker with Douglas Elliman. "Landlords are very open to conversations in a way that they hadn't been historically."

The shift is less about the monthly rent coming down and more about financial incentives being offered by landlords, she said. These incentives can add up to a significant cost savings for the tenant.

"The prices are coming down a little bit but the incentives that are being given are what's doing that and that's what we call the 'net effective number,'" Raskopf said. "You're having a lot of owners who are deciding to give—whether it's their existing tenant or prospective new tenants when the apartments are vacant—opportunities to get some sort of concession, whether it's that they pay our broker's fee or they will offer a free month's rent or a gift card."

And one more thing. Raskopf said that if you can't afford to move and your rent is going up then this is the right climate for renters to renegotiate and stay put.

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