Manhattan Multifamily Report – Spring 2021

After bottoming out in the last quarter of 2020, rates in the borough are slowly but steadily gaining ground.
Manhattan rent evolution, click to enlarge
Manhattan rent evolution, click to enlarge

In line with other gateway metros, New York City, which heavily relies on tourism, business travel and service industries, proved particularly vulnerable to the health crisis that ground the city’s economy to a near halt in 2020. Year-over-year, the average Manhattan rent was down 14.3 percent as of March. However, while rents continued to contract, they have done so at a steadily decelerating rate after reaching an October 2020 bottom.

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The New York metro area lost more than 1 million jobs in 2020. While the region’s main economic engines—including Wall Street, big corporations and the tech industry—have stood the test better than initially anticipated, low-wage workers and small businesses continue to struggle. Glimmers of hope emerged as the American Rescue Plan allocated an estimated $100 billion to the state, with $6.1 billion in direct aid carved out for the city government, significantly enhancing New York City’s outlook. However, the recovery is going to be a steep climb, according to economists and analysts.

Manhattan sales volume and number of properties sold, click to enlarge
Manhattan sales volume and number of properties sold, click to enlarge

Manhattan had 5,078 rental units under construction as of March, 94 percent of which are targeting high-income renters. Nearly half the pipeline is slated to come online this year, with an additional 1,647 units expected for delivery in 2022. Meanwhile, some $932 million in multifamily assets of more than 50 units traded last year, down 40 percent compared to 2019 and marking the decade’s low point.

Read the full Yardi Matrix report.