Brooklyn and Manhattan battle it out for renters

A breakdown of where prices have dropped most in the rival boroughs
By C. J. Hughes | November 20, 2009 11:14AM

From the November issue: Brooklyn has long been a haven for renters looking for cheaper deals than they can get across the river in Manhattan. In the current downturn, however, rents have dropped faster in Manhattan than in Brooklyn. This month, The Real Deal stacks up the rival boroughs next to each other, comparing year-over-year rent drops to see where the biggest declines have been. According to the real estate Web site StreetEasy, average rental listing prices fell 21 percent in Manhattan between the third quarter of 2008 and the third quarter of 2009, while coming down only 15 percent in Brooklyn.

In addition, price declines have been far steeper in certain Manhattan neighborhoods, a phenomenon that has made headlines and prompted many Brooklyn renters to give Manhattan another look. Indeed, brokers say, budget-conscious renters arriving in New York for the first time — who in the past may have gone straight over the Brooklyn Bridge to hunt for an apartment — are now weighing Manhattan as a comparable alternative. more