The Real Deal New York

Developers home in on family-size apartment shortage in Brooklyn

February 24, 2012 12:30PM

There’s a shortage of family-size apartments in Brooklyn, and developers are first catching on now, the Wall Street Journal reported.

“When we started developing, Williamsburg was pretty much recognized as a creative community — artists, musicians, galleries, cafes, vintage clothing,” said Douglaston Development Chairman Jeffrey Levine. “As time passed, years turned hipsters into parents.”

But just 13 percent of the housing inventory for sale in Williamsburg is larger than 1,500 square feet, and in Fort Greene and Downtown Brooklyn those larger units comprise just 7 percent of apartments. Further, the number of listings for units with at least three bedrooms has fallen 35 percent in Williamsburg and 9 percent throughout the borough.

The shortage is due in part to the riskier nature of larger units, which are more of a liability when they don’t sell.

However, the Journal said the market is beginning to correct itself and developers are planning for more larger units. For example, whereas about 5 percent of the units in Douglaston’s the Edge have three bedrooms, 10 percent of the units in its next project, at Northside Piers, will have three bedrooms. [WSJ]