Lower Manhattan rentals fall 70 percent post-Sandy

November 29, 2012 02:30PM

It’s no secret that Hurricane Sandy badly damaged some of Lower Manhattan’s rental properties, but the impact to the rental market in the area was also severe—perhaps even more than previously predicted.

In the weeks following the storm, rental activity dropped 69.8 percent compared to the same period a year ago, according to Jonathan Miller, president of appraisal firm Miller Samuel.

Miller confined his search to four Lower Manhattan zip codes—10280, 10004, 10005, 10006—and looked at the three-week period two days after the storm ended, from Nov. 1 to Nov. 21. In 2011, there were 199 closed rentals in the area, compared to 60 in the same period this year, he found. The data guru attributed the drop in transactions to buildings being off line and inaccessible, rather than a lack of demand.

“Inventory remains tight and it is hard to see much in the way of a reprieve in rental price levels as a result of the storm,” he wrote in a blog post.

As The Real Deal and others have reported, landlords at a number of Lower Manhattan’s rental buildings have been forced to relocate tenants and offer rent abatements. Some will be displaced for months. [Matrix]Leigh Kamping-Carder