Are creative workers keeping NYC rents down?

February 19, 2013 03:30PM

Despite significant job growth in New York City over the last year, rents have declined in the last few months. A new study claims that the relatively stagnant rents are the result of new tenants’ professions: many have jobs as artists, designers or workers in the city’s growing technology sector, rather than in the high-paying field of finance that has traditionally driven the rental market, the Wall Street Journal reported.

“Lower wages are contributing to lower rental growth,” real estate marketing consultant Nancy Packes wrote in today’s report. “The highly compensated finance sector is losing market share to the technology and creative industries.”

According to Packes’ report, nearly 60 percent of new renters worked in the financial sector in 2006. In 2013, only about 40 percent do. The number of workers in technology and creative fields has almost doubled, and they now make up almost three out of 10 new renters.

Citi Habitats’ most recent rental market report showed that Manhattan rents fell in each of the last five months, down to $3,211 a month in January after peaking at $3,461 per month in August. [WSJ]Evan Bleier