Brokers say market for five-figure rentals shifting faster than smaller apartments

The market for five-figure rentals may be improving faster than the market for small apartments, some real estate agents say. According to the New York Times, many high-end clients are often choosing to rent rather than buy.

Data from shows that more apartments priced over $10,000 per month were leased this May than in the same period in 2010 and 2009. Apartments in that bracket also went off the market faster and without price cuts.

“If you’re purchasing something at $20 million plus and you have those funds in some sort of account that’s bringing a good return,” it does not necessarily make sense to invest it all in an apartment, said Margaret Bay, vice president at Brown Harris Stevens.

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Bay, who manages rentals at the Waldorf Towers, ranging from $12,000 to $150,000 a month, said many of the higher-end buildings insisted on purchases in cash.

Brokers claim that finding tenants for five-figure rentals is often simpler than in the lower brackets. “In this range, we’re not running into problems with people not having 40 to 45 times the rent,” said Rado Varchola, senior vice president at Citi Habitats.

The most expensive rental listed in the city is a mansion at 4 East 80th Street, between Fifth and Madison avenues, available for $210,000 a month. [NYT]