Manhattan retail asking rents falling from 2015 heights: report

Flatiron cooled down, but FiDi saw asks rise

The Crown Building on Fifth Avenue
The Crown Building on Fifth Avenue

Retail asking rents in large parts of Manhattan are falling as retailers shy away from making expensive long-term commitments, according to a new report by the Real Estate Board of New York.

On Broadway between 14th and 23rd streets, asking rents are down a hefty 23 percent year-over-year. Asking rents are also down in Herald Square (11 percent), Times Square (9 percent), the Meatpacking District and Harlem. The notable exception is the Financial District, where asking rents are up largely because expensive space in new developments hit the market, the report found.

Sign Up for the undefined Newsletter

“Six months ago, the brokers were of mixed opinions,” REBNY’s research head Mike Slattery told the New York Post. “They sensed the retail pricing was galloping ahead, and as the market softened a bit, the prices looked harder to achieve. There is no indication that tourism is slowing, but just that prices were too high.”

On Fifth Avenue in Midtown, landlords have not given up on big deals — asking rents are up 3 percent.

In July, The Real Deal reported that fears over a retail real estate bubble are mounting as some investors rely on unrealistic rent assumptions to make acquisitions pencil out. [NYP]Konrad Putzier