Dead weight: A breakdown of NYC’s rental listing glut

Manhattan listings make up the bulk of NYC rentals on the market


The pandemic and subsequent shutdowns have dealt a serious blow to New York City landlords, sending vacancy rates soaring and rents to the ground.

Manhattan rental vacancies reached 5 percent in August, the highest level in 14 years, according to Miller Samuel. That coincided with a surge in listing inventory, which shot up to 15,000 listings, a 166 percent jump from August 2019. In August and September, citywide rents fell compared to last year.

Manhattan’s contributions to the city’s inventory glut are colossal, according to The Real Deal’s analysis of LavaMap’s active rental listings as of Sept. 30. With 20,147 listings, that borough took up 72 percent of all listings in the city. Brooklyn came in a distant second with 5,938 listings, while Queens had 2,231 listings.

The five neighborhoods with the most active listings — all of which were in Manhattan — were the Upper West Side (1,539 listings), Hudson Yards-Chelsea-Flatiron-Union Square (1,452 listings), the West Village (1,332 listings), Soho-Tribeca-Civic Center-Little Italy (1,243 listings) and Turtle Bay-East Midtown (1,223 listings).

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In Brooklyn, Park Slope-Gowanus had the most available listings, with 539, while Hunters Point-Sunnyside-West Maspeth had 454 in Queens.

One-bedroom apartments accounted for the largest share of listings by apartment size, with 10,129 active rentals making up 44 percent of all listings citywide. That was followed by 8,291 two-bedroom apartments and 4,467 studios. The size of apartments on the market varied by borough, with larger apartments easier to find in Brooklyn and Queens.

Citywide, rentals with prices ranging from $2,000 to $2,499 made up about 20 percent of all listings. That’s followed by those in the $2,500 to $2,999 range, with about 19 percent of all listings. The $3,000 to $3,499 bracket had about 12 percent of all listings.

Like apartment size, the price distribution of active listings varied considerably per borough. The pricing of rental inventory in Manhattan was more spread out — and more expensive, with 7 percent of listings asking upwards of $10,000 per month. In Brooklyn and Queens, the price distribution was heavily concentrated in the $1,500 to $3,500 range.