Navigating the Shifting Tides: A Perspective from Albert Dweck, CEO of Duke Properties

Manhattan’s Yearly Rent Increase Hits its Lowest Point Since 2021

As the owner and CEO of Duke Properties,immersed in the pulse of New York City’s real estate landscape, I find myself reflecting on the recent shifts in the rental market with a blend of observation and anticipation. The dynamics of Manhattan’s rental scene have undergone a noticeable transformation, ushering in a departure from the days of unrestrained rent growth that characterized much of 2022.

In October, for the second consecutive month, Manhattan witnessed a dip in rents, sounding the metaphorical death knell for the era of rampant rent escalation. According to a report by Miller Samuel for Douglas Elliman, the median rent in the borough landed at $4,195, marking a 3.6 percent decline from September and a modest 4.6 percent increase compared to the same month last year. This annualized uptick is the lowest reported since September 2021, starkly contrasting the astonishing 20 to 30 percent increases that dominated the narrative throughout much of 2022.


The report points to August as the pinnacle of the city’s rental market, suggesting a decisive shift in tenant behavior. Rather than embarking on the perennial apartment search, tenants opted for the familiarity of lease renewals. Consequently, new lease signings in Manhattan dwindled for the fourth consecutive month, underscoring a preference for stability amid a changing rental landscape.

Brooklyn and northwest Queens, known for their relatively lower rental prices, experienced more pronounced declines. In Brooklyn, the median rent settled at $3,490 in October, reflecting a 5.7 percent drop from September and a marginal 0.2 percent decrease compared to the same month in 2022. Notably, this marks the first time in two years that Brooklyn rents did not register a year-over-year increase. Meanwhile, in Queens, the median rent in October was $3,198, representing an 18-percent decline from the peak prices observed in August.


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