Rentstravaganza: New-to-Market Apartments, $2,300 to $23,000

February 10, 2015

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The rental boom is heading into its third year. Even as real estate pundits anticipate a slowdown in demand for luxury condos in 2015, the appetite for new rentals is voracious, from small boutique-type projects to multi-building complexes.

The last quarter of 2014 saw a 31.5 percent uptick in leases signed in Manhattan buildings constructed within the last five years. Brooklyn’s new development leases shot up by 67.8 percent over 2013’s final quarter, based on a Douglas Elliman report compiled by Jonathan Miller, the president and CEO of Miller Samuel appraisers.

Top-quality rental developments in the “once under-appreciated neighborhoods” of Bushwick, Crown Heights and Windsor Terrace are fueling Brooklyn’s boom, said Stephen Kliegerman, the president of Terra Development. “The amount of parks and cultural offerings are endless—and a number of insightful developers saw the boroughs under development as an opportunity—and purchased land prior to the recovery of the economy and housing market.”

Sky-high land prices in Manhattan and tight financing for condo buyers are also contributing to the rental boom, particularly in Brooklyn, noted Dottie Herman, the president and CEO of Douglas Elliman. “In the outer boroughs, land is cheaper and again, due to limited financing, people are looking to rent, especially in the new buildings. Developers do make more money with condos,” she said. But in rentals, “costs for finishes and fixtures, when compared to those in a luxury condo, are substantially less.”

With so many units either under construction or already leasing, there are some standouts. Here are the selects in Manhattan and Brooklyn.

The Arthur, 245 West 25th Street, Chelsea
Developed by the Naftali Group and exclusively leased through Urban Compass, this Manhattan building has been fully renovated with generously proportioned one- and two-bedroom apartments. Units feature hardwood floors, nine-foot-high ceilings and sunken living rooms. Kitchens have lacquer cabinetry, Caesarstone worktops and stainless appliances. Porcelain-tiled bathrooms feature glass-enclosed rain showers and custom vanities.
Amenities: Fitness center, landscaped garden with outdoor shower, washer/dryers in units, 24-hour doorman.
Rents: $4,000 to $6,500
Perks: One month free