Tuesday, January 13, 2009

My Year of Hopefulness - An Affordable New York City

My pot-smoking neighbor is back in full-force. Gross. I have opened up my front hall closet two days in a row to a waft of marijuana. So, I sent my landlord a very nice email explaining that problem was occurring again and that I may consider finding a new apartment. He swears that he has spoken to her again and that the problem will not happen again. Still, I am skeptical so I decided to take a look around the neighborhood and see what's available. 

First, I discovered that I am overpaying for my studio. I signed the two year lease at the height of the market in the summer of 2007 and I needed to live in my neighborhood to park my car on the street and make my commute as easy as possible. Now, a year and a half later, times have changed. Rents have dropped dramatically, even in my ritzy neighborhood. I can get a place twice as large as my current apartment for less money. Amazing!

And there is availability everywhere with free months of rent promos, waived fees, and apartments held with no extra cost. The New York City rental market may actually morph to be like rental markets in other cities. That is to say it could actually become reasonable!

Now this is cause for much rejoicing and much hope. Yes, we'll get to save a bit more money but the exciting piece for me is that New York City has the great potential to save its edge. For years now students, writers, artists, musicians, activists, and entrepreneurs - people who make our world an interesting place to live - have been driven out of the city by rents that are too high. You have to have an MBA, or be a doctor or lawyer to afford a place in a decent neighborhood. It's crazy! With these lower rents, a more diverse population will be able to afford a wider variety of neighborhoods. And we will all be the benefactors of that diversity.

Just when I thought all was lost and that I'd never be able to afford to buy in New York, I'm realizing now that eventually it might be possible. That alone is a great reason for hope. 

1 comment:

runner52 said...

Good luck with the hunt...