NYC Rising Rents Good for Jackson Heights Real Estate – Residential rental market grows ever more competitive as tenants see living in Queens as affordable alternative to Brooklyn
Median prices topping $2,000 per month In hippest hoods like Long Island City and Astoria, but rents are steadily rising from Bayside to Woodside to Forest Hills and beyond.
BY CLARE TRAPASSO / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS
PUBLISHED: WEDNESDAY, JULY 10, 2013, 5:34 PM
The rental market is exploding in Queens.
The median rent for a one-bedroom apartment in the borough is $1,470, according to Zumper, an apartment rental search company, and it looks like it’s steadily rising.
It may not be Manhattan east — yet — but it’s starting to feel a bit like Brooklyn north, especially in the borough’s hippest hoods.
In northwestern Queens neighborhoods like Long Island City and Astoria, which are closest to Manhattan and have good public transportation, the median rents now top $2,000 a month.
Queens remains a bargain in comparison to Manhattan and Brooklyn, where median rents are $3,800 and $2,150 per month respectively, according to Zumper.
“Rents in Queens look expensive to people that aren’t from New York, but cheap to people who live in Manhattan and Brooklyn,” said Jed Kolko, chief economist of the online real estate listing company Trulia.
The most expensive neighborhood in Queens is now Long Island City, a former industrial zone where luxury towers continue to rise on the manicured waterfront. Median rents for a one-bedroom there are $2,500.
“We have eight subway lines, 12 bus lines and a ferry,” said Dana Frankel, who works with businesses at the Long Island City Partnership. “We are minutes from Manhattan. We have great parks, we have amazing views.”
Neighborhoods like Jackson Heights, Woodside and Forest Hills are also on the rise, said real estate broker Eric Benaim.
“You’re going to see more gentrification and higher rents in areas that are closer to the subways and the commutes are shorter to Manhattan,” said Benaim, CEO and president of Modern Spaces.
Zumper, which launched in September, does not have any housing data from 2012, but Queens rents have been steadily climbing, brokers said.
In 1981, a one-bedroom apartment on the Ditmars side of Astoria rented for $275 a month, according to the records of Amorelli Realty. A decade later, it was going for $615 a month.
“That same apartment today is renting for $1,600,” said Paul Halvatzis of Amorelli Realty in Astoria. “It’s scary.”
In the neighborhood’s newer luxury buildings, apartments can easily fetch up to $2,100, he said.
The competition for rentals is getting fiercer, and Queen brokers say it’s a borough-wide struggle.
“There’s never enough apartment rentals in Queens — particularly in Bayside,” said Walt Siefert, a broker at Prime Realty in Bayside.
The hunt for housing becomes even harder in the summer, Siefert said.
It’s easier for tenants to scope out apartments after work when the days are longer, he said, and it’s more convenient to move when the kids are out of school.
But that means that prices are the highest during the warm weather months, he said.
One-bedrooms in the suburban northeast Queens neighborhoods of Bayside, Whitestone, Douglaston, Little Neck and Fresh Meadows typically go for anywhere between $1,100 to $2,000 a month, he said.
“There are not too many of the $1,100s,” he said.
According to Zumper, the median price for a one-bedroom in Bayside is now $1,500 per month.
The least expensive expanses of the borough are Laurelton and Springfield Gardens, where the median price for a one-bedroom is $1,100, according to Zumper.
Kenny Sattaur, a broker with RE/MAX Southshore Realty in Rosedale, said that’s because there are no subways nearby.
But what the area lacks in public transportation, it makes up for in housing stock, he said. Most rentals in southeast Queens are one- and two-family homes built in the 1960s, he said.
And he’s seen rents rise in the area since last fall, when displaced Sandy victims, whose homes were damaged in the storm, started moving in.
“The good deals are over with,” Sattaur said. “More people are moving.”