Apartment rent prices soar in New York City

July 12, 2012 2:17:30 PM PDT
New York City apartments are getting smaller and a lot more expensive.

Stephanie Siravo would love to rent an apartment on the Upper West Side, but right now, she and her husband have no place to live, so they're staying with friends.

For many people in Manhattan, the question is the same: how can you afford to live here?

The average Manhattan rent is now more than 37-hundred dollars a month, the highest it's been in 2 years.

"I kind of feel helpless you know. It's just like, how do pay that amount of rent? And eat?" said Siravo.

Appraisers who studied nearly 8 thousand new rentals say it's simple supply and demand. More people are in the rental market for two reasons: the economy is slightly better in the city and at the same time fewer people are buying apartments.

"The challenge is that tight credit on the purchase side is keeping some people in the rental market that normally would be moving into the purchase market," appraiser Jonathan Miller said.

In neighborhoods in northern Manhattan, where more people seek affordability, the squeeze is the tightest. For example, the median rent for a Harlem studio is now 16 hundred dollars. That's up more than 14-percent from just last year.

Eric Ingram has been a Harlem resident for 35 years, but not for much longer.

"It's ridiculous. That's why me and my son, we're leaving New York," he said.

Ingram says he is headed for Pennsylvania and Virginia, and more affordable living.

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