Platinum Properties’ Third Annual ‘The Fidi Report’ Reveals Competitively Priced Bargains Are Available In Financial District

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Inventory and Concessions Up for 2009; Downtown Market Still Seeing the Most Demand for Studio and One-Bedroom Units, But Vacancy Rate Also Slightly Up from Previous Year

“While a large portion of the new inventory remained vacant, the sharp increase in the number of luxury apartments rented in 2009, which was up approximately 74% from 2008, reveals that the area continued to be viewed as a viable place to live."

The just-released third annual issue of The FiDi Report, a year-to-year analysis of luxury apartment rental trends in the city’s Financial District(FiDi), reveals that in 2009, FiDi emerged as one of the most competitively priced areas to reside in, due in part to many buildings offering multiple concessions and an abundance of new inventory available in the neighborhood. As with previous years, studio and one-bedroom apartments continued to be in high demand; however, with the economic downturn, the area still experienced a high vacancy rate.

Prepared by Wall Street-based brokerage firm Platinum Properties, the year-end report indicates that the tough economic climate led some of the area’s previous renters to relocate to the outer boroughs, which in turn brought average rental rates down across the board with luxury studio apartments in FiDi averaging $2,210.77 – an almost 10% decline from the previous year’s figure of $2453.08 – while studio with home offices in the neighborhood saw an even steeper decline of about 11.1% from $2980.63 in 2008 to $2648.90 in 2009. One-bedrooms and two-bedrooms fared slightly better averaging $2901.18 and $4073.94, showing more modest declines of 8.3% and 7.82%, respectively.

“Although FiDi saw less people renewing their leases than last year, the available inventory increased in 2009 primarily because many new developments, including 200 Water Street, 20 Exchange Place, and the second phase of 67 Wall Street, brought additional apartments on the market,” said Daniel Hedaya, Platinum’s Executive Vice President, the researcher and preparer of The FiDi Report. “While a large portion of the new inventory remained vacant, the sharp increase in the number of luxury apartments rented in 2009, which was up approximately 74% from 2008, reveals that the area continued to be viewed as a viable place to live, especially for those renters who were looking to find value, but were unwilling to sacrifice luxury living and the conveniences that the neighborhood provides.”

Other interesting findings in 2009’s The FiDi Report (http://www.platinumpropertiesnyc.com/files/the-fidi-report-09.pdf) include the following:

  • Representing 34% and 37% of luxury apartment transactions, studio apartments and one-bedrooms remained the most in demand in the area.
  • The vacancy rate in 2009 more than doubled in the Financial District, most likely due to the sharp increase of inventory in the area as well as the high number of renters that decided to not renew their leases. This led many new developments to increase the number of concessions they were offering and/or decrease their rents.
  • In an effort to draw in renters, many buildings in FiDi were, at most, willing to offer two free months of rent, with 7.4% of apartments rented with three months free and a small percentage offering four months.
  • Offering just slightly less space than a one-bedroom, studios with home offices, which were priced on average 10% lower and also experienced the largest price drop since 2008 of all apartment types, offered an economical alternative for renters looking to get the best value on a spacious apartment in a luxury building.

Additional Notes for Renters

  • As prices went down across the board, in 2009 renters were able to pay a relatively low price per square foot due to the availability of rent concessions, as the new apartments on the market included a significant increase in square footage with two-bedrooms offering about 7.38% more space than 2008, just over 4% more space for both studios and one-bedrooms, and over 2% more space for the studio with home office category.
  • For the second consecutive year, studios with home offices offered the best FiDi values with an average of 703.5 square feet of space and renting at $45.19 per square foot. With concessions, renters were also able to rent a two-bedroom priced on average at $45.39 per square foot for 1076.98 square feet of space.
  • One-bedrooms still went for the highest rent per square foot (at $48.49) for 718-square-feet.

Established in 2005, Platinum Properties is a Wall Street-based real estate services firm with a steadily growing sales staff of more than two dozen street savvy agents that average 25 years of age. The company, led by CEO and President Khashy Eyn, represented the buyers on some of the City’s most notable residential transactions, including the $33.7 million sale of the final three penthouse units at Trump World Tower, the $7.82 million sale of the most expensive single residential unit in the Financial District at The Setai, New York and the recent $9.9 million sale of the oceanfront triplex penthouse apartment at The Continuum tower in Miami Beach, which closed in just 48 hours. In addition to sales and rentals, the firm has expanded its services into property management, including its successful Platinum Management program, which has proven instrumental in serving the needs of international investors looking to own and manage property in Manhattan.

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Christina Sardinas
Rubenstein Associates, Inc.
(212) 843-8269
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