As rents around Manhattan flirt with all-time high prices, many young renters and bargain seekers have had to look to Brooklyn or Queens for affordable apartments.
But there is a swath of the island that has bucked all the trends and actually become more affordable over the last couple of years: The corridor along Second Avenue that has been turned upside down by the construction of the city’s $4.4 billion new subway line.
As the New York Times reported last month, many renters are finding that they can save hundreds of dollars a month if they are willing to deal with the clamor, inconvenience, dust, and occasional underground explosions of the massive project.
The MTA says the first phase of the project, is scheduled to be complete in late 2016. That phase will provide service from 96th to 63rd street as an extension of Q train service, and should ease pressure on the overcrowded Lexington Avenue subway line.
In the mean time, deals — like $1,450 for a 500-square-foot studio, roughly $350 below market value — abound, according to the Times.
The situation seems to best suit young people who aren’t in their apartments all that much, either because of active social lives or hectic work schedules, the Times said. Return to your apartment late enough, and most of the noise has subsided.
Brokers should be eager to help clients avail themselves of the bargains on Second Avenue, but they should also be very clear about the trade-offs involved with living near a major construction site. Deal or no deal, many renters aren’t prepared to sacrifice peace and quiet and wide-open sidewalks.