Manhattan is arguably one of the best cities in the world, rich with amazing art and culture, beautifully landscaped parks and breathtaking architecture. Perhaps this is why 1.6 million people choose to live in a radius of just 34-square miles. Living the big-city life comes with a pretty price tag, however, as real estate prices are shattering records in 2016. According to CNBC.com, the average apartment price hit $1.95 million with condo markets at $2.66 million and co-op markets at $1.28 million. Median rent is between $3,300 and $3,900 per month.
Cost, while possibly most important, is unfortunately just one of the many factors to consider when searching for an apartment in Manhattan. Neighborhood preference, proximity to public transportation, noise level, floor number, and availability of laundry facilities are just a few of the others. Raphael Toledano has access to a wide array of properties and can assist in filtering through these preferences when faced with the difficult task of apartment hunting in Manhattan.
What Are My Options?
In searching for a Manhattan apartment, learning apartment terminology is possibly one of the most important things to do to save time and effort. After all, there are dozens of different apartment types on the tiny island and having some background will help to understand the complex maze of options.
Size: Studios, One-Bedrooms, or Two-Bedrooms
Starting on a basic level, studio, one-bedroom, and two-bedroom apartments are the most common types found in Manhattan real estate.
- Studio: A studio is just one room and usually has a small, separate bath while the kitchen, living area, and bedroom are all one room. Often, studios will come equipped with only a hot plate and mini-fridge, which is usually lower in price than studios outfitted with a full kitchen.
- Alcove studio: Another type of studio is an alcove studio, which is usually L-shaped, providing an extra space that, with a curtain or screen, could potentially be a separate “room.”
- One-bedroom: A one-bedroom apartment has a door that separates the living area from the bedroom (for a total of two rooms) and will also provide a kitchen and bathroom.
- Two-bedroom: Add a door to a second bedroom, and that is the layout of the two-bedroom apartment in Manhattan.
Location and Category
Lofts: A loft apartment is an open, airy space found in older industrial buildings and there are a plethora of them in Manhattan neighborhoods like Soho and Tribeca. Back in the 1960s, lofts were originally one large room and residents would add partitions and walls to allow for more private space. Lofts are still coveted by Manhattan residents today so many newer condos are being constructed with the loft floor plan.
Railroad apartments: Railroad apartments, found mostly in old tenement-style buildings, are set up with rooms placed side-by-side, in a straight line, like railroad tracks. These apartments are not ideal with roommates as walking to the living room or kitchen may require walking through a roommate’s bedroom each time. Privacy can be a major issue, so living solo is ideal in a railroad apartment.
Walk-ups: A walk-up apartment can be great for exercise but can also be undesirable when considering moving furniture and getting groceries. These no-elevator buildings are usually more affordable than their polar opposites with an elevator, so that can be a perk.
Co-ops: With a Co-op, residents must be approved by the board to buy a unit within the building, since technically these residents are buying shares of the corporation, rather than the actual apartment unit. It is a rigorous process when getting approved by a co-op board, but once an owner of the property, it is permissible to sublease the living space to whomever you please.
Condos: A condominium is the opposite of a co-op. With a condo, units are privately owned and shared spaces include lobbies, hallways, etc. When applying to rent a condo, potential residents will apply to the owner of the unit and will also have to be approved by the condo board.
Classic six: Classic six apartments are found in the Upper East Side and Upper West Side, in prewar buildings, which are buildings constructed prior to World War II. The apartments usually have a doorman and consist of a dining room, living room, kitchen, two full bedrooms, and a “maid’s quarters” which is usually converted to a family room or nursery in the present day.
Townhouse: The closest thing to living in a house in Manhattan is living in a townhouse. Many of these three and four-story buildings can be found in the East Village and Raphael Toledano can assist buyers in searching for one of them. Manhattan townhouses, often referred to as “Brownstones” when made with brown sandstone, are also referred to as row houses. Some of the quaintest streets in Manhattan are lined with trees and beautiful rows of Brownstones, many of which come complete with an eat-in kitchen and even a private backyard, which is a rare commodity when living in other types of housing in Manhattan. In other instances, Manhattan townhouses are broken into several units with multiple residents occupying one building.
To learn more about Manhattan real estate and Manhattan apartments, specifically in the East Village, contact Raphael Toledano.