The Big Apple: Rentals hot, Hamptons too. More!

Employment posts gain in June, but jobless rate continues to stall

The city’s unemployment rate in June went to 8.7 percent from May’s 8.6 percent, the state Department of Labor reported.

The one-month rise was not itself a significant increase, but after falling consistently each month for nearly a year starting last spring, there have now been four consecutive months without a noticeable decline in the city’s jobless rate.

Most of the drop in the rate from its 10 percent peak has come not from significant job gains but as a result of discouraged job seekers leaving the work force.

The city added 51,400 private sector jobs in the 12 months ending in June. The 1.6 percent growth rate, “is pretty good by historical standards,” according to James Brown, principal economist at the labor department.

Rental rigmarole challenges prospective tenants

With a vacancy rate in Manhattan of under 1 percent, apartments sometimes rent in hours, not days or weeks. Good tenants are not that hard to find. On top of that, evicting problem tenants can be expensive and time-consuming.

So, as the New York Times observes, most landlords here require a lot of information.

They want to see a prospective tenant’s tax returns, pay stubs, bank statements, proof of employment, photo identification and, sometimes, reference letters from previous landlords.

Everyone will run a credit check (many Manhattan landlords look for a score above 700) and just about all, from big management firms to small-time landlords, want to know that your gross income is somewhere between 40 and 50 times the monthly rent.

Luxury sales in the East End bloom in Q2, but lower-end sales remain wilted

Wealthy buyers fueled a rise in sales of high-end homes on the East End this spring, according to new market reports, but sales of lower-priced homes in the second quarter remained sluggish.

In Nassau County, median prices increased on the more monied north shore but sat nearly unchanged on the south shore.

In the Hamptons, there were 492 closed sales recorded in the second quarter, according to a market report prepared by appraiser Jonathan Miller, the highest tally of sales since the first quarter of 2007, when the market was in the middle of a boom and rising prices.

The median price last month for the Hamptons was $937,500, the highest price since the second quarter of 2008, and 4.2 percent above the same quarter a year ago. It was 34 percent above a dismal first quarter.

Some pre-war buildings opt for post-war amenities

Some old buildings are embracing the future — often enthusiastically, occasionally kicking and screaming.

Spurred by residents eager to pursue a more active lifestyle and the explosion of luxury condos, dowager prewars are layering on the amenities, reclaiming and transforming unused space to satisfy a more demanding population and in the process, increasing the value of apartments.

When it comes to renting, look for new kids on the block

Media and technology workers are rapidly gaining ground as a percentage of the borough’s renters, while the number of finance workers in the pool shrinks, according to a new report by Nancy Packes, a consultant to some of the city’s biggest residential developers.

Young media and tech workers flock to neighborhoods such as Williamsburg in Brooklyn and Chelsea, where many of their employers also are moving their offices.

These tenants demand high-tech amenities such as ubiquitous wireless Internet access, movie screening rooms and, in one case, a Wii room.

Follow 6 steps to ease the process of obtaining the necessary work permit for even relatively minor renovations

To begin your renovation project you must obtain a work permit issued by the Department of Buildings (DOB), observes

Doing so will raise the cost and time to complete your project.

But the good news is that obtaining a work permit will minimize (but not eliminate) the risk that your renovation will not be built as per the city’s building code, increasing the chance that your contractors will be fully insured. That’s because the DOB often has more stringent insurance requirements than your building.

Following general contractor Yoel Borgenicht’s 6 steps to obtaining a work permit will mitigate your pain.

Rental market tightens grip on the necks of aspiring tenants

Rents continue to climb across the board, according to the MNS report for June.

Prices are up 1.21 percent overall — 1.13 percent for units in buildings without door personnel and 1.29 percent with them.

Inventory levels are beginning to decline, with the summer turnover beginning to settle. Inventories are down 2.39 percent — 1.07 percent for non-doorman units and 3.28 percent for apartments in doorman building.

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Malcolm Carter
Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker
Senior Vice President
Charles Rutenberg Realty
127 E. 56th Street
New York, NY 10022

M: 347-886-0248
F: 347-438-3201
Web site

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