Home ECONOMY Woman shares shocking video of $12K/month NYC apartment: 'This is insane'

Woman shares shocking video of $12K/month NYC apartment: ‘This is insane’

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In order to rent an apartment in New York City these days, you need to sell your soul.

As median rents in Manhattan hit a shocking $ 4,000 for the first time ever, according to Douglas Elliman’s May rental market tallies, TikTok users have just gotten a new front-row seat to the horror show that now comes with trying to find a place to live .

Stephanie Leigh, a Manhattan-based fashion and lifestyle content creator who has 48,400 followers on the platform, went viral this month for showing just how little a ton of money now gets in the Big Apple.

“Our landlord decided to raise our rent an absurd amount because it’s a condo building, and apparently they can do that. So here we are apartment hunting, ”she said in an early June video that has since amassed more than 6 million views. The minute-long clip shows her touring two units in the same East Village building – one of which asks a jaw-dropping $ 12,000 per month.

The TikTok tour begins in an $ 8,000-per-month East Village rental.
The two-bedroom unit had a washer / dryer, but Leigh was not impressed with other features.
The two-bedroom unit had a washer and dryer, but Leigh was not impressed with other features.

But first, she begins walking through a two-bedroom spread priced at $ 8,000 per month. The video shows an open kitchen, a washer / dryer and oversize windows in the living area. But she notes the latter space isn’t big enough to accommodate bar stools, so a small kitchen table would need to take up a portion of its limited space – and the master bedroom, she adds, has small closets and an outdated en-suite bathroom.

“This was listed at $ 8,000, which is absurd. I mean, it’s a nice apartment – but not that nice, ”she said, later adding,“ This market right now is insane. The inventory levels are so low, I’ve never seen it like this. And this is my eighth time moving in New York. ”

In Manhattan, according to the latest figures, May saw a total of 5,776 apartments for rent. Despite that number being in the thousands, it’s a nearly 70% year-over-year drop from the 19,025 units listed in May 2021, when a number of New Yorkers remained out of the city and as coronavirus vaccines continued rolling out.

An apartment in the same building asked a much higher $ 12,000 per month, and Leigh added it had a terrace.
An apartment in the same building asked a much higher $ 12,000 per month, and Leigh added that it had a terrace.
TikTok viewers were stunned by the sky-high asking price.
TikTok viewers were stunned by the sky-high asking price.
A bathroom inside the pricier unit.
A bathroom inside the pricier unit.

In the clip, Leigh headed to the other – and much higher-priced – apartment for rent merely out of curiosity. Asking that mighty $ 12,000 per month, she said it’s not only out of her budget, but also that “it was listed this high because they had a big terrace.” Meanwhile, the master bedroom and bathroom “[are] really nice, but not worth it for $ 12,000 in my opinion, ”she added.

Of course, viewers were stunned.

“New York is literally not worth the price,” wrote one commenter, while another asked, “how does NYC not have laws against this omfg.”

Another commenter chimed in saying, “If you can afford a 12,000 apartment you can afford a MORTGAGE,” while another asked, “Are people in NY ok? Like what are you doing? Get out of there! ”

Beginning in the later months of 2021, the city’s rental market began emerging from record lows – a time when tenants took advantage of large inventories and inked leases to upgrade their units for the same price or less. But in the months that followed, residents began facing large increases for lease renewals – and later even found themselves in bidding wars, throwing down even more money per month to call a unit their own.

Meanwhile, more rent-related TikTok videos have recently shown other nauseating aspects of the city’s market. One video shows a prospective tenant trying to tour a high-priced unit, but they can’t fully swing open the door to enter – because the kitchen stove is in the way. Another shows dozens of renters gathered on a Brooklyn sidewalk to tour a unit in Greenpoint.

In further evidence of the demand and high competition for renting a city home – all at a time when remote workers are moving to New York from out of town due to ongoing flexibility and, for locals, as offices reopen on a hybrid basis – Leigh mentions in a separate video that the $ 8,000-per-month East Village unit quickly rented.

“The scary part is that these apartments are flying off the market,” she says. “Two hours after I posted the video, I got an alert from [listings website] StreetEasy that it’s in contract, and I’m like, ‘Are you kidding me?’ ”She later added that, for another apartment, a renter came in and offered $ 1,500 more than the monthly asking price for a two-year lease. (That apartment appeared in a subsequent clip, which got nearly 206,000 views.)

Last week, Leigh announced her search may have ended.
Last week, Leigh announced her search may have ended.

“This is insane to me,” she says. “People are literally getting into bidding wars over a lease!”

Leigh has posted more videos of her house hunt – one details how the $ 8,000 East Village unit didn’t resemble its listing images, while another shows the unit she lost in that bidding war.

But last week, Leigh posted a video saying her search seemed to have ended – and as of a clip uploaded on Monday, she’s awaiting approval from the building’s condo board.

“I [can’t] believe how crazier the market out there has gotten, ”said one commenter. “I hope you get the new condo!”

The Post has reached out to Leigh for additional comment.

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