Gather ’round kids, and let me tell you a story of times not so long ago, when the city still had payphones and Brooklyn real estate was considered cheaper than Manhattan. That was until the great inflating real estate bubble of 2015 meant that buying a place in Brooklyn was just as much of an impossible dream to most New Yorkers as landing someplace on that vaunted citadel of culture, now known as Rat Trash Island.
Yes indeed: The real estate in Brooklyn hit record prices in the final quarter of 2014, according to brokerage Douglas Elliman which, admittedly, does have some stake in the whole thing. But consider that the average price of buying a place jumped from $674,272 in 2013 to $739, 610 in 2013 and that the median price went from $550,000 to $570,220, and you’ll see what they mean. Those are, according to the author of the report, the highest numbers since 2003. Brooklyn, the more affordable borough? How absolutely quaint.
The interesting thing about the report that doesn’t make us want to flee to Oklahoma in the hope of ever having some real estate stability is that, per real estate agents, people are now less attached to certain boroughs. And it makes sense: If an apartment costs roughly the same in Astoria and the Upper East Side and Cobble Hill, well, maybe it doesn’t make all that much sense to head out to Queens. Costs between Manhattan and Brooklyn are flattening out.
“Prices have reached a point where the [East] River has almost evaporated,” Urban Compass president Leonard Steinberg told New York Magazine. “It’s like Moses came to Manhattan and took the water out and [the boroughs] are very connected.”
Huh, is that what it’s like? Or is just that pockets of relative affordability in our city are slowly being ironed out? Stay tuned for, perhaps, the literal evaporation of the East River so we can build more condos.