LandlordsNY Briefing for May 15th

The 15-month L train shutdown will affect 225,000 commuters who ride the L each day, which is leading many to call the disrupted service L-Mageddon. In some cases, these commuters will be able to find alternative routes that are relatively painless. Others, however, may see significantly longer commutes, particularly those in Brownsville, Canarsie, and the northern parts of East Williamsburg.

For those who rent in the affected areas, there is one upside: rent reductions. Rents in Williamsburg, Greenpoint, and Bushwick decreased by 0.6% from last year. Meanwhile, the average citywide rent for an apartment has increased 10.04% from April of last year. This is not proof that the looming shutdown is driving down rental prices, but it is hard data to support anecdotal information suggesting that renters are expecting either concessions or lower rent because of the inconvenience. Then again, some believe that the housing boom in Williamsburg has led to a glut in apartments, and that this has had a greater impact on the declining rents than the shutdown.

However, if the disruption of the L train is the reason why Williamsburg rents are cooling off, expect an even more severe decline in coming months. Similarly, expect other parts of Brooklyn, particularly neighborhoods serviced by the G line, to see a jump in rents.

Curbed New York has more.

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National median home prices have risen above their pre-recession peak of $241,500. It’s a sign not only that demand for single-family homes is surging, but that inventories are lacking. It also means that fewer families are able to afford to move out of the rental market.

The Washington Post has more.

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In a Landlords New York Minute – A (Very) Brief Look Around the World

North Korean officials are displaying a “tremendous sense of optimism” about their leader’s newfound sense of diplomacy, their country’s newfound ability to feed itself, and the razing of their nuclear site; the political coalition that supports Moktada al-Sadr, who once oversaw a militia that battled American forces but has since come to regard the United States as a necessary presence in Iraq, appears to have secured enough seats in Iraqi parliament to form a government; Gaza officials claim at least 59 were killed and 2,400 were injured when Israeli forces opened fire after Palestinian protesters attempted to a breach a security wall separating Israel and Gaza; and China and Russia are almost certainly falsifying the economic data they provide to the international community. Mixed economic data that includes increases in capital expenditures by large companies and moderate gains in consumer spending, as well as the ongoing trade negotiations between China and the United States, led U.S. stock markets to slide and U.S. bond yields to rise yesterday; oil prices are rising; and REITs may soon gain more investors. First Lady Melania Trump underwent surgery for what has been described as a “benign kidney condition” yesterday and is expected to be fully recovered by the end of the week, an Australian man who saved 2.4 million babies because the blood he regularly donated contained a rare antibody needed to treat infants with Rh incompatibility retired from the blood game, and children are being prescribed more ADHD medications and fewer antibiotics. Voters will head to the polls for primaries in Idaho, Nebraska, Oregon, and Pennsylvania; there are 169 active volcanoes around the U.S.; Hollywood is considering a PG-15 rating for reasons that are beneath mockery; Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos believes artificial intelligence will create jobs rather than eliminate them; blockchain will somehow save us all; and New York City attracts the most recent graduates of any city in the U.S. BMW will abandon ReachNow, its Brooklyn-based car-sharing program; the Coney Island boardwalk has been designed as a landmark; and a new startup named Sounds of New York City has developed an acoustic sensor device that can identify the sources of noise pollution.

Swallowing disorders (dysphagia) are real, Volkswagen produces more sausages than cars, SUVs are increasingly the culprits behind fatal pedestrian crashes, and D.I.Y. gene editing is both gaining popularity and the most common precursor to super villainy. A Chinese co-pilot was partially sucked out of a cockpit when the window blew out on a Sichuan Airlines plane heading from Chongqing to the Tibetan capital of Lhasa, insects can evidently be emotional support animals, 8 million dimes flooded a Nevada highway, scientists are examining lead levels in ice core samples from Greenland to learn about the economic history of the Roman Empire, and a former actress was paying $28.43 in rent for a Greenwich Village apartment until she passed a few months ago. Novelist Tom Wolfe has died at the age of 87.

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