Friday, January 18, 2013

Rents in Brooklyn Have Gone Up Faster Than Wages. Much Faster.

You could rent this apartment for $10 a month in 1891. Published in The New York Age
Apartment rents in New York City are increasing all out of historical proportion. According to MNS figures from December, 2012, the mean rent for a one bedroom in DUMBO has jumped to $4,238 a month. In Williamsburg, it'll cost you $3,176.

The mean rent for a one bedroom in Brooklyn is $2,556.

It's bad in Manhattan, too. The mean rent for a non-doorman one bedroom in Manhattan is $3,098. (Tribecca is the most expensive Manhattan neighborhood, at $5,349, while Harlem is the cheapest, at $1,820.)

Historically, we're paying much more of our income for rent than we used to.

In 1891, (see the ad above) you could get a decent two-bedroom overlooking Prospect Park for about $10 a month. Salaries ranged from a bit under $30 to more than $100 a month back then, according to Wage Trends, 1800 - 1900. If the average Joe earned $60 a month, they shelled out one sixth of their salary for their apartment.

That same two-bedroom in Park Slope today would cost you around $3,500 a month, according to MNS. 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average wage in Brooklyn today is roughly $3,267 a month. So to rent that same apartment today would cost the average Joe all of his salary, plus what he makes returning soda cans to the store.

While these figures are rough, there's no doubt the average Brooklynite in 1891 had a much easier time making the rent than we do today.

Go to McBrooklyn's HOME PAGE.

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