After the 2008 market crash the prices of one-bedrooms and studios recovered fairly quickly, but the two-bedroom has held out until now. According to The Real Deal, overall inventory of apartments has grown by 13.4 percent since March, but the inventory of two-beds has grown much slower. True to the laws of economics, the ever-present high demand of Manhattan real estate coupled with a low supply means that prices of Manhattan two-bedrooms has hit a new peak -- and the competition to secure one is getting fierce. The New York Times interviewed Tracie Hamersley, a senior vice president of Citi Habitats, whose two-bedroom listing in Murray Hill closed at the asking price after only a single week on the market. It was the buyer’s third attempt at securing a two-bedroom.
Why are two bedrooms so popular? Besides the obvious -- to reiterate: they are two-bedroom apartments in Manhattan -- there's the fact that, even with prices bouncing back, Manhattan two-bedrooms are still priced well below their peak prices. The most popular Manhattan two-bedroom apartments are priced below one million, low enough to avoid the mansion tax that would hike up the price by 10%, and close enough to one-bedroom prices to be a competitive option for those who might not have been able to afford an extra bedroom in the past.
There are a few sacrifices that come with the low price tag. The biggest sacrifice is the view. Many lower-priced two-bedrooms look out to the brick walls of other buildings or small courtyards rather than the Manhattan skyline, and the rooms can be a little dark. Many of them are fixer-uppers, or are located further uptown than some people prefer, in the far Upper West Side, the far Upper East Side, or Harlem. But many people say that the disadvantages don’t distract from the advantages: more space overall, an affordable price that dodges the mansion tax, and a place in which to grow into the next stage in life. For those looking to purchase or rent in NYC’s competitive housing market, the two-bedroom is currently poised to be one of the summer season’s more popular choices.