NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

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Breezy84
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Joined: Sat Feb 08, 2020 6:55 pm

NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Breezy84 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 12:18 pm

Hi everyone,

At a bit of a fork in the road.
-Single, 35 years old
-Stable career, near 6-figure salary, ongoing salary increases
-Currently reside in a rent stabilized one bedroom apartment in manhattan, rent is under $1500, been here about 7 years

I’m tempted to buy in one of the up- and-coming areas of the Bronx, with prices for one bedrooms from around 250k and up. I feel if I don’t buy immediately I’ll miss out on the opportunity to purchase something nice at a reasonable price point in NYC.

The issue is, I’m certain any monthly mortgage plus maintenance payment I’d take on would exceed my current rent by at least $500 a month.

Just looking for some opinions. Thanks.

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leeks
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by leeks » Sun Feb 09, 2020 3:01 pm

How much longer would your commute be?
Do you enjoy your current neighborhood?

Big Dog
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Big Dog » Sun Feb 09, 2020 3:05 pm

Staying where you are is a no-brainer, unless your commute would get a lot shorter. 1 BR's for $250k are a long way from up-and-coming. In other words, you'd have to be there a long time to make it pay off. More importantly, what is the comparison in neighborhoods?

Mr. Rumples
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Mr. Rumples » Sun Feb 09, 2020 3:28 pm

Your rent can only go up by 1.5% if you have a one year lease. That's cheap. Compare that to real estate tax increases, HOA/maintenance fees and so forth. How does that math come out? $250,000 is cheap for NYC, would you like living in the Bronx?

https://ny.curbed.com/2019/6/25/1872844 ... -2019-vote

I suppose I am in a minority, but even though I have owned a home most of my life, there is something to be said for renting if you have a good landlord. Nothing wrong with renting and saving the $500 a month.

CrossOverGuy
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by CrossOverGuy » Sun Feb 09, 2020 3:45 pm

I'm in NYC as well. Generally speaking, most people in rent-stabilized apartments here do not give them up easily, especially if they like where they are living. Is it possible you could rent out the apartment you are thinking of buying? If it's a condo, probably easier than a co-op which may require all sorts of requirements including sometimes limiting subletting to 1 or 2 years and having to apply to the board of directors. If you were able to get in writing that you could rent out the space without limits, and the amount coming in would at least cover your maintenance and mortgage payments, you might consider it. Of course, you'd have to vet them to make sure they are going to be reliable in paying rent regularly. If you were thinking of living there yourself, there are some commutes from Manhattan to the Bronx, like around Yankee Stadium, which are actually pretty easy commuting, as the D and A train has one big express stop from 59th Street to 125th Street (other than when repairs to the train system forces trains to go local) which takes only about 7 minutes, plus then a few more stops and you are home at 161st Street. Plus living in the Bronx is easier to have a car than in Manhattan, where most parking lots charge almost as much as keeping another apartment. It really also mainly depends upon if you like where you are living now though. It also depends on what area of the Bronx you were considering.

NESF
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by NESF » Sun Feb 09, 2020 4:05 pm

I'm not from a big city, but my gut says to stay where you're at. Not enough context on career or personal aspirations. Never know what your boss or SO might have planned a year from now.

retire2022
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Location: NYC

Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by retire2022 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 5:17 pm

Breezy84 wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 12:18 pm
Hi everyone,

At a bit of a fork in the road.
-Single, 35 years old
-Stable career, near 6-figure salary, ongoing salary increases
-Currently reside in a rent stabilized one bedroom apartment in manhattan, rent is under $1500, been here about 7 years

I’m tempted to buy in one of the up- and-coming areas of the Bronx, with prices for one bedrooms from around 250k and up. I feel if I don’t buy immediately I’ll miss out on the opportunity to purchase something nice at a reasonable price point in NYC.

The issue is, I’m certain any monthly mortgage plus maintenance payment I’d take on would exceed my current rent by at least $500 a month.

Just looking for some opinions. Thanks.
Breezy84 what area in the Bronx? what zip code?

see CDBG map the white area are Area Median Income is at 80% AMI

https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/planning/do ... bx2020.pdf

Riverdale is the only area in the Bronx which held up during Bronx is burning, look at the left corner of the map.

Trader Joe
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Trader Joe » Sun Feb 09, 2020 5:21 pm

Breezy84 wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 12:18 pm
Hi everyone,

At a bit of a fork in the road.
-Single, 35 years old
-Stable career, near 6-figure salary, ongoing salary increases
-Currently reside in a rent stabilized one bedroom apartment in manhattan, rent is under $1500, been here about 7 years

I’m tempted to buy in one of the up- and-coming areas of the Bronx, with prices for one bedrooms from around 250k and up. I feel if I don’t buy immediately I’ll miss out on the opportunity to purchase something nice at a reasonable price point in NYC.

The issue is, I’m certain any monthly mortgage plus maintenance payment I’d take on would exceed my current rent by at least $500 a month.

Just looking for some opinions. Thanks.
Welcome to the forum. I would stay where you are and save.

Topic Author
Breezy84
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Joined: Sat Feb 08, 2020 6:55 pm

Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Breezy84 » Sun Feb 09, 2020 11:55 pm

leeks wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 3:01 pm
How much longer would your commute be?
Do you enjoy your current neighborhood?
My commute would actually be slightly longer if i moved to the Bronx :? . Also, i like my current neighborhood better (trains and buses nearby, supermarkets, a gym, coffee shops, some restaurants inching up where i am). Neighborhood wise, no comparison, where i am is prime-ish, becoming prime for upper manhattan at this point.

This seems as though it should be a no brainer but for whatever reason i'm still torn :confused

Topic Author
Breezy84
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Breezy84 » Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:06 am

Big Dog wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 3:05 pm
Staying where you are is a no-brainer, unless your commute would get a lot shorter. 1 BR's for $250k are a long way from up-and-coming. In other words, you'd have to be there a long time to make it pay off. More importantly, what is the comparison in neighborhoods?
Commute would be a bit longer. Neighborhood-wise, no comparison IMO, where i am fits my needs. The area of the Bronx i'm thinking about (concourse area) is also budding, but not so much so that I'm be priced out of the market (yet). In the area where i rent currently, i could not afford to buy.

Topic Author
Breezy84
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Breezy84 » Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:09 am

Mr. Rumples wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 3:28 pm
Your rent can only go up by 1.5% if you have a one year lease. That's cheap. Compare that to real estate tax increases, HOA/maintenance fees and so forth. How does that math come out? $250,000 is cheap for NYC, would you like living in the Bronx?

https://ny.curbed.com/2019/6/25/1872844 ... -2019-vote

I suppose I am in a minority, but even though I have owned a home most of my life, there is something to be said for renting if you have a good landlord. Nothing wrong with renting and saving the $500 a month.
I much prefer Manhattan, just cannot afford to buy something nice here, outside of a mitchell-lama (limited equity) co-op.

Topic Author
Breezy84
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Breezy84 » Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:12 am

retire2022 wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 5:17 pm
Breezy84 wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 12:18 pm
Hi everyone,

At a bit of a fork in the road.
-Single, 35 years old
-Stable career, near 6-figure salary, ongoing salary increases
-Currently reside in a rent stabilized one bedroom apartment in manhattan, rent is under $1500, been here about 7 years

I’m tempted to buy in one of the up- and-coming areas of the Bronx, with prices for one bedrooms from around 250k and up. I feel if I don’t buy immediately I’ll miss out on the opportunity to purchase something nice at a reasonable price point in NYC.

The issue is, I’m certain any monthly mortgage plus maintenance payment I’d take on would exceed my current rent by at least $500 a month.

Just looking for some opinions. Thanks.
Breezy84 what area in the Bronx? what zip code?

see CDBG map the white area are Area Median Income is at 80% AMI

https://www1.nyc.gov/assets/planning/do ... bx2020.pdf

Riverdale is the only area in the Bronx which held up during Bronx is burning, look at the left corner of the map.
Grand concourse area. Riverdale is nice and affordable, but too out of the way, my work commute would be over an hour.

Topic Author
Breezy84
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Breezy84 » Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:14 am

Trader Joe wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 5:21 pm
Breezy84 wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 12:18 pm
Hi everyone,

At a bit of a fork in the road.
-Single, 35 years old
-Stable career, near 6-figure salary, ongoing salary increases
-Currently reside in a rent stabilized one bedroom apartment in manhattan, rent is under $1500, been here about 7 years

I’m tempted to buy in one of the up- and-coming areas of the Bronx, with prices for one bedrooms from around 250k and up. I feel if I don’t buy immediately I’ll miss out on the opportunity to purchase something nice at a reasonable price point in NYC.

The issue is, I’m certain any monthly mortgage plus maintenance payment I’d take on would exceed my current rent by at least $500 a month.

Just looking for some opinions. Thanks.
Welcome to the forum. I would stay where you are and save.
Thank you!

Topic Author
Breezy84
Posts: 8
Joined: Sat Feb 08, 2020 6:55 pm

Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Breezy84 » Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:27 am

NESF wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 4:05 pm
I'm not from a big city, but my gut says to stay where you're at. Not enough context on career or personal aspirations. Never know what your boss or SO might have planned a year from now.
Career: I work in education. Satisfied and (relatively) secure in my position. No SO, currently single, no kids. For the most part...I honestly just want to travel as much as i can and engage in my hobbies. The latter is another reason i'm pulled toward just continuing to rent.

Topic Author
Breezy84
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Breezy84 » Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:44 am

CrossOverGuy wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 3:45 pm
I'm in NYC as well. Generally speaking, most people in rent-stabilized apartments here do not give them up easily, especially if they like where they are living. Is it possible you could rent out the apartment you are thinking of buying? If it's a condo, probably easier than a co-op which may require all sorts of requirements including sometimes limiting subletting to 1 or 2 years and having to apply to the board of directors. If you were able to get in writing that you could rent out the space without limits, and the amount coming in would at least cover your maintenance and mortgage payments, you might consider it. Of course, you'd have to vet them to make sure they are going to be reliable in paying rent regularly. If you were thinking of living there yourself, there are some commutes from Manhattan to the Bronx, like around Yankee Stadium, which are actually pretty easy commuting, as the D and A train has one big express stop from 59th Street to 125th Street (other than when repairs to the train system forces trains to go local) which takes only about 7 minutes, plus then a few more stops and you are home at 161st Street. Plus living in the Bronx is easier to have a car than in Manhattan, where most parking lots charge almost as much as keeping another apartment. It really also mainly depends upon if you like where you are living now though. It also depends on what area of the Bronx you were considering.
Considering grand concourse area. I like my neighborhood better though. I think i'm just impacted by the constant rhetoric skewed toward homeownership. NYC is a different animal re: the rent versus buy discussion though. I get the merits of homeownership outside of NYC but i'm not convinced its a necessity here. Look at me talking myself out of buying. ha. Wish it were that simple...i'm still on the fence.

ivk5
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by ivk5 » Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:48 am

Single in NYC and no kids = keep renting and stay flexible. Upper Manhattan can be great (we were in Inwood until couple years ago, loved it).

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celia
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by celia » Mon Feb 10, 2020 3:06 am

If there is a chance you might marry within 5 years, it is better to wait and buy with your spouse. He/she will want to have some "say" in where you both live.
(Better yet, marry someone who already owns a house/condo. :sharebeer )

UpperNwGuy
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by UpperNwGuy » Mon Feb 10, 2020 5:22 am

Keep renting. The rent-stabilized apartment is itself an asset, freeing you up to increase your contributions to your investment portfolio.

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beyou
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by beyou » Mon Feb 10, 2020 7:28 am

Long ago i bought a coop in Queens just because I could not find a decent rental in the area. Bought during good economic times, later economy plunged, and wanted to move. Hard time selling, so I rented it out. Tenant was a pian in my ..... Eventually sold at large% LOSS.

Real estate, especially in the boroughs, is no guarantee and it is an illiquid investment. Stay put.

rjbraun
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by rjbraun » Mon Feb 10, 2020 1:09 pm

I generally agree with the replies that say OP should continue to rent.

I could see a couple of potentially legitimate reasons for why OP should consider buying.

1) If OP knows or believes that NYC rent stabilization guidelines may change so that they will no longer be able to rent, that would be a reason to consider buying. For example, if NYC has income restrictions that OP may exceed in the future that would disallow them to continue to rent, that could be a factor. Or if they felt / feared that for whatever reason rent stabilization guidelines would change and become less friendly, etc.

2) If OP's current apartment and building aren't as nice as they would like, and they could get something better by moving. Example being that they would like to fix up their place (remodel and update kitchen appliances, paint, refinish floors, etc.) and either the landlord won't allow that or they don't want to put the money into something they do not own.

CrossOverGuy
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by CrossOverGuy » Mon Feb 10, 2020 2:10 pm

Regarding your possible buying a new apartment, you might continue renting and instead use that $500/month to invest in REIT (real estate investment trust) index funds, which gives you a real estate asset without all the bother of dealing with tenants, plumbers, late night service calls, etc. You might invest up to the amount you were going to use as a downpayment, or perhaps to about 10% of your stock allocations, which seems to be, here anyway, considered a reasonable allocation to that type of investment. The index (made of of many real estate holdings) might give you a better return than you might get on any one specific property, as historical records might show, though, of course, certain people who buy right (right area, right time, right price) and are lucky, can do really well. If you were going to live there, why sacrifice convenience, too? Plus, it's not always easy to convince friends in Manhattan to come out to visit you in the boroughs, btw if it's not just a few subway stops in.

Parts of the Bronx are pretty close to Manhattan, and you'll notice that in Queens they are building up Long Island City as well with new skyscrapers because it's right across the river from Manhattan and an easy commute. The Grand Concourse is due at some point to be rediscovered and built up again, as it was modeled on the Champs Elysees in Paris. Plus they have restored a few years ago the Loew's Paradise, one of the most beautiful movie palaces ever, though don't know if it's currently being used. Plus the Bronx has some lovely parks. But the Bronx really changed years ago, and I also mean that from a perspective of safety in a number of areas. So unless you're going to be in a position to rent out your new apartment, I wouldn't give up a rent-stabilized Manhattan apartment where you have access to all you need and that you actually like. If you get a job elsewhere in the country or meet a SO, you'll appreciate the freedom you have, rather than be tied down to a mortgage and all the other trappings of a co-op or condo.

Mehitabelle
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Mehitabelle » Tue Feb 11, 2020 6:26 pm

Property taxes in NYC are in the process of being revised, with an unknown outcome. The tax on our 900 square foot condo in Manhattan is closing in on $13,000/ year. The crime rate has increased, so I'm not sure the "up and coming" neighborhoods will continue their upward trend. I would be inclined to rent.

Unladen_Swallow
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Unladen_Swallow » Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:54 pm

Stay in the rent stabilized. No contest.

Stay there as long as you can, and increase your savings. Down the road you might need to relocate or even early retire. Then you can consider if owning is a good idea wherever that might be.

I would absolutely not buy a 1 bedroom as you indicate in the Bronx giving up rent stabilized.
"I think it's much more interesting to live not knowing than to have answers which might be wrong." - Richard Feynman

Oakwood42
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Oakwood42 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:03 pm

ivk5 wrote:
Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:48 am
Single in NYC and no kids = keep renting and stay flexible. Upper Manhattan can be great (we were in Inwood until couple years ago, loved it).
+1

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noraz123
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by noraz123 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:13 pm

Breezy84 wrote:
Sun Feb 09, 2020 12:18 pm

I’m tempted to buy in one of the up- and-coming areas of the Bronx, with prices for one bedrooms from around 250k and up. I feel if I don’t buy immediately I’ll miss out on the opportunity to purchase something nice at a reasonable price point in NYC.
You may not like the Bronx. A recession could hit and you could be underwater on a mortgage. You could get married and want/need to move somewhere else. You could get old(er) and want to move the suburbs.

If you think real estate in the Bronx is such a winning investment, take the $6k/year in savings and invest in a syndicated real estate deal there.

Another way to think of this - if real estate prices continue to go up, the more valuale your rent-stabilized apartment will become.

Just stay.

60B4E24B
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by 60B4E24B » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:19 pm

Mehitabelle wrote:
Tue Feb 11, 2020 6:26 pm
Property taxes in NYC are in the process of being revised, with an unknown outcome. The tax on our 900 square foot condo in Manhattan is closing in on $13,000/ year. The crime rate has increased, so I'm not sure the "up and coming" neighborhoods will continue their upward trend. I would be inclined to rent.
The crime rate is still decreasing:
“The good news is overall crime is down, but the bad news is there are 22 more homicides than last year, and any increase is unacceptable so there will be focus on this,” said de Blasio.
https://www.amny.com/news/murders-spike ... mble-nypd/

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Rob5TCP
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by Rob5TCP » Tue Feb 11, 2020 8:59 pm

I've both owned (5 Tudor City place) and rented in the city (Sty Town) and I am staying as a renter.
I enjoy my neighborhood (by the East Village) and when I looked at buying, the options always tended
to favor renting. I have several investment properties and all did well but one (partially with money I've
saved from renting).

At this point, the buy/rent scenario (for me) is not even close. My rent for a fairly large 1 bedroom is about
$1700 including all utilities. I would have a negative $1000-$1500 per month to purchase a comparable unit.

If my building went co-op I would buy, but I am in no hurry to look at current 1 bedrooms (only place more expensive
to buy than San Francisco).

Try to do an analysis of where you would be better 5 or 10 years from now.
How would you like spending months and years in a Uptown vs. Bronx apartment.
I lived in Queens for 6 months and couldn't wait to move into the city.
Everyone has different priorities.

BoggledUp
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by BoggledUp » Wed Feb 12, 2020 9:30 am

If you move can we have your apartment?

:sharebeer

knowledge
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Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

Post by knowledge » Wed Feb 12, 2020 9:44 am

Everytime there's speculation that the Bronx (or Staten Island!) is "next," is a sign that the end is nigh. Semi-joking, but I do believe it.

Assuming your rent-stabilized apt isn't falling apart or a health hazard, I would stay. People kill for these things.

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