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Manhattan rents ease for first time in 2 years

…The median rental price for Manhattan slipped to $3,095 a month in the period, compared with $3,195 a year earlier, for a drop of 3.1 %, according to an analysis released by Douglas Elliman Real Estate and prepared by appraisal firm Miller Samuel Inc. Jonathan Miller, CEO of the latter firm, cautioned that the decline is slight enough to qualify as a plateauing….

…“Last quarter Manhattan sales were the highest total number since 2007,” Mr. Miller said….

…Essentially, Mr. Miller believes that the rush to the sales market poached potential renters, causing a drop in demand and thus median rents….

…The shift from rentals to sales may be explained in part by the Federal Reserve’s announcement this spring that it would begin to taper its bond-buying program, according to Mr. Miller, an announcement that drove interest rates up and caused a rush of mortgage-seekers hoping to get in before the rates climbed still further….

…The median sales price there rose to $564,720, the highest since Miller Samuel began tracking the market a decade ago….

…“If you compare it to Brooklyn, Queens is essentially stable,” Mr. Miller said….

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