One Day I’ll Be Forced to Move Out of This Town

Manhattan landlords’ winning streak continues. In September, the median apartment rent rose 10.2% from a year earlier to $3,195 a month, according to a report released Thursday by Prudential Douglas Elliman and appraisal firm Miller Samuel Inc. Median rent adjusting for common landlord concessions, such as one month free of rent, also rose 8%, hitting $2,938.

I was lucky this year when my lease was up for renewal and my landlord didn’t notify me that my rent was going to be raised, because it seems like rents are going up everywhere else. I spent a significant amount of time considering what I’d do if my rent did go up. The first thing I did was ask my friends in the neighborhood if they were staying: “Our rents didn’t go up too much, so we’re renewing.” The next thing I did was consider how much my rent would have to go up to spur me to move: A $250 monthly increase was what I imagined would be the breaking point after calculating things like moving expenses and possible brokers fees. I’d also need to brush up on my negotiating skills.

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