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Three tips to reduce rent in New York

New York is known for many things: skyscrapers, Broadway and an excellent dining scene to name a few. Those who are looking to live in New York know that the buildings aren't the only things that can be sky high. The city that never sleeps is also known for having sky high rental costs. However, those looking for a new place to live may be shopping at just the right time. According to a recent piece in The New York Times, now may be an optimal time for renters to negotiate their agreements.

The piece points to a "wave of new luxury rentals" entering the market as the primary motivation for landlords to negotiate on their properties. Regardless of the cause, over 20 percent of agreements in the first quarter of 2016 had some sort of incentive designed to sweeten the deal for renters. These "sweeteners" can translate to big savings. The average cost for a rental in Manhattan in March of 2015 was $3,395. In March of 2016 this price dropped by almost 3 percent to $3,300.

How can I take advantage of this trend?

Those who are either in the market for a new apartment or up to renew a current agreement can benefit from these three tips:

  • Time the end of the lease wisely. The rental market is often the busiest in May, June, July and August. During this time, college is letting out and the weather is a bit more conducive to a move. Regardless of the factors contributing to this trend, landlords can benefit from a lease that is scheduled to end during this period. Having some flexibility in your end date and proposing to adjust the agreement to fall within this period can benefit the landlord and give you some leverage in negotiating a better price.
  • Consider a longer lease agreement. One negotiating tool that can help a renter have a bit more leverage is the length of the lease. In some cases, it can be beneficial to offer to agree to a longer lease period. Offering to agree to a two year commitment instead of one year can ultimately save landlords money, as they will not need to look for a new tenant at the end of the lease period. Use this fact in your negotiations.
  • Offer to pay the rent upfront. The final tip involves when you pay your rent. Offering to pay rent in advance may work in your favor. The piece in The Times shares a story of a woman who took out her checkbook during an open house and offered to pay six months' rent in full if the landlord would agree to drop the price by $100 per month. Ultimately, the landlord took the deal.

These are just a few tips that can help result in a rental agreement that meets your needs. In addition to finding a good deal financially, rental agreements need to meet a variety of other needs. As a result, it is often wise to have an attorney review the document.

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