Home Buying in East Harlem>Question Details

Cornic, Home Owner in East Harlem, New York,...

I have a large studio in a good location in E Harlem. Would it be better to rent it out or sell now that prices have come up?

Asked by Cornic, East Harlem, New York, NY Mon Feb 4, 2013

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Hi Cornic,

Your large studio in East Harlem was an investment. Your investment is an asset. The decision to sell or rent your asset is a personal financial and lifestyle decision. It should be based on your current life conditions rather than market conditions.

Fortunately in Manhattan real estate is a great long term investment and asset. Over the long term both the value of your apartment and rent will increase. In the short term real estate can be volatile.

Currently the market is good for both selling and renting. Inventory is low. Depending how long ago you bought you should be able to sell at a profit or collect rent that will cover your cost and expenses and bring income.

Do you need the money now? If you sell you can "take the money and run" While a big responsibility comes with being an owner/landlord If you keep the studio it can be an income producing asset that should continue to grow. I'm assuming it is a condo. If it's a coop, in my opinion it is better to sell now because even if they allow subletting they have total control "board approval" over everything and may even force you to sell after they have allowed you to rent it at a future date that may not be the best time for you.

Feel free to contact me to discuss your options. What ever you decide, I would be happy to help you either sell it or rent it.


Mitchell Hall
Lic. Assoc. RE Broker
The Corcoran Group
3 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 4, 2013
Mitchell Hall, Real Estate Pro in New York, NY
Renting or selling decisions can be answered by considering personal financial needs. Taxes, income, assets, cash flow, these issues are all major topics that need to calculated when making real estate decisions. The people on your team should be your accountant, or tax preparer, your real estate sales representative, a contractor, and a major amount of time should be spent on what you are going to dao with the money. I can help you with my experience.

very truly

Jessie Bonaparte
917 806-1353
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Aug 27, 2014
Hi Cornic--

Just curious...what did you decide to do?

A lot depends on your building, as others have said, and also the value and appeal of your immediate neighborhood. East Harlem is a big place (I live here) and some areas have appreciated more than others. Which means that some parts have probably leveled out for now, and some still have room for appreciation over the next few years.

In general, right this minute is a great time to list a Manhattan apartment, because there are lots of first-time buyers out there and they're looking for value and convenience. Not to mention that potential buyers are carefully watching what's happening with interest rates (hint: they're not going down). But there are very few apartments for them to buy, and the well-priced ones get snapped up FAST.

I know the area pretty intimately and can run a report for you to see what the numbers tell us - not just asking prices, but actual sale prices.

Send me a message if you'd like to talk further!

Kate Shindle
Douglas Elliman Real Estate
0 votes Thank Flag Link Thu Aug 22, 2013
I forgot to give you my location yesterday at 4:25 PM.

William J. McBurney, Jr.
1st Prize REBNY Deal of the Year 2012
[Residential Rental category]
Douglas Elliman Real Estate
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Feb 5, 2013
Hello Cornic,

It mostly depends on your personal situation but as pointed below it also depends on wether you own a co-op or a condo and can rent it.

Either way, if you want to speak about it you can contact me. I would be happy to help you.


Nicolas Puygrenier ǀ Licensed Real Estate Broker
Mona Lisa Real Estate Group LLC
419 Lafayette Street, New York, NY 10003
Telephone: 917 499 1917
Email: nicolas.puygrenier@monalisanyc.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 4, 2013
You are right that prices have come up since you asked for opinions about your studio on Trulia in December 2010. Prices are up on sales right now because so many people sold in the last part of 2012 out of fear of higher taxes in 2013, causing a temporary low inventory of property on the market and a few bidding wars. This will probably not hold up through the current year.
Prices are up on rentals because so many people who sold in the past few years did not buy again (to downsize or upsize) but decided to rent instead "for awhile" out of a need to stay mobile in the employment environment or out of fear that prices would drop again before the recession is over for good, causing an unusual demand for rentals that enables landlords to raise rents 5-10% at the start of new leases. This situation is not permanent either.
You can get a relatively good price on either a sale or a rental right now so which is better for you depends upon your immediate, and your longer term, personal plans.
Do you want to sell your studio and use the money to buy another apartment or do you want to rent out your studio and go live somewhere else in a rental or another apartment you purchase with other funds you have? If you need a new loan, be warned that banks continue to be very, very demanding in their requirements and it is not easy to get financing right now -- and no sign of it easing up soon.
Also consider that beginning in three to five years, there may be a radical change in the U.S. economy when Bernanke stops holding interest rates low and the banks begin to spend (loan out) the cash they are sitting on; that change is going to be rapid inflation with prices going sky high and the value of the dollar falling. In that scenario, people with a lot of cash are in a good position to finally earn higher interest rates. But it very hard for most people to even imagine that scenario.
As an agent, I can help you get the highest price for your studio, and the lowest price for your next purchase or your new rental for yourself; or if you decide the other way, I can help you get the highest rent from your new tenant in your studio and the best arrangement for your new living quarters whatever you choose them to be (ownership or rental).
Probably, the best way to go is: What will net you the most cash at the end of the next two years.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 4, 2013
If you need some extra current income and still want to keep your property, then renting is the right option. If you do not intend to use this apartment in the future and would rather have proceeds from the sale of the apartment or need cash to buy a new home, etc., than you should consider selling. It is all about the numbers - you should ask an agent to check what current rents are in your building and in the neighborhood, if your building charges anything on renting out the apartment, and if there are any restrictions on the term of the sublet. The same with selling - get an idea of what the market price of this studio is now and decide what you prefer - a current income and being a landlord or to sell.
Also if you are not in the rush to sell, it is expected that the prices would go further up after the 2d ave subway line is finished.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 4, 2013
The answer to this question is several fold. firstly does your building allow you to sublet? Second are you familiar with the responsibilities of being a landlord and willing to deal with the issues that arise? third do you plan to possibly return to the apartment one day making it a good idea to keep it and rent it? Do you know if the monthly income potential will exceed the amount of monthly cash outlays (or are you willing to make up the shortfall)? Owning an investment property is a great way to create income streams that will last well into the future but comes with a certain amount of commitment and risk-taking. I think the answers to these questions will determine whether it's smarter in your case to sell or rent it out. I'm always happy to discuss the decision in greater detail feel free to call me or email me. Charlie Summers 917-376-1648 or csummers@bellmarc.com.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 4, 2013
Hi Cornic,

What you do with the property depends on your financial status and goals. If you are in need of the funds, you should seriously consider listing your apartment for sale. However, if the rental income is higher than your monthly expenses (positive cash flow or passive income) and you are not in need of the funds, it is a way to grow your wealth through equity buidup as well as income.

Hope the answer was not too confusing. If you wish to discuss in person - feel free to give me a call.

My best
Anoop Punjabi
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Feb 4, 2013
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