Some study or work at Yale. But a whole bunch of people don’t do it anymore.
That’s who is moving into all these new market-priced apartments in town, according to Carol Horsford.
And she should know. Probably better than anyone else in town.
Horsford leads the 30 people Farnam real estate group, one of the best commercial real estate brokers as well as one of the best rental management companies. His company is often hired to find tenants to move into new apartment complexes popping up on previously vacant lots throughout downtown and neighboring neighborhoods amid the city’s biggest building boom in generations.
So, during an appearance Thursday on WNHH FM’s “Dateline New Haven”, Horsford was asked the question that worries many people these days: who are all those human beings willing to pay thousands of dollars a month to rent new small apartments?
“It’s not just the ‘@ yale.edu’ emails anymore,” Horsford replied. “These are people who love New Haven.”
For example, his company started renting The Elm, a five-story apartment building that will soon open on a vacant lot next to 100 Howe St. between Edgewood and Elm. Monthly rents for 425 square foot studios start at $ 1,595; for one-bedroom apartments from 510 to 675 square feet at $ 1,750; for 900-1040 square feet two bedrooms at $ 2,895; and four-bedroom, 1,610-square-foot suits at $ 5,500.
The top five tenants signing leases include an elderly couple looking for a fun place to retire, a few couples in their 30s and 40s coming to look for a job, and a veteran looking for a place to stay. ‘install after completing military service, Horsford said.
Of 18 High At Whitney Modern and Audubon, new luxury resorts are already fully rented, with waiting lists in some cases, Horsford reported. While other new projects at market rate are taking shape.
The first wave of new complexes is often filled with Yale graduate students or people affiliated with vocational schools or Yale New Haven Hospital.
More and more people are coming to town and looking for a simple life, in bedrooms of 570-700 square feet, for example, with washer-dryers, microwaves, and air conditioning on-site, but don’t seek to store a lot of stuff, Horsford said.
She said it fits into a larger model of small towns attracting young singles and empty nests seeking to live near restaurants, galleries and theaters and generally more activities than one can. find in the suburbs. Or, in the case of a recent older client who sold a primary residence in Woodbridge, an urban place to hang out and sleep in addition to a house on the shore, especially during the winter months.
Where does that leave the New Haveners who are already here?
Some affordable housing advocates argue that too many new apartments are at market rates, resulting in higher rents for everyone and not enough affordable apartments.
Others argue that the vast majority of new apartments, built on vacant land, do not replace any existing housing – and in fact help reduce rents for existing surrounding apartments by alleviating the shortage of supply, while also bringing in new revenue. city tax requirements with customers for local stores.
Horsford falls into the latter camp. She gave the example of the luxurious Corsair apartments built on State Street. A landlord who owns an older house on Mechanic Street nearby did not want to invest in renovations to compete with Corsair rents. So he had to lower the rent. Horsford said she has placed families on Section 8 rent assistance in many apartments like this, allowing families to live in neighborhoods with good schools.
In the interview, Horsford also discussed the explosion in house selling prices in Greater New Haven during the Covid-19 pandemic.
This is somewhat of a peak for middle class housing, she said. She gave the example of a single-family home listed with her agency in Hamden for $ 279,000. On May 26, during the peak, it immediately drew seven bids, with bidders offering to pay more than $ 300,000. An offer has been accepted. But six weeks later, the buyer backed down. When it returned to the market, fewer people showed up at the open house. Some offers have arrived, but not as many, and not above the asking price.
Click on the video to watch the full discussion with Horsford on WNHH FM’s ‘Dateline New Haven’, including how she’s built her business over the past decade and her own personal fight with Covid.
I was struck by the comment that the wealthy retiree had a house on the shore for the summer and a city apartment for the winter. Some people cannot afford to buy a home, and the well-heeled may have multiple homes and in doing so, force other tenants to move out of town. (As my 12-year-old nephew said “who NEEDS more than one house?”) Some older landlords may reduce the rent temporarily, but a real estate investor or mega-landlord will come in then, come up with a price of sale he won’t be able to refuse, give them a makeover, then rent these apartments to the rich who have fled NYC and other higher priced cities, or to the rich who have multiple homes. And you say they want to move to town for restaurants and entertainment venues, but brick and mortar retail is a dying industry. In addition, if all workers in service industries cannot afford to live in cities, or even in the nearby suburbs, it will be much more difficult to find workers as they will either have much longer and more expensive journeys to get. work, or they will leave the state.
strongly agree with Carol – adding more available apartments (increasing supply) will lower the overall price. Simple Econ 101. We don’t need the government to get involved – adding restrictions and adding costs to the process.