“No Fee”- It is often music to the ears of renters trying to save a little bit on their move.  No fee sounds great, because that means there is no broker fee, right?  Unfortunately no fee does not mean there is no broker fee associated with the transaction.  No fee simply means the landlord has decided to pay the broker fee so the client doesn’t have to.

While that seems like a pretty great deal for the client, think about why a landlord would ever choose to pay more to rent an apartment.  Well, they don’t unless they can’t find anyone that wants to rent their apartment.  The vast majority of apartments in NYC rent right away with full broker fees.  With a vacancy rate of less then 1% in Manhattan it is easy to find renters for almost any apartment.  A no fee apartment is an apartment that wouldn’t rent, so the landlord decided to pay the broker fee to make the apartment more appealing.

That’s why the best apartments in New York are never advertised as no fee.  Great apartments (even just good apartments!) always get rented right away so there is no need for landlords to pay the broker fee for the client.  The best advice we can give you is not to limit you search to no fee apartments.  A landlord only makes an apartment no fee if it is hard to rent, and there is usually a reason why!

As always, it is important to be prepared.  If you DO decide to look for a no fee apartment (we would be happy to show them to you!), here are the average rental prices for no fee apartments in Manhattan today:

 Studio:  $2,820.79, Alcove Studio:  $3,207.82, One Bedroom: $3,652.83, Junior-4: $4,634.68, Convertible 2: $3,294.05, Two Bedroom: $5,460.75, Convertible 3: $5,605.86, Three Bedroom:  $9,661.57

The best deals in NYC are almost always fee apartments.  Keep your options open and remember, if you find a great place you can live in for two years, that’s often cheaper then living in a dump for one year then moving since you only have to pay one broker fee.  Be smart, think long term, and you’ll find a great apartment!

Search rentals and sales in NYC