MICHAEL D. REHM – (646) 895-2945

Real Estate in Brooklyn

Brooklyn is the third-largest business district in New York City. The eclectic combination of housing, parks, transportation, and business caters to a diverse population of urban-loving individuals. There are plenty of bars, restaurants, parks, and coffee shops within a stone’s throw from any address in the city.


If you’re looking for an urban oasis that provides a cultural experience with all the amenities needed to live comfortably and raise a family, Brooklyn is exactly that sort of place. The public schools in Brooklyn are rated well above average, and the 2.5 million people who live there will tell you that it’s a great place for young professionals and young families alike.


Median Sale Price for Brooklyn Real Estate

The typical cost of real estate in downtown Brooklyn has held steady in the mid $800Ks over the last five years. While pricing holds steady, the number of properties available for sale has sharply declined through 2021. This creates a highly competitive market for buyers looking in the area.


The most affluent neighborhoods in Brooklyn like Vinegar Hill and Manhattan Beach bring prices as high as $1.5M or higher. Downtown Brooklyn falls squarely in the mid-range around the mid $800Ks, and Coney Island and Homecrest real estate sells for prices between $325K and $375K.


While similar trends are being echoed around the country, Brooklyn is catching up to Manhattan as a desirable area that is attracting more homebuyers than those who are looking to leave. Unfortunately, with fewer properties available to sell, a higher number of residents are renting than buying in this area.


Types of Housing Available in Brooklyn

Brooklyn real estate caters largely to condos and coops, with only a small percentage of the sales over the last decade for single-family dwellings. The median sale price for a Brooklyn condo is $985K, averaging $1K per square foot.


The high market prices in the area of driven demand for co-op housing which is nearly as popular as condos. In a co-op, owners can build equity in their home without taking on the traditional maintenance needs of owning a home.


While it might feel like the real estate market is endlessly full of condos, Brooklyn architecture has some history that homebuyers should keep an eye out for. There are elaborate, historical Victorian homes from the late 1800s sprinkled throughout the city. More modern homes tend to be built in the popular east coast colonial style. And, of course, the earliest and most extravagant forms of multi-family dwellings in the cities are the rowhouses or brownstones. Brownstones have remained popular for offering an abundance of space in the heart of the city.


What it’s Like Living in Brooklyn

Once a commuter’s dream, Brooklyn is steadily gaining momentum as a place where locals want to settle around the clock. If you’re in downtown Brooklyn between eight and five, you’re likely to see the bustle of the business world echoing New York City and Manhattan. But what is the area really like after the subways depart, carrying commuters back to their homes? It’s not as quiet and sleepy as it once was.

Schools in Brooklyn

For families settling in Brooklyn full-time, there is always the question of access to quality schools. The good news is that Brooklyn, NY is home to 731 public schools, all ranking good or higher according to GreatSchools. There are an additional 471 private and charter schools available to supplement the niche educational needs of a diverse population.

Lifestyle Amenities in Brooklyn

Buying a home and going to work are the big pieces of the puzzle when it comes to building a life in a new city. But there are more details to it. Where will you buy groceries, and how far will you travel to do so? Can you grab a cup of coffee on your way to work or put gas in the car without driving out of your way?


Brooklyn is home to many upscale grocers, including Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods Market, FreshDirect, Dean & DeLuca, among others. And, you may have guessed that there would be no shortage of high-end coffee shops in the area. After all, caffeine and work seem to go hand-in-hand. Starbucks alone has 138 locations in Brooklyn, on top of dozens of local delights. If you’re looking for a good cup of coffee, you can try a different shop every day of the year in Brooklyn.


And the same can be said for restaurants. If you’re familiar with New York City, you might know that there are dozens of eateries lining every city block. So many, in fact, that it would take more than 22 years to try them all. Brooklyn fancies itself as a mirror of the big city, curating a collection of hot dining trends that will keep you comfortably placated in the borough. Enjoy fresh takes with cultural infusions from trendy places like Taqueria Ramirez, Bar Blondeau, and Tong.

Nightlife in Brooklyn

According to GQ, Brooklyn is the coolest city on the planet. If you’re looking for something to do, you’re sure to find something that indulges your whimsy. If you’re familiar with a night on the town in Manhattan and you’re looking for a similar look and feel, then Williamsburg is your best option. Park Slope also seems to be a fan favorite. The point is that there are plenty of options, from hole-in-the-wall breweries to lively stops for the best barhopping experiences to be found throughout Brooklyn.

Who Lives in Brooklyn

Brooklyn is an urban area that is well-known for its ethnic and economic diversity. The population is well spread out across all age groups, with the highest percentage of young adults between the ages of 25-34 years old. This is likely due to the growth of business opportunities and curated living experiences available in the city. It is a place that is known to be great for young professionals.


Just over one-quarter of the population has a high school diploma or equivalent, and nearly one-quarter have completed a bachelor’s degree. The median household income in the city is below the national average at $60,231 per year. But with housing averaging in the mid $800Ks, there isn’t a lot of opportunities for these residents to afford to buy in the area. About 70% of Brooklyn residents are renters, leaving a mere 30% who own their homes.


The Upside to Living in Brooklyn

Brooklyn is one of the five boroughs of New York City. It’s home to 52 unique neighborhoods, offering a little something for everyone. If you’re affluent and looking to keep up with the Joneses, there’s a neighborhood for that. If you enjoy serene river views or prefer to be within walking distance from nightlife, there’s a neighborhood for that too. There’s even beachfront property on the Brighton Beach boardwalk if that’s the sort of thing that you’re into.


Brooklyn once had a bad wrap as the dangerous borough of NYC, but over the last decade, it has reinvented itself–offering a less expensive Manhattan feel. With an abundance of parks and the Brooklyn Children’s Museum, there is plenty for young residents to do. But one of the things that Brooklyn has held onto is the feeling of community among neighbors.

What to Know Before you Move

While many people are drawn to the vibrant cultural diversity of this urban area, gentrification is quickly taking root and transforming the neighborhoods of the city into hipster hotspots filled with artisan shops. If that’s your thing–you’ll be pleased to call Brooklyn home. But if you’re hoping for a peek at the past in a city rich with history, you might find that things have changed here.


Brooklyn is also a fairly pricey place to live, despite being named a cheaper alternative to New York City or Manhattan. In fact, up to 40% of the population can’t even afford to live here. As rent and property prices continue to skyrocket and inflation is growing at an alarming rate, Brooklyn isn’t going to get any cheaper.


As with any urban area, poverty and homelessness are a real problem in Brooklyn. More than 21,000 juvenile residents are homeless, and more than 20% of the population live below the poverty line. There will always be disparities between the have and have-nots, but in a city like Brooklyn, the lines can be clearer to see.

What to Know About Buying Real Estate in Brooklyn

The New York City area and all its boroughs have always been the epicenter of wealth and luxury living, so it should be no surprise that the real estate market commands high prices that are relatively unaffected by any downturns in the economy. A single development like Billionaires’ Row in New York City can drive up prices citywide.


While most residents rent instead of buying, mostly due to the high prices, the best time to purchase real estate in Brooklyn is the spring or fall. The spring usually brings an influx of listings, and the fall brings potential price drops from sellers not wanting to carry a property through the winter. However, in many cases, properties have received multiple offers within the first day of listing, so unless things slow down a bit, pricing will continue to be in the seller’s favor.

The Bottom Line on Real Estate in Brooklyn

Brooklyn strikes a balance between historic New York City charm and a slightly more affordable housing market. However, the emphasis is on ‘slightly.’ While you may be more likely to find lower-priced property in Brooklyn compared to Manhattan or New York City, it’s still well above the national average. And, unfortunately, household income is keeping up with the cost of living in the city. At the end of the day, you get gentrified neighborhoods that are mostly inundated with wealthy residents.


Despite those realistic truths, Brooklyn is quickly becoming a desirable place to call home for young professionals and young families. There are plenty of opportunities for business and leisure. Unfortunately, the real estate market is highly competitive. Homebuyers should prepare themselves for higher sale prices, bidding wars, and competitive contingencies.



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