Brooklyn Second Most Expensive Place to Live


Brooklyn was ranked the No. 2 most expensive place to live in the U.S. in the quarterly Cost of Living Index by the Council for Community and Economic Research, a Washington-based research group. First is Manhattan, followed by Brooklyn, Honolulu, San Francisco, San Jose, Queens and Stamford, Conn. The report ranks 300 urban areas weighted according to different types of costs for “mid-management households” — in other words, professionals and managers, according to a story on the report in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle. In New York City, the biggest and most important cost is housing. In Alaska and Hawaii, it’s food. Other costs considered include utilities, transportation and prescription drugs. Housing in Brooklyn costs more than three times the average; a city with average housing costs would be a place such as Erie, Pa., or Charlottesville, Va., said the Eagle. “We are mindful that Brooklyn must never be a place of only the very rich or the very poor,” said Borough President Marty Markowitz to the Eagle. Does the report sound accurate to you? Do we need more affordable housing in the borough?
Expensive Brooklyn! Boro Ranks No. 2 in U.S. [Brooklyn Eagle]

19 Comment

  • daveinbedstuy

    I suspect you could construct a set of variables to make virtually any city the “second most expensive.”

    There are many other places with far more expensive housing stock than Brooklyn. The dicing into “mid management households” is very bizarrre to say the least.

  • daveinbedstuy

    I suspect you could construct a set of variables to make virtually any city the “second most expensive.”

    There are many other places with far more expensive housing stock than Brooklyn. The dicing into “mid management households” is very bizarrre to say the least.

  • The report says Brooklyn scores a 105 in transportation, but I’m guessing that’s because they include car owners’ costs in the survey. That really throws things off since owning a car in Brooklyn is mostly a luxury and not a necessity. I’d be willing to say that parts of Silicon Valley are more expensive since you NEED a car.

    • According to the sample data at http://coli.org/ (its a pdf from the 2008 report inside a zip file), transportation costs are calculated as 25% auto maintenance and 75% gasoline. The cost of buying a car is not factored in (I guess on the assumption that car costs are the same throughout the country), and neither is the cost of car insurance.

      According to AAA the cost of owing a car in the US is almost $9,000/year (see http://www.thecarconnection.com/news/1075820_average-cost-of-car-ownership-creeps-up-to-8946-per-year). The cost of an unlimited metrocard is $1,250/year, so Brooklyn’s transportation cost should be closer to 15-20% of the national average (let’s assume you want to take a cab or zipcar once in a while). That $7,000/year savings on transportation means you can spend an extra $500/month on housing, and still come out ahead.

  • To answer one of your questions, dear Brownstoner, no, I do not think that we need more affordable housing in the borough.

  • why are they breaking down NYC into separate places? they aren’t dividing
    SF to north and south of Market St.

  • East New York

    There are lies, damned lies and statistics.

  • I find that very hard to believe. I think SF is on par with NYC, and it is strange that they separate the 5 boroughs, but do not separate neighborhoods in other large cities.

    I think that including car ownership is OK, I know lots of people in Brooklyn with cars. The difference is that they drive a fraction of the miles that the rest of the country does. I have 3 kids and yet I only have 55k miles on my 12 year old car. Almost any other American family would have 250k or more in the same car.

  • I think it is obvious that more affordable housing is needed.
    Though the irony of reading that question on this site, which cheers every new sales price milestone, is rich.

  • I think it is obvious that more affordable housing is needed.
    Though the irony of reading that question on this site, which cheers every new sales price milestone, is rich.

  • Yes, Brooklyn is evey expensive if you apply the requirements of mid-management types from elsewhere in the country…with respect to sq footage required, outdoor space, cars, parking, and the like. But NYC can be a quite cheap place to live in other respects once you’ve secured a place to live, which for many means less space and no car. It is common to spend way more on housing, while spending much less on most other things.

  • Yes, Brooklyn is evey expensive if you apply the requirements of mid-management types from elsewhere in the country…with respect to sq footage required, outdoor space, cars, parking, and the like. But NYC can be a quite cheap place to live in other respects once you’ve secured a place to live, which for many means less space and no car. It is common to spend way more on housing, while spending much less on most other things.

  • Housing costs are the culprit here, just go ask Montrose.

  • im shocked that more people don’t agree…the cost of housing is insane for what you get in terms of sq footage…i mean almost half my salary every month goes to housing and i could NOT afford to live on my own or buy an apartment in brooklyn. and things are only getting worse…not to mention the cost of moving AND the 12-15% broker fee you pay to even find a place to live. seriously….

  • minard

    Horrific housing costs fed by an avaricious real estate industry.
    People, even young people, will start getting a clue soon: It’s not worth it.
    There are plenty of nicer (much nicer) places to live.

  • First, yes there needs to be more housing. It will be affordable when there is enough supply to take us up to a 5% rental vacancy level (and thus out of rent control land).

    Second, to those wondering why to separate out Brooklyn from Manhattan or Queens, the better quesion is why is San Francisco separated from Oakland, etc. A city that is less than 1/3 the size of Brooklyn population wise is simply in a different class for comparisons.

    And yes, one can only imagine what type of gerrymandering of data was used to reach “mid-management.”

  • Marty is great, but if he wanted more affordable housing he wouldn’t have let developers take over our borough.

  • Trying to reply to alexwithak for many a car may be a luxury but my husband works in construction so our car is a necessity. Unless he should haul ladders and bags of plaster via subway. Also, not everyone lives close to a train station. Just to clarify many non-car owners get by fine but some people do need to own a vehicle.

  • Marty should be ashamed of himself, he sold out to Ratner who will never build any affordable housing.