Rental Market Photo: Jens karlsson/Flickr 

Fans of the NBC sitcom “Friends” have long been suspicious of the spacious, beautiful apartments supposedly located in Manhattan belonging to the characters. How could Joey, Chandler, Ross, Rachel, Monica and Phoebe possibly afford them on average twenty-something budgets?

Turns out, those fans shouldn’t have been so quick to judge. According to Citi Habitats’ August Rental Market Report, the West Village where the characters lived is actually in the median range for Manhattan renters.

The average monthly rent in the neighborhood is $2,725 for studios, $4,018 for one-bedrooms, $4,988 for two-bedrooms and $5,700 for three-bedrooms. With a 1.75 percent vacancy rate, the median rental price is $3,975 for an apartment in the West Village.

The report also reveals that Soho/Tribeca is Manhattan’s most expensive neighborhood for renters of every apartment size. For monthly rent, studios average $2,600, one-bedrooms are $3,923, two-bedrooms are $5,798 and three-bedrooms are $9,133. The area’s median rent is around $5,045 per month.

By contrast, Washington Heights is Manhattan’s least expensive neighborhood looked at in the Citi Habitats report. The average studio goes for $1,447, one-bedrooms are $1,696, two-bedrooms are $2,103, and three-bedrooms are $2,737. Its median rent is $1,900 per month.

This data is based on Citi Habitats’ closed rental transactions, current rental listings in the firm’s database, as well as company research.

The report confirmed some truisms about Manhattan rentals. For instance, for all apartment sizes, walk-up buildings are the most affordable, followed by elevator buildings.

But some might be surprised that doorman buildings built prior to 2006 are significantly less expensive than new development buildings with doormen (built after 2006). The average studio apartment in a doorman building goes for $2,941 per month, but in a new construction building with a doorman, that figure goes up to $3,447 per month.

Follow @bbhnyc for more in NYC rental trends.

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