How to Secure the Best NYC Retail Space

Are you looking to rent NYC retail space for a store, boutique or restaurant? You probably already are aware that Manhattan retail rents are much greater than in other U.S. cities, with asking prices as high as $1,000 per square foot for retail space in a high-traffic avenue location.

Strong Demand in SoHo & The Plaza District

Two of the most desirable retail corridors in Manhattan are located in The Plaza District, at Fifth Avenue between 49th and 59th streets, and in SoHo, on Broadway. Luxury brands such as Bergdorf Goodman, Louis Vuitton and The Apple store have large stores on Fifth Avenue in the high 50s, and prestigious national chains such as Hugo Boss, Steve Madden, Sephora and Kenneth Cole have a presence on Broadway in the heart of SoHo.

You Snooze You Lose

If you are looking to acquire NYC retail space in a desirable location with good foot traffic, decent visibility and a favorable demographic, you will need to be proactive and aggressive. There is not an abundant supply of desirable retail spaces, but there is strong demand, so good spaces rent quickly. Once you find the retail space for your boutique, store or restaurant, do not hesitate in making an offer or you risk losing a potential space.

High-Price Retail Corridors in Manhattan

These retail corridors are some of the most coveted retail spaces in the world, and NYC has other fantastic retail areas to offer.

Times Square – Broadway to Seventh Avenue; 42nd to 47th streets
Midtown Manhattan – Fifth Avenue between 49th and 59th streets
Upper West Side – Broadway between 72nd and 86th streets
Upper East Side – Third Avenue between 60th and 72nd streets
Herald Square – West 34th Street between Broadway and Seventh
SoHo – Area south of Houston Street to Broome Street
Downtown Manhattan – Battery Park to Chambers Street
Meatpacking District – Just below 14th Street between Eighth to West End avenues

Helpful Hints for Finding NYC Retail Space

If you plan on attaining retail space in Manhattan, here are some things you should keep in mind:

  1. The market for retail space in Manhattan is complicated, and only an experienced retail space broker knows where the best opportunities exist. To find the right space and negotiate value, you need a real estate broker who specializes in Manhattan store space. You are best off engaging the services of a New York City retail broker who is familiar with retail availabilities on each block and in each neighborhood of Manhattan. A broker understands what you are looking for and will show you retail spaces that best meet the needs of your store, boutique, shop, restaurant, gallery or department store. Finding the decision makers on a certain property, researching lease expiration dates, and finding retail space not yet on the market is a job best left to a retail space broker
  2. Before you contact a real estate agent who specializes in NYC retail space, establish your budget, square footage needs and location preferences. A broker needs those details to survey the market on your behalf.
  3. Retail space in Manhattan is usually delivered to new tenants in “as-is” condition. Tenants are typically responsible for improving a ground-floor space at their own expense. Free rent can often be negotiated in lieu of landlord’s work. Sometimes a store will have an existing infrastructure (HVAC, plumbing, electrical distribution) that can be reused.
  4. Because there is such a limited supply of retail space in Manhattan, landlords will be often be negotiating with several different tenants at any given time. It can be quite competitive to acquire these desirable ground floor spaces.
  5. It is probably to your advantage to lock in a predictable rent for your business for as long a lease term as possible. Try to negotiate at least a 10-year lease term or a five-year lease with a renewal option.

The prime retail corridors of Manhattan can command retail rents as high as $2,500 per square foot. This is a cost that no retailer should take on without doing proper research and making sure that the best possible deal has been negotiated for them. At Metro Manhattan Office Space, we have successfully represented retailers throughout Manhattan, helping them sign leases for stores, boutiques, restaurants, galleries, spas or shops in prime areas of New York City.

If you need help securing your next premier retail space in Manhattan, please call us 212-447-5403 or complete our Brokers Assisted Search Form to get started.

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