With city rental prices spiking and rental sizes shrinking, New Yorkers are less willing to spend money on broker fees.

Four out of 10 renters in New York City say that won’t pay a broker’s fee “on principle,” according to a survey by rental listings site Rent.com. One third of the 1,000 people surveyed reported that they would give up eating out for a year if only they could sign a lease without a broker’s fee.

Half of all respondents between the ages of 18 and 24 limited their apartment search to the area around their home, relying on the help of family, friends and neighbors, the survey reported. In contrast, only a third of apartment hunters 25 to 34 years old stayed close to home when scouting for new places.

Renters often have to move swiftly to snag housing; in Manhattan, the vacancy rate has stayed around 1 percent for the last year and dipped to 0.89 percent in May, Crain’s reported. A quarter of younger renters said that the need to make fast decisions was the hardest part of the search process, as opposed to 15 percent of respondents between the ages of 45 and 64.

The data is part of a larger nationwide survey of the rental market.

“New York has always been a different market,” Rent.com Director of Strategy and Branding Christina Aragon told Crain’s. “At this point in time, there’s such a frenzy; those differences are exaggerated.”

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