Real estate investors -individual or institutional- need to crunch numbers on cap rates and appreciation projections of properties in different neighborhoods to determine if they look like a good investment or not.  But one thing that is hard to quantify is the coolness factor of a neighborhood.  In fact, a neighborhood that is up-and-coming on the coolness factor can portend huge positive changes for the value  of real estate there.  But the question for us real estate nerds is, “How do we measure how cool a neighborhood is??”

Well here is a foolproof metric on determining the amount of cool-factor in a neighborhood- follow the “Edison Bulb Rule Of Cool” and that is:

The coolness of the neighborhood is directly proportional to the number of places (bars, restaurants, cafes, hotels etc) with Edison bulbs in them.  

Thats it.  This metric is currently right 100% of the time.  Start paying attention to that when you are evaluating neighborhoods and if you can find a neighborhood that devoid of social establishments with Edison bulbs and yet is really cool,  it would be great to hear about it.

BUT one caveat: At some point the uber-hip folks opening bars and restaurants are going to realize that they are just part of the Edison bulb herd and they are going to find some other form of lighting that will eventually be the death knell of Edison Bulbs being the perfect metric of cool like it is now.  So use the Edison Bulb metric wisely and soon..
You are welcome.  (And no, lighting stores don’t count).


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He is a highly esteemed real estate professional, widely recognized as a master marketer of real estate and a top 1% performer in New York City and nationally. With an unwavering passion for the NYC real estate market and an exceptional track record of success, Cary is a sought-after expert known for delivering outstanding results to his clientele.

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