Modern day Flatlands is best known for the past. As the name suggests, the terrain is flat and easy to build upon, which made it appealing to early settlers. The neighborhood has various historic homes and public buildings leftover from its Dutch colonial roots, including the Wyckoff House Museum. Some families in the area have long and involved histories dating back to the 1600s.
The current residents of Flatlands are primarily Jewish and Caribbean, not surprising since the 2 & 5 subway lines that run through the neighborhood also connect to areas like Crown Heights that host amenities geared specifically towards both populations. On the west side of Flatlands along Flatbush Avenue, there are also many groceries, eateries and restaurants catering to the West Indian community.
Contrary to its reputation, Flatlands actually has a variety of housing types from different eras. Alongside Dutch colonial buildings are turn of the century detached homes and brownstones, as well as more modern row houses and apartment buildings. Listings for the neighborhood reveal the diversity of the housing available – two family homes, large condos, co-ops of all shapes and sizes. The current median sales price for all kinds of real estate is an affordable $485K. Already inexpensive, Flatlands is one of the neighborhoods worst hit by the Subprime Mortgage Crisis, which may cause housing to prices to drop further. Renting is also inexpensive, with studios and 1Brs at about $950/mo.