A vendor in Soho is selling Christmas trees for as much as $6,500 each

December 9, 2019

Good luck finding a Christmas tree in NYC for under $75 this year; Photo by Billy Williams on Unsplash

A Christmas tree vendor in Manhattan is selling 20-foot Fraser firs for $6,500 each, most likely the most expensive evergreen in the city, the New York Post reported Sunday. Scott Lechner, the manager of Soho Trees, located near Canal Street, told the newspaper that the exorbitant prices aren’t slowing sales. “We’re sold out,” he said. The steep price tag includes delivery and installation.

The price of Christmas trees has been steadily climbing over the last decade, with vendors blaming a shortage of trees stemming from the 2008 recession when fewer trees were planted. Now, fewer full-grown trees are available, pushing prices higher each year. According to the National Christmas Tree Association, the average buyer paid $36.50 for a Christmas tree in 2008. In 2016, that number grew to nearly $75 and hit roughly $78 on average in 2018.

In addition to the shortage, sidewalk vendors in New York pay the city thousands in fees in order to sell their trees. They also face competition from larger companies like Whole Foods and Home Depot, which can buy trees in bulk and charge a fraction of the price.

Like in real estate, the price of a Christmas tree is tied to where it’s located in the city. According to the Post, a 20-foot tree in the East Village goes for about $2,000 and a 16-foot fir costs nearly $1,500 in Hell’s Kitchen. A Brooklyn tree delivery service delivers Fraser Firs to all five boroughs that range in price between $120 for a six-foot tree to just over $400 for a 12-foot tree, including delivery.

Despite the rising prices, New Yorkers and Christmas celebrants continue to pay the big bucks for the perfect tree. Last year, according to the association, Americans spent more than $2 billion on more than 32.8 million living trees last year.

[Via NY Post]


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