The Real.Est List
- by Sara Alessi | 3/22/13 - 9:16 AM
Let’s face it -- when you’re investing in a new home, you’d like it to be, well, exactly the way you want it, so some flexibility in the layout or having a say in the renovation could be an attractive option. This Friday's edition of StreetEasy’s Most Wanted -- the 10 apartments StreetEasy users saved more often than any others this week -- highlights a group of apartments that’ll let you use your imagination.
You’ll have some flexibility with a $1.625m three-bedroom, three-and-a-half-bath townhouse on 11th Street between Fourth and Fifth Avenues in Park Slope. The rear bedroom on the top floor can be converted into two rooms, and the built-in couch on the parlor level can be used as a day bed should you require the space. You can taste some fresh air in the back garden, which also has a stone terrace and gas barbecue.
- by Mike Akerly | 3/21/13 - 2:47 PM
Q. I live in a rental apartment in Manhattan and have recently had some issues in my bathroom that have resulted in a water leak in the apartment below mine. I am worried because the workers that my management company has sent to do the repairs seem less than professional.
Does my management company need to hire a licensed contractor for the work?
A. Many types of construction work in NYC are required to be performed by workers with some form of license. For example, for most work done in certain types of residential properties, a Home Improvement Contractor’s (HIC) license is required, issued by the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA).
- by Julie Inzanti | 3/21/13 - 12:15 PM
We know an over-1,400-square-foot one-bedroom in New York sounds like a fantasy...but it can be your reality, at least for a little while.This $4,500 one-bedroom in Prospect Heights is available for May through the end of August.We're loving the fact that it's the polar opposite of all the cookie cutter one-bedrooms we usually see, set in a renovated firehouse, former home of Engine Company 219 built in 1880. It's also on beautiful tree-lined Dean Street.The triplex has amazing natural light and tons of storage (although, this is a great opportunity to practice living with less because how much can you possibly move in during a three-month stay?). We're totally sold rented.Real Estate Want is a weekly column featuring New York City apartment details we're coveting right now.
- by Marjorie Cohen | 3/21/13 - 10:22 AM
Photo Credit / Interior Marketing Group
You’re ready to put your apartment on the market. Now take a long, hard look. Is it ready to meet the public? Does it even know what to say to the public?
Ideally, according to stager Cheryl Eisen of Interior Marketing Group, your apartment should say “a stylish person with impeccable taste lives here." Unfortunately, observes Eisen, "most homes I see that are not professionally staged look like Pottery Barn meets grandma’s hand-me-downs."
Note that staging is not the same thing as interior design, says Susan Goldstein, design director of Studio D.
“Interior design is geared to the homeowners taste and personal desire," says Goldstein, while "staging is about putting enough furniture in a space so that buyers can envision themselves living in the home and how their own furniture will fit in."
- StreetNoiseby Lucy Cohen Blatter | 3/21/13 - 9:01 AM
- Go west (of the BQE) young buyer--for a less crowded, less expensive treat (New York Times)
- Looking for a parking garage that’s swanky enough for your lifestyle? Try the LES (CurbedNY)
- Before you move to Park Slope, find out if your block’s alternate side parking personality is “chill” or “alpha” (F**ked in Park Slope)
- Good news for the 1 percent -- if you're looking to sell (Wall Street Journal)
- ...and for the rest of you, here's how to find a good landlord-tenant lawyer (CurbedNY)
- Here's your chance to lord it over a NYC icon (NY Observer)
- There's a big difference between "online" and "on line": A new service expedites the process of filing plans for a DOB permit (NY1)
- by Jamie Lauren Sutton | 3/20/13 - 3:34 PMDear Ms. Demeanor,Our beloved super is retiring after 25 years. What is the proper etiquette in terms of giving him a warm send-off? Do you have any gift or party tips for us?Signed,Farewell to Strong ArmsDear Farewell,How bittersweet! I absolutely love and applaud your instincts. The super is one of those people in the neighborhood (...in the neighborhood - sing it with me!) who can make or break city life.A gracious send-off is well-deserved for a man who does all home-related things you cannot or will not do. He is the guy you call when things go bump (or squeak) in the night, the one who unclogs a toilet or helps an ex- move out (similar job description, no?).While a get-together in the lobby (for a larger building) or someone's apartment (in a smaller building) is lovely, it is not necessary.
- by Sharon Krum | 3/20/13 - 2:38 PM
WHO: Jon Stewart is taking a break from hosting The Daily Show this summer to direct his first film. Worse, therapists go away in summer too. How will we cope?
WHERE: Stewart, now a triple threat as comedian, fake news anchor and budding director, lives with his family in Tribeca, where the median sales price is $2.995 million and the median rental is $6,895, according to StreetEasy.
Your Celebrity Neighbor is a weekly heads-up on the A-listers who call your neighborhood home and (in theory) shop the same Duane Reade as you.
- by Mayra David | 3/20/13 - 12:20 PM
Photo Credit / Mr. T in DC
Scaffolding that’s a nuisance, a door that denies entry, and storage for the digital age! Six New York City citizens spill what they’d love to change about their homes.
- A place to store a suitcase: My husband travels a lot for work and we’ve used it as an excuse to keep his luggage parked in a corner of the apartment. But the truth is, it’s too much of a hassle to rearrange items in the closet to fit the suitcase back in there. The closets are so stuffed, as soon as you take something out, it’s like everything else in there pops into the empty space naturally. - Marta, Upper West Side
- A scaffold-free existence: I can’t remember anymore when they put the damn scaffolding up around my building. It’s been years and years. It ruins the light, the view -- everything -- in my ground floor apartment. Plus, sometimes people play on it, or do their pull-ups like it’s a gym. It’s costing the building thousands of dollars. Last I heard, the scaffolding was still up because there was nobody to disassemble it. The scaffolding companies have a racket going on. - Doris, Harlem
- Real.Est. List Spotlight Galleryby Leah Hochbaum Rosner | 3/20/13 - 10:18 AM
Shortly after emigrating from Greece in 1959, Dimitri and Calliope Gravanis opened a flower shop on New York’s Upper East Side. Decades later, it has blossomed into the 20,000 square-foot outdoor Urban Garden Center in East Harlem, now owned and run by grandson Dimitri Gatanas.
A leading supplier of garden supplies and plants in NYC, the Urban Garden Center—the subject of this week’s Real. Est. List Spotlight Series—also builds gardens from scratch...designing, maintaining and installing them.
In Manhattan, that most often means working on terrace or rooftop gardens. And while most people have simple requests—climbing hydrangeas, juniper plants, some Japanese Maple trees—Gatanas has also received some outlandish demands.
“I’ve had to incorporate a Moroccan tent into a rooftop garden, design a playhouse that looks like the Hotel des Artistes, and built a number of rooftop ponds—complete with fish,” he says.
- Confessions of a Neighborhood Bloggerby Julie Inzanti | 3/20/13 - 9:01 AM
Brokelyn is a web mag founded in May 2009 about all things Brooklyn -- from hyper-local goings-on and stoop sales to cheap eats and real estate deal. The content is written by contributors who live and work all over Brooklyn.
Since starting in 2009, the blog has exploded. We got a chance to hear from one of the site’s editors, Dave Colon, who started as a contributor and is now the News Editor of Brokelyn. Dave is originally from Long Beach, and has been a resident of Bushwick for 5 years.
Although Brokelyn covers all Brooklyn news in a broader sense, Colon was able to narrow the scope to his neighborhood: Bushwick.
- by Teri Karush Rogers | 3/19/13 - 2:06 PM
Photo Credit / Nate Tharp
Q. We are thinking of buying a co-op that was renovated by the sponsor. It's a middle-of-the-road renovation that isn't really our style but we're prepared to live with it for a few years until we can afford to redo it.
Our main concern, since the sponsor is a little on the sleazy side, is to make sure they didn't take any shortcuts, especially on the bathroom and kitchen.
What sort of things should we watch out for?
A. There are several, some more consequential than others, say our experts.
"You'd want to know that the renovations were legally permitted, approved by the board, and undertaken by licensed contractors," says real estate broker Gordon Roberts of Warburg Realty. "Additionally, you may be advised to include language in the contract of sale that would protect you against faulty workmanship in the sponsor's renovation."
- by Alex Hughes | 3/19/13 - 11:16 AM
Believe it or not, spring is almost here (we know, the snow isn't helping us get in the mood either), and close proximity to parks will soon be worth the higher pricetag. Maybe that explains why a quarter of this week's Hot Dozen -- the 12 rental apartments Streeteasy.com visitors clicked on most often over the past seven days -- are only a short walk from Central Park (and Riverside, too).
A three-bedroom apartment at 244 West 64th Street and West End Avenue (pictured) is listed at $3,000/month, and is not far from Central or Riverside parks. The apartment is well-priced and well-suited for a share, but the lack of a living room area outside of the spacious kitchen is a catch.
- by Leah Hochbaum Rosner | 3/19/13 - 9:05 AM
View 62 NYC Rental Buildings That Accept Credit Cards in a larger map
If you've been reading BrickUnderground lately, you already know that Suitey--a technology-enabled real estate brokerage founded by two young Yale grads bent on radically improving the typical NYC rental experience--has agreed to extend its corporate rates to Brick readers.
That means if you sign up here, you'll usually pay a broker's fee of around 10% of a year's rent (versus the standard 12%-15%) on most apartments and have the extreme relief/pleasure of working with an agent in Suitey's handpicked network.
For those of you who have already taken Suitey up on their offer, we look forward to an invite to your housewarming soon.
For the rest of you still hunting for your next place, our friends at Suitey have compiled a gift for you: This handy list of 62 NYC rental buildings that take credit cards.
- by Isabelle Magliari | 3/18/13 - 3:16 PM
Photo Credit / Marv Gillibrand
My first Brooklyn apartment was a walkup in Midwood so cramped that a single renter would have felt smothered. Unfortunately, I had three roommates to contend with. My friend, Lindsay, and I lived on top of one another in a ten-by-ten room, while Arthur and Lula, a couple we barely knew, shared the bedroom next to ours.
At first, I survived the claustrophobia by taking solace in the fact that our apartment couldn’t possibly get any more crowded. How naive I was.
One morning, I walked out of my bedroom to find a man sleeping on our kitchen table. He was snoring and shirtless. After jumping three feet in the air and muffling a scream, I tiptoed closer to assess the situation. He had a stack of suitcases on the floor beside him and his coat was hanging off our pan rack.
- by Sara Alessi | 3/18/13 - 12:36 PM
It's been a long winter, so it's no surprise that this weekend, apartment-seekers were on the hunt for homes with bright windows and views of the great (and hopefully sunny) outdoors. The Open House Scorecard -- the 10 open houses StreetEasy users saved to their open-house planners more often than any others -- features a selection of apartments with natural light and nice views.
Over in the Columbia St. Waterfront District in "Cobble Hill West," there’s a $945k three-bedroom, one-and-a-half-bathroom condo on Tiffany Place between Kane and Degraw Streets that features six oversized, soundproofed windows to let in light and views of Manhattan and Brooklyn brownstones (but less sound). T