The Market

Cat ladies vs market-rate renters: Which make better neighbors?

By Teri Karush Rogers | June 27, 2011 - 10:50AM 

It's no secret that ever since the credit crisis, banks are highly squeamish about financing purchases in condo and co-op buildings that have low owner-occupancy rates.  But as a discussion on reminds us, the elephant in the room also extends the renters next door.

"I hate to say it, but it is often the case that renters are simply not as caring about a building as those who own (think empty beer cans left in the elevators, food wrappers dropped in the hallways and half-empty pizza boxes strewn haphazardly in the stairwells)," says one commenter.

In an older building where rent-stabilized and/or rent-controlled tenants have aged in place, the "crazy cat hoarder who wanders around the halls in her rarely-washed shmata complaining about the roaches in her apartment" is said to be common enough that "she doesn't even need to exist" to scare off buyers. "The mere specter of Friskies cans piling up in her kitchen amid gamboling roaches - whether real or imagined - is enough...."

That said, notes the Friskies commenter, "The problem neighbors are just as likely to be the transient market rate tenants living in sold units, whose stake in the building basically ends with their security deposits."


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