Take It Or Leave It

Take It or Leave It: Would you shell out $4,495/month for this pre-war Gramercy Park 2-bedroom?

By Leah Hochbaum Rosner  | January 22, 2014 - 8:59AM

Our trio of longtime renters tackles a no-fee pre-war Gramercy Park 2-bedroom with its original crown molding and a large sunken living room in this week’s Take It or Leave It. Our panelists—who have 43 years of combined rental experience between them—are RentHackr founder Zeb Dropkin, freelance writer Lambeth Hochwald, and BrickUnderground’s own senior contributing editor, Lucy Cohen Blatter.

The Apartment:                                                                   

Location: 145 E. 22nd St. between 3rd and Lexington Aves. in Gramercy Park
Cost & concessions: $4,495/month+no broker’s fee
Flexible Layout: No
Days on the market: 56 days
Subway: 6 at 23rd St.; N, R at 23rd St.; L at 3rd Ave.; L, N, Q, R, 4, 5, 6 at 14th St.-Union Sq.; F, M at 23rd St.; PATH at 23rd St.

Pros and Cons:

Zeb: “This apartment looks clean and boasts some nice pre-war details--love the crown molding! It’s also only a block off of Gramercy Park, which is a pretty prime location. Still, one bedroom is small, it’s expensive, and you have to sign a lease for at least 18 months.” 

Lambeth: “This squeaky clean Gramercy 2-bedroom, located in a well-maintained building that dates to 1940, has just enough pre-war bells and whistles to make it feel special—the foyer is pretty fabulous, love the built-in bookshelf, and the arched doorways are especially cute. Cons are that there’s only one bathroom, the kitchen is pretty bland, there’s no doorman and this is a street-level apartment which means it could get noisy at night.”

Lucy: “The location is great—East 22nd between Lexington and Third—in the heart of Gramercy. Plus, I love the pre-war details, like crown moldings, a hallway, and built-in bookshelves--although one bedroom seems to be a signature pre-war style closet-less bedroom. There’s also a separate, decent-sized kitchen. However, it looks as though the apartment has been on the market since August. Maybe that’s because it seems to be on the first floor? Or maybe it’s the fact that the renter must make 45 times the monthly rent, which is slightly higher than the average 40 times? Likely it could just be that it’s a slow season for renters.”

Who would this apartment be perfect for?

Zeb: “A family that would love nothing more than to lay down roots in this hoity-toity locale.” 

Lambeth: “A suburban couple that wants to make this their weekend place. This is the perfect location for a walk around Gramercy Park followed by a browse through the Union Square market.”

Lucy: “A small family that wants to live in the posh Gramercy neighborhood.”

The Verdict(s):

LEAVE IT “It’s too expensive and has too many high-bar requirements like that you need to make 45 times the monthly rent.” —Zeb

TAKE IT “…provided you fit the bill, as the building prefers applicants with a strong credit history who earn at least 45 times the monthly rent and have been employed for at least three years, though guarantors may be acceptable.”—Lambeth

TAKE IT “For the location, the value seems decent.”—Lucy

Ready to rent? Check out our How to Rent Guide...and if the apartment you like requires a guarantor that you don’t have, see if the landlord accepts Insurent, a guarantor solution from one of BrickUnderground’s sponsors.

Take It Or Leave It is a weekly column in which a panel of long-time renters weighs in on the pros and cons of an apartment that’s currently on the market.

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