POSTS TAGGED ‘NY Times Real Estate’

A Tale of Two Cities28

Posted by Deirdre // 10-31-2015


This is not a long post. It’s Halloween and I haven’t posted here in almost a year, officially. I just don’t have the time or energy to do these posts–maybe that says something–but this one had to be done.

I have so much to write as the year has been filled with some big changes for us on the living front. We’re still in Brooklyn but were finally faced with the inevitable–getting booted out of our big apartment in Center Slope that had always been out of our reach. We’re in a tiny apartment now that has other issues and although it was meant to be a transition year, it’s still a big, slap-in-the-face dose of reality. More on that later.

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A pretty block in Prospect Heights

So in case you missed this article from the NY Times last weekend–the one in which people (at least 3 families!) who lived in tiny spaces stayed put because of their close-knit community. One could have moved to a grand full brownstone in Prospect Heights but stayed in their crappy one bedroom for the neighbors, or something like that. Wait, seriously? The whole thing made my skin crawl, as I like my privacy–I’m not one who likes the surprise knock on the door on a Saturday, or any day really. And well, I just don’t have an extra brownstone lying around so that makes me bitter.

Then yesterday they presented the flip side. The story of the family who had just had enough and fled for the burbs. The loud neighbors, the loud commute, the soul-crushing experience of looking for a decent apartment and finding “a beat-up two-bedroom on the fourth floor of a creaky walk-up in one of our coveted school zones — for $1.2 million.”

I found myself having much more in common with the ones who left (of course it was all through rose colored glasses). He says that the neighbor’s techno beats were his breaking point. I feel like I may have just hit mine with a listing that came through from Street Easy this week. A vinyl-sided box needing a gut reno on a deserted block in Sunset Park 1/2 block from the highway for a cool million. But more on that later.

ugly houseugly house info map of ugly house


The NYC Public School Shuffle8

Posted by Deirdre // 05-05-2013



A happy family living in Crown Heights, loving their local PS 705

If you’re out enjoying this gorgeous day (and not inside posting on your blog or cleaning up your apartment for an open house because the owner is selling, for example) then you may have missed the article in today’s NYT Real Estate section about moving (or cheating) to get your kids into a good school. 114 comments on the article, and counting. Always good nuggets in these pieces, even though some of it (like the family at left, a bit) can occasionally make one seethe with jealousy.

What did you do – or will you do – to get your kids into your school of choice?




Brooklyn or Bust8

Posted by Deirdre // 03-09-2013


Ok Brooklyn die-hards, here’s the New York Times’ first semi-annual Real Estate proclamation of 2013 on alt Brooklyn hoods. They’re calling this latest search for affordable prices a “cross-Brooklyn migration,” citing the median price in Williamsburg as even higher than Gramercy Park. Ouch.

NYT Migration illustration by James Laish

NYT Migration illustration by James Laish

The article goes into a NYT typical lack of depth on a few outer hoods – Sunset Park, Ditmas/Kensington (two totally different neighborhoods in my mind but what do I know), Northern Crown Heights, Prospect Lefferts Gardens and Bushwick – the “New Gentrification Frontiers.” If that makes you feel squishy, it does me too.

And the thing is, they’ve been saying that about PLG for years, “they” being the real estate people and those who quote them in the media. But businesses catering to this new demographic along Flatbush and Lincoln and Maple Road keep opening and closing – is that a sign? Though Lefferts Gardens Charter school is now open and looks amazing, solving a major issue of a lack of good elementary school options. Though there’s no guarantee of admission I guess because it’s lottery, there’s preference for District 17 residents, which includes PLG and parts of Crown Heights, also a subject of this article.

Sunset Park has been talked about as “a new artist colony” since NY Mag spoke of it as such in ’09, but this hood does actually seem to be attracting artists. Great ethnic food (real Mexican, Chinese and Vietnamese) and some new cafes and bars popping up to serve the gentrifiers, er artists. There are also some zoning changes that will allow big box retail to move in along Third Avenue, with talk of Bed Bath and Beyond being interested (just like the suburbs!). Whatever you feel about that, there’s also a giant rooftop garden going up on that building which is pretty awesome. Plus Sunset Park has Sunset Park, which happens to be a gorgeous pocket park with a nice little playground, a recreation center with a pool and tennis courts in Summer and an ice rink and great sledding hill in Winter. All with a gorgeous view of NY Harbor, lined with some of New York’s earliest townhouses and old growth trees – it’s a winner.  Some info on schools here, and on the well regarded Sunset Park High School here.
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