“In New York, you’re always looking for a job, a boyfriend or an apartment” – Carrie Bradshaw [SATC]
It’s now been a year since my friend Natasha and I moved to Manhattan…the city that never sleeps. Looking for an apartment was exciting, but difficult. Units here rent in a New York minute, which is to say they’re here one day and gone the next. You have to be quick and more importantly prepared, something we clearly weren’t. After a few frustratingly failed attempts, we ended up finding an apartment we loved that worked for both of us. Although the bedrooms (or should I say converted cubbies) are pretty tiny, we fell in love with the “luxury” buildings downtown. As soon as we walked into the lobby full of plush couches and mirrored elevators, we knew we were sold. Honestly, they had us at “chandeliers.” As a girl who loves all things glitzy and beautiful, I immediately pictured myself cooking underneath our own sparkling chandelier, and gazing at my shoe collection from the walk in closet. Natasha’s parent’s home has chandeliers in practically every room (bathrooms included) so we felt pretty accomplished with taking a little of that out of the suburbs into the city. Even though our rooms now are not anywhere near what we were used to, the kitchen was spacious, there was plenty of closet space and a large living room (NYC’s definition of large). These 3 things were most important to us and did I mention the closet space? The building itself, on the other hand, doesn’t offer much in amenities compared to others in the neighborhood. The gym is not included, the lounge is nice but nothing special, and rooftop is small with a limited view.
Now that the time has come for our lease to end, we’re on the hunt again for a new place. Somewhere we can get more for our money (is that still possible in NYC?) This time we’re ready – older, wiser, and more experienced! We thought that place was in the new building down the street with hands down the most beautiful rooftop downtown, and a gym and lounge on the roof, included in the rent! For this building, they had us at “rooftop pool”. I already had my sunglasses on and bikinis laid out. After getting approved right away, some complications got in the way…thank you NY fire laws. Did I really think this would be easy? As I mentioned earlier, finding an apartment in New York is anything but easy.
While we looked at our options, Natasha saw an apartment online in the West Village (one of my favorite neighborhoods) that looked like an absolute catch – the pictures showed a “real” 2 bedroom, large living room, renovated kitchen, bathroom, wooden floors, and to drive it home, brick walls. I went to the open house, ready to fall in love, but instead was hit with a serious reality check. Warning: do not believe everything you see, PICTURES LIE! The rooms were literally tiny, maybe even smaller than my walk-in. The kitchen was equally small (where would I cook all the recipes I’ve been dying to try?!) Really, the only decent area was the living room, but the layout was really strange. To top it off the building was G-R-O-S-S. At the open house the broker let me know the prices would likely go up, to which I immediately turned around and walked out. That’s okay, sir, you can keep it! For that kind of money, we might as well stay right where we are…
We may be homeless soon (JK, JK), but we’re still looking!
[pictured – Carrie Bradshaw’s apartment, NY, NY] (can we move in there though)