Monday, June 11, 2007

Broker's Fee (Fie Foe Fum).

Fee! Fie! Foe! Fum!
I smell the blood of a renter in a desperate situation
Be she live, or be she dead
I'm going to charge 10% of annual rent because I can, and you'll pay it, because this space is really nice and you can't have it until you give me my money first. Sorry, It's just sort of how the industry works.

Note: This is an actual excerpt from an actual Real Estate Marketing Fairy Tale, "Jack and the Two Bedroom, One Bath, Quiet Tree-Lined Street Close to Shops Beanstalk." It's not great. It has this really annoying ending where it turns out that heat and hot water aren't included and jack just decides to live in his sister's living room until he's 30.

So I'm going crazy. Looking for an apartment in NY is basically the worst thing in the world. Some people might enjoy it. Those people might also enjoy soft rock, mystery smells on a crowded train or watching strangers eat corn on the cob. Different strokes. I for one, would prefer not to spend the vast majority of my weekends walking around Brooklyn in intense heat looking at places that either A) Scare me in a, "Will a bug eat my face off when i sleep?" kind of way
B) Are so amazing I can't believe I can afford to live there, and then the Broker chimes in with a ps--I can't.

The whole process is frustrating, and that's why people should really limit it to looking at one or two places a day. But you can't do that because everyone is telling you that the great spaces will be picked by noon and that good apartments won't last longer than the day they're posted. But no pressure. Just get out there and have fun with it!

Do you know how painful it is to spend hours a day looking at apartment listings on Craigslist? Do you?! It's a modern day cilice. Craig Newmark lived in my neighborhood in SF and I always ran into him when grabbing a coffee at Reverie. I never thought to look for a hairshirt, but I'm quite certain he was wearing one.

Saturday was a real treat. I woke up early to search open-houses, made some calls, and Vanessa and I set out. Long story short, by 11AMi was delirious and sweating like some sort of sweaty animal (pig, i guess? are there others?) because of the heat and the billionth floor walk ups. Note: Be leery of "Views." An ad that reads, "Nice View" just means that by the time you reach the top floor, you'll be very dizzy and start hallucinating that you're dancing on a giant cupcake (if it's giant i guess it would just be a cake) and a pony walks up to you and says, "Hi, I'm Buttons."
That's all "Nice View" means when you have a budget.

By 2:00 we had walked so far away from anything we knew that we were searching for any establishment that served or sold food. Where the hell do people eat in random parts of Brooklyn?! We ended up getting a sandwich at a convenient store with one aisle--(complete contents of aisle included: Fantastic spray cleaner, a 6pk of Sam Adams, beef jerky, and kotex products--that IS convenient!) A woman who looked like she was about to die, walked to the back of the aisle and started coughing violently. I was so punch-drunk by this point I go to Ness, "Clean up on aisle...aisle." and literally burst into tears laughing.

The whole process is unhealthy.
Looked at a few no-fee apartments yesterday and fell in love with one, but when I spoke with the guy today it turns out there is a broker's fee. Well, sure. It's only fair. I mean, he did unlock the doors for us, and then he had to lock them back up when we left. Makes sense that I should give him a few thousand dollars.

Foe Fum.


juliet said...

ashley's roomate might brake the lease. you should get in on that.

Anonymous said...

Wow, and I thought that SF was supposed to be a tough property market.

Sounds grim - can't you move into Monica and Chandler's apartment, isn't that still empty? Upside - huge space, downsides - fictional, actually a stage in LA, danger of Jennifer Anniston.

How about camping in Central park? Here in London there's an anti-war protester who has a permenant camp on Parliament Square (democracy in action, cheers!) and, while I heartly approve his action, I'm less than impressed by the half-dozen other tents that have sprung up behind him since the weather got warm, one simply wants to tell these sorts to stop pretending to like camping, which nobody does and certainly nobody does after watching that Blair Witch thingie.

Anyhoo, good luck with the house hunt.

juliet said...

to go. lake george once again. so be prepared for the self portraits to come... where ever i go the pictures are the same because i'm always present... haha. next weekend is maire's birthday.