There are few tasks more daunting than setting out to buy your first home, especially for the average New Yorker facing ever-so-steep price tags on teeny-tiny places.
In a nod to the ubiquity of the experience, HGTV created the series "Property Virgins," dedicated to documenting the travails of being a first-time buyer. Each week, viewers can catch real estate guru and host Egypt Sherrod guiding real estate newbies through their first purchase, helping them to strategize, plan, and ultimately buy a home that’s the right size for them (and their wallet).
But in case you don't want to hightail it to Swett, S.D., an unincorporated 6.16-acre hamlet with a bar, a workshop, three trailers and a house, take a gander at what's available in the five boroughs for about the same price.
Cheap, temporary and attractive, removable wallpaper sounds like a renter's dream. But does it live up to the claims?
The living room wall before...
A bedroom door with wallpaper
The fridge before...
Let's get one thing clear: I’m no DIY maven. I don’t wistfully wander the aisles of Home Depot on a Sunday afternoon. I consider framing a poster and nailing it to the wall a pretty major home improvement. So when I heard about temporary wallpaper--with its promise that all you have to do is peel off the backing, stick it, and remove it without a fuss when the lease is up--I was both intrigued and skeptical.
This weekend, I experimented with four panels of the stuff, courtesy of Chasing Paper, a New York City-based manufacturer of removable wallpaper. Below, the step-by-step process, plus lessons I learned along the way.
AddressReport uses public records and a computer algorithm to figure out the speed of elevators across the city
If you've decided that an elevator is an amenity you simply can't live without--or if you're curious about how yours stacks up against others around the city--take a look at AddressReport's elevator tracker.
The site, which mines public records for info on building violations, commute times, vermin infestations, crime levels and other apartment must-knows, tracks typical lobby wait-times and commutes between the street-level and different floors, separated into morning and evening peak hours.
Susan Olsen is the director of historical services at Woodlawn Cemetery; her home is filled with cemetery-themed decor, like this coffin basket
Susan Olsen has a keen eye for what others might consider morbid. The director of historical services at The Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx, the city's largest, Olsen has long focused on historic objects, homes and monuments in her work. Her career has involved stints as the chief of the Bureau of Historical Museums within the Florida Department of State and the director of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Pope Leighey House, among other positions. She's currently co-curating an exhibition commemorating Woodlawn’s 150th anniversary, which will open at Columbia University’s Wallach Art Gallery this September.
Among the most eye-catching possessions in her one-bedroom rental in the Bronx is her coffee table, a big wicker basket (appropriately) shaped like a coffin.
To install your A/C safely, you'll want to use brackets, not a book.
In case the occasional sleepless, sweaty night in your apartment (or artificially frigid day in your office) hasn't made it abundantly clear, air conditioning season is upon us.
And whether you've already crammed yours into the window or plan to finally set things up over the long weekend, we've rounded up the best advice from our archives (and the rest of the Internet) on everything from installation protocol to pest control.
If you're the lucky owner of a Brooklyn brownstone, we'd imagine it would be hard to part with it. But consider that owners even in less desirable areas--so-called emerging neighborhoods like Bed-Stuy and Crown Heights--are finding buyers willing to pony up $2 million or more for these coveted pieces of property, and suddenly selling seems a little more doable.
The one catch, according to Brownstoner, is that these high-end buyers expect top notch finishes. No middle-of-the-road Home Depot reno is going to cut it.
The rise in sales prices has finally slowed, but the Manhattan market is still rough for all but the wealthiest, all-cash buyers.
In an already competitive market, it doesn't look like buyers will find relief any time soon. In the last three months, nearly half--45.9 percent--of all Manhattan co-ops and condos sold for their asking price or higher, the biggest percentage in six years. At the same time,the average number of days a place spent on the market fell to 96 from 178 last year,according to Douglas Elliman's just-released report on second quarter Manhattan sales.
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