1) The West Chelsea market has recently given us the $20 million penthouse, but is it ready for the $20 million townhouse? Developers snatched up an old house with an artsy history for $6.1 million, completely rebuilding the innards while preserving the historic details. Now the five-story, 25-foot-wide Greek Revival house at 436 West 20th Street is on the market for $21 million. Plans for a rooftop addition with a garden are making their way through the Landmarks Commission.
2) Some say the stigma attached to going from owning to renting is gone, thanks to the downturn. One former SNL writer who made the switch says, "Whenever our friends see us, they say, 'We have a place half as big as yours and we're stuck with owning." How the tables have turned! NYC is still a renter's town: Only 25% of Manhattan residents own their homes, versus 67% nationally. Does this make Stuy Town the new 15 Central Park West?! ['Owners No More']
3) Might there be a mass sell-off of apartments at the Lower East Side's Co-op Village? A rabbinical ruling out of Israel seems to ban the use of many "Shabbos elevators," which stop on every floor during the Sabbath so observant Jews do not have to press any buttons, labeled as unnecessary work on the day of rest. The Co-op Villae high-rises have a huge Jewish population, and each building has a Shabbos elevator. The decision was ambiguous and left many scratching their yarmulkes. Oy vey. [Another Landlord Worry: Is the Elevator Kosher?]
4) Why would one move out of 740 Park Avenue, the world's richest apartment building, except when carried out feet first? Well, when your hedge fund buys a failed bank, and you become the chief executive of the holding company for that bank, and the offices are in Pasadena, sometimes you don't have a choice. Quietly asking $37.5 million, all cash plz. [Big Deal/'Gilt-Edged Vacancy']
5) Who says Manhattan is not for the middle class anymore? A teacher and a firefighter go looking for a small UES rental, only to have the one they choose get evacuated due to Second Avenue Subway construction. They find another walk-up with a yard for their adorable (Neutron!) on East 88th Street, paying $1,720/month. [The Hunt/'An Apartment Scramble']