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Inching Closer To Park Slope and the Food Co-op

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If reading The Hunt stokes your deepest hopes that someday everything in life could work out, then you, too, are obsessed with the New York Times Sunday Real Estate section. Join us as we venture into the depths of this weekend's installment.

Diana Jensen lived in Ditmas Park in a two-bedroom but there was always something that bugged her about the location. The family vibe combined with the distance from Park Slope, where she spent a lot of her time and where her friends lived began to be too much for her. So, she decided to sell her place in Ditmas Park and move somewhere closer to the Slope. After a frustrating search that led her to think she missed out on a once in a lifetime deal, the events actually revealed themselves to be serendipitous. Let's see what happened...

-A part of Ditmas Park’s appeal had been its affordability, but she often found herself on the subway en route to pricier Park Slope, which she would have preferred and where many of her friends lived. She took yoga classes there, and belonged to the Park Slope Food Co-op. “It was really good food,” she said, “and it was important to me.” -...so she hunted for an apartment costing no more than $475,000. This time, a one-bedroom would do, as long as it had some light and views.

-In Park Slope she found a one-bedroom co-op with a sunny view of rooftops and steeples, along with a living-room large enough to work in. The listing price was $399,000, with a maintenance of nearly $900.

-She negotiated the price to $385,000 but still had no buyer for her Ditmas Park place, so she was reluctant to make a firm offer.

-When Ms. Jensen did find a buyer, the Park Slope apartment was still available, this time for $379,000. Her offer of $372,000 was accepted.

-The transaction, however, proved difficult.

-Then, when Ms. Jensen’s lawyer commented on the balcony, she knew something was really wrong: the apartment didn’t have a balcony. The apartment next door did. A one-bedroom with the same owner, it was also for sale. The balcony was shared by the two units, but had been blocked off for the use of just one.

-So she never signed.

-She had seen a cozy one-bedroom co-op with a nice kitchen on Prospect Place in Prospect Heights. It was only $299,000, with a maintenance of $640. But within two weeks of hitting the market, it was in contract for $320,000. “I felt I missed the boat on that one,” Ms. Jensen said.

-On Underhill Avenue in Prospect Heights, she visited a one-bedroom in a four-story co-op. At 525 square feet, the place seemed just the right size. The seller, an architect from Germany, had added plenty of built-in shelves. The co-op had a large common garden. The price was $345,000, with a maintenance of $525.

-But Ms. Jensen had more places to see. A $449,000 one-bedroom at 475 Sterling, a condominium on Sterling Place in Prospect Heights, was larger than most, at 750 square feet.

-“It was similar to my place in Ditmas Park in that the feng shui was off,” she said. “There was something about the sleekly styled architecture that didn’t feel like me.”

-So she chose the place on Underhill, where her offer of $330,000 was accepted.

-She is glad to be within walking distance of “all the things I most enjoy in Brooklyn,” she said. She now has her pick of yoga studios. She walks to and from the food co-op instead of taking the subway

Turns out the deal she missed out on didn't even matter in the long run. She ended up paying just $10,000 more for the Underhill apartment and she got a whole lot more room. We love when these things work out!

· This Time Park Slope, or Close To It [NYT]