HGTV's Selling New York rides along with brokerages CORE, Gumley Haft Kleier and Warburg as they try to sell fabulous properties fabulously. Here's our recap of how the NYC real estate industry is portrayed to the world, penned by Molly Reisner. Episode air date: 12/1/2011.
Last night's Selling New York was a bow-wow-nanza of canines and their cash-heavy owners. A San Francisco couple and their dinky dogs seek guidance from an agent on the pupfect Manhattan nabe to nab a rental. Will the west coast family find fabulous square footage or a bunch of fleabag flops? Then, a wealthy Boston family is THIS CLOSE to closing on their dream Gramercy Park apartment when eeeks! it turns out their gigantic dog may not be so welcome. Will they have to throw a bone to the co-op board to get Dogzilla on board? I may have run out of dog-related jokes...but maybe not! You'll have to take this recap out for a walk around your eyeballs to find out!
CRISIS #1: SAN FRAN DUO MUST SETTLE INTO DOG-FRIENDLY RENTAL FOR IMMEDIATE NESTING
CORE agent Parul Brahmbhatt is just hanging around the office to handle random walk-ins when an anxious Chris Mancini pops in. Chris just moved from San Fran to work in Jersey City, and he needs to find a Manhattan home to rent before his boyfriend and their two dogs come east. His budget? $8,500 a month! "I don't know what that even does in New York," he says meekly. Um, it'll get you a windowless room with a shared toilet in the hallway. Are you &*%#ing kidding me?! I don't believe you're that clueless, Chris?you're a super successful business man!
Chris holds invisible stacks of cash to show Parul his budget:
Parul is amped to be Chris' agent and to show him "a broad spectrum of choices" that are close to Jersey transport and for getting around the city. Their first stop is at this $9,500/month rental at 343 West 16th Street in Chelsea:
Chris has concerns over the street-level lack o' privacy vibe and isn't sure if it's so safe being on the ground floor. No one is mentioning this, but it's over budget, Parul!
Though Chris is digging the private dog poop garden:
Feeling unmoored without his BF Brian to help make the decision, Chris decides to wait until he and the dogs arrive before they look at...
...a $9,995/too-much-money-a-month apartment in the Financial District.
For just shy of ten grand, you too can live in this 2BR/2.5BA luxury pit:
Chris & Bri love the openness of the space, but aren't sure about the nabe. They take a moment to reflect, while nursing their dogs:
They pop out for a jaunt around the 'hood, where the twosome note how crowded the streets are.
Chris and Bri getting lost amongst unfortunate fashion choices:
Where's the hominess? The green space? The community? they want to know. Ummm, not so much in Wall Street guys. Have you NEVER been to New York before? Brian doesn't want to live in a "big, concrete canyon," plus the dog park is too far. Parul is determined to find them just what they need, which may be a $9500/month spot at Union Square's 254 Park Avenue South.
Will this pre-war pup-friendly pad be fetching enough? Will they go for the art and the amenities?
So not a surprise, Chris and Bri love it and think it "feels like home." But, but, but...the rent is too damn high! Next, Parul meets up with the agent, Ken Barkoff, at Chelsea Market to negotiate a deal. He's not feeling the $8,500 a month budget limit on a $9,500 apartment, no bones about it.
Ken negotiates down to $9,300 but Parul sticks to her budget guns at $8,500. "San Francisco is beautiful, this is Manhattan. They gotta get roughed up a little bit here y'know," Ken exclaims. What is this, New York in the late '70s?
Ken barters even further to $9,000 at which point Parul has a light bulb moment and excuses herself to make a quick call to Chris with an idea...which is to get him to pay $8,750 a month up front for the whole year IN CASH! Chris likes the idea but has to make sure he has the funds, and Ken finds it "an intriguing notion" to bring to the owner.
Chris digs up some savings and offers the cash, but did Ken accept it? Why yes he did! Parul shares the good (if you can call forking over $100k for a rental, good) news with them at the park. And even better news? The update informs that Chris and Bri plan to buy once their lease is up and return to Parul. Aww, I love that they've taken a cue from their pets in the loyalty department.
CRISIS #2:BERNESE MOUNTAIN DOG THREATENS TO DIG UP GRAMERCY APARTMENT DEAL
Sabrina Kleier-Morgenstern's got her Boston-based clients/friends, Brian Knez and Wioletta Zywina (AKA BriWi), chomping at the leash to buy a $5.45 million manse at 50 Gramercy Park North (or as we like to say, that building that Jen Aniston does not call home).
A repeat visit to the 3BR/3.5BA abode only confirms their desire to snap up this slice of prime grade A Gramercy Park:
Naturally, Sab is panting at the possibilites of reeling in the referrals from this well-connected couple, who, P.S. have a mammoth Bernese Mountain Dog named Beaumont. Next, BriWi meet up with Sab and Mama Michele Bear at the Gramercy Park Hotel's Jade Bar to discuss next steps.
Baby's got an eye on the deal:
Turns out their offer was approved and now it's time for some nitty gritty board package review. BriWi's not so into the invasive nature of the process, calling the experience "like a proctology exam." Perhaps accurate for him but blaaarghdangit that's a strong image to shake.
Two personal references are needed to ensure BriWi are not vigilantes, as well as the 411 on Beaumont (how big he is, what kind of breed, and how bad is his breath).
But yeeeps! There's a snag. Mama and Sab head over to the CORE office where the building's listing agent, Kirk Rundhaug, explains that the big dog might be a big no for the board.
Agents fake-freaking out over a fake issue:
Will the board snub their nose at sweet Beaumont or...no, of course they don't! Kirk figures out that OOOPS the board really does allow big dogs and it was just a manufactured misunderstanding. Mishap solved!
Finally, it's time to celebrate the closing of BriWi's Manhattan dog bedpartment at where else? Barkdorf's! Bri used to run Bergdorf's, so it's basically an extension of his home. There, he bejewels the Kleier ladies with opulent offerings:
After several rounds of hugs and kisses and hoorays, the update explains that BriWi's gifts keep on giving as Mama and Sab have a new client referred by them. It's a dog sweet dog world!
Episode Grade: I was itchin' for some deals and this episode was like a big scratch behind the ears. This episode begs for 3.5 out of 5 tail-wagging cackling Kleiers.
· Selling New York [HGTV]
· Selling New York coverage [Curbed]