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Finding More Life in Sleepy Brooklyn Heights

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.

Anne Bauso grew up always having a soft spot for Brooklyn, but it was in Garden City where she spent most of her life. Later on when her kids had moved out of the house, the 1600 square foot suburban house was rented out and she moved to Manhattan. After a while she needed something a little bigger and just a little more peaceful. Her ideal neighborhood was Brooklyn Heights and she set out to find a one bedroom in the area.

-Finally, last May, she took action. Brooklyn seemed like the right place for her, especially Brooklyn Heights. -She visited an open house at 2 Grace Court, a six-story co-op in Brooklyn Heights. A sunny, top-floor one-bedroom there was listed for $439,000, with a maintenance fee of around $650 a month. She liked the apartment, but it was early in her hunt, and she wasn’t ready to buy. (That apartment later sold for $435,000.)

-Because years ago she had been hit by a car, injuring a knee, she did not want stairs. Her price range was in the low $400,000s, with a monthly maintenance of no more than $800.

-Back at the Grace Court co-op, a fifth-floor one-bedroom came on the market. This one was an interior apartment with a courtyard view. But the kitchen, with a banquette along one wall, consumed more space than she thought necessary.

-Besides, at $500,000, the apartment seemed expensive. (It later sold for $450,000.)

-At 24 Monroe Place, a 12-story co-op, she saw a few listed in the high $300,000s and low $400,000s. Some of the kitchens were impossibly tiny, even for her. Maintenance, around $1,000 a month, was on the high end.

-The largest one-bedroom she saw, on Montague Street in another 12-story building, was around 625 square feet and on the ground floor. She liked it, even enjoying the lively foot traffic right outside the window. The price was $419,000. She returned with her son, a builder. He was eager to revamp the kitchen as well as the bathroom, which “had a dinginess about it,” Ms. Bauso said. But then, “I thought to myself, do I really want to go through all this?”

-A one-bedroom in a 1950s building on Willow Street, at just over 500 square feet, was smaller than most. The bedroom was just 8 by 10 feet. Ms. McMaster cautioned against it. “Going from a house to an apartment,” she said, “I was concerned for her.”

-But the apartment was clean and cozy. The price was $429,000, with maintenance in the low $600s. Ms. Bauso couldn’t get it out of her mind.

-The location, on a street of pretty town houses and prewar buildings, was her favorite, too. “I had such a sense of peace on this block,” she said.

-Ms. Bauso sold the Long Island house for $525,000. Her new home cost $418,000.

· A Move in the Direction of 'More Life' [NYT]