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Boards Rejecting Discount Sales; Feng Shui Still Mysterious

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1) Close your eyes. Imagine, if you will, that you are trying to sell your one-bedroom co-op, that you have been trying for over a year, even cutting the asking price twice, still with no luck. The economy, you think to yourself, ruefully. Politics. But then, out of nowhere, your savior appears. It's a buyer, a polite, respectable buyer with a normal job, and he's offering to pay in cash. This is it! you think to yourself. Finally, I can go live in a cabin in the woods and make canoes or whatever! The only thing that's left is for the board to approve the sale, which they refuse to do because the sale price is too low and they're afraid it will adversely effect the values of their apartments. Open your eyes. Isn't that the worst? Apparently, this is something that has been happening with increased frequency. One way to get around it is to agree to a higher price and then have to seller refund some of the cost under the table, which is legal, but not "proper." Still, this confirms what we've all long suspected: Co-op boards are pure evil. ['Board to Buyer: Nah. Not at That Price.']

2) Brokers and developers are just as thoroughly mystified by the concept of "feng shui" as they were last month. But now, they've come up with a solution: hire a Jewish lady from Queens to come in and feng shui the place up. Judith Wendell has a masters degree in feng shui and owns her own consulting business, which is really coming in handy due to the influx of wealthy Chinese buyers—who find feng shui to be essential—looking to make New York City real estate investments. (Consulting an actual Chinese person would probably be too much trouble to go into. They don't even speak English! Weirdos.) Wendell gives input on interior design choices and performs sacred blessing rituals on development sites, or maybe she just dances around and throws red dust in the air, because the people hiring her would literally not know the difference. They really value her contributions, though. This is definitely not just something they do so that they can assure buyers (through a translator) that they consulted a "feng shui expert." ['To Bricks and Mortar, Add Harmony and Luck']

3) This week's hunters have just bought a business in "New Jersey," which must be ones of those weird outer borough neighborhoods, like "Brighton Beach" or "The Ocean." They decide to move their family there as well. They soon find that, as in the city, finding the right area to live in is more important than finding the right house. They find a five-bedroom colonial in a picturesque little town for $745,000, which sounds like a great deal until you realize that they live in the suburbs now, and they'll never get to eat in a restaurant or hear live music or be accosted by a homeless person ever again, the poor schmucks. Their daughters are very excited about Halloween, though. One of them is going to dress up as a "pompom witch." Hey, little girl, thanks for making us Google "pompom witch." That's not a real thing. Now we have to clear our internet browser history. [The Hunt/'Less Commuting, More Halloween Candy']