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Family of Doctors Looking to Rent in Harlem

Welcome to It Happened One Weekend, our weekly roundup of The New York Times real estate section...

Every "The Hunt" column begins with the Hunters describing the apartment they want, and ends with them rationalizing whatever they came away with. This is The Hunt: Dreams vs. Reality
The Hunters: A family of doctors
Price
Dream: $3,000/month
Reality: $4,700/month
Neighborhood
Dream: Harlem
Reality: Harlem
Amenities
Dream: 3BR/3BA, outdoor space, close to Central Park
Reality: 3BR/4BA, triplex, backyard
Summary
This weekend's Hunters are a pair of doctors, their sons, and their dog. After living in a three-bedroom unit in New York-Presbyterian staff housing for a few years, the Watkins family decided to look for a more permanent place to rent. They decided to focus on Harlem, relatively close to Central Park, with a budget of around $3,000/month. However, finding this mythical three-bedroom apartment for $3,000/month in one of the hottest markets in New York City proved difficult, so they decided to up their budget and look further north. Eventually, they found a triplex in a brownstone that perfectly met their needs in the West 130s, though they're now paying a hefty $4,700/month (plus a ton of other unforeseen expenses). [The Hunt/"A Decision Clinched by a Yard"; photo by b-btzn/Curbed Photo Pool]