The New York City real estate market is different than any we had experienced before. (This is our first time buying in New York.) We are learning, though.
For one thing, it seems “exclusive” listings still exist here. Apparently that means that here any realtor can show a property that is on the market but only with the help and usually the actual presence of the listing agent. Additionally, there is an absence of lock boxes, so the owner also must be present for each showing. All of this takes a lot of coordination and so showings rarely (if ever) take place on short notice.
Nevertheless, we did make arrangements through a real estate agent named Sonya to see a co-op we found listed for sale on Zillow. We arranged to meet Sonya at 5 PM in front of the building. Sonya arrived with an “assistant” named Annette, punctually.
Punctuality doesn’t always mean a whole lot, however. In this case, although all the parties agreed to the showing, the owner and the listing agent were late. Sonya did not have access to the building or the apartment, and so we waited. After some time, Annette decided to go around the building to another entrance to try to worm her way into the building, and she did. Meanwhile, Sonya, whose patience was wearing thin, finally rang EVERY apartment buzzer hoping someone would let her (us) into the building. Someone did just as Annette also came through the lobby from another direction. Burglar-proof that building is not!
Our plan was to see apartment 4A. Sonya had other ideas, however. She showed us 4K. Apartment 4K was a total mess and would easily require tens of thousands of dollars just to make it habitable. Meanwhile, 4A was unavailable for a showing. Sonya did have another property just a few blocks away she pushed rather hard for us to see. When we finally agreed to see it (against our better judgment), it would be another hour of wait time.
Although you cannot see the disrepair in this photo, notice the stall shower on the far left. Walls, floor, and ceiling of that shower are all dark brown!
No harm done, however. In the process, we did learn that the building was unacceptable to us (and that was just the parts we saw) as was the neighborhood with burglar bars aplenty, not to mention the two bail bondsmen storefronts just down the street.
Sonya, however, clearly stated that the unavailability of apartment 2A for a showing, which was the sole reason we were there, was not her fault. She does not make mistakes, you see. She said so. The mistake was Sir Braver’s. She flat out said so.
And Sonya’s parting words to us? “I am representing you.”
No, thank you, Sonya.