chinatown loft

One year ago, I came to this city to look for an apartment. I had called up my friend from high school who was a broker and asked her to show us some places. When we came into her office, she said the usual schpeel about how our price range is unrealistic and how there are only three places she can show us.

The first place was in Alphabet City. For a suburban girl, the whole city seemed a bit like a dump, so Avenue C didn’t seem anything dumpier. The next stop was in East Village. I liked the neighborhood, but the apartments we looked at were ridiculously small. And I mean, small. I would have had to pay $1200 for a hole with a chair in it.

Usually the broker saves the best for last, so after seeing those three apartments, we were geared up to see the next one- on the “Lower East Side”. When we got off the subway we realized that we were in Chinatown. How did we know? Oh the Chinese signs everywhere and the umm, Chinese people. This was no LES- it was right by the Manhattan bridge- but what did we know.

The broker took us upstairs. When we came in, our jaws dropped. It was an empty space with windows. The walls were caving in, and so was the floor. There was trash everywhere. It was also obvious that no one had occupied that space since 1989.

“So, you can put a wall up here, and here, and over there. This can be a bedroom,” the broker told us, pointing to a corner.
“That’s not a bedroom, you can’t put a twin bed in there,” my roommate proclaimed.
“Welcome to New York!” the broker snapped.
“Are you fucking kidding me? And there’s no stove!”
“Well there’s a gas connection, I’m sure you can buy a stove.”

We were flabbergasted. I wish I had taken photos of this place, because it was amazingly crazy. Manhattan is a bizarre place. That loft was going for $3,000 a month.

4 Comments so far

  1. RN (unregistered) on July 22nd, 2007 @ 1:41 am

    Everyone’s coming to NYC to live out their “Sex in the City” fantasy.

    Oh…I’m a writer, live on Park Ave., and can afford all these Manolos!

    Give me a freakin’ break.

    Try Baltimore.

  2. mamababoo (unregistered) on July 22nd, 2007 @ 1:01 pm

    I love Manhattan for its history, charm and friendly people. Way beyond those “Sex and the City” years, I would like to live there for the ambience and walkability and the access to great art and theatre. I do hope it doesn’t become priced out of reasonability.

  3. lismarks (unregistered) on July 23rd, 2007 @ 12:20 pm

    Go Back to the suburbs and quit your whining.

  4. RN (unregistered) on July 23rd, 2007 @ 8:24 pm

    I wonder how many millions NYC spends on public relations and ads promoting this place. Yes, it does have history but it’s overly commercialized and hyped.

    If your’re looking for affordable living be ready to sacrifice convenience. Try Staten Island and Bronx, or Queens past Astoria might yield some cheap finds.

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