Selling style-saturated NYC apartments is no cakewalk

In New York City, where money and quirkiness sometimes meet to produce extravagant, peculiar living spaces, brokers brought in to sell the singular apartments often encourage renovation or price drops for the spaces to get their due.

Sometimes sellers don’t want to compromise. Take the 3,800-square-foot Chelsea unit draped in black decor to resemble a “Shanghai nightclub” whose owner is now trying to sell for $6 million. The owner tells The New York Times that she’s confident it will sell to a foreign buyer looking for something unusual.

It might have to follow other spaces like a one-bedroom loft, also in Chelsea, that was intricately done out in a “steampunk” theme complete with the master bedroom made out to look like a worn Zeppelin-like airship. The filmmaker-owner had to remodel the entire unit to get close to market value when he sold it.

“Buyers want to be able to see themselves in the property,” Kathy Braddock, an owner of Rutenberg Realty, told the Times. “That’s a very important thing. In two to five seconds, they either envision themselves living in the space or they don’t.”

If sellers don’t want to renovate their homes that brokers typically tactfully market with phrases like “taste specific” and “design specific,” then a price drop is often in order.

“There’s definitely a discount when you’re purchasing someone else’s taste,” Caroline Bass, an associate broker at Citi Habitats, told the Times. But it takes some skill to avoid offending the sellers, she said.

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Source: New York Times


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