Industry News

Tough love for real estate ‘Virgins’

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The real estate agent is showing a house to a young woman who wants to buy an income property. Except for the icky shower stall in the tenant's apartment, it's looking good. Then the agent points out the building's deteriorating roof, which will cost at least $4,000 to replace. Oh, and don't forget that in addition to the mortgage, the buyer also will have to cover the taxes, the utilities and the stress of having a herd of college-student tenants downstairs, the agent says. Can she handle that? The buyer clutches her throat and says she's starting to feel panicky. "I can't breathe, I can't breathe!" she cries, only half-joking. This is real estate agent Sandra Rinomato's world -- a place populated by earnest singles and couples who coo over a house's stainless-steel appliances but manage not to notice the factory that's belching smoke directly across the street, until their agent points it out. It's a place where the agent rolls her eyes when the buyers dismis...