With demand slowing for rentals in New York City a bit, some renters are gaining the leverage with owners and landlords that allows them to renovate their temporary abodes, as crazy as that may sound.

One young couple negotiated the right to do, and pay for, a significant $45,000 remodeling project on a two-bedroom New York City apartment after a two-month negotiation with the landlord that resulted in a five-year lease and a lower monthly rent for the trouble.

“We get a break on rent, but put a significant investment in the property,” Brandon Michon — the renter who, with his wife, negotiated the deal — told the New York Times. The arrangement “allows us to get a home without the mortgage and without having to search hundreds of apartments for something that suits our taste,” he said.

Renters are able to explore the option to renovate because the market has shifted some in their favor, Lyon Porter, a sales and leasing director of the New York City brokerage Town Residential, told the Times. “Before, it used to be absolutely not. Take it or leave it. I have a line out the door. Now there’s a real conversation and a negotiation.”

Source: New York Times

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