Sunday, April 27, 2008

On My Mind: Real Estate

City Guy and I are seriously thinking of buying a place this year. Actually, we've been talking about it for a while. So what's holding us back besides economic uncertainty and laziness? The truth is I can't get those California houses out of my head. I've had this bad habit of saying to myself, "Do you know what that money can get us in California?" It's hard to commit to a 1000 sq-foot apartment when you can get a bi-level with a pool out back. Yes, I know I'm always talking about California, but before someone writes in and tells me to leave NYC if I don't like it, give me credit for trying.

Today, I went to see a couple condos in the Financial District. City Guy and I like FiDi, as they call it, for a number of reasons, which I can get into later. They were both gorgeous loft-style apartments in the Phillip Starck-designed building (just check out that lobby) at 15 Broad St, with amenities that would put many New York hotels to shame. Seriously, what hotel do you know that has an indoor lap pool, bowling alley, jacuzzi, basketball court, private theater, private terrace, state of the art gym and dance studio...Whew! Truthfully, I think we might be dreaming with this one. I don't know if we can afford to live in a building like this, with its common charges, but I was dazzled and if I had the kind of cash that allows you to make rash decisions, I'd have gone for it!

But I know next to nothing about real estate and being a complete-ist (does anyone else use this word - I find it handy), I know I won't be comfortable buying until I've explored the market more. We've been putting off this house-hunting process for a while, just dipping our toe into the water with a few open houses last fall, but now that the weather's warming, we have no excuse.

And of the two of us, I'm the one who's got the time to do our real estate homework. So I guess I've got a lot of these open houses ahead of me before this journey is done. I'll keep you posted. So far, these are some of my favorite real estate sites:
What are your favorites?Anyone have any good advice on how best to go about looking for a home in NYC?

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