NYC Apartments In Harlem Are The Size Of Prison Cells
In jail, captives get an eight-foot-wide space plus three meals a day as they pay their debt to society.
Via NY Daily News reports:
But in one Harlem building, the captives in a 100-square-foot apartment pay $1,275 a month — and there is no free grub.
The owners of a building at 14 Convent Ave. are now hyping the micro mini skirt of apartments — units that are a tough sell, unless you’re a real estate broker, of course.
The Douglas Elliman firm boasts on its website that the apartments — which are barely big enough to accommodate a bed, let alone a nightstand — sport “robust sunlight” and “generous” cabinet space.
“Studios are small, clean, with compelling renovation,” the listing continues. “Perfect for students or young professionals who wish to enjoy the vivacity of South Harlem.”
In other words, this apartment isn’t big enough for indoor vivacity.
“They are like dorm rooms but more expensive,” said third-floor resident Kevin Mangan, 22, a Columbia University senior who moved into his own claustrophobic pad in the building last week.
He pays $1,350 a month for the building’s biggest unit — a 250-square-foot spot that can fit a queen-sized mattress and not much else. He could have saved roughly $400 and just taken a dorm room at his college.
“It is just a place to put my bed,” he said.
The flats at 14 Convent Ave. are considerably smaller than the micro-units plugged by Mayor Bloomberg to answer a coming demand for small units for young professionals.
The first wave, ranging in size from 250 square feet to a whopping (by comparison) 370 square feet, is under construction in Kips Bay with an asking price of $2,100 per month.
Shanghai Holdings is believed to be the first developer to market the mini-homes in Harlem, where an average studio rents for $37 per-square-foot, three-times the asking price for the mini-micros on Convent Ave.
The company filed with the Department of Building’s to convert the building’s “single room occupancy” status into a regular residential classification.
But agency spokeswoman Kelly Magee said the building is still considered an SRO until inspectors rule otherwise. If inspectors don’t rubber-stamp the conversion, Shanghai could be in trouble; city Housing Maintenance Code requires residential rooms to be at least 150 square feet.
At least two of the rentals in question appear too small to meet the letter of the law, as measured by a News reporter with a trusty tape measure.
A housing expert was surprised to learn of the small find.
“It is certainly not the norm,” said Ben Gross, legal fellow at the Furman Center for Real Estate and Urban Policy.
Neither Shanghai nor Douglas Elliman broker Daniel Dolgicer wanted to comment, giving potential customers the last word.
“It needs to be half the price,” said a 35-year-old agent eying the first-floor flat. “This is not worth $1,200. I wouldn’t show this to anyone.”
Would you pay $1,250 for this
Susan Watts/New York Daily News