03/20/17 6:09pm
Those Gowanus kayakers are not wearing hazmat suits, meaning they have no fear of death. Photo via 365 Bond

Those Gowanus kayakers are not wearing hazmat suits, meaning they have no fear of death. Photo via 365 Bond

Gird your loins: beginning tomorrow, an affordable housing lottery is opening for 54 newly constructed units at the massive, neighborhood-changing rental building known as 365 Bond. The lottery will undoubtedly be inundated by enough people to populate a larger-than average American town, but hey, applying won’t take as long as writing that leaving Brooklyn essay, and if you win a unit you’ll be able to actually afford to stay here. (more…)

03/14/17 11:44am
Bushwick, $825/month. Someone lost their security deposit, but at least they had fun

Bushwick, $825/month. Someone lost their security deposit, but at least they had fun

Brooklyn’s rental market is way scarier than the blizzard: we’d deal with Stella twice a week every week if we could only rent in Park Slope for under $1,000 a month. Alas, times are tight, but check out these picks we found, and don’t forget to try out Brownstoner’s listing service before you go sloughing through Craigslist. (more…)

03/07/17 2:26pm
This looks like a set from Amelie. Damn.

This looks like a set from Amelie. Damn. (Gowanus, $2,550/month)

Finding a livable apartment in Brooklyn within your budget in 2017 is more difficult than plenty of reality TV shows: you probably have a better shot at winning Jeopardy than finding a one-bedroom for under $1,000 a month. We here at Brokelyn’s Budget Apartment Department are here to help. We’ve combed Craigslist for you and found the borough’s best deals this week. (more…)

02/13/17 2:46pm
Affordable housing lottery opens Downtown for 143 units with onsite dog grooming

33 Bond Street under construction, photo via Google Maps. Inset rendering via TF Cornerstone

In what marks the fifth affordable housing lottery to open in Brooklyn this year alone, a whopping 143 subsidized units are now accepting applications at Downtown Brooklyn’s glassy residential development 33 Bond St. (alternate address 300 Livingston St.). You’ll be paying on the cheap (rents start at $897/month) while your neighbors splurge big time and both of you get too enjoy the buildings’ ridiculous amenities, including dog grooming, because no luxury housing experience is complete without a professionally cleaned pupper.

The lottery, which opened today, is looking for one- to four-person households making a combined annual income of $32,640 to $54,360, depending on family size. (more…)

11/28/16 9:55am
Apply now: The lottery for $596/month studios at the old Domino Sugar factory site opens today

A sweet deal at the old Domino sugar factory site. Via Shop Architects.

Years ago, when the spread of waterfront development in Williamsburg momentarily seemed containable, a group of residents and decay-junkies led an effort to preserve the old Domino Sugar factory complex. The ill-fated goal was to preserve the historic, hulking ruins of the old sugar factory, whose vast abandoned charm and industrial aesthetic reminded the neighborhood of its pre-hyper gentrification days. The effort failed of course, and the massive development project pictured above is under construction. So you can’t live in lofts carved out of a 130-year-old sugar factory, but you can at least live on the land instead: Today, the lottery opened for $596/month studios at 325 Kent Ave., the first building on the site.  (more…)

10/21/16 10:38am
The bot form of Jimmy McMillan wants to help you find an apartment.

The bot form of Jimmy McMillan wants to help you find an apartment (Archibald the parrot helps too).

Jimmy McMillan has an enduring allure to him, especially at this moment in history, perhaps because he reminds us of a time when our, let’s say, more unorthodox candidates weren’t seen as a direct threat to democracy and everything we hold dear. Most people started seeing McMillan’s Chester A. Arthur mutton chops and pro wrestler swagger during his notable bid for governor in 2010, when he ran on the Rent Is Too Damn High ticket, which also happened to be his catchphrase and only memorable platform. It was the “make America great again” for a kinder, simpler age. We’ve seen a decent amount of him since then: he talked about running for mayor, dropped a fairly fire anthem (for a politician, at least), traveled the world in doll form, occasionally shopped at Trader Joe’s on Court Street and announced in December he would retire from politics. This month he’s back in a new role, though along the same theme: Helping you find an apartment in a city where the rent only keeps getting higher.

Apartment hunting startup Joinery worked with McMillan to create Jimmybot, a free Jimmy McMillan-inspired Facebook bot that helps you search for apartments in your price range. McMillan appears in videos for the service, including one where he advises that if you had your own apartment, you wouldn’t walk in on him having sex with your mother to the tunes of Teddy Pendergrass.

“A lot of it was completely just ad libbed,” Joinery cofounder Julia Ramsey said of the videos. “He was totally into the idea, he’s been sort of in and out of politics for so long. His central platform that the cost of living is too high in New York, and I would tend to agree.” (more…)

10/13/16 4:14pm
Shady landlords abound in this city. Via YouTube.

Shady landlords abound in this city. Via YouTube.

Landlords occupy a rarefied position in American society, alongside lawyers, street canvassers and lousy journalists, in that the public always seems to think they are categorically a terrible class of humans. Everyone thinks their landlord is the worst, and many of them are, as they seem to be dedicated to squeezing every penny out of potential tenants without a whiff of concern for civic pride or maintaining a livable city. But is your landlord actually the worst? Here’s your chance to find out: Public Advocate Letitia James released the annual list of 100 worst landlords today and for the first time, the list includes Department of Building violations and Department of Finance data on tax liens. Ooh I can’t wait, it’s like the most depressing award show of all time (except for the Grammys).  (more…)

08/03/16 2:05pm
An ad from Ollie's Facebook page, advertising "all-inclusive living."

An ad from Ollie’s Facebook page, advertising “all-inclusive living.”

As you surely have noticed, the media have turned telling us why millennials are Bad into a cottage industry. Millennials are not having sex, they’re not eating cereal, they’re living in adult tree forts constructed out of all the participation trophies they were handed while not buying crap like cars because we don’t actually want them/can’t afford them anyway. Millennials are not actually Bad, nor are they a homogeneous group of people who all act or tweet alike; when people talk about “millennials,” they usually mean a certain subset of city-dwelling white people from upper-middle class families who spend a lot of time on the internet. Millennials as a group are definitely not worse than Baby Boomers, many of whom were, it turns out, Bad the whole time.

But occasionally we get a reminder why this trope exists about millennials, like this story from DNAinfo yesterday about all the real estate companies that cater to “millennials” — aka people who have a lot of money to spend on apartments with fancy amenities — and offer discounts on lots of apps that divide you from actually interacting with your fellow New Yorkers.

“Our generation is so used to an on-demand lifestyle,” Lia Wayman, the 27-year-old co-founder of Room Ring, a service that matches roommates like an online dating service, told DNAinfo. “I used to say to my mom that I needed someone to do my errands.” (more…)

07/28/16 9:37am
Rental report card: New site rates landlords and apartments using letter grades

Rentlogic assigns a letter grade to each building based on complaint records.

The average NYC resident tends to avoid eating at a restaurant with a C rating — would they rent an apartment with a D- rating? That’s the grade my current apartment received according to a new site, Rentlogic, that uses an algorithm to calculate letter grades for apartments and landlords in the city. Now, before you sign the next lease, by going on Rentlogic you’ll be able to check a given apartment’s history of safety violations, vermin infestations, legal action and the like. Think of it as a way to run a background check to supplement your Craigslist search.

The CEO, activist and entrepreneur Yale Fox, who is behind Toronto’s Landlordwatch.com, told DNAInfo that he created the site because “renters really never come first.”

“It’s not a level playing field between landlords and renters,” he said. But by providing crucial information to renters, he’s hoping to change that.   (more…)

06/29/16 3:12pm
Via Flickr user jthetzel.

Via Flickr user jthetzel.

Ah Boston, you ain’t so bad, except for when it comes to the thought of actually living there, which, ugh, no. Our nation’s most bro-friendly city gets a lot of flack from us New Yorkers, some of it deserved, some of it just being mean, some of it because it looks like their streets were laid out by a 5-year-old with a spirograph.

So whatever your thoughts on Boston are, here’s a reason to be glad you don’t live there: Much of the rent in the city is more expensive than Brooklyn’s, according to this report in Metro. And with that 2am last call time, there’s even less time to drink away your sorrows.  (more…)