Well today I got back from Philadelphia after my in-laws finally would leave since I was getting a ride with them back to New York City. The sister in-law was actually cooler than I thought and we got a bit drunk together so that was a bit funny too. I had a real estate photography job at noon, but wasn’t able to make it till 4pm due to normal stuff like in-laws driving, traffic, and taking the wrong subway train. When I did get to the landlords pimpin pad off 70th St in Upper West Manhattan she was happy I was still able to show up, even late. I got right at it taking tons of pictures of her two 1 bedroom vacation rentals in her five-story 1890 brownstone. I was kind of nervous due to this being my first big client getting to do some real estate photography. I was almost worried because this is Upper West Manhattan. Her place must have been worth as an asset around and no less than $5-10 million (and that’s probably a small number). The mahogany wood work was amazing.
After getting all the photography done she wanted me to edit everything on spot in her apartment, upload it, and create another profile for another rental website. I helped her do everything and by the time I was done it was around 9pm. She ended up offering my dinner and I took it. My stomach couldn’t stop growling. I was basically tutoring her for almost 2 hours. It was rather chill. I kind of expected a more snobby preppy white woman from the name and sound of her voice, but she was a chinese immigrant who spoke excellent english, semi-retired after being in the banking industry, and received her parents apartment building. She was actually really laid back and really open or maybe I’m more charming then I give myself credit for. She actually told me a lot and it really gave me a good perspective on landlords with very expensive real estate and the costs going with it. She recently has started making her normal long-term rentals into vacation rentals due to the prime location. The more I asked I found out she has done quite well with the switch, but its just much more work for her then she wishes.
I found even though the place is paid off the inheritance tax alone is 50% of the MARKET VALUE of it. YIKES! Talk about big monthly payments so no wonder rent is SO HIGH in that area. The city is really makes owning real estate and making it profitable (with tons of equity) a really difficult task for manhattan landlords especially. That must suck. You pay off a place, you die, it goes to your kids, and then they are stuck with a huge property tax + basically new HUGE mortgage from inheritance taxes for life since her place is in the upscale Manhattan prime prime area. I suppose when you rent a 1 bedroom 500 sqft place for $2700/month (which is low she said due to bad market conditions) you must be banking on the job and in a SUPER nice area, which the upper west side is of course. I figured if the place was fully rented it must bring in around $30,000 cashflow a month or through vacation rentals for nightly rates. She should be well off with income, but instead the taxes alone without any income in a sick and sad position, that comes off really stressful.
Between 10pm to 12am we talked about America’s government policies, healthcare, people getting fat from food, life, and how to make me make better curry dishes. She was quite charming for a baby boomer and I hope she enjoyed my inquisitive aggressive question asking personality, I mean she did buy me dinner and we drank really great white wine.
I retired after 12am because it was getting late and I had to get back to my ghetto in Bedstuy, Brooklyn. I never got to move in to the new place in Prospect heights, but I did walk away with a $250 check ($50 extra then I requested). So it felt good to have a first real pay check even if small in New York City doing something media related. Now I’ll definitely have an excellent real estate photography client references and I hope I pick up more jobs with more work examples.
I’m sure I’ll be working with this landlord again on something if not just hanging out with her offering company for some stress relieving landlord small talk.
March 29, 2010 | Categories: landlord website, Real Estate Blogs, real estate journal, trading stock options | Tags: 1890 upper west manhattan brownstones, having fun with in-laws, new york city real estate photographer, nyc landlord small talk, nyc real estate inheritance tax, nyc real estate photographer, nyc real estate photography | 2 Comments