Why am I still living in one of the most expensive cities in the world? IDK – I honestly wanna move – I want a house or a gated community, a yard, dead silence and complete boredom. Currently I am looking to move yet again. I’m a Harlem Knight who read a the book, A Tree grows in Brooklyn. One day I moved across the bridge and never looked back.
However, I do not know when real estate went to shit in New York. Rent is $2,000+, they have successfully forced everyone to live life like MTV’s show The Real World – 4-6 people in a house just to cover the rent. Chopped up apartment sizes to the size of a shoebox, got rid of any closets or dead space– and still want people to be happy in this city with a shitty transit system that hasn’t been fixed since the 70’s. So when I starting to look for an apartment, I was immediately discouraged by the prices, second by the lack of thought and effort management companies take in this process. They want bank statements, credit scores, w-2 pretty much everything short of a blood sample or DNA test. So with no flexibility in the system, what is a working person to do?
They built the system to kick the working class out of affordable housing, I read a bunch of NYTimes articles including The Eviction Machine Churning Through New York City discussing people’s struggles with landlords on getting evicted, non-existent one shot deals, black listed tenants, lying lawyers and frustrated tenants that just want there apartment fixed. I honestly feel lost in the abyss of why am I still here. Is the system even built for us? Jobs aren’t paying minorities 40x the rent, let alone you need a guarantor of 80x rent plus the 700 credit score. Putting this in perspective, an apartment listed at $2,000 I would need to make $80,000 a year, and my guarantor $160,000. Even if I haven’t missed a payment on anything in 7 years, you can still deny me based on the color of my skin which has happened twice.
I never pull or use the race card however one instance, I provided all of the necessary documents, my job was solid, and my guarantor was going to pay for a year of rent upfront at lease signing cash – DENIED with no reason. A landlord that walks away from a year of NYC rent CASH does not want you in their establishment for any reason other but your race. It’s not about business at this point its personal- I do not want you in this building regardless of if you pay your bills on time, letters of recommendation, never missed a rent payment, can afford to actually live here– nothing. Now my credit score has taken a few hits of hard inquiries when I only asked the broker to run my credit one time, the office ran it four times so they could charge $75 each time they hit enter and take it out of the “hassle-free” deposit. By “hassle-free” I mean call the office everyday to give me my money back since you can’t find me an apartment nor give me a reason why I was denied. Now I have to rethink long and hard why am I still here – TBC.