Translating Broker Babble – The New York Times


Jewel box: “That is an apartment that might be teeny tiny, but might be decorated nicely,” Ms. Cangiano said. Like a pretty little jewel box, but you have to live in it.

Quiet. Serene. Intimate. Sexy. Cozy: Dark as a cave.

Penthouse level: It’s not exactly a penthouse because, well, it’s just a top-floor apartment, sharing the floor with lots of other apartments. But doesn’t “penthouse” have a nice ring to it?

Estate condition. Great bones. Tons of potential. Vintage New York. Bring your imagination. An architect’s dream: It hasn’t been updated since the Koch administration.

Partial, park and direct views: Pay attention to that first word. While “partial” could result in a neck injury, even a “park view” could be limited. “There could be a building between you and the park,” said Martin Eiden, an associate broker at Compass. To guarantee an unobstructed view, the key word is “direct.”

Roof deck: One person’s cabana is another’s fire door. If a listing says “roof deck,” it could mean anything from an infinity pool with fire pits to a slab of asphalt. So look for pictures in the listing.

Three flights up: Do the math. It’s a fourth-floor walk-up.

Motivated seller: “It typically means negotiable price, but they’re not reducing their asking price,” Mr. Guerrieri said. So please just make an offer. Any offer.

Renovated. Newer kitchen. Recently updated: The first question to ask is: “How long ago?” The second: “In what way?” “If you use the word ‘renovation,’ I would assume they painted the cabinets and maybe it has a new dishwasher,” Ms. Kee said. If you’re hoping for a brand-new kitchen, look for words like “chef’s kitchen” or “state of the art,” and expect to see a laundry list of fancy appliances and brand-name finishes.

Artfully designed. Creative. Distinct. Unique: The seller spent an armload renovating the place, but has questionable taste. Brace yourself for chartreuse wallpaper and insanely expensive iridescent tiles. Unless that’s your thing — in which case, welcome home!

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