By Beyond My Ken , via Wikimedia Commons

Greetings from Your Soon-To-Be Realtor!

“A shortage of New York City apartments for sale is forcing real estate agents to take extreme, if not desperate, measures in order to conjure up listings. One tactic is sending letters to all the two-bedrooms, say, in choice buildings to try to persuade their owners to sell.”

The New York Times

Dear Homeowner:

Helpful realtor here, hoping this letter isn’t too much of an inconvenience. Frankly, I’ll be surprised if it even gets to you, given the shoddy mail service in your building. Did you know your doorman opens all of your personal correspondence? Not only that, but he took the cash your great-aunt sent for your birthday. Some people!

In any case, if you’re able to focus on this letter without getting distracted by the rodent eggs hiding in the cracks of your baseboards, I just wanted to let you know that if you’ve been thinking about moving out of the city before the inevitable next hurricane, terror attack, or criminal takeover, I know some people who’d be eager to look at your apartment.

Not bright people, of course. No, no one in their right mind would want to move into a New York City apartment during this, The Great Rat Relocation of 2013, as rodents take residence in buildings where they’ve never before been spotted. No, it’s a bunch of naïve rubes who don’t realize that the folks who own the empty lot across the street are just weeks away from beginning construction on an 80-story building that will block your view — with jackhammering starting every morning at six. Make that five. Yep, I’ve got some suckers here just waiting with cash in hand. And lots of it.

Sure, you may like the restaurant scene here in the city — but have you seen the latest Health Department Ratings? If you haven’t gotten food poisoning recently, I bet you will — just like your upstairs neighbors, who are clogging your shared sewage pipes as we speak. Or maybe you enjoy the theater? So does the guy down the hall — I have the inside scoop that he’s just started taking opera lessons. And bought his son a drum set. And a police siren!

And did you hear about the new roof deck? No, neither did we. Yes, they’ve been promising it for years, but you know with those crooks in charge it’s never going to happen. How are you enjoying your high-speed Internet? Hope you’ve downloaded everything you're ever planning to, because I have it on good authority that your building’s connection cables are about to be yanked out of the ground by some enterprising young realtor. (And we both know he can — and will! — keep doing that each and every time they’re fixed.)

So before the water starts tasting funny — and, trust me, it’s about to — and your power starts to mysteriously go out every time you’re trying to use your microwave, you might want to give me a call. It’s going to be much harder to sell once someone dies in your apartment. And you can’t be sure that’s not going to happen, especially with the handyman’s criminal record.

Also, this letter — there are bedbugs in the envelope. Or, I should say, there WERE bedbugs. Hey, it’s not so bad — did you really like your furniture? (The bedbugs sure do!) The superintendent once sneaked in and had sex on your couch. Twice. Three times. Give me a call. I’m here for you.

And so are the bedbugs.

Your Brand New Realtor!

    Jeremy Blachman

    Written by

    Author of Anonymous Lawyer and co-author of The Curve ( for even more.

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