NYU Student Needs an Apartment, for Living In, and the Times Is On It

Settle down, children! It's time for another fairy tale from that enchanted land of knights and princesses and New Rochelle trust funders, the New York Times real estate section.

This week, the section's apartment-hunting column, "The Hunt," stretches its definition of "hunt" to include Vanessa Csordas-Jenkins, a New York University junior who seeks "an advanced degree in quiet," or a pricey studio in a "1900 neo-Renaissance-style co-op with a beautiful marble lobby and a virtual doorman" near Union Square. Whichever!

You see, living with other students just wasn't cutting it, because the apartment walls had ventilation openings, and other people make noise that's, like, audible:

If a roommate was in the living room, the noise kept her awake. Ms. Csordas-Jenkins — who had received a diagnosis of a sleep disorder five years ago — was exhausted and cranky.

"I checked the box that said are you willing to pay more, because I need to be a healthy person," she said. "That request was denied. Presumably there were no open spaces, which was understandable, but certainly didn't help me any."

Earplugs combined with a white-noise machine were not enough. "It was impossible for me to live comfortably in that situation," she said.

Time for a change! Csordas-Jenkins did what any college student in search of lodgings would do: She hired broker Deborah Hughes to find her a perfect place where she could pay more, as you do.

On East 25th Street, near Second Avenue, a studio in the back of a small 1920 walk-up building with a sleeping loft was available for $1,950 a month. Ms. Csordas-Jenkins, an aspiring actress who is studying theater and dramatic literature, liked it but thought it was too far from campus.

She knew she would fret about rising early enough for class.

"It seemed like the potential for a really stressful situation for me if I woke up late and had to wait for the train," she said. She also wanted to avoid the sirens that came with proximity to the hospitals along First Avenue.

But good things come to those who wait. Things like a pre-war 240-square-foot studio, a charming "little room" just big enough for "a bunk bed that has a sofa underneath." So what if it has a clogging sink? It was totally worth the $3,000 broker fee and the rent... how much was the rent again?

She texted pictures to her parents, who also liked what they saw, and agreed to the rent of $2,100 a month. "I am grateful for my parents because I know how expensive my tuition is," Ms. Csordas-Jenkins said.

And they know it will come back to them sevenfold. Theater and dramatic literature are growing industries. I believe I read that in the Times once!

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