Not a House for Mere Mortals

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There are houses for normal people with uneven floors, mice that live in the walls and closet-sized bedrooms, then there are houses like this one on Grace Court Alley. This is one of those houses you see and you wonder who the hell lives there. I’ll tell you who: not you. Not me. People who live here eat ambrosia – the real Greek god kind, no the Jell-o and Cool Whip kind – for breakfast, lunch and dinner and they never get fat. They buy new underwear when all the pairs they own are dirty and just throw the old ones away. They have Netflix accounts of their own and don’t even share the password with all of their family members. This is not a house for mere mortals.

Grace Court Alley is in Brooklyn Heights and it looks like a set of what you imagine quaint New York City looks like (Forgotten New York has a deep dive if you want to read it). It’s a movie set of itself. Cars may drive down this alley sometimes, but only the cars that pull into the private garages of the homes here. Anyone else who drives down it immediately thinks to themselves, “Oh god! Oh god! What did I do? I DON’T BELONG HERE!” At one point in time this alley was just the entry point for the stables that belonged to the real showpieces of the neighborhood. But now, most of us would kill to live in the stables of those houses. Because now they don’t look like stables, they look like this:

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Son. Of. A. Bitch.

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Can you imagine eating cereal in your t-shirt and 13-year-old comfy pants one morning in a room this pretty? Well you’re not allowed to. Those pants deserve to be put in the trash just like a pair of single-use underwear. And just forget about sunbathing on this deck or watching the snow gently fall from your glass-enclosed reading nook, ok?

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But maybe you’re a fancy person and you’ve got $10M to spare (up 270%!!!! from its last sale in 2011). If so, 6 Grace Court Alley is the place for you.

 

Welcome to House Scouting!

I am guilty of being an incurable house scouter. I live in Brooklyn, NY – the epicenter of housing that is both desired and unaffordable at the same time. The envy that I feel, the what-ifs that roll around in my brain, the mental gymnastics that I go through to figure out just how I could land myself in this brownstone, or that apartment, or that other upstate cabin borders on pathological.

It’s pretty silly that I am constantly looking in the first place. I’m one of those few lucky people who’s been in her rent-stabilized, larger-than-average apartment for 16 years. It fits most of my needs (just barely). To keep myself in good standing as a tenant, I do repairs myself and scream at my kids not to stomp too loudly on the floor so they don’t disturb the super who lives below us. I pay my rent on time and try to fly as far under my landlord’s radar as possible. But I’d consider trading one of my stompy children for a second bathroom, or a postage-stamp sized outdoor space, or maybe another bedroom in a heartbeat.

Rather than trafficking in illegal human trade, I figured I’d do something with this never-ending hunt that I’m on and share it with you. Maybe you need an apartment! Maybe you’re a real estate obsessive like I am! I plan on posting good deals in great neighborhoods, absurdly un-great deals in even greater neighborhoods, apartments and houses that you and I are never going to get to live in but love peeking into anyway, and maybe some design scores that you totally should buy. After all, a good chair may be in your budget even if a corner brownstone is not.

If you see an amazing place that you think I should share, by all means, send it to me at: housescoutingsite@gmail.com because sharing is caring.