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27 East 127th Street
Price: $783,999
Width: 18 feet
Broker: Lisa Miranda Yearwood, Century 21 Future Homes Realty

This former rooming house—not an SRO, Yearwood emphasizes, since it doesn’t require a hard-to-get certificate of non-harassment—is full of original fixtures: mahogany doors, wood cabinetry, four marble fireplaces. Many of the other townhouses on this pretty street have already been rehabbed.

Photo: Noah Sheldon

140 West 130th Street
Price: $675,000
Width: 16.75 feet
Broker: Norman Horowitz, Halstead Property

This one’s all potential, for now: boarded-up windows, chipped façade, and chain-link fence out front. (The interior’s just as rough.) Previous owners started demolition work on one floor, but construction halted midway, leaving a lot of detail intact, says Horowitz. The rest of the block is quite handsome.

Photo: Noah Sheldon

126 West 131st Street
Price: $899,000
Width:20 feet
Broker: Howard Friedberg, Harvest Equities; Robin E. Prescod, Harlem Homes

Prescod says this former SRO has its non-harassment paperwork in order, so financing should be obtainable and construction can begin. Wainscoting, molding, and decorative mantels are all intact, though the interior definitely needs heavy refurbishing.

Photo: Noah Sheldon

215 West 131st Street
Price: $995,000
Width: 16 feet
Broker: Angela Ward and Brian Huang, City Connections Realty

The work on this one has already been done. The owners, who bought it in 2007 and are selling to fund their local ministry, live on the top three floors and rent out the garden apartment. Listing broker Angela Ward says she’s been showing it “around the clock” and expects it to go soon.

Photo: Noah Sheldon

251 West 131st Street
Price: $800,000
Width: 17 feet
Broker: Maurice Brown, Prudential Douglas Elliman

This three-unit house is still classified as an SRO, and the seller has begun the process of obtaining the all-important certificate of non-harassment. It’s in passable shape inside, with a new roof and boiler. Brown notes that “it’s a short sale”—that is, it’s going for less than the amount the owners owe, so their bank has to approve the deal.

Photo: Noah Sheldon

167 West 126th Street
Price: $990,000
Width: 17 feet
Broker: Kathryn Higgins, DJK Residential

This four-story house has a retail space for extra income. But there’s a big catch: Squatters occupied the house for years, and the last of them, until recently, would accost Higgins and screech at her during showings. The crazy lady’s gone now, but the property needs a lot of help, from top (the roof) to bottom (the floors need to be torn out and replaced).

Photo: Noah Sheldon

1990 Madison Avenue
Price: $910,000
Width: 20 feet
Broker: Victoria Stinson, Fenwick Keats Goodstein

Located somewhat unusually on an avenue block of brownstones, this SRO near 127th Street is chopped up with kitchenettes and communal bathrooms and lacks a certificate of occupancy. If you’re willing to do the work, there’s plenty of reward: pocket doors, wood moldings, a large mirror original to the house.

Photo: Noah Sheldon

102 West 132nd Street
Price: $875,000
Width: 17 feet
Broker: Carolyn Mitchell, Mark David and Company

A freestanding house with a serious sob story: Its owners lost it to foreclosure on the brink of finishing a renovation. “My heart dropped when I walked in,” says Mitchell. “They were so close!” It has an owner’s duplex and two rentals, and needs a few final details finished: One window needs to be reframed.

Photo: Noah Sheldon

239 West 120th Street
Price: $689,000
Width: 20 feet
Broker: Crystal Burns, Crystals City

Another SRO that lacks its certificate of non-harassment, so its current tenants will need to sign off before you can proceed with reconstruction, says broker Crystal Burns. Tin ceilings, granite entryway, and original banisters and doors are all intact.

Photo: Noah Sheldon

Fall Fashion Features

The Beefcake in the Backcourt
Big, fake, and fully able to outshine its surroundings.Big, fake, and fully able to outshine its surroundings.


The Beefcake in the Backcourt
Big, fake, and fully able to outshine its surroundings.Big, fake, and fully able to outshine its surroundings.