July 19, 2024
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July 19, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

After a Tough Week, Some Lighter Real Estate Matters

It was hard to write this column while my mind was preoccupied with the horrific news from Paris that is at the forefront of all our thoughts. However, history has shown that determination and perseverance in the face of adversity has been a major factor in overcoming the face of evil. The Jewish communities throughout our history have, remarkably, stood the test of time, against all odds.

With this in mind I’d like to relate some lighter real estate matters to distract us for just a little while. It’s no secret that a large portion of our clientele want to relocate to a strong Jewish community. This makes it easier for us because we can narrow the search down to the handful of towns in Bergen County that can accommodate their needs. For clients in Bergen County who just want the proximity to New York, there are 70 towns to choose from. The downside of all of this is that if you want to walk to a synagogue you are going to pay a premium for that luxury.

It’s interesting to note that most of the open houses in Bergen County are on Sunday. This makes it easier for traditional real estate agents to compete with the general public. One reason it remains on a Sunday is that the current Blue Laws prohibit the malls and stores in Bergen County from opening on Sunday. This leaves the shopping and errands for the general community to be conducted on Saturdays.

Whenever I show a house that’s supposed to be empty, I always ring the bell first and wait a few seconds. This habit started when I entered a (supposedly) vacant house and opened the master bedroom door and, to my surprise, there was a man sleeping on a cot. The owner gave permission to one of his friends to crash there, without informing his real estate agent. I don’t want to be put in that position again.

As a property manager, I once got a call from one of my tenants that there was water coming into his apartment from the upstairs tenant. I tried to call that tenant, but no one answered. I called the super to meet me there. I did not want to enter the apartment alone. When I opened the door and walked in a few feet, I screamed and ran back out. The only item in the living room was a 12-foot glass cage with a 15-foot python curled up in it. The tenant was nowhere to be found. The super found an open window that allowed rainwater to run down into the downstairs apartment. He closed the window and the tenant did not respond to numerous calls for three weeks. He was working out of town. The lease he signed had a no-pet clause. When I reminded him about that he shot back at me saying that there are tenants in the complex who have cats and if I make him get rid of his snake he will take us all to court. I called the lawyer for the building and he asked me, “Is a cat a pet?” and I said yes. He asked me, “Is a snake a pet?” and I said yes. He informed me that the only animals people can’t keep in their apartments are farm animals. Now I know it’s important not just to ask about cats and dogs.

I hope these vignettes will distract you just a little bit from the faces of evil that have sprung up all around the globe. Strong family and communities will shed light on all this darkness.

By Martha (Malkie) Aaron, Anhalt Realty

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