No place like home — sometimes unfortunately


Example of an air conditioning unit that would be installed on a rooftop.

The following headline in the New York Post caught my eye:

Manhattan couple says hulking Duane Reade air conditioner blows away their view

According to the newspaper, they own a $3 million duplex on East 86th Street next to Duane Reade.  Lo and behold, the store is planning to construct a huge eight-foot-high air conditioning unit on its roof.

Uh oh, there goes any view (from the second and third floors) and down goes the Upper East Side co-op’s value.

So the couple has lodged a lawsuit claiming that the apartment “will be compromised as to safety and security, obstruction of views, vibration, subjected to excessive noise, possible air pollution and other toxic emissions, all of which constitute a nuisance.”

Perhaps so, but the case illustrates how little certainty exists in the land of real estate.

The apartment next door seems quiet at all hours of a buyer’s visit.  Okay, but what if those neighbors move and the new ones possess a terrier that barks whenever the owners are absent.

Instead of a dog, maybe it’s a stentorian instrument that a musician practices for hours a day.  Or it could be a child overhead who is allowed to stamp mercilessly on the floor when she awakes at 5:30 a.m.  (This is one development to which I can attest personally, if sleepily.)

Then there is the question of a store that might replace the quiet little nail salon downstairs and produces intrusive odors or noise.  Or say the property across the street becomes a treatment center for recovering addicts, a home for those without one or another facility that excites NIMBY sentiments.

There simply are no guarantees that the property into which you move will continue as the environment that you always wanted for your home.

That’s life, and suing is unlikely to produce much in the way of justice.  It is not a perfect world.


To take your own bite out of the Big Apple, you have the option here to search all available properties privately.

Subscribe by Email


Malcolm Carter
Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker
Charles Rutenberg Realty
127 E. 56th Street
New York, NY 10022

M: 347-886-0248
F: 347-438-3201
Web site

One thought on “No place like home — sometimes unfortunately

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s