Lizbello, Home Seller in Greenwich Village, New...

Is there any disadvantage to turning a 1BR in GV into a 2BR by splitting the living room into a smaller LR 2nd BR? Will this get me a better price?

Asked by Lizbello, Greenwich Village, New York, NY Mon Sep 12, 2011

The whole place is 725 sq ft. The LR is 22 x 13 so I could split it to a 13x10 BR and 13x12 LR. I'm thinking this would appeal to those looking for a baby room or office. What are the pros and cons please. Is this a good strategy or is there something I'm not thinking of. Thx.

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While it may sound like a good idea to "turn a 1-BR...into a 2 BR" in reality, it will always be a 1-BR because the offering plan has it listed as a 1-BR, and others in your line are 1-BRs. It will not fool anyone. You would actually be mis-representing this. For example, some owners of alcove studios section off the sleeping alcove, and this is a very good use of the space and what it was intended for. However, this does not make it a 1 BR. It remains an alcove studio.
I would say that rather than look for tricks, hire yourself a skilled and experienced agent from a reputable company with great marketing capacity. Successful agents get you top dollar because we give you great exposure, have honed negotiating skills, and know how to present your property in the best light. By having a Village location, you already have a lot going for you, no need for gimmicks.
To find a top agent, go to the "FInd a Pro" tab on top and put in New York, NY.

Jenet Levy
Halstead Property, LLC
212 381-4268 for all NYC listings
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 12, 2011
Splitting the 2 bedroom into a pieces is a marketing tactic to TRY to get you more money. At the end of the day, people see thorough this that it is chopped up and the seller is trying to get more money; when the buyers end up paying price per square foot anyway, and are looking for usable space.

You will want to create the most usable space as possible. I have seen many units that advertised as a 2 bedroom but the second bedroom is so small that it turns buyers off. Ie. A studio with a wall up and called a one bedroom.

Greenwich Village apartments are small and pricy enough, that you will want to show that you have great usable open space and not that you are getting a tiny shoebox.

Jennifer Chiongbian
SVP/ Associate Broker
Rutenberg Realty
2 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 12, 2011
Make the renovations for your living purpose but not for selling it as a 2BR. When it comes down to reselling your apt, the smart person that will buy it will purchase it according to how it was originally configured in the offering plan. Will it get you a better price as a 2BR? Depending on how you chop it up. maybe not. Sometimes, it won't even sell because of how impractical the floor plan has been altered. However if the new configuration is well thought of and renovations are well done in terms of materials used, lighting, space, etc., it may get you a tad more than if you sold it as a 1BR. So my practical suggestion is to change it only if you need it for your purpose or for your enjoyment of living and hope for the best on your resale. I would be more than happy to help you if you would want me to render my opinion on your space. Best of luck on your decision!

Zita Alvarez Lo
Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker
Cell 917.656.8112
205 East 42nd Street, 6th floor
New York, NY 10017
1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 12, 2011
Hi Lizbello,

In doing any conversion you are looking for two things:
1. That it's legal and 2. That it's an improvement on functionality.

Most buildings have a set of rules in the Improvements section. To be a legal division it may require an approved licensed architect's plan. And to be called a bedroom it usually needs a closet.

Then you look at where you fall within other competing 2 bedrooms on the market in the Village. Your legally converted unit will still have to hold its own against the competition as it will attract 2 bedroom seekers.

I am very te mpted to see your floor plan :) I love drawing in suggestions. But look, square footage is the key factor in the pricing of your unit. Approved legal conversion plans alone will boost the value a bit, then it can be marketed as 1 bed convertible 2.

There are a few more things you can do, but this is a good place to start.

1 vote Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 12, 2011
Dear Lizbello, I would make sure there are windows and heating in each space with a closet in the space that would become the second bedroom. Otherwise, it may not be what constitutes as a legal 2 bedroom. As well, the legal room count on record would need to be checked. If you could say yes to the first 3 questions above, you may choose to market your apartment as a 1 bedroom with the ability to convert to a 2 bedroom. If a buyer looks at the listing as a 2 bedroom and then sees it is only 725 sf, it may be prohibitive.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 12, 2011
Not the best of ideas to do. You may not get the desired results as it will be nothing more than a chopped up one bedroom. Your location should bring in top dollar. Hopefully you have a nicely updated apartment. Good luck.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 12, 2011
Thank you all, I have my answer. i will keep it as a 1BR with large LR.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 12, 2011
Dear Lizbello,

It would be a good strategy if the 13 x 10 BR has a window. Otherwise, it would not be considered a legal bedroom so you would only be able to market it as a home office and not as a baby room. The other disadvantage if that you would be creating a much smaller lving room.

I think it would be best to let the new Buyers divide it after they purchase it if they need a 2nd BR since a large LR is a big selling point and lots of smaller rooms are not such a big selling point.

Best of luck in selling your apt,

Pat Harbison, Exec VP, Halstead Property 212 381-2205
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 12, 2011
The best possible usage of space
Is to leave it as a one bedroom. Chopping it up will not bring you anymore money. Concentrate on how to make the place pop and you will get more that way. My partner and I have been written up in the NY Times for getting apartments in the best possible shape, in fact we did such a great job the seller decided to stay instead of move. let us come in and work with you in getting ready to put your home on the market and maximize your sale. 917-750-3088
0 votes Thank Flag Link Mon Sep 12, 2011
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