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Wed Aug 28, 2013, 07:09 PM

I am reading "New York" by Edward Rutherford. I an into something that absolutely shocked me.

In the chapter I'm reading, set just before 9/11, Gorham Master, a character from an old-money family, lives in an exclusive co-op building. He is wealthy, but not extremely so. Now an acquaintance, an OB/GYN by the name of Caruso who had delivered all three of Master's children, wants to buy a unit in the building that has come onto the market. From previous chapters, we know that Caruso is from an Italian family that started out dirt poor on the Lower East Side, and the one ancestor, a great-aunt as I recall, even died in the Triangle Shirtwaist factory fire.The president of the co-op board, Vorpal, was opposed. When Master protests that Caruso's financials were just fine, which they were, the board president said that Caruso's "social references," whatever those are, were not good enough, and that they should hold out for someone who has assets of at least five times the value of the unit -- in other words, $25 million . Master angrily says that he himself doesn't have that much in assets, and yet he is there. He also asks Vorpal if he has that much . "But you're old money," says Vorpal. "We like that."

I had only vaguely known how co-ops like this worked. I don't think we have any buildings like this around here. This is just insane to me. How are you supposed to sell a unit under circumstances like this? Just another way the super rich protect themselves from the rest of us, even in the cramped quarters of Manhattan.

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Reply I am reading "New York" by Edward Rutherford. I an into something that absolutely shocked me. (Original post)
Brigid Aug 2013 OP
bettyellen Aug 2013 #1
Downwinder Aug 2013 #2
DURHAM D Aug 2013 #3

Response to Brigid (Original post)

Wed Aug 28, 2013, 07:15 PM

1. Co-ops are a better value for the money than Condos- but the board thing can make them a pain in the

 

ass to sell or god forbid- sublet. You are at the whims of the board.

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Response to Brigid (Original post)

Wed Aug 28, 2013, 07:24 PM

2. Bill Veeck had it all set up to sell the White Sox

to DeBartolo and Major League Baseball would not allow it.

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Response to Brigid (Original post)

Wed Aug 28, 2013, 07:29 PM

3. A co-op board would not allow

Richard Nixon to buy a unit in New York in the 70s for social reasons.

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