Sunday, April 19, 2009

Looking for an apartment in NY? Who ya gonna call? Broker Busters

Apartment hunting in NYC is stressful, particularly if you're an out-of-towner looking to make the move to the big city.

If you don't have the time to check out dozens of apartments or the money to spend flying to NYC to meet with pushy brokers and scouring all of the city for the perfect 10x10 abode, a new service has come to the rescue.

Broker Busters, founded by three New Yorkers who know what a hassle and inconvenience it can be to find the right apartment from miles away (Oklahoma, Chicago and Philadelphia), offers unbiased, independent consultants to go out and do all the work for you for a nominal fee. Broker Busters will videotape the requested apartments and neighborhoods, honing in on all the nitty gritty details online photos and brokers looking to make a buck leave out (i.e., the cracked tile in the bathroom photos can't capture or the neighborhood scene you may not otherwise see).

Below, FF talks with the Broker Busters themselves to find out how they started and what makes their business such a valuable proposition for apartment seekers.

What is Broker Busters?
Broker Busters is a convenient and cost-effective service for people moving to New York City. When apartment seekers are unable to visit their selected apartments, Broker Busters will visit the apartments for them to save them time and money.

Where did the idea for BB come from?
The idea for Broker Busters was established after we (the co-founders) experienced the gruesome task of searching for an apartment in NYC with limited time and economic resources. As new college graduates at the point of our move, we had limited time and money to fly to NYC prior to our relocation in search of an apartment. We were reliant on online searches, which ultimately revealed skewed apartment photos. After many years of establishing a residence in the Big Apple and grasping an understanding of the different neighborhoods and tricks to surviving in NYC, we wanted to help others transition to the city as frugally and as easily as possible.

Who is your target customer?
Broker Busters is an ideal service for all prospective and current New Yorkers. For people living outside of NYC, Broker Busters' services can save them the time and expense of traveling to NYC to look for apartments, and provide valuable insights about NYC from a local's perspective. For people currently living in NYC and in search of a new apartment, Broker Busters offers them the convenience of an unbiased video analysis when they are unable to visit due to work or school schedules.

What makes BB a valuable resource for Fabulously Frugal followers?
Broker Busters is an extremely valuable resource of Fabulously Frugal followers as the service saves the significant expense of airline tickets, cab fares, and temporary housing (i.e. hotels), etc. As we quickly realized, the expense of searching for a NYC apartment, many times unsuccessful due to lack of sufficient funds, is very significant, yet can be ideally managed with Broker Busters.

Do you plan to expand BB to other cities in the future? Broker Busters is currently in the process of evaluating its offering in cities such as Chicago, Los Angeles, and London.

For more information about Broker Busters, go to or check them out on Twitter @BrokerBustersNY.

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