How Much Do Those ‘Only Murders in the Building’ Apartments Actually Cost? 3 NYC Real Estate Agents Weigh In
There's a lot to love about the new Hulu series Only Murders in the Building. The show follows three true-crime-loving New Yorkers living in the same apartment complex who band together to solve a murder in their building. The must-watch series serves up adorable chemistry between Steve Martin and Martin Short, Selena Gomez rocking some seriously cool looks and an unusual blend of intrigue and humor. And while viewers watching the show have many questions (“Who is tie-dye guy?” and “What was Tim Kono doing with all that jewelry?”), New Yorkers need to know—where can I get one of those gorgeous apartments?
The opulent Arconia building (the scene for much of the show’s drama) might as well be the show’s fourth main character, with its swoon-worthy entryway arch and luxe apartments. Happily, you too can live out all your Upper West Side crime-solving dreams because the series used the real-life Belnord building for exterior shots, including that expansive courtyard. The only catch? It’s going to cost you a pretty penny. (Think: $9 million and up.)
The Belnord is located at 225 W 86th Street on New York City's Upper West Side between Broadway and Amsterdam Avenue. Built in 1908, the Belnord is 13 stories tall and occupies one full city block. With over 200 units, the pre-war building offers a 24/7 staffed lobby, a courtyard and garden, a fitness center and sports court, a lounge, a children’s room and another dedicated room for teens. Not too shabby.
Sadly, scenes taking place inside the Arconia were not actually shot in the Belnord, but rather in a nearby studio set that was designed to look like the interior of a posh apartment building. Which means that estimating exactly how much the crime-solving trio’s apartments would cost IRL isn’t so easy—but we asked NYC real estate agent Donna Bradbury, a Licensed Associate Broker with The Level Group, to give us her best guess.
Oliver Putnam's apartment (aka Martin Short)
“A larger four to five bedroom apartment with a full dining room, like Martin Short’s, is about 4,800 square feet. The list price would be $2,700/foot or $12,960,000. However, being his character is also a famous Broadway director, it could list for even higher, say $3,000/foot.”
Charles Haden Savage’s apartment (aka Steve Martin)
“Steve Martin’s apartment is also large, but perhaps three bedrooms. The list price per square foot would be very similar with a max of $3,000/foot. These smaller units are about 3,600 square feet. List price for this would be $9,720,000.”
Mabel Mora’s apartment (aka Selena Gomez)
“I image that Selena Gomez’s unit was in original condition and is one of the larger units in the building. They don't make such large units anymore—this one would be 5,000 to 6,000 square feet—and would price at $2,200/foot in its current condition prior to renovation. That’s approximately $11,000,000. A good comp for this scenario is this unit for sale at The Apthorp.”
OK, what if I want to rent an apartment?
Jonathan Miller, President/CEO of MILLER SAMUEL INC. Real Estate Appraisers & Consultants, tells us that the developer of the Belnord has been busy converting building rentals to condos. “The redone units are considered luxury units, being extensively upgraded. In fact, apartment 405 was rented about five years ago for $16,000 per month after it was renovated.” Although Miller notes that existing tenants in unrenovated apartments are likely paying a small fraction of that.
And let’s not forget about those monthly fees. Gerard C. Splendore, a broker for Warburg Realty, tells us that monthly charges and taxes are between the $5,000 and $7,000 range for two bedroom units. He also reveals the Belnord offers something called ‘The Belnord Club,’ which includes a package of amenities.
So yeah, not exactly cheap. But hey, maybe you could negotiate the price down a couple of mill... you know, considering that someone was murdered in the building.
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