Ms. Hussey showed her a one-bedroom in Bedford-Stuyvesant for $1,750 that had an additional small room — a feature that Ms. Komer liked and added to her wish list.
“Elena wanted somewhere where she could create,” Ms. Hussey said. “In Brooklyn, you meet a lot of musicians and artists and writers who want a work space. A corner in the living room wasn’t good enough for Elena. I saw her light up when we went to places that had that half-room.”
The bathroom in the Bed-Stuy apartment, however, lacked a window, which was a deal-breaker.
A fair number of one-bedrooms Ms. Komer saw in Brooklyn had some kind of extra space, but the bathroom window proved elusive. Ms. Hussey requested bathroom information from other agents with listings, but she was rarely able to find out about the window until she and Ms. Komer arrived to see for themselves.
In Bushwick, a beautifully renovated one-bedroom for $1,825 had no bathroom window. And Ms. Komer disliked the ground-floor location, with the bedroom facing the trash cans out front. “I couldn’t imagine the sound and the smells,” she said.
She was scheduled to see a one-bedroom sublet in a new boutique condominium building in Bedford-Stuyvesant that was $2,000 and had a balcony and a washer-dryer. Could those features overcome the lack of a bathroom window?
No — and this one had a floor plan online, so there was no reason to bother seeing it. “It was brand-spanking new and had everything but the window in the bathroom, and that’s what made her say ‘no,’” Ms. Hussey said.
Another one-bedroom in Bedford-Stuyvesant, which also had a small extra room, was undergoing a renovation. The living room held a heap of plastic-draped furniture, but Ms. Komer liked the layout and the size. “I saw the possibilities of this apartment,” she said.
Ms. Hussey urged her to measure. “I don’t need to,” Ms. Komer said. “I can imagine it.”
The apartment not only had a bathroom window, but also a skylight over the stairs, with more sunshine and fresh air than she expected. And with the exception of the small half-bedroom, “Windows are everywhere,” Ms. Komer said.
The apartment was a mess, Ms. Hussey said, but “Elena was able to see through the debris and applied that night.”
The rent was $2,000 a month, with no broker’s fee. Ms. Komer signed an 18-month lease and arrived in the fall with her cat, Shusha.
She is setting up the extra room as a combination closet and art studio — she plans to make molds for sculpture there — and is considering what furniture to buy. “Now I can really think of the interior,” she said. “I am just starting.”
Her main concern is laundry, which hadn’t been a priority before. One nearby laundromat has broken machines, so she walks quite a few blocks to a better one. “It takes a lot of time to do laundry,” Ms. Komer said.
Still, the long walk has its compensations. As she makes her way with her big bag, neighbors “say good morning to you and that makes your day in some ways,” she said. “I like it.”