#MoveUptown. Hamilton did.
Posted on May 2, 2016

Bohemia Blog by Agent Kathleen LaMagna

Like everybody else seems to be these days, I am a “Hamilton” fanatic. I listen to the cast recording daily, and my sister and I are almost ready to debut Cabinet battles #1 and #2 as our next party trick. (For those wondering, I’m Jefferson).

[caption id="attachment_6410" align="alignright" width="278"]- Photo Credit: Joan Marcus - Photo Credit: Joan Marcus[/caption]

Every one of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s lyrics is ingenious, and the one that resonates with me the most is in the song “Helpless.” In his proposal to his future wife Eliza, Alexander Hamilton explains that although he doesn’t have a lot of money, he will take good care of her and make a good life for the two of them … in Harlem. He says, “No stress, my love for you was never in doubt, we’ll get a little place in Harlem, and we’ll figure it out.”

This lyric perfectly captures how I felt when I first moved to the city. Like Hamilton, I didn’t have a “dollar to my name” or any sense of how I would make ends meet upon arrival. All I knew was that I loved New York City more than anything else, and I would figure out the rest. My two roommates and I moved to the most affordable apartment we could find. A 3 bedroom in Hamilton Heights. Go figure.

Hamilton’s mention of Harlem is also special for me as a real estate agent. Now that our busiest season is approaching, we will be working with several clients who are moving to the city for the first time in search of their “little places in Harlem.” (Although it’s more like “gigantic places in Harlem” … You can get a lot of space inexpensively uptown). It can be a scary and overwhelming experience that I know all too well.

Truth be told, these clients who are new to the city, excited to figure it all out, are some of my favorites. Nothing makes me happier than teaching them about the uptown neighborhoods, taking them to my favorite spots (Yes, Broadway’s Finest deli is still at the top of my list. See previous blog post), or even pointing out Hamilton’s house at The Hamilton Grange National Memorial. It’s a comforting reminder that we might not become Secretary of the Treasury, but hey, if Alexander Hamilton could make it in New York after starting from nothing, maybe we can, too.

The best part of it all is running into my clients once they’re settled in and hearing about all of the great things they’ve done since they’ve moved to the neighborhood. Whether they are starting rehearsals for their first Broadway show, launching a wedding dress line, or navigating their first year of marriage (all real reasons my clients have moved here), they are figuring it out.

And, hopefully, if I’ve done my job, they feel a little less helpless.