Walking renters down the aisle

<span style="font-style: italic;">One agent brokers a rental deal — and a wedding</span>

In today’s down market, some real estate brokers are going above and beyond their job descriptions in order to secure scarce deals.

In the past, Kirsten Nelson, a broker with Platinum Properties, has brought the customary bottle of wine to clients after they’ve moved into a new place, and has even taken clients out for drinks and meals to celebrate a new apartment and introduce them to the neighborhood.

This spring, however, he took things to the next level and helped shape one couple’s wedding, which saved them money and allowed them to move into a bigger place.

The couple, a hairstylist for Rachael Ray and a photographer, were in the market for a one-bedroom rental. As Nelson showed them around two dozen buildings, they told him about their May wedding plans, which consisted of a Central Park ceremony followed by a reception at a swanky hotel.

As he was showing them an apartment at 10 Hanover Square in the Financial District, he offhandedly suggested that if they moved into the building, they could hold their reception in the common room and save thousands of dollars.

Nelson noted that the money saved could be put toward their living space.

Sign Up for the undefined Newsletter

“This was a unique circumstance that happened pretty fast,” Nelson said. “I made a few suggestions and they just lit up when they realized what it meant.”

The couple ended up renting an even larger unit at 10 Hanover, a one bedroom with a home office. They negotiated a few months of free rent as well.

Also wearing his wedding planner hat, Nelson suggested the two have an after-party at nearby Joseph’s restaurant, whose owner he knows well. The couple did that, too.

For his services, Nelson received the customary fee of one month’s rent (which came from the owner of the building), and a bunch of good referrals.

More importantly, perhaps, he got a rental deal done in a tough market.

“They got a much bigger place in a nicer building, and what struck me was that it worked because they weren’t having a 500-person party,” said Nelson. “It greased the deal but didn’t seal it.”