New York City apartments are notoriously pricey. In fact, small units regularly rent for several thousand dollars a month. However, an actress managed to rent a two-bedroom apartment in trendy Greenwich Village for less than $30 a month for over 60 years, according to CNN.
In 1955, Patricia O’Grady moved into the apartment with three friends. The landlord told them that they could rent the place for the bargain price of $16 a month if they also swept the hallways and did some light cleaning.
While her friends eventually moved out, O’Grady stayed in the apartment, pursuing her dream of becoming an actress. Over a five-decade career, she appeared in several Off-Broadway plays and had a few small parts on TV soap operas. She also had an uncredited role in “Taxi Driver.”
O’Grady never made it big, but she made enough to keep her little rent-controlled apartment. In March, she was tragically struck and killed by a car at the age of 84. At the time of her death, her rent was $28.43, not even double what she originally started paying 63 years ago.
O’Grady apparently lucked into the low rent through a likable personality and New York City’s rent-stabilization laws. The previous owner of the building that houses her apartment became such good friends with her that he barely raised her rent over the years. When the current owner of the building, Adam Pomerantz, bought it in 2002, he learned that she was only paying $26.45 a month. Because of New York City’s rent-stabilization laws, he could only raise it to $1.98 per month. However, he also became good friends with her, so he didn’t mind.
Now that O’Grady has passed away, Pomerantz intends to refurbish the apartment, which friends called a “dump with character” in her obituary. The rent will also be raised to around $5,000 a month.