Cate Corcoran

Articles by

Cate Corcoran

Cate Corcoran has written for the New York Times Magazine, Wired, Salon and San Francisco. She is renovating a wood frame house in Brooklyn and is obsessed with real estate, renovation and places that time forgot.

12/25/15 8:30am

Holiday Tradition Brooklyn

Pull up a chair and settle down with a mug of hot cocoa and a candy cane, the better to peruse our holiday-themed reading today.

Even if you’re far away from Brooklyn, you can still take a virtual trip through the borough and its seasonal delights — holly-bedecked brownstones, Santas on the street, and the dazzling display of lights in Dyker Heights — via our morning holiday photo post. (more…)

12/23/15 10:21am


If you were a celebrity, where would you want to live? Brooklyn is a nice little hideaway, and a couple mil goes much farther here than in, say, Manhattan.

In 2015, Nets player Thaddeus Young joined the swelling ranks of celebrities who call Brooklyn home, while Girls star Zosia Mamet hightailed it back to Manhattan after a short stint in Bushwick. (more…)

12/07/15 10:38am

Photo by Barbara Eldredge

Can visitors to the Brooklyn Heights Promenade still see the breathtaking view of Manhattan they have enjoyed since the Promenade was created in the 1950s? Or has the Pierhouse development ruined it — and if so, can anything be done about it now?

Two community groups have filed yet another suit against Brooklyn Bridge Park and developer Toll Brothers, claiming Pierhouse is in the wrong but that it’s not too late to make things right. (more…)

12/01/15 11:57am
affordable-housing-ocean-hill-brooklyn-henry-apartments-3 - 1

The building at Site A was up to four stories in mid-November

The big affordable housing complex known as the Henry Apartments on Broadway in Ocean Hill is now very far along, with the first five stories peeking up over the construction fence on the two lots on two sides of Decatur Street.

Workers have been hurrying to finish up the outside of the two complexes before winter sets in, and it looks like they will succeed. They’ve been adding about one story a week on both sites for the past month or so. (more…)

11/26/15 8:30am
A very colorful Prospect Park. Photo by Edrei Rodriguez

A very colorful Prospect Park. Photo by Edrei Rodriguez

In honor of the holiday, Brownstoner will be publishing special stories today and Friday.

First up is a guide to beautiful walks to take in Brooklyn to work off your Thanksgiving dinner. Later in the morning, our columnist Suzanne Spellen (aka Montrose Morris) will be taking a look at the history of Thanksgiving celebrations in Brooklyn. (more…)

11/23/15 12:31pm

Renovating An Old House

If you’ve ever renovated an old house, chances are there are some things you wish you’d done differently. Here are the top 10 things to know before you start — all from hard-won experience.

10. Do everything at once up front.
It will seem more expensive, but we promise you will save money and mental trauma in the long run. You only want to open and close the walls once. Plastering, painting and floor refinishing should all be done before you move in. (more…)

11/19/15 1:00pm

Commercial broker Chris Havens, left, interviews commercial developer Albert Laboz

Resistance to high rents in Bushwick and the dramatic impact of the end of the 421-a tax break were two hot topics industry insiders were talking about at the Brooklyn Real Estate Roundtable at the Brooklyn Historical Society Tuesday afternoon.

Brownstoner checked it out and mingled with developers, brokers, bankers, and architects, who gathered — as they do every quarter — to discuss the industry’s most pressing issues and hear movers and shakers talk about their projects.

Click through for Brownstoner’s favorite quotes, notable trends, and development updates. (more…)

11/16/15 9:36am


Has the New York real estate market peaked? Agents are reporting a slowdown that started at the end of the summer: Sparsely attended open houses, properties sitting on the market with no offers, price cuts.

“Prices kept climbing and climbing, and the market started not being able to handle it. Sellers weren’t listening and just went too far, and now everybody’s taking a step back,” said a manager of a Brooklyn office for a major firm who requested anonymity because he wasn’t authorized by his company to speak on the record.

Buyers may have reached a limit to what they are willing or able to pay. The standard approach of adding 10 percent to the last sale price is no longer flying, agents told Brownstoner. They stressed they are not seeing a dip — and certainly not a crash — but a slowing of the intense acceleration in prices that has become the norm in the Brooklyn market since 2012. (more…)

11/12/15 3:01pm


The Brooklyn economy is doing great, thanks to increasing population and jobs, according to a sweeping economic report released last week by the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce.

Brooklyn added thousands of jobs last year, an increase of 5.8 percent, and in just one or two years may have more residents than Chicago, the third-largest city in the U.S.

“We’re growing,” Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Carlo Scissura told Brownstoner. “In a year or two, we will have more population living here than in Chicago. The trends show a good future for our population.” (more…)

11/09/15 3:00pm

Protesters fight the eviction of longtime Bed Stuy homeowner Mary Ward in 2011

Con artists hiding behind untraceable LLCs are swindling longtime homeowners in Bed Stuy, Crown Heights and elsewhere out of their homes. In some cases, fraudsters lie to get homeowners to sign over the deed. In other cases, they simply forge signatures without the homeowner knowing a deed transfer has taken place — until it’s too late. (more…)