Upper Manhattan Nest for a Mother and Son

The Greenwich Village apartment where Laura Martin lived with her son, Dax Roy, couldn’t have been more convenient. It was across Sixth Avenue from his elementary school. On school mornings, Ms. Martin would walk Dax across the street and then return home.


The rent on their 1,100-square-foot two-bedroom was around $6,000 a month. Neighbors who moved into the building more recently “who had the same apartment were paying like $8,000 or something,” said Ms. Martin, an inventor and product designer in her 40s, who, having endured tiny kitchens, invented a magnetic spice rack. Her goal was to purchase a similar space for a lower monthly outlay.


“At first I objected to moving because I liked my old home and, you know, there’s no place like home,” said Dax, an actor who is now 11. But he was finishing elementary school and would be entering middle school in a different part of town, so it was a good time for a change.


Ms. Martin, who is separated from Dax’s father, looked around Greenwich Village and nearby Chelsea. But she was unwilling to pay $1 million for a small two-bedroom or a one-bedroom where she or her son would have to sleep in the living room. She preferred to put down roots in a new neighborhood. And because of Red, a Maltese-poodle cross, a dog-friendly building was a must.

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