“You hear stories about kids fleeing the pandemic to be with their parents, and the opposite happened to me,” said Jose Madrigal Jr. “And, honestly, it feels great.” To wit: His parents are less inclined than past tenants to complain about his stereo sound system.
“I don’t think he ever thought he’d live with his partying college kid,” Bianca Colasuonno, an agent with Compass who has known the family for years, said about the senior Mr. Madrigal, but they were faced with a complicated decision.
After losing their Astoria tenants, the couple tried for a few months to sell the property, but were not satisfied with the offers. Moving into the Astoria home meant forgoing additional rental income, and the couple is unlikely to sell their Manhattan apartment anytime soon, because the market there has been slower to recover and less robust than in other parts of the city.
But the couple feel more at ease in Queens, where their two-family house is on a residential street with two outdoor spaces. Traveling to nearby Flushing to see their oldest son, his wife and their granddaughter has also gotten easier. “We’re closer now than we probably ever were,” the senior Mr. Madrigal said.
For the Craftses, who joined three households to buy a sprawling compound in Weston, Conn., their unusual needs meant they faced less competition for their property, at least compared to heated demand in the single-family market.
“It was one of those properties that didn’t work for everybody,” said Kristi Law, an agent with William Pitt Sotheby’s Realty, who helped them buy the home. While many local listings were selling in days or weeks, this compound, which had been on the market for a few months, was larger than what many buyers were seeking. Still, there was urgency to the purchase: sensing other bidders, the Craftses made an offer, sight unseen, after their first video tour in February; they closed in May.
They were well suited to the property. The original owner, Alice DeLamar, a philanthropist, built the estate in 1931 as an artist retreat. The new owners are all creative in their own right: Ms. Scherer Crafts and Mr. Crafts are multimedia producers, who recently completed “Street Gang: How We Got to Sesame Street,” a documentary about the children’s show; Ms. Scherer Crafts’ mother, Jackie, is an artist and former arts-and-crafts store owner; and Mr. Crafts’ parents, are professional singers and vocal instructors. Even though none of them had lived in Connecticut, they all grew up on the East Coast, where much of the Craftses’ work is now located.