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What Is a Pied-à-Terre in NYC?

If you frequently travel for work, it won't surprise you to learn that 1.3 million business trips are taken across the US each year. In some cases, business travel takes workers to a variety of locations.

You find yourself back in the exact location with some frequency other times. It might even be that your commute to the city is part of your regular workweek.

If you travel for work with some frequency, you also know how tedious and old it can be checking in and out of hotels.

It's just one of the reasons the pied-à-terre is so popular with the traveling and commuting workers.

If you're wondering whether a pied-à-terre might be the perfect part-time solution to your time in New York City, you need to read on. Learn what a pied-à-terre is and how it might benefit your travel for both work and pleasure.


What Is a Pied-à-Terre?

Pied-à-terre is a french term that directly translates as "a foot on the ground." Its early uses meant a convenient first-floor apartment for busy executives who needed part-time living accommodations.

The term pied-à-terre has expanded since its original use. Now, someone might use a pied-à-terre for business, pleasure, or part-time accommodations for urban living.

In New York City's bustling real estate market, pied-à-terre can mean anything from a tiny studio apartment to a luxury condo.

Benefits of Owning a Condo, Pied-à-Terre

As the definition of pied-à-terre has evolved, so has the reason to own one. Initially intended for the convenience of haggard business travel, their use now goes well beyond work travel.

Often there are financial benefits to owning a pied-à-terre, but again there are more benefits than just financial ones.

Let's take a look at some benefits of owning a pied-à-terre.

Business Travel

If you're a frequent business traveler, you know how tiring the rotation of different hotels can get. At the end of a long day, you want to escape to a place that feels like home.

Additionally, business travel can get expensive week after week. New York City is considered the most expensive city for business travel, with costs up to $799 per day of travel.

The average business traveler is away from home between 48 and 84 nights a year. Having a place that feels like home on those nights is essential.

Investment Property

More and more investors are opting to buy properties in places, not their primary residences, as a pied-à-terre.

They use them when they visit the city for pleasure or business and then rent them out when they're not in town themselves.

City Life

While at some point, you may have opted for suburban life for more space and a bigger home, city life still can have quite the allure.

Owning a pied-à-terre means you can take advantage of city life even if you're not using the condo for business use.

The advantages of city life include:

  • Shopping

  • Dining

  • Nightlife

  • Museums

  • Art galleries

  • Live entertainment

Some choose to come into the city for a Broadway show and dinner or musical event and appreciate having their place to stay following the night out.

Long-Distance Commuting

New York City commutes are nothing to balk at. If you frequently commute to the city, you probably know how much time you spend in the car, on the train, or stuck in traffic.

Imagine how much more time you'd have to work if you weren't faced with the long commute.

It's the reason many are opting to buy a pied-à-terre. They avoid the long commutes and stay in the city on work nights.


If you spend regular time in New York City, you may want your family to join you.

Likewise, if you frequently visit family or friends in the same place, it might make more sense to invest in a pied-à-terre than pay for hotels over and over.

Buying a Condo or Co-Op

When you start to look for the perfect pied-à-terre, one consideration will be whether you'll be buying a condo or into a co-op building.

Most co-ops restrict pied-à-terre residences. If there's one that allows it, it'll likely be part of the advertising for the unit.

In most cases, it's easier to buy a condo in New York City to use as a pied-à-terre than a co-op.

As you start to look, it's smart for you and your real estate agent to be upfront about your intended use for the unit to ensure it's accepted at that property.

What Amenities Are Offered

For many condos in New York City, you not only get the benefit of condo living, but you also get some amenities to go with it. Some popular and standard amenities also include:

  • Location, location, location

  • View of the city

  • Common living and entertaining areas

  • Access to public transportation

  • Pet-friendly

  • Concierge service

  • Full staff (doorman, maintenance, housekeeping, etc.)

  • Gym, spa, and other quality-of-life amenities

Consider what amenities are most important to you and have your real estate make them part of your search criteria.

Taxes in New York City

There has been outrage in New York and the surrounding areas about the purchase of pied-à-terres and the impact on tax dollars.

When Ken Griffin purchased a $238 million pied-à-terre in New York, the debate came to a head.

A pied-à-terre tax was on the docket for the state congressional season for 2021-2022. Be sure to talk with your realtor about potential tax implications for buying a pied-à-terre.

New York City Pied-à-Terres

Owning a pied-à-terre has become an excellent business travel accommodation and luxury for many who frequent New York City.

Whether you’re looking to rent, to buy, or to sell in NYC, Dillon Ross can help. If you're interested in purchasing a pied-à-terre, we can help. Contact us today and let us help you find the perfect home-away-from-home.

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