YouTube Rental Ad for Perfect Park Slope Pad

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The story goes: a friend of a friend of a friend has a way of making sure he doesn't end up with crazy roommates. The test? "Say you had something you wanted to discuss with one or all of us, and we were out for the day," he'll say to prospective renters. "What would you do?"

Anyone who so much as mentions the words "note," "fridge," and "leave," is automatically disqualified.

Dirk Healy doesn't have such stringent requirements, but the 29-year-old Brooklyn resident is, with an ingenious advertising strategy, giving potential roommates as clear a sense of who he is as he's looking to get from them. Last week, Healy posted a video on YouTube advertising a "Park Slope Garden Duplex for rent Feb 1st!"

See his YouTube video after the jump..."Welcome to my video tour of my Park Slope brownstone," the video begins, zooming in on a typically Brooklyn gray metal gate, to the exhilarating soundtrack of Manu Chao's Me Gustas Tu. First line after that? "Bike storage. Nice." Gives you a sense of Healy, right? He seems cute. Charming. Aware of alternative transportation methods. This is New York, though, a city that runs on real estate obsession, and he cuts to the chase, cutting to the bedrooms. "Rent for one person is $1400." And below that, in smaller text, because everyone in New York is also aware that many relationships run on a mutual real estate need, "For a couple it is $1700."

The rest is similar – introductions to various rooms ("This is probably my favorite room," Healy says of the gigantor kitchen, cf that openness of introductory spirit at work) and little taglines explaining what's going on in each image. It ends with a shot of Brooklyn bay windows and two overstuffed easy chairs. "Move in is Feb 1st...", the final tagline says, the ellipsis hinting at the awesome life that could be yours, if bike storage + kitchens + a roommate who'll make a video sound awesome to you.

The question is, why'd he do it when craigslist is so available, and free? "I'm not in any sort of video/media field but this is the age of self-publishing," Healy tells us. "Social media has given a much louder voice to the everyday Joe so I thought I'd take advantage of that." Healy did the entire video with a point-and-shoot camera, editing the result on free software that came with his laptop. And the Manu Chao? "The choice of music and font and words were all deliberate and were chosen to draw in people who shared a taste or aesthetic."

"I've never attempted anything like this before but the response has been awesome," Healy says. "Apartment hunting on Craigslist is always a crap shoot and between the video and access to my Facebook page people can have some idea of what they are walking into." Any concerns that anyone might get a little too enthusiastic, and show up with a homemade bicycle and the complete Chao discography, on Laserdisc? "It's a little weird, knowing that complete strangers can take a virtual tour of my home but the benefits during this roommate search greatly outweigh my stalker fears."
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