#cheap apartments in nyc
433 E. 82nd St. where Harper Lee rented a one-bedroom apartment Photo: Angel Chevrestt
Harper Lee had something rarer than a best-seller — a dirt-cheap apartment in New York City.
The reclusive author of “To Kill a Mockingbird,” who died in her native Monroeville, Ala. Friday at age 89. had maintained an Upper East Side apartment and renewed the lease only a few months ago.
Lee signed on for two more years for her one-bedroom at 433 E. 82nd St. even though she hadn’t occupied it since suffering a stroke in 2007.
“She’s up to date on her rent,” said property manager Steven Austern, who lives in the building.
He said the rent was less than $1,000 a month.
With Lee living elsewhere, Austern had a legal right to terminate the lease — and collect a higher rent from a new tenant — but he said he couldn’t do that.
“She was a personal friend of mine,” he said.
Lee was also friendly with other tenants in the building.
“She was a very Southern and hospitable type of person,” one neighbor said.
Lee would finish the New York Times Magazine crossword puzzle by 9 a.m. every Sunday and leave it on a table in the building lobby.
“There was never an empty box,” the neighbor recalled.
She was a big Mets fan but couldn’t watch games on TV because she never had one, he said.