Category Archive: Buying

NYC Buyer’s Checklist

Here are our top tips before you buy.

The checklist below will help you prepare for your home search and ensure you are able to find the perfect home. 

  • Evaluate your budget
    • Know what to spend for a down payment as well as monthly expenditures (i.e.; maintenance or common charges and real estate taxes, monthly mortgage payment, utilities, parking, etc)
  • Obtain mortgage pre-approval
    • You must know how much you can spend before you spend it. Condominium apartments require at least 10% down; cooperative apartments generally require at least 20% down. However, every building is different. 20% of Manhattan’s buildings are condominium buildings and the other 80% are cooperatives.
  • Select an attorney who specializes in New York City real estate
    • The buyer’s attorney does ‘due diligence’-reading minutes, financial statements of buildings etc.
  • Prioritize top needs
    • Space, light, views, building amenities, are all factors to keep in mind while making the time to view at open houses.
  • Identify the timeline for the move
    • Factors that can go into include but are not limited to: confirming the right moving team, taking time off of work, and making sure that your children are set to go to school in a new location. 
  • Explore different neighborhoods to identify your preferred needs 
    • Some of the top priorities when it comes to neighborhoods are the commute to work and the distinctive flare that each offers.
  • Research schools in the selected neighborhoods(s)
  • Evaluate access to transportation in the selected neighborhoods(s)
    • Again, each neighborhood can have an impact on daily commute, so you will want to make sure that it is manageable for you.
  • Work closely with your broker to gather supporting materials for your mortgage application and board package
    • Cooperative apartment buildings require board approval before a closing can take happen. Condominiums require an information packet to be completed before a closing can take place.
  • Once the apartment has been selected, review building financials with your broker and attorney.

To learn more about the buying process in NYC, download our full guide here. You can also contact us with questions or if you would like to speak with our buying specialists.

4 Tips for Your Upcoming Board Interview

After months of searching and studying up on board rules, you have found your perfect co-op! It offers everything you had on the checklist and the long hunt through NYC is officially over. However, there is one final hurdle to overcome – the board interview. This is the step of the buying process where you will meet the board and be asked a series of questions prior to final approval for tenancy. For many people, this can be a nerve wracking step in the process since you have come so far with bank approval, signed contracts, etc. To lighten the stress that this day can carry, we have provided a couple of key tips that we have gathered from experience of dealing with board approvals:

  • Be on time or a little bit early – punctuality is important and shows your care for the tenancy. It is always recommended to double check with your broker before attending to make sure you have everything you need as well as the correct time. You may even want to meet with your broker at a nearby location 15 minutes in advance to make sure that you are prompt.
  • Be prepped for personal questions – The board will likely want to get to know you so personal questions will likely arise. Some questions may related to previous job experiences, salary changes, frequency of recent moves and this is common in the process. However, you will want to avoid offering any personal information that is not asked for.
  • Prepare in advance if there will be more than one person with you – If you are going to be interviewed with someone else, plan out who will speak to financials, personal questions, etc. It will mitigate any confusion and show preparedness for the interview.
  • Don’t lie – This one is self-explanatory, but as quoted by Baltasar Gracian – “A single lie destroys a whole reputation of integrity”. It is important to be yourself as the board is looking to learn more about who their next neighbor may be.

To learn more tips on handling your next board interview, download our full guide here. If you are planning to search for a co-op, contact us here and  one of our buyer specialists will gladly assist in your next steps. 

Board Interview Full Guide >>