Head to courthouse steps for auction of a co-op

Apartment 1-B at 107 W. 106th St., not on the market.

If you have your heart set on a bargain co-op, a foreclosure auction that I spotted in an advertisement with the tiniest type may be for you.  It caught my eye because such auctions in Manhattan occur infrequently to the best of my knowledge.

The apartment in question is a 550-sf unit at 107 W. 106th St. between Columbus and Amsterdam avenues on the Upper West Side.  It is listed as the C apartment, while others others in the pet-friendly 16-unit building have numbers such as 1-B (above) attached to the letter.  Is Unit C in the cellar?

No pictures or floorplans are available, but I have learned that the place went on the market in December of 2008 for $375,000.  It stayed at that price until last October, when the ask was $349,000 with monthly maintenance of $565.  As is typical in such situations, the place remains actively listed.

The building was converted into a co-operative rather recently, in 2007, when the currently listed owner, one Paul D. Hurley, likely bought Unit C.

By way of comparison, 3-B was listed at $450,000 in September of 2008 and remained on the market only two weeks before it was taken off permanently.  It, too, is 550 square feet; the maintenance, a reasonable proxy for comparable apartments in the same building, is just $3 more than the property to be auctioned.  (So, probably C isn’t in the cellar after all.)

The auction will be held Feb. 17 at 11 a.m. on the front steps of State Supreme Court, 60 Center St. in Manhattan.

But – there always are “buts” – you may well be bidding against the unidentified “secured party; the apartment is being sold as is;  and the event may be adjourned, delayed or terminated up to the day of the auction “without further notice.”

As for another concern, I don’t know for sure whether the co-op board has the power in the case to turn down the purchaser; I think not.

Still, if you do become the successful bidder against the lender and the professionals looking to scoop up a bargain for re-sale, you’ll likely win the apartment for perhaps 25 percent of its market value.

Since I’ve never witnessed the quaint practice of a foreclosure auction on the courthouse steps, I’ll do my best to attend and report back.

Meantime, if you have questions, the attorney for that secured party is one Ronald S. Kahn at 973-383-4701 or ronkahn@mylawyeris.com.  (He’ll no doubt love me for providing his contact info.  Then again, he did publish it.)

You’re on your own!

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Malcolm Carter
Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker
Senior Vice President
Charles Rutenberg Realty
127 E. 56th Street
New York, NY 10022

M: 347-886-0248
F: 347-438-3201

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