Buying sight unseen is not for faint of heart

(Flickr photo by MadEmoiselle Sugar)

Anyone who purchases an apartment from floorplans probably knows that opportunities abound for making a mistake.

An article in the New York Times last year provided a good rundown of issues that buyers should explore before signing on the dotted line for apartments in buildings yet to be completed or, on occasion, even started.

Some of the concerns that the wise buyer of such apartments ought to bear in mind center on the following:

  • The offering plan, which should not be left only for attorneys to read, especially the “special risks” section and projected annual budget (which probably is a fiction in any case);
  • How the square footage of the unit was measured;
  • The words “or equivalent” in reference to finishes and appliances;
  • Floor plans not only of the apartment contemplated but also the ones around it, plus the proximity of elements such as elevators and trash chutes;
  • Floor numbering, which may inflate how high the apartment really is;
  • Whether the apartment has varying ceiling heights;
  • Views that could be compromised in the future;
  • The likelihood of construction delays.

With a continuing shortage of new condos, many buyers feel pressured to get in early.

That is probably not a bad tactic so long as the housing market appears to be strengthening, but any buyer who goes that route is well advised to do so with eyes wide open.

Tomorrow: Last Weekly Roundup until April 5

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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
Web site

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